By Sara Jane Hess and David Grabowski

Howdy podcast friends! It's David and SJ again to give you a rundown of A) what's going on in the world of podcasting, including the "Answer All" fiasco and how it could affect you, and B) four shows that we think entrepreneurs are doing after should have in their queue.

If you missed our last roundup, we are the SPI Podcasts Team: Sara Jane Hess (Senior Producer) and David Grabowski (Producer). We wade deep in podcast land every week producing Pat's shows (and some super exciting behind the curtain stuff we're not allowed to publicly announce yet) – and we fucking love it. All of that to say: trust us … you can trust us.

Anyway …

4 podcast recommendations without hesitation

Business Schooled (Synchrony)

Business Schooled is a gem that appears to have flown under some radars. The premise is simple and unique: send a well-known young entrepreneur out on the streets to learn business lessons and document everything from those who succeed. Season one is hosted by Alexis Ohanian, whom you may recognize as the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Reddit. His curious road trip includes visits to a successful quilting company, global music retailer Sweetwater, and a sixty-year-old with a PhD in welfare who reinvented the travel bag industry – and that just scratches the surface. Season 2 gets a new host, Soraya Darabi, founder of early-stage investment firm TMV, and goes in the same direction. There's a lot to learn through the lens of Alexis and Soraya, so don't miss out!

Recommended episode: "Practice Joy (and Medicine)"

Second life (second life)

Career pivots can be scary, but Second Life embraces the change and empowers people – especially women – to face the challenge head on. Second Life was created by Who What Wear co-founder Hillary Kerr and shows the success of its guests, who range from high profile actresses and founders like Reese Witherspoon to models, journalists, media professionals, bestselling authors, CEOs and more. There are a variety of inspirations for this.

Recommended episode: "Lilly Singh: YouTube creator, actor, producer, bestselling author and presenter of A Little Late with Lilly Singh (explicitly)"

Customers from Hell's Podcast (Bryce Bladon)

Customers From Hell Podcast Could Ring A Bell; That's because it's a spin-off of the hugely popular, extremely funny Tumblr blog of the same name. Host Bryce Bladon has over twelve years of experience as a creative professional, working with megaliths like the Government of Canada and the New York Times to shape the future of technology and ideas. At CFHP, Bladon explores the future of the self-employed with a fascinating, rotating group of guests and topics: freelance, consulting, crowdfunding, project management. It's a strong mix of humor and insight – ideally with a short drive and a hot drink.

Featured Episode: "Sell Your Soft Skills Hard: Alison's Freelance Bible Grade"

Wellpreneur (Wellpreneur)

Okay, this is a small niche, but it's probably one of the most important niches out there right now: wellness entrepreneurship. From meditation, mindfulness and yoga to nutrition, skin care and much more, wellness professionals are more important than ever. Wellpreneur is an invaluable resource: Over 230 episodes are aimed at entrepreneurs in the wellness sector. Content marketing, website building, growth strategies – this show has a little bit of everything to help the companies that help us thrive.

Recommended episode: "Start your wellness business – step by step!"

Reply to everyone and the ripple of accounts

It's been a very busy couple of weeks in the podcast world, and there are some stories we want to get into – but we have to start with the biggie first.

It's difficult right now to write about podcasting and not talk about "Reply All". It's a story that reverberates in the podcast space and intrigues even people outside of it. (A friend of SJ's, who works in the corporate coffee world and isn't particularly interested in podcasts, said the other day, "What happens to that podcast called" Answer All "?)

There are many excellent articles out there detailing what happened (and what is still happening) so we won't rehearse everything, but the TL; DR is as follows:

At the beginning of February Reply All started a series entitled “The Test Kitchen”, which focused on the cosmic accounting of Bon Appétit's popular YouTube video “Test Kitchen”. Allegations of racism and unequal pay, especially for colored employees, came to light and caused the test kitchen, the Bon Appétit team and Condé Nast (rightly) to falter. Everyone wanted to cover this story just to make the same allegations against their own team culture by several former employees telling stories of handing over for full-time jobs and the leadership actively working against efforts to form a union that would ensure this was bigger Equality.

Needless to say, former employees found the new series hypocritical. Within days, one of the cohosts and a producer, both accused of racism and working to block the union, left the show and the remaining episodes of "The Test Kitchen" were postponed.

The story goes much deeper, so we encourage you to read up on the numerous reports from former employees and the introspection from podcasters across the industry. Reply All is Gimlet's biggest show, and Gimlet is a sizable part of Spotify's podcasting properties. Ideally, there will be a lot to do with this topic on a large scale. While the Reply All staff posted a statement, there was no such message from Spotify itself.

As the SPI Podcasts team, we see the situation as a disappointment and a challenge. A disappointment because we have been Reply All fans for years and strive to do shows of the same caliber, and also because the measures taken by members of this team were and are clearly wrong. Answer The current chaos of space should be a lesson to all of us (albeit not a new lesson): Creating just and diverse cultures and stories requires constant vigilance, reflection, and listening and engaging with voices other than our own, especially for teams that Go wrong knows how Reply All & # 39; s – and how we do it. We are challenged to move forward with humility and to seek perspectives that go beyond our own. We can all work to get better.

More podcasting news: Apple is coming through and the Boss and Prez are falling flat

Now for a few easier quick hits:

Last month we predicted that when Apple releases more original podcast content, it would support its Apple TV + offerings, and what do you know – that prediction has come true! About a week after our February post, Apple announced it was releasing a companion podcast for its show For All Mankind, which launched its second season on February 19. More are to follow. ("Please give us a Ted Lasso podcast," whispers Sara Jane softly to Siri, who pretends not to know by giving the weather forecast for El Paso.)

Finally, Obama's Higher Ground Productions released their second exclusive Spotify podcast, Renegades: Born in the USA, which features talks between President Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen. It's a little weird. Not to say it's bad or not interesting, but it feels like an odd coupling and format for the conversations and topics they deal with. We don't doubt that each of them love their country and want to solve the challenges America faces, but at certain moments it feels forced and a bit hollow. Or just a reason to play Born in the USA. More. Time. Oy.

That's all for now – these podcasts are not produced in-house. See you next time Sara Jane and David log out!

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