The 21 Hats Podcast is a weekly conversation with entrepreneurs who share their challenges and compare notes on how they’re coping with the pandemic, whether their businesses are as profitable as they should be, how big a price they are willing to pay for growth, and why they hired their brother-in-law. Every week, host Loren Feldman has a conversation with three of the show’s six regulars: Karen Clark Cole, CEO of Blink UX; Paul Downs, CEO of Paul Downs Cabinetmakers; Jay Goltz, CEO of The Goltz Group; William Vanderbloemen, CEO of Vanderbloemen Search Group; Dana White, CEO of Paralee Boyd; and Laura Zander, CEO of Jimmy Beans Wool. Every week, the owners talk about news stories that matter to business owners, and track what’s working and what’s not working on their own entrepreneurial journeys. Visit 21hats.com to read episode transcripts and learn more. The show is produced by Jess Thoubboron of Blank Word Productions.
Episode 37: What Would You Do With $200,000 Right Now?
And so, yes, Dana White was in fact the big winner at last week’s Detroit Demo Day, taking home the top prize of $200,000 for her hair salon business, Paralee Boyd, which specializes in serving women with thick and curly hair and which has an unusual walk-in-only business model. Of course, Dana now has some decisions to make: Does she want to take the money in the form of a zero-interest loan? Or does she want to take it in the form of a convertible note, which can convert to an equity stake in her company? And perhaps, more importantly, how exactly is she going to spend the money? As she tells Paul Downs and Jay Goltz in this conversation, she’s thinking about spending it on marketing, on opening another location, or on creating retail products for sale online or in her salons. What do you think Dana should do? Please email your thoughts to email@example.com, and we’ll share them on the podcast and in the Morning Report.
Episode 36: Man, If I Win...
This has not been an easy year for Dana White, who has had to close one of her two hair salons and who has struggled, amid the pandemic, to keep the other one staffed. But this week she reveals to Karen Clark Cole and Paul Downs that she’s a finalist for a potentially game-changing pitch competition. “A $200,000 investment from Quicken Loans is a huge validator when you're looking to grow,” says Dana. “When you have first money in from Dan Gilbert, it bodes well for your company.” Dana also tells Karen and Paul that she’s just made her most important hire ever, an operations manager who had a compelling reason for wanting to join Dana. Plus: the Morning Report News Quiz.
REVISITED: That’s The Price
This, to say the least, has been a challenging year. So this week, we’ve decided to bring you two inspirational success stories by revisiting one of our earliest podcast episodes. Way back in November of 2019, Karen Clark Cole and Loren Feldman attended EY’s Strategic Growth Forum in Palm Springs where we conducted a series of interviews with participants in EY’s Winning Women program. Two of those interviews were with women who started companies from scratch and sold them successfully—learning all sorts of lessons along the way.
Episode 35: I Would Be Scared, Frankly
In this week’s episode, the tables are turned. This week, it’s host Loren Feldman who fields questions and takes advice after he explains why the BusinessAdvantage TV Podcast will once again be The 21 Hats Podcast. “The bottom line is: I am now the proud owner of a pre-revenue startup that has a daily email newsletter that we've been giving away for free, plus this weekly podcast that we've been giving away for free, and the designs for an unbuilt website that we had hoped to one day charge subscription fees for. Any thoughts?”
Episode 34: Landlords and Real Estate and Banks, Oh My!
In this week’s episode, Dana White, Laura Zander, and Jay Goltz talk about their real estate challenges. Dana decided to close one of her locations rather than keep dealing with an overly aggressive landlord. Laura, fearing her landlord was going to throw her out, decided to buy a building. But she hasn’t been able to close on the deal because, while she’s been to six banks, she has yet to find one that will fund the loan—even though she already has SBA approval for a loan. And Jay wants to take out a mortgage on a building he owns outright just to have some extra cash on hand, but he’s on his 10th bank. “You can’t get discouraged,” Jay tells Laura. To which Laura responds: “Come on, what do you mean, ‘You can't get discouraged?’ You see my face? It’s called discouragement.” Plus: the Morning Report News Quiz returns.
Episode 33: When’s This Gonna Be Over?
This week, six months into the crisis, Paul Downs, Jay Goltz, and William Vanderbloemen take inventory. What does the crisis mean for the future of their businesses? Has it changed them as leaders? Has it affected their relationships with their employees? And they come to some counter-intuitive conclusions. For one, William tells us that he suspects he will one day look back on the crisis and conclude it was the best thing that could have happened to his business. It’s been painful, he says, but, “in some ways, we needed a jolt, and this gave it to us.” Jay understands: “When things get really bad like this, we start paying attention to stuff that we should have been paying attention to before.” Plus: do the three owners have a plan for how their businesses would continue to operate if they were incapacitated by COVID?
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Loren and his fab five are just what I needed. Perfect for what I’m going through! Kind of like “The View” for entrepreneurs...
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This is a great podcast. You should listen regularly to get the full effect.