Every small business is powered by a bolt of inspiration and the dedicated people who bring it to life.
And the Back of the Napkin podcast is where small business owners can tune in to explore the unique ideas that have launched successful enterprises, and meet entrepreneurs who aren’t afraid to think differently.
In each episode, we’ll sit down with entrepreneurs from all kinds of different industries to learn why they got into business, how their ideas have developed, and what twists and turns they’ve faced along the way. You won’t believe some of the wild ideas that have taken root, and you’ll be able to learn valuable lessons from the mistakes that other entrepreneurs have already made.
Small businesses are the backbone of the American economy, and we hope these stories inspire business owners and consumers alike to dream big, take risks and shop locally.
At SurePayroll, small business is our business, and we understand that a lot goes into running your operation. Our easy online service makes running payroll for small- and micro-businesses a breeze so entrepreneurs can focus less on payroll and taxes and spend more time doing what they do best.
So roll up your sleeves, brew some strong coffee and make sure you’re subscribed on your favorite podcast app. The Back of the Napkin podcast is hosted by SurePayroll’s Stephanie Davis and small business owner Dusty Weis, and launches on January 27.
Hiring Post-Prison People and Serving High-Quality Coffee with Pete Leonard
Pete Leonard is a serial entrepreneur whose latest business venture pairs high-quality coffee with a mission to hire post-prison people. I Have a Bean is a coffee roasting company in Wheaton, IL that roasts high-quality coffee beans. Inspired by a personal situation, Pete decided his employees were going to be post-prison people and has set them up for success.
In our chat with Pete, he explained more about the inspiration behind I Have a Bean, the business planning that went into this, and his lessons learned along the way running multiple small businesses.
Friday Fails: Maria Erna Explores Failure in Business
In this Friday Fail, Maria Erna, owner of WaG Grooming Salon and Spa, shares a fail she had early in her career. When she was 18, Maria had an event planning business. Her fail was brutal, but she learned an important lesson in moving forward amidst failure in business and learned how important resilience is when running a small business.
How to Plan a Wedding in 5 Minutes with Manali Shah and Raj Kamaria
Inspired by their own struggles with wedding planning, Manali Shah and Raj Kamaria launched Pyaari Weddings in early 2020. Pyaari Weddings is a wedding planning website that helps users plan a wedding in five minutes. The couple quickly learned how time-consuming and complicated the wedding planning process can be and Pyaari Weddings makes it easy for couples to plan their whole wedding without needing to work with a wedding planner or spend hours contacting vendors. This is the first small business venture for the couple.
In this episode, Manali and Raj share more about how they got Pyaari Weddings up and running, the lessons they've learned along the way while running their business, and how they are enjoying the small business journey.
Friday Fails: Lee Kitchen Explores Failure in Business
Failing in business is never fun, but those fails have the power to inspire big success. In this short episode of Back of the Napkin, we talked to Lee Kitchen, creative guru and inspiration consultant, in Orlando, FL about failure. Failure plays a big role in Lee's creative brainstorms, and he wants his participants to embrace failure and learn from those setbacks. In this episode, Lee shares a story about a time he had a major failure at work, what he learned from that experience, and what he wants to remind others about learning from failure.
Why Quality Service and Supporting Employees Matters in Small Business, with Maria Erna
Maria Erna is the owner of WaG Grooming Salon and Spa in Salem, NH. Inspired by her own struggles to find quality dog grooming for her dogs, Maria opened WaG to provide a holistic, dog spa, salon experience to her furry clientele. Maria has worked in a variety of industries and is a marketing consultant for small business owners to help them succeed and reach their full business potential.
In our time with Maria, we talked about why a holistic dog grooming experience is important, supporting employees and trusting them to do the job they were hired for, her full journey in small business, and advice for other small business owners.
How to Inspire Creativity in Business with Lee Kitchen
Lee Kitchen is a brainstorming facilitator in the Orlando, Florida area who arms businesses across the country with tools to inspire creativity and launch new ideas. Following a more than 30-year career with The Walt Disney Company, Lee focused on his new small business and learned that many people struggle with creativity in business. He has several workshop styles with a variety of exercises that are designed to get people out of their comfort zones and embrace creativity.
On this episode of Back of the Napkin, Lee shares what he learned in his time with the Walt Disney Company, what his small business journey has been like, and tips for how small business can boost creativity in entrepreneurship.
Customer ReviewsSee All
I love hearing the stories of the small business owners on how they started. The ups an downs, the bad and the ugly. Awesome job Surepayroll!
This was a refreshing and insightful podcast to listen to!
Wonderful small business stories
So good to hear these small businesses find success, and failures, in growing their businesses. Maria’s episode (Season 1, ep2) is spot on when she says “Why would I hire the best and then tell them how to do their job?” Great insight!