100 episodes

Welcome to Five Good Questions. I’m your host, Jake Taylor.

Fact: the average American watches 5 hours of television per day. What would the world be like if we dedicated one of those hours to reading books instead?

I don’t know, but I’d like to find out.

So to inspire others to read more, I ask five good questions of interesting authors and share the results with you every Friday. Let’s see if together, we can’t rescue some of those lost hours.

Five Good Questions Podcast Jacob Taylor

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 21 Ratings

Welcome to Five Good Questions. I’m your host, Jake Taylor.

Fact: the average American watches 5 hours of television per day. What would the world be like if we dedicated one of those hours to reading books instead?

I don’t know, but I’d like to find out.

So to inspire others to read more, I ask five good questions of interesting authors and share the results with you every Friday. Let’s see if together, we can’t rescue some of those lost hours.

    5GQ Adam Mead - The Complete Financial History of Berkshire Hathaway

    5GQ Adam Mead - The Complete Financial History of Berkshire Hathaway

    In this week's episode of Five Good Questions, we're interviewing Adam Mead about his new book, The Complete Financial History of Berkshire Hathaway.
    Adam Mead is CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Mead Capital Management, LLC, and founder of WatchlistInvesting.com.
    His book, The Complete Financial History of Berkshire Hathaway: A Chronological Analysis of Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger’s Conglomerate Masterpiece (Harriman House, 2021) was released in April. Extras and research material can be found at brkbook.com.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. There’s an unbelievable amount of financial data and analysis pulled together into this book. What was the process of sorting through and organizing so much information?
    2. Which decade for Berkshire was the most impressive to you?
    3. Much of Berkshire’s success can be tied to insurance. What are some of your observations after deep-diving into their insurance operations for decades?
    4. The effects of compounding are so small at the beginning, they’re almost imperceptible. Have you noticed any patterns that might help you detect the next Berkshire early in its formation?
    5. How has writing this book made you a better investor?

    • 39 min
    5GQ William Green - Richer, Wiser, Happier

    5GQ William Green - Richer, Wiser, Happier

    In this week's Five Good Questions, we're interviewing William Green about his new book Richer, Wiser, Happier. This book is based on hundreds of hours of interviews that he’s conducted over the last 25 years with a pantheon of legendary investors—everyone from Sir John Templeton to Charlie Munger, Howard Marks to Joel Greenblatt, Ed Thorp to Nick Sleep. William has written for many publications, including Time, Fortune, Forbes, Barron’s, The New Yorker, and The Economist. He edited the Asian, European, Middle Eastern, and African editions of Time. Born and raised in London, he studied English literature at Oxford and has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia. He lives in New York with his wife, Lauren, and their two children, Henry and Madeleine.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. How did you get these world-class investors to open up for you in such a striking way?
    2. What are some of the common traits running through the people you interviewed? Are these characteristics we can develop, or are they naturally born?
    3. Was there anything about a global pandemic that changed how these people thought? Or perhaps confirmed they were using the right approach?
    4. It seems that often those who reach the highest levels of wealth and achievement had to sacrifice a lot to get there. Perhaps even their own personal happiness. Who seemed like the happiest of those you interviewed? Why were they happy?
    5. We’re perhaps toward the end of a 40-year bull run in bonds which saw interest rates fall from high teens to practically zero. Any phenomenon which spans a career length has a greater chance of creating survivorship bias. Are there perhaps any wrong lessons to learn from their success which might hurt us over the next 20 years if the cycle turns?

    • 1 hr 31 min
    5GQ Eric Jorgenson - The Almanack of Naval Ravikant

    5GQ Eric Jorgenson - The Almanack of Naval Ravikant

    In this week's Five Good Questions, we're interviewing Eric Jorgenson about the book The Almanack of Naval Ravikant.
    Eric Jorgenson is a product strategist and writer. In 2011, he joined the founding team of Zaarly, a company dedicated to helping homeowners find home service providers they can trust. His business blog, Evergreen, educates and entertains more than one million readers. You can find all of his projects and other writing on EJorgenson.com.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. This is a very unusual book--how did this project come about?
    2. What was your favorite section to work on?
    3. What does Naval say about ego, identity, labels and habits?
    4. What changes have you made in your own life since compiling this book?
    5. What are some common ideas or themes that connect the various advice throughout the book?

    • 32 min
    5GQ Tim Koller - Valuation

    5GQ Tim Koller - Valuation

    In this week's Five Good Questions, we're interviewing Tim Koller about the 7th edition of Valuation.
    Tim Koller is a core leader of the Corporate Finance Practice at McKinsey. During his more than 28 years of consulting, Tim has served clients globally on value creation, corporate strategy, capital-markets issues, and M&A transactions.
    Tim is the lead author of Valuation: Measuring and Managing the Value of Companies. This book—now in its seventh edition—has sold more than 800,000 copies.
    Before joining McKinsey, Tim was a vice president at Stern Stewart & Company, a leading value-based management-advisory firm, where he helped develop key financial-analytical tools and software. He has also lectured at business schools, such as the University of Chicago, Northwestern, Tuck, Yale, and INSEAD.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. Do the growth rates and ROICs of today’s market favorites that are implied by their prices seem justified to produce an attractive future TSR?
    2. Will profit margins and returns on capital mean revert after a prolonged period above their historical norms? Are the higher P/Es of today justified?
    3. When forecasting the impacts of digitization, how do we factor in competition and pricing with respect to cash flows? (What are the odds of “Winner Take All” vs. “Red Queen Effect” where most of the value flows through to consumer surplus?)
    4. What’s the most pervasive and pernicious myth in finance that just won’t die?
    5. What’s the most likely mistake a business analyst will make over the next decade?

    • 33 min
    5GQ Mike Michalowicz - Fix This Next

    5GQ Mike Michalowicz - Fix This Next

    In this week's Five Good Questions, we're interviewing Mike Michalowicz about his book Fix This Next.
    Mike Mi-KAL-o-wits is the author of Profit First, Clockwork, Surge, The Pumpkin Plan, and his newest release Fix This Next. By his 35th birthday, Mike had founded and sold two companies - one to private equity and another to a Fortune 500. Today he is running his third multi-million dollar venture, Profit First Professionals.
    Mike is a former small business columnist for The Wall Street Journal and the former business makeover specialist on MSNBC. Over the years, Mike has traveled the globe speaking with thousands of entrepreneurs, and is here today to share the best of what he has learned.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. When every problem in a small business feels existential, how do we prioritize what to fix first? What is the Business Hierarchy of Needs?
    2. Many businesses, particularly in Silicon Valley, have grand visions of changing the world, yet their unit economics might not work. How does that violate your Business Hierarchy?
    3. What can the Winchester Mystery House teach us about being an entrepreneur?
    4. What is the biggest mistake you see that holds back the good from becoming the great?
    5. What special advice do you have to small business owners who may be facing 50-100% drops in revenue?

    • 29 min
    5GQ Matt Ridley - How Innovation Works

    5GQ Matt Ridley - How Innovation Works

    In this week's Five Good Questions, we're interviewing Matt Ridley about his new book How Innovation Works. Matt Ridley's books have sold over a million copies, been translated into 31 languages and won several awards. 
    His TED talk "When Ideas Have Sex" has been viewed more than two million times.  He writes a weekly column in The Times (London) and writes regularly for the Wall Street Journal.
    As Viscount Ridley, he was elected to the House of Lords in February 2013. He also served on the science and technology select committee.  With BA and DPhil degrees from Oxford University, Matt Ridley worked for the Economist for nine years as science editor, Washington correspondent and American editor, before becoming a self-employed writer and businessman.
    Five Good Questions:
    1. What was the single most important event in the history of humankind and why?
    2. Campfire, dung, whale oil, kerosene, “Edison’s” light bulb, CFLs, and LEDs. What are the sweeping innovation lessons we can draw from how humans simply light their homes?
    3. Does the use of debt allow us to pull innovation from the future, similar to overclocking a computer?
    4. What do past responses to health epidemics teach us about dealing with COVID-19?
    5. Has science gotten so complex, specialized, and expensive that accidental, tinkering, gentlemen scientists are no longer feasible? For instance, could I build a thorium reactor in my garage? Is centralized research by governments and big businesses the necessary answer?

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5
21 Ratings

21 Ratings

Bill Brewster ,

Great podcast with unique discussions

There’s a lot out there in podcast world. Jake found a good niche with this one. I’ve enjoyed the guests and content. Great discussions about life, family, and business. Thank you Jake!

Bradkearns ,

Love the format and the diverse guests

This is so much better than TV! I love what Jake's doing here and his choice of diverse and interesting interview guests. Give the podcast a try and I think you will be hooked! I understand that Jake is revitalizing the show in 2018 and preparing to publish interviews conducted while out on the trail hiking. Can't wait!

Ipse_Dixit_fc3 ,

Great Podcast!

Jake asks some great questions and explores some amazing authors.

Top Podcasts In Business

Listeners Also Subscribed To