Ep. 100 – Behind the Scenes, Lessons Learned, and the Future of Food

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I’ll be talking about this episode in three different sections: One will be about how we produce this podcast, two will be a sort of overview of the most common answers our 100ish guests have given on My Food Job Rocks, and the last part will be about what we plan to do for our future.

So let’s start with how this podcast was made. Podcasting technology is pretty cheap. You can get an ATR mic for $70 dollars, audacity software for free, MP3 Skype recorder for free, Skype for free,  and hosting for about $10-20 dollars a month. I’ve had this for almost all 100 episodes but we will most likely invest in some other software very soon. One of the things I purchased recently, is wavve.co software which converts audio clips to video clips which I find pretty cool.

Again, setup for podcasting is super cheap but it does take some skill to improve. You eventually get into a rut when recording, editing, and publishing episodes and it wasn’t until episode 80ish where I wanted to really analyze how to improve. I paid a radio coach about $100 dollars to evaluate two episodes: an interview and a monologue and I got some really great insight on how my audio sounded and I dunno if you guys have noticed, but the entrances are a bit more dynamic.

Speaking of past episodes, I recently listened to episode 000 and it was terrible. I sounded really boring. It’s recently been replaced with a more modern version. Check it out! I also noticed while digging up clips for the intro, that I zoomed through the intros so fast. Wow, I hate listening to my past self! But if you’ve been here since the beginning, then you’ve seen the improvements.

In the things I do, I try as hard as possible to get user feedback and this is why I love using surveys. I used surveys to get responses from the Arizona Section IFT and got some very valuable feedback using this method. Giving away prizes helps a ton with getting people to fill out the survey.

For those who filled out a survey, thank you! Throughout the podcast, I’ll talk about things I’ve noticed but one very particular one is the audio quality, which scored low and got some interesting comments. Many didn’t like the inconsistency of audio and some people say that it’s not very car friendly. I also got one saying I make too many mouth noises. Haha, I love it!

So over time, we’ll be upgrading the sound quality of My Food Job Rocks and this is going to be a learning experience in my end. There are a lot of youtube videos that teach you some cool stuff so I’ll try that. Right now, it’s current episodes, but I wouldn’t mind doing this for all of our episodes eventually.

So as everyone knows, I have a full time job and I have to schedule these things before or after work. This isn’t too bad as my job is decently flexible and timezones are awesome. Guests are told to sign up using a free app called calendly.com and then I send them a list of questions about 3 days before hand.

When we do the interview, I get them and I warmed up and then we begin with asking the first question, which is a general “how do you introduce yourself?”.

As you might have noticed, the episodes are getting longer and longer. The amount of questions haven’t changed, but how I asked questions have changed. I’m sure you realized that I now ask more questions to get a better understanding of the guest and really try to dig up some great advice. This is just a skill I developed with practice but it’s made the podcast a lot better when it comes to getting advice. Or so I think so.

Through the survey, I received a lot of feedback that maybe an hour an episode is too long. I’ve debated about this for a while and I’ve decided this: Starting at maybe the 110th episode, we’ll still have hour long podcasts, but it’s going to be segmented into two parts, a general inquiry and a lightning round questionnaire at the mid-point of the episode. I want the most important info at the first 30 minutes and give structured opinions at the end of the episode.

So for example, most of the great stories about career advice will happen at the beginning of the podcast and opinions about technology, favorite books, etc, will be at the end. I know this is not ideal for people who want to finish things from start to finish, but to be honest, I am a huge believer of long-form content.

We need more long-form sources of content in the world. I think that really separates the people who like to absorb information and actually learn from My Food Job Rocks. Tim Ferriss, Tom Bilyeu, and other interview based podcasts give some amazing insights that take an hour long, but I learn so much and I feel like a 30 minute talk between guests really devalues my time with them, their time with them, and of course, your time with them.

So after I get an audio file, I put it on my backup and it’s added to the list of podcast guests, or a google drive. Usually, we have around 5 to 10 episodes in stock because interviewing is really enjoyable for me. Last year, I tried doing 2 episodes a week, but it really killed me doing so. All of my time was devoted doing podcasts! That was when we switched to more article-writing content when I realized my time was being eaten up doing twice a week.

So for a 1 hour podcast, it takes 3 hours to do. We first record it, that takes an hour, then I have to edit it, which involves listening to the podcast and through real time, write, pause, and edit the show. I find this a really enlightening process because I’m absorbing the most information through this step. I not only get to learn about my guests, but write notes in which I can eventually apply it to my life. A lot of the advice I’ve gotten from my guests have made me a happier and healthier food scientist. Because it takes 2 months to revisit the podcast, it’s like reviewing a brand new episode.

Uploading and copy pasting it on the website takes about 30 minutes of work, and I blast it out on facebook, twitter, and linkedin.

I use these platforms because these are where my guests live. A lot of younger food scientists. Or business owners use facebook to share my content. Twitter is great for the people who use it such as Logan or David Despain. Linkedin is my powerhouse and I meet most of my guests there. Most of my viewerships, thank-you notes and things of that nature come from linkedin.

And that’s kind of my process on the podcast. Again, doesn’t take too much of my time.

So now let’s go to part two. Talking about the most common and interesting questions on the podcast (We go more in depth in the podcast)

Questions that were scrapped
More focused on asking better questions in the beginning
What’s your favorite food?
Something inspiring
Where will you be in 5 years?
Who inspired you to get into food?

Important Skills
Emotional Intellegence/Empathy
Always keep learning

Books I’ve read thanks to my guests
The Alchemist
Radical Candor
A More Beautiful Question

Books that are insanely popular
On Food and Cooking
Anything by Malcom Gladwell
Modernist Cuisine
Kid’s books: Give a mouse a cookie, swallow a fly, Oh the Places you will go

Other Books I Mention

So Good They Can’t Ignore You
Elon Musk: Tesla, SpaceX and a Quest for an Amazing Future
Clean Meat

Quotes that were popular
Crazies by Steve Jobs
The Man in the Arena by Theodore Roosevelt

Kitchen Items that were popular
Kitchen Aid
Knives (especially chefs)
Spoons of sorts

Technology that is really popular
3D Printing and then it stopped
Alternative Meats
Clean Label
Super specific: Baking technology and Whole Genome Processing

Problems that the industry needs to face
Feeding the World
Communication is a big one

General Advice on Being in the Food Industry
Find your passion
Your Network is your net worth
Love what you do
Try everything


Let’s talk about the future

So base don the survey, the results were pretty cool. I bounced some ideas around about free things we can do, and also some avenues where you would pay for things.

For free things, I want to try different media platforms. I’m already experiencing with short videograms that are kinda cool.

I also want to try and get an inclusive group going either on facebook or linkedin. I’ve been noticing through my posting on linkedin, a lot of other people are telling their story

Thank you everyone for also filling out the daring question on what type of things you would buy from us if given the chance. We’re carefully taking things into consideration and I have an idea where this will go. Ideally, I’d like to launch this mid year.

So next year, we have more interviews, and it will be a mix of things you like, things I like, but I’ll be focusing on more technical experts. From the data I’ve gathered, I want to really dive into technology that is really changing the industry. To do this, I’ve tapped into some of my guest’s networks so you’ll be getting some really cool discussions on the topic of let’s say lab grown meat or geospatial technology. It’s thanks to a strong relationship I have with my previous guests, that I have this opportunity, and they will be thanked as the episodes roll out.

Other than that, better podcasts, more articles from guests, maybe more services, and perhaps something completely new.

Overall, the big question is what does My Food Job Rocks stand for? I think this will change every year, but I’ve always stood by this philosophy.

Everyone has a story to tell, and the people in the food industry are no different. My Food Job Rocks is a platform for people in the food industry to not only tell their story, but have the ability to encourage people to tell their story. I’ve been finding this out more frequently as we continue to post consistently on linkedin. People are inspired, and people are talking.

This will always be our main focus here, to give you the ability to tell your story and inspire others to do the same.

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