2021’s Top 10 Episodes of the CEO Campfire Chat

We started the CEO Campfire Chat as a way to connect with leaders at the outset of COVID. There was no playbook, and we wanted to create a space to come together and support each other.

Soon enough, our informal Zoom roundtables transformed into a podcast with a live audience. And as the pandemic has evolved, so too has our collective understanding of how to lead during times of uncertainty.

The advice we’ve heard on the show is wide-ranging, from how to get more out of your analytics to why compassion and empathy win the day when inspiring your team.

As the year draws to a close and the omicron variant picks up speed, it’s evident that this advice about nimble leadership will remain relevant for a while. That’s why we wanted to look back at the top ten most downloaded episodes of the CEO Campfire Chat this past year. We hope some of the wisdom and inspiration from these leaders helps spark something great for you and your team in 2022 and beyond.
If you missed any of these episodes, follow the links below to give them a listen. Or you can browse all past episodes here.

Making Business Decisions Grounded in Empathy

Featuring Elizabeth Green, CEO of Brief Media

Elizabeth Green was an early guest on the CEO Campfire Chat, when lockdown was still in effect across the country. Just about every industry was topsy-turvy, including the veterinary world, which Elizabeth’s publishing business serves. Elizabeth spoke about how, when it’s impossible to tell which end is up, it’s time to use empathy as your compass in decision-making.

Listen to Elizabeth Green’s episode here.

Driving Growth by Identifying the Root Cause of Customers’ Pain

Featuring John Campbell, CEO of Cambium Learning Group

Cambium Learning Group offers a wide range of technology products to help students of all ages and abilities succeed. John Campbell shares that a major piece of Cambium’s success is the team’s ability to treat customers’ underlying problem, rather than simply addressing the symptoms. He shares a framework for drilling down to find the root cause of your customers’ pain.

Listen to John Campbell’s episode here.

Getting Started With First-Party Data

Featuring Aaron Oberman, CEO of Omeda

The era of third-party data is coming to an end, so now is the time to establish the systems and processes for collecting, analyzing, and acting upon first-party customer data. Omeda is a martech platform that helps publishing organizations do just that, so who better than its CEO, Aaron Oberman, to provide timely advice on how to get up to speed with first-party data?

Listen to Aaron Oberman’s episode here.

How to Unlock Growth Through Listening

Featuring Zvia Schoenberg, CEO of A-List Education

When you run a business that serves multiple audiences and stakeholders, listening is key. Zvia Schoenberg shares the various business models A-List Education uses to reach students with its tutoring services, and how input from customers allows the team to continually refine its offerings and approach.

Listen to Zvia Schoenberg’s episode here.

Using Customer Data and Experimentation to Build a Winning Strategy

Featuring Gabby Wong, CEO of FranConnect

Gabby Wong became a first-time CEO in 2019. Little did she know, she was walking into what would be one of the most turbulent times in global history. Using data as her guide, Gabby was able to help FranConnect pivot to meet customers’ shifting needs. She shares how customer feedback led the way.

Listen to Gabby Wong’s episode here.

Data Versus Intuition in Business and…Love?

Featuring Sam Yagan, CEO of Corazon Monoceros, Co-Founder of OKCupid

Sam Yagan has a long history of creating and leading successful entrepreneurial ventures. One of his earliest was OKCupid, which he co-founded in his 20s and grew into a powerhouse in the online dating world. And while customer data played a crucial role in OKCupid’s growth, he also shares an interesting story about a time the data told him one thing, but he followed his heart instead.

Listen to Sam Yagan’s episode here.

How to Identify and Serve Your Niche

Featuring Marc Heyneker, Co-Founder and CEO of Revinate

Revinate is a CRM and email marketing platform that operates in the big wide world of hotels and hospitality. A giant chain like Marriott and a little boutique B&B are not going to have the same needs from a software provider. So Marc and his co-founder invested a lot of time and energy up front in finding the right niche. He discusses their process.

Listen to Marc Heyneker’s episode here.

Building a New Kind of Recruiting Firm

Featuring Kurt Wilkin, Founder and CEO of HireBetter

Hiring is at the front of many leaders’ minds right now. With the Great Resignation hitting employers in all sectors, what can you do to attract and retain great talent? Kurt Wilkin shares HireBetter’s winning formula for connecting its partners with not just smart people, but the right people.

Listen to Kurt Wilkin’s episode here.

Building Trust With a Growing Audience

Featuring Kaarel Kotkas, Founder and CEO of Veriff

Kaarel Kotkas founded Veriff in his home country of Estonia, total population: 1.3 million. While its diminutive size might seem like a disadvantage, Kaarel instead viewed it as an opportunity to think globally from day one. Hear about how his ambitious vision has launched Veriff into 190 countries and the vital role trust-building plays in Veriff’s expansion into new markets.

Listen to Kaarel Kotkas’ episode here.

Scale Your Professional Services Firm Without Working Overtime

Featuring Tom Barry, Managing Partner of GHJ Advisors

One of the trickiest things about running a professional services firm is managing growth. It’s great to take on new business, but because you’re essentially offering your team’s time, you’re selling a finite resource. Tom Barry shares how he helps his team find balance as the firm grows.

Listen to Tom Barry’s episode here.