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IAM521- Podcaster Tells Stories To Drive Businesses Forward

Podcast Interview with Katharina Brendel

Kat's love of stories made her a lifelong book nerd and led to her studying journalism and building a career in media. After gaining a boatload of marketing experience around the world, she learned how to not just tell stories for stories sake, but how they can drive businesses forward. After soaking up all that knowledge, she went out on my own, launching the Leading Rebels podcast, co-founding the community club & coworking space for women CoWomen, and collaborating with kickass (wo)men like you to launch your podcast to get your voice heard.

  • CEO Hack: Time-blocking and time-tracking
  • CEO Nugget: Get out there and share your story
  • CEO Defined: Being in charge of your life and work

Website: https://katbrendel.com/

Podcast: http://leadingrebels.com/
CoWomen: http://cowomen.com/

Social media:
https://www.instagram.com/kat_brendel
https://www.facebook.com/KatBrendelPodcasting/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/katbrendel


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Transcription:

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Intro 0:02

Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:29

Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Katharina Brendel of katbrendel.com. Kat, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Katharina Brendel 0:39

Thank you for having me. I'm happy to be here.

Gresham Harkless 0:41

No problem super excited to have you on and what I wanted to do was just read a little bit more about Kat so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing. Kat's love of stories made her a lifelong book nerd and led to her studying journalism and building a career in media. After gaining a boatload of marketing experience around the world, she learned how to not just tell stories for story's sake, but how they can drive businesses forward. After soaking up all that knowledge, she went out on my own, launching the Leading Rebels podcast, co-founding the community club & coworking space for women CoWomen, and collaborating with kickass (wo)men like you to launch your podcast to get your voice heard. Kat, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

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Katharina Brendel 1:21

I'm ready.

Gresham Harkless 1:22

Awesome. Let's do it. I wanted to give you the mic so to speak, and kick everything off here a little bit more about your CEO story, what led you to get started with your business?

Katharina Brendel 1:31

What was kind of one thing led to another I started the podcast because I got a leadership position at a tech startup. There wasn't a lot of women leadership as unfortunately, it's still the tech case. I wanted to know a little bit about female leadership and what that looks like. Since as you mentioned, I'm a journalist and other people were having the same questions I thought, you know, why not share the conversations I'm having and that's how the Leading Rebels podcast doc was born.

I'd have to admit, that you kind of already started the intrapreneurial blog, when you start a podcast and create something for yourself, you're already kind of in the flow. Then I met my co-founders through the women's networks because I got into that scene kind of fits in quotation marks. They had this idea for a community club and co-working space for women, which didn't exist at all in Germany. We're like, we got together and did that. Then I quit my job and went full time, both with CoWomen and as a podcast strategist.

Gresham Harkless 2:26

Nice, I definitely appreciate that. It seems like as you were saying, like, once you start seeing or getting that entrepreneurial bug or you discover it, then you start to see things everywhere. It's like you have to rein in the amount of opportunities you have. Because you always see everything she can do all the time.

Katharina Brendel 2:41

Yeah, the list of like-to-do-soon projects so what could be it's very long.

Gresham Harkless 2:47

Exactly. I appreciate that. I kind of session on when I was reading your bio, just how journalism and of itself is not just like writing for newspapers or magazines. It's developed, especially with content being so prevalent in businesses it's become a way for people to tell the story. That's why I love everything that you're building, and you're growing, and I'm a Journalism nerd, and a book nerd, too. So I can appreciate all that.

Katharina Brendel 3:13

Thank you appreciate. Yeah, it's definitely what I love is that there are so many mediums now that you can choose what is the best avenue both in how you're good at storytelling and where your audience hangs out. That's just perfect. But there are so many avenues now.

Gresham Harkless 3:25

Exactly choices are abundant. I know you touched on it a little bit, but I wanted to hear some more about your podcast, like what we can expect by listening to it, and also everything you're doing with your co-working space and in the podcast consulting you're doing.

Katharina Brendel 3:38

Sure. So the podcast evolved with me I like to say, which I think is fun. Because a lot of people think like, oh if I started this way, it has to be this way for like the next 50 years. The fun thing is no podcasts and gigs as you like. In the beginning, I pretty much focused on interviewing women in leadership. Because that was a topic I was treating, but I kind of found out that leadership is not just a position in a company. That's not what leadership is just about. It's also there's a lot of ways of being a leader. The other side was also that the tips the women had, and whether they were younger or older, regardless of their positions, were all about kind of being authentic and being yourself and we hear this so much. But we're like, Well, what does that mean? What does that look like?

Like I get you're telling me this, you went through some transformation. But I don't know how to get there. I don't know how to do this. I decided that that was a little bit the area I wanted to dive into for this last season, which was 30 students have been doing this three years, kind of looking at like, Okay, people who did kind of outside of the norm, things who went their own way and how did that process look like? How did they maybe not feel great at times? Then also share a little bit of my storytelling chops to help people tell not only just tell them sort of but find and own them, which I think is also an important step. We often skip.

That was kind of what the podcast is about and yeah, cool, when we opened, it's been open about two years. We have a space here in Berlin Germany and the second location in the south of Germany. That's just it's a physical space, which is really nice. I do both online and media stuff, but also physical, which I think is also super valuable. And we kind of bring them in together and give them masterclasses, co-working mentors, all this stuff to kind of both intrapreneurship and employed, kind of take it to the next level.

Gresham Harkless 5:21

Yeah absolutely love that. I love how you kind of talked about, I feel like, a lot of times we're in one camp or another. But those camps that kind of merge together, you're either so online that you don't want to have anything to do with anybody other than if it's online. Then you're either offline, or you don't do a lot of things online. But I think that there's a synergy and opportunity to be able to do both. Because I think you take relationships to a different level if you're able to kind of get those connections, and then obviously, you can spread yourself and have much more of a broader voice by being able to do things online.

Katharina Brendel 5:52

Yeah, I think it's there's a lot of different relationships you can have. I think there are reasons and uses for all of them. But we shouldn't be leaning too much into one side versus the other, as always, when we're kind of fun kind of suddenly feel a bit isolated or alone in some way.

Gresham Harkless 6:06

Absolutely. That's why I love everything that you've been able to build grow and merge together. You might have already touched on this, but I want to ask you for what I call your secret sauce, and it could be for you or your or your businesses. But what do you feel kind of sets you apart and makes you unique?

Katharina Brendel 6:21

I like to say that I'm Mary storytelling in business, that's kind of the thing. From the journalist side, and being a book nerd, I'm a really big fan of things that have to be interesting. They have to like actually how we connect a story. What is the campfire tales, or whatever it may be, that's how we connect. But on the other hand, we've got business, if you're an entrepreneur, or even you're working in a business, the stories you tell should do something.

They shouldn't be nice to listen to, they should also drive your business. But people often fall into one camp or the other either very dry, because they're like, this isn't to be sales basically. Or do you like to tell me nice things, but sales is pushy and I don't want to do that. Then they kind of end up just telling my stories, and it doesn't convert. I like to think that I kind of can put both hats on and do stories that are engaging, but also drive somewhere at the end that ideally benefits both parties at some point.

Gresham Harkless 7:13

Yeah, absolutely. You have to have that ability to captivate people so that they are interested in your product and services, and sometimes why you do things, but you do. At the end of the day have to make sure you're sharing business and to do that you have to make a sale or to make sure and ensure that happens.

Katharina Brendel 7:28

Yeah. So I like to say that's kind of what I excel at, at getting people for one capital bit more than the other and vice versa.

Gresham Harkless 7:35

Yeah, that makes so much sense. I wanted to switch gears a little bit and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be an app, book, or a habit that you have but what's something that makes you more effective and efficient?

Katharina Brendel 7:48

I'm a total productivity nut, which probably means I've tried everything under the sun. Mostly because as you've listened to what I do, I do a lot of different things and also in different settings. So when I work as a strategist and a coach, I'm more like in my home office, but then I also the physical space I work in, so there's a lot of hats I'm wearing. That's the biggest challenge, of course. I block times where I'm like, so I do usually do sprints in the day, like three different sprints, and then I do like group tasks together.

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For example, I will say, Okay, this morning, I'll focus on Coleman, doing these types of things this afternoon is podcasting these things and then I also have a timer so that I can see how long things are taking because otherwise, planning weeks is really hard. Because you're always thinking like, oh, yeah, I'll do them 30 minutes and then like three hours later, you're like, oh. Never mind and yeah, that's how I get a good feel about so both tracking the time and really blocking times and not switching too much is what I really found super helpful.

Gresham Harkless 8:43

Nice. That makes so much sense. I heard you use the word sprint so could you kind of define exactly what that means to us it just that you're working for something on our project as far as you can take it or how do you kind of structure that?

Katharina Brendel 8:55

Sure. So I kind of thought around because since I was at a tech startup doing spreads is actually from like the development side, so like the IT tech side, they do a lot of sprints. For me, I kind of do them small in the sense of like, focus on one topic for a certain amount of time, for example, like two hours, and then I have a bigger project that they feed into that I say like, Okay, I'm gonna guesstimate this is gonna take 10 to our blocks to complete. Then I can schedule those in so I can say like, Okay, this is the time I want to have this completed and that's how I sprint.

Gresham Harkless 9:23

Nice. Yeah, I definitely appreciate that. Because I guess the saying is the quickest way to eat an elephant one bite at a time. A lot of times we have these big projects, and see big things that we want to accomplish. Not sure where that time is going to come from. But if you're able to kind of say, Hey if you can break in two hours for 10 weeks, then all of a sudden you hit whatever goal you might try. You're trying to hit.

Katharina Brendel 9:42

Yeah and also we don't like when we see too many big things. We don't even know where to start. So they were like, Oh, let me check my email. Sometimes it's good just like having every single task as small as might be written out because then you don't have that excuse me, like okay, this is what I have to do next. Then you just like go through the list and don't even think about how big the whole thing is basically,

Gresham Harkless 10:03

Yeah, it gives you that manageable tasks that you can because you can, you can target and you can you can crash and hit so that makes so much sense. Now I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. This is a word of wisdom or a piece of advice, or maybe a piece of advice around podcasting or even storytelling, but what would you kind of tell a younger business person or younger business self?

Katharina Brendel 10:25

This is kind of one of my core beliefs wouldn't it's very much what drives what I do, you have something valuable to say because I'm especially passionate about amplifying women's voices. It's also part of what I do, and also in podcasting, listenership is 5050. But women are about 25% of hosts. So it's like, it's not the most equal. But in general, a lot of people feel like, what they have to say on matters, or somebody has said it better than them. So why should they even bother?

It's been so many times that I like to give the example of how many times have you been given advice, maybe by your parents when you were younger. They told you this 60 times and you didn't listen, because it's your parents? Then somebody you admired or a friend or something said the same thing? Then you're like, oh, yeah, I did it. The point is not to have somebody said it before, maybe nowadays, there's so much out there that probably have, but they haven't said it like you would, and you we all connect with different people in different ways. You have something valuable to say and that's why pro-people get out there and share their stories.

Gresham Harkless 11:26

Nice. I love that kind of example because a lot of times I think everybody can relate to that, who's who's heard, their parents probably say anything they they hear so many times, and then it it clicks when you hear from somebody else. I think a lot of times people will say or even when they're starting businesses or thinking about probably certain podcasts that, oh, this podcast already exists that does X, Y, and Z, but they don't necessarily do it in a way that you do it. That's why I love how you help people, first of all, find their voices and be able to kind of execute on that so that they can understand how exactly they can start whatever it is they're trying to start.

Katharina Brendel 11:57

Yeah, I'm definitely super passionate about that and kind of the strategy behind that and getting the right stories out and how to tell them that stuff, what I'm all about.

Gresham Harkless 12:05

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Now I wanted to ask you my absolute favorite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO and we're hoping to have different quote-unquote, CEOs on this show. So Kat, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Katharina Brendel 12:17

For me, it just means being in charge of your life and work. I think it's a general thing. I think, sometimes it can be tempting to when you're maybe employed or in some situation, or not a huge fan of when you're like, or you're starting your business and it's not going well to decide it's like outside factors that are maybe in your way, and there definitely are those things. I'm not saying there aren't hardships outside of your world that get created for you. But being a CEO means saying, okay, there might be ABCDE things that are going against me, but I decide how I react to them. I decide what I do and how I move forward and that's what for me being a CEO it was about is about owning the agency that you do have.

Gresham Harkless 12:56

Absolutely, yeah, I love owning that agency, because I think so many times, you can get so focused on external factors of this is going wrong, or this isn't perfectly set up. But if you control yourself, control your mindset, how you look at things, how you react to things that can give you that opportunity to hit whatever goal maybe not in the way you necessarily see but you can still kind of crush your goal and hit your goal whenever you're able to do that.

Katharina Brendel 13:20

Yeah, and I think that's it I mean, I'm not saying it's easy. It's one of those very typical thing. It's simple, but not easy. It's also okay to win. Sometimes we run down and sometimes feel defeated like, those are truly normal feelings, but it's just kind of having that base that you go back to, to kind of pull yourself out of it.

Gresham Harkless 13:37

Yeah, that makes so much sense because it's definitely not easy as you said, it's simple, but not necessarily easy to execute. But that's why everybody isn't doing it all the time. That's just a reminder based on that, but yeah, you're absolutely right, where sometimes it is understanding too, that you're not alone, if you're going through that one of those down moments, because entrepreneurship, running a business, running the podcasts, doing all these things is extremely hard. If you're aware of that, then sometimes when you have those down moments, you won't feel like you're by yourself or you're failing or something's wrong with you.

Katharina Brendel 14:07

Yeah, that's where the second thing I'm so passionate about is community and all these different ways. Because if you try to go at it alone, and from the outside of the Instagram world, everybody's crushing it, and not having a single problem in the world. It's really important to have people around you who show you, that it's okay, things go wrong. We fall, we'll follow challenges that we've had to dig ourselves out of.

Gresham Harkless 14:28

Exactly, yeah, it's all part of the process. So definitely great to understand that. So, Kat, thank you so much for that definition. I appreciate that. Appreciate your time, even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and listeners know. Then of course, how best they can get a hold of you. Subscribe to the podcast, to find out about the co-working space and all the awesome things. You're working on it.

Katharina Brendel 14:49

Thanks so much. It's been an awesome conversation. So thank you for having me for sure. The last thing is I think I already said my key piece of advice right and as you said, if anybody wants help with how to do podcasting, I mean, sure, hit me up. I'm at katbrendel.com. If you've heard crushes podcasts and you're like, this sounds cool, but I don't know if it's the right thing for me to have a quiz that says you should start a podcast or grow your business because I'm also honest I'm pretty direct. I'm a little bit German, so very direct, too.

For some people, it's not the right thing, it's not the best medium, and there are other ways you can tell your story better. I do a little quiz where I honestly tell you it is the right fit for you right now. Other than that, you can find everything about CoWomen there too, but it's cowomen.com. For everyone, in Berlin, you're welcome to drop by guys are welcome at our events. For that, you're also welcome to go on social media, it's all kept pinned down. So easy to find.

Gresham Harkless 15:42

Awesome. I will make sure to have those links in the show notes so that everybody can follow up with you. Thank you so much again for your time and again, for that reminder that sometimes podcasting might be for you, but there are so many other mediums as well, too that might be better shoes that fit well on you as well. I definitely appreciate that. Appreciate you and I hope you have a phenomenal rest today.

Katharina Brendel 16:02

Thanks, Gresh. You too.

Outro 16:04

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

Intro 0:02

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Do you want to learn effective ways to build relationships, generate sales, and grow your business from successful entrepreneurs, startups, and CEOs without listening to a long, long, long interview? If so, you've come to the right place. Gresham Harkless values your time and is ready to share with you precisely the information you're in search of. This is the I AM CEO Podcast.

Gresham Harkless 0:29

Hello. This is Gresh from the I AM CEO podcast and I have a very special guest on the show today. I have Katharina Brendel of katbrendel.com. Kat, it's awesome to have you on the show.

Katharina Brendel 0:39

Thank you for having me. I'm happy to be here.

Gresham Harkless 0:41

No problem super excited to have you on and what I wanted to do was just read a little bit more about Kat so you can hear about all the awesome things that she's doing. Kat's love of stories made her a lifelong book nerd and led to her studying journalism and building a career in media. After gaining a boatload of marketing experience around the world, she learned how to not just tell stories for stories sake, but how they can drive businesses forward. After soaking up all that knowledge, she went out on my own, launching the Leading Rebels podcast, co-founding the community club & coworking space for women CoWomen, and collaborating with kickass (wo)men like you to launch your podcast to get your voice heard. Kat, are you ready to speak to the I AM CEO community?

Katharina Brendel 1:21

I'm ready.

Gresham Harkless 1:22

Awesome. Let's do it. I wanted to give you the mic so to speak, and kick everything off here a little bit more about your CEO story, what led you to get started with your business?

Katharina Brendel 1:31

What was kind of one thing led to another I started the podcast because I got a leadership position at a tech startup. There wasn't a lot of women leadership as unfortunately, it's still the case in tech. I wanted to know a little bit about female leadership and what that looks like. Since as you mentioned, I'm a journalist and other people were having the same questions I thought, you know, why not share the conversations I'm having and that's how the leading rebels podcast doc born. I'd have to admit, that kind of already started the intrapreneurial blog, when you start a podcast and create something for yourself, you're already kind of in the flow. Then I met my co-founders through the women's networks, because I got into that scene kind of fits in quotation marks. They had this idea for a community club and co working space for women, which didn't exist at all in Germany. We're like, we got together and did that. Then I quit my job and went full time, both with CoWomen and as a podcast strategist.

Gresham Harkless 2:26

Nice, I definitely appreciate that. It definitely seems like as you were saying, like, once you start seeing or getting that entrepreneurial bug or you discover it, then you start to see things everywhere. It's like you have to rein in the amount of opportunities you have. Because you always see everything she can do all the time.

Katharina Brendel 2:41

Yeah, the list of like to do soon projects so what could be it's very long.

Gresham Harkless 2:47

Exactly. I appreciate that. I kind of session on when I was reading your bio, just how the journalism and of itself is not just like writing for newspapers or magazines. It's developed, especially with content being so prevalent in businesses it's become a way for people to tell the story. That's why I love everything that you're building, you're growing, and I'm a Journalism nerd, and a book nerd, too. So I can definitely appreciate all that.

Katharina Brendel 3:13

Thank you appreciate. Yeah, it's definitely what I love is that there's so many mediums now that you can choose what is the best avenue both in how you're good at storytelling and where your audience hangs out. That's just perfect. But there's so many avenues now.

Gresham Harkless 3:25

Exactly choices abundant. I know you touched on it a little bit, but I wanted to hear some more about your podcast, like what we can expect by listening to it, and also everything you're doing with your co working space and in the podcast consulting you're doing.

Katharina Brendel 3:38

Sure. So the podcast evolved with me I like to say, which I think is fun. Because a lot of people think like, oh, if I started this way, it has to be this way for like the next 50 years. The fun thing is no podcast and gig as you like. In the beginning, I pretty much focused on interviewing women at leadership. Because that was a topic I was treating, but I kind of found out that one leadership is not just a position in a company. That's not what leadership is just about. It's also there's a lot of ways of being a leader. The other side was also that the tips the women had, and whether they were younger or older, regardless of their positions, was all about kind of being authentic and being yourself and we hear this so much. But we're like, Well, what does that mean? What does that look like? Like I get you're telling me this, you clearly went through some transformation. But I don't know how to get there. I don't know how to do this. I decided that that was a little bit the area I want to dive into for this last season, which was a 30 students have been doing this three years, kind of looking at like, Okay, people who did kind of outside of the norm, things who really went their own way and how did that process look like? How did they maybe not feel great at times. Then also sharing a little bit of my own storytelling chops to help people tell not only just tell them sort of but find and own them, which I think is also an important step. We often skip. So that was kind of what the podcast is about and yeah, cool, when we opened, it's been open about two years. We have a space here in Berlin Germany and second location in the south of Germany. That's just a really it's a physical space, which is really nice. I do both online and media stuff, but also physical, which I think is also super valuable. And we kind of bring them in together and give them masterclasses, co working mentors, all this stuff to kind of both intrapreneurship and employed, kind of take it to the next level.

Gresham Harkless 5:21

Yeah absolutely love that. I love how you kind of talked about, I feel like, a lot of times we're in one camp or another. But those camps that kind of merge together, you're either so online that you don't want to have anything to do with anybody other than if it's online. Then you're either offline, or you don't do a lot of things online. But I think that there's definitely a synergy and opportunity to be able to do both. Because I think you take relationships to a different level, obviously, if you're able to kind of get those connections, and then obviously, you can spread yourself and have much more of a broader voice by being able to do things online.

Katharina Brendel 5:52

Yeah, I think it's there's a lot of different relationships you can have. I think there are reasons and uses for all of them. But we shouldn't leaning too much into one side versus the other, as always, when we're kind of fun kind of suddenly felt a bit isolated or alone in some way.

Gresham Harkless 6:06

Absolutely. That's why I love everything that you've been able to build and grow it and merge together. You might have already touched on this, but I want to ask you for what I call your secret sauce, and it could be for you or your or your businesses. But what do you feel kind of sets you apart and makes you unique?

Katharina Brendel 6:21

I like to say that I'm Mary storytelling in business, that's kind of the thing. From the journalist side, and being a book nerd, I'm a really big fan of things have to be interesting. They have to like actually how we connect a story. What is the campfire tales, or whatever it may be, that's how we connect. But on the other hand, we've got business, if you're an entrepreneur, or even you're working in a business, the stories you tell should do something. So they shouldn't be nice to listen to, they should also drive your business. But people often fall into one camp or the other either very dry, because they're like, this isn't to be sales basically. Or do you like to tell me nice things, but sales is pushy and I don't want to do that. Then they kind of end up just telling my stories, and it doesn't convert. I like to think that I kind of can put both hats on and do stories that are engaging, but also drive somewhere at the end that ideally benefits both parties at some point.

Gresham Harkless 7:13

Yeah, absolutely. Because you have to have that ability to kind of captivate people so that they are interested in your product and services, and sometimes your why of why you do things, but you do at the end of the day have to make sure you're sharing business. In order to do that you have to make a sale or to make sure and ensure that that happens.

Katharina Brendel 7:28

Yeah. So I like to say that's kind of what I excel at, at getting people for one capital bit more than the other and vice versa.

Gresham Harkless 7:35

Yeah, that makes so much sense. I wanted to switch gears a little bit and I want to ask you for what I call a CEO hack. So this could be an app, book or a habit that you have but what's something that makes you more effective and efficient.

Katharina Brendel 7:48

So I'm a total productivity nut, which probably means I've tried everything under the sun. Mostly because as you've listened to what I do, I do a lot of different things and also in different settings. So when I work as a strategist and a coach, I'm more like in my home office, but then I also the physical space I work in, so there's a lot of hats I'm wearing. That's the biggest challenge, of course. I really block times where I'm like, so I do usually do sprints in the day, like three different sprints, and then I do like group together tasks. For example, I will say, Okay, this morning, I'll focus on Coleman, doing these type of things this afternoon is podcasting these things and then I also have a timer so that I do see how long things are taking because otherwise, planning weeks is really hard. Because you're always thinking like, oh, yeah, I'll do them 30 minutes and then like three hours later, you're like, ohh. Never mind and yeah, that's how I get a good feel about so both tracking the time and really blocking times and not switching too much is what I really found super helpful.

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Gresham Harkless 8:43

Nice. That makes so much sense. I heard you use the word sprint so could you kind of define exactly what that means to us it just that you're working for something on our project as far as you can take it or how do you kind of structure that?

Katharina Brendel 8:55

Sure. So I kind of thought around because since I was at a tech startups doing spreads is actually from like the development side, so like the IT tech side, they do a lot of sprints. For me, I kind of do them small in the sense of like, focus on one topic for a certain amount of time, for example, like two hours and then I have a bigger project that they feed into that I say like, Okay, I'm gonna guesstimate this is gonna take 10 to our blocks to complete. Then I can schedule those in so I can say like, Okay, this is the time I want to have this completed and that's how I sprint.

Gresham Harkless 9:23

Nice. Yeah, I definitely appreciate that. Because I guess the saying is the quickest way to eat an elephant one bite at a time. A lot of times we have these big projects, see big things that we want to accomplish. Not sure where that time is going to come from. But if you're able to kind of say, Hey, if you can break in tw hours for 10 weeks, then all of a sudden you hit whatever goal you might try. You're trying to hit. .

Katharina Brendel 9:42

Yeah and also we also don't like when we see too many big things. We don't even know where to start. So they were like, Oh, let me check my email. Sometimes it's good just like having every single task as small as might be written out because then you don't have that excuse me, like okay, this is what I have to do next. Then you just like go through the list and don't Like even think about how big the whole thing is basically,

Gresham Harkless 10:03

Yeah, it gives you that manageable tasks that you can because you can, you can target and you can you can crash and hit so that makes so much sense. Now I wanted to ask you for what I call a CEO nugget. This is a word of wisdom or a piece of advice, or maybe a piece of advice around podcasting or even storytelling, but what would you kind of tell a younger business person or younger business self?

Katharina Brendel 10:25

This is kind of one of my core beliefs wouldn't it's very much what drives what I do is, you have something valuable to say, because I'm especially passionate about amplifying women's voices. It's also part of what I do, and also in podcasting, listenership is 5050. But women are about 25% hosts. So it's like, it's not really the most equal. But in general, a lot of people feel like, what they have to say on matters, or somebody has said it better than them. So why should they even bother? It's been so many times that I like to give the example how many times have you been given advice, maybe by your parents when you were younger? They told you this 60 times and you didn't listen, because it's your parents? Then somebody you admired or a friend or something said the same thing? Then you're like, oh, yeah, I totally did it. Right. So the point is not has somebody said it before, maybe by nowadays, there's so much out there probably have, but they haven't said like you would, and you we all connect with different people in different ways. You definitely have something valuable to say and that's why pro people getting out there and sharing their stories.

Gresham Harkless 11:26

Nice. I love that kind of example, because a lot of times I think everybody can relate to that, who's who's heard, their parents probably say anything they they hear so many times, and then it it clicks when you hear from somebody else. I think a lot of times people will say or even when they're starting businesses or thinking about probably certain podcasts that, oh, this podcast already exists that does X, Y, and Z, but they don't necessarily do it in a way that you do it. That's why I love how you help people, first of all find their voices and be able to kind of execute on that so that they can understand how exactly they can start whatever it is they're trying to start.

Katharina Brendel 11:57

Yeah, I'm definitely super passionate about that and kind of the strategy behind that and getting the right stories out and how to tell them that stuff, what I'm all about.

Gresham Harkless 12:05

Yeah, that makes so much sense. Now I wanted to ask you my absolute favourite question, which is the definition of what it means to be a CEO and we're hoping to have different quote-unquote, CEOs on this show. So Kat, what does being a CEO mean to you?

Katharina Brendel 12:17

For me, it just means being in charge of your life and work? I think it's a general thing. I think, sometimes it can be tempting to when you're maybe employed or in some situation, or not a huge fan of when you're like, or you're starting your business and it's not going well to decide it's like outside factors that are maybe in your way, and there definitely are those things. I'm not saying there aren't hardships outside of your world that get created for you. But being a CEO means saying, okay, there might ABCDE things that are going against me, but I decide how I react to them. I decide what I do and how I move forward and that's what for me being a CEO it was about is about owning the agency that you do have?

Gresham Harkless 12:56

Absolutely, yeah, I love that owning that agency, because I think so many times, you can get so focused on external factors of this is going wrong, or this isn't perfectly set up. But if you control yourself, control your mindset, how you look at things, how you react to things that can give you that opportunity to hit whatever goal maybe not in the way you necessarily see but you can still kind of crush your goal and hit your goal whenever you're able to do that.

Katharina Brendel 13:20

Yeah, and I think that's it's I mean, I'm not saying it's easy. It's one of those very typical thing. It's simple, but not easy. It's also okay to win. Sometimes we run down and sometimes feel defeated that like, those are truly normal feelings, but it's just kind of having that base that you go back to, to kind of pull yourself out of it.

Gresham Harkless 13:37

Yeah, that makes so much sense because it's definitely not easy as you said, it's simple, but not necessarily easy to execute. But that's why everybody isn't doing it all the time. That's just a reminder based on that, but yeah, you're absolutely right, where sometimes it is understanding too, that you're not alone, if you're going through that one of those down moments, because entrepreneurship, running a business, running the podcasts, doing all these things is extremely hard. If you're aware of that, then sometimes when you have those down moments, you won't feel like you're by yourself or you're failing or something's wrong with you.

Katharina Brendel 14:07

Yeah, that's where the second thing I'm so passionate about is community and all these different ways. Because if you try to go at it alone, and from the outside of the Instagram world, everybody's crushing it, and not having a single problem in the world. It's really important to have people around you that show you like, it's okay, things go wrong. We fall, we'll follow challenges that we've had to dig ourselves out of.

Gresham Harkless 14:28

Exactly, yeah, it's all part of the process. So definitely great to understand that. So, Kat, thank you so much for that definition. I appreciate that. Appreciate your time, even more. What I wanted to do is pass you the mic, so to speak, just to see if there's anything additional, you want to let our readers and listeners know. Then of course, how best they can get a hold of you. Subscribe to the podcast, find out about the co working space and all the awesome things. You're working on it.

Katharina Brendel 14:49

Thanks so much. It's been an awesome conversation. So thank you for having me for sure. The last thing is I think I already said my my key piece of advice right and as you said, if anybody wants help with how to do podcasting, I mean, sure, hit me up. I'm at katbrendel.com. If you've heard crushes podcasts and you're like, this sounds cool, but I don't know if it's the right thing for me actually have a quiz that says you should you start a podcast or grow your business because I'm also an honest I'm pretty direct. I'm a little bit German, so very direct, too. For some people, it's not the right thing, it's not the best medium, there are other ways you can tell your story better. I do a little quiz where I honestly tell you is is the right fit for you right now. Other than that, you can find everything about CoWomen there too, but it's cowomen.com. For everyone, Berlin, you're welcome to drop by guys are welcome at our events. For that you're also welcome to go and on social media, it's all kept pinned down. So easy to find.

Gresham Harkless 15:42

Awesome. I will make sure to have those links in the show notes so that everybody can follow up with you. Thank you so much again for your time and again, for that reminder about sometimes podcasting might be for you, but there's so many other mediums as well, too that might be better shoes that fit well on you as well. I definitely appreciate that. Appreciate you and I hope you have a phenomenal rest today.

Katharina Brendel 16:02

Thanks, Gresh. You too.

Outro 16:04

Thank you for listening to the I AM CEO Podcast powered by Blue 16 Media. Tune in next time and visit us at iamceo.co I AM CEO is not just a phrase, it's a community. Be sure to follow us on social media and subscribe to our podcast on iTunes Google Play and everywhere you listen to podcasts, SUBSCRIBE, and leave us a five-star rating grab CEO gear at www.ceogear.co. This has been the I AM CEO Podcast with Gresham Harkless. Thank you for listening.

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Mercy - CBNation Team

This is a post from a CBNation team member. CBNation is a Business to Business (B2B) Brand. We are focused on increasing the success rate. We create content and information focusing on increasing the visibility of and providing resources for CEOs, entrepreneurs and business owners. CBNation consists of blogs(CEOBlogNation.com), podcasts, (CEOPodcasts.com) and videos (CBNation.tv). CBNation is proudly powered by Blue16 Media.

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