Listening Is The New Reading


I rarely have time to read books anymore.

I used to accumulate sizeable bills on my Kindle doing a book a week, now I don’t even remember the last book I read in print form. My babies, both actual and startup, have been occupying a whole lot of my time. I’ve also re-committed to writing on a particular blog. My weekends I’ve mostly closed off to family.

I do have a LOT of wasted time in traffic.

Living in Antipolo, sometimes I spend a good 2-3 hours a day in the car. 4 on bad days. (Waze sometimes I feel guides me INTO traffic)

It didn’t take me long to put two and two together.

I might have stopped reading, but I haven’t stopped learning.

Now, a huge chunk of the data on my phone is reserved for audio books and downloaded podcasts. My Kindle budget has now been transformed into an Audible budget (the best!).

Here are some very useful tools/resources I’ve found:

1) Audible

This is now one my favorite mobile apps. Buy a book from audible and it instantly loads on your mobile device. It’s also cool that it’s synced across all your devices – you can listen from your phone, stop, and then listen later on your tablet at the exact time you left it on your phone. It’s amazing.

I’m on the $14.95 per month plan, where you can purchase an audio book – ANY BOOK per month. This is a great deal because the books are typically much more expensive than $15. I usually end up buying more credits per month because it’s cheaper.

Do buy any of Gary Vaynerchuk‘s books on audio form – even if you’ve already read the print form! He reads the book himself, adds SO much more material, and delivers his audio performance with such panache.

I’ll soon do a review of some of the great books I’ve “read” over the last 6 months. (aside from The Alliance)

2) Podcasts

Podcasts are so awesome because they are very current (some books miss trends which happen during the gap between the book is finished and when it is published) and a lot of them come in conversation form – which, if the interviewer is semi-decent, can be very compelling to listen to.

Some podcasts I recommend for the entrepreneur-at-heart.

A) This Week In Startups – Jason Calacanis

The first podcast I subscribed to. Jason talks weekly to both successful entrepreneurs/investors and those who are new. He has a very interesting “news panel” format also where a selected group of panelists talk about startup news. If you’re not listening to this, make the Chris Sacca interview you first listen.

B) The Tim Ferriss Show – Tim Ferriss

He of the “4-hour workweek” fame, and perhaps not too many know, is a very very active angel investor. Not all startups, but what Tim does here is he interviews very successful people in different fields and tries to deconstruct what made them successful. Tim also does a lot of  productivity tips as well.

C) Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders – Stanford eCorner

Look at that list of guests. It’s a who’s who of the absolute best entepreneurs/investors ever – Zuckerberg, Evan Williams, Ron Conway, Brad Feld, etc…

Cons: 1) is the guest list becoming less impressive? 2) the monologue format is a killer (not awesome, but more of “just kill me now”) for entrepreneurs who aren’t good speakers.

D) The James Altucher Show – James Altucher

My newest find. James is an entrepreneur/investor/author. His podcasts are just…different, as he has a different take on things and it shows in his questions. Guest list is awesome…Mark Cuban, Huffington, and this guy…

E) Seth Godin’s Startup School  – Seth Godin

I’m a huge Seth Godin fan (largely because of his hairstyle), so this was a no-brainer. The podcast is just 15 episodes recorded from his just-one-time weekend startup seminar. He offer a different take from the usual startup science (lean startup, MVP, etc…), which is a bit more marketing driven.

Enjoy! Do let us know if you have your own recommendations!

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