Published September 2020 on Spotfiy

404: Guy Raz | How I Built This

1. Introduction

Guy shares his insights on how exposing yourself to rejection can help you build resilience and armor yourself for any journey you take, whether it's up the corporate ladder or in your own business. He also offers tips on finding a mentor and making your own way.+

2. From Intern to Bureau Chief

NPR Intern to Bureau Chief:Guy Raz shares his journey from being a 22-year-old intern at NPR to becoming the youngest overseas-based bureau chief at age 25. He talks about his imposter syndrome and how he started out doing freelance articles to get his first big break in journalism.+
Overseas Reporting Challenges:Guy Raz shares his experience as a foreign correspondent in Germany in the early 2000s, including the challenges he faced as a young reporter for NPR. He also discusses the traditional deficiency of journalism in providing solutions to the problems they report on.+

3. Personalizing Interviews

Personalizing Interviews:Guy Raz reflects on his career as a foreign correspondent and how he became frustrated with the lack of impact his reporting had on developing empathy. He discusses the deficiency of journalism in offering solutions and how it's held back by the fear of being biased or not objective. Jordan Harbinger adds to the conversation by sharing how Larry King's advice to put personality into interviews is now a given in podcasting.+
Navigating a Journalistic Career:Guy Raz shares his insights on forging your own path in journalism, dealing with setbacks, and the importance of taking control of your career. He emphasizes that there is no clear path and that failures can lead to interesting opportunities.+

4. Overcoming Obstacles

Overcoming Obstacles:Guy Raz and Jordan Harbinger discuss the importance of experiencing struggle and obstacles in order to grow in your career. They also touch on the topic of seeking out mentors and how to approach the question of mentorship. Guy shares his personal experience of reinventing himself throughout his career.+
Finding a Mentor:Guy Raz emphasizes that finding a mentor requires building a relationship and having a stake in each other's success. It's not a one-way relationship, but rather a feedback loop where both parties benefit and learn from each other. Mentors can be found in people you marginally know or have a natural stake in your success, not necessarily someone much older or experienced.+

5. Sponsors

Jordan Harbinger discusses SimpliSafe, a modern home security system, and Better Help, an affordable option for online therapy, with guests Guy Raz and Jen Harbinger. They talk about the importance of feeling safe at home and taking care of mental health during difficult times.+

6. Skill Acquisition

Skill Acquisition:Jordan and Guy discuss the misconception that success can be achieved through shortcuts and mentorship alone. They emphasize the importance of hard work and consistent practice in acquiring any skill, whether it's exercise or interviewing.+
Mastering Your Craft:Jordan and Guy discuss the importance of reflecting on your work and listening to yourself to improve your craft. They share personal experiences of listening to their own work and how it has helped them grow and evolve. They emphasize the need to embrace the process of improvement, even if it means feeling uncomfortable at times.+

7. Interview Preparation

Preparing for Interviews:Guy and Jordan discuss their interview preparation process and how they sometimes over-prepare, leading to having more notes than necessary. They also share their anxiety about potentially killing an interview and the importance of research to prevent that from happening.+
Honoring the Interviewee:Guy Raz shares his secret to getting a good interview - honoring the interviewee by doing extensive research and preparation. He explains how immersing himself in the interviewee's story allows him to leave the chaos of the world behind and truly connect with the story being told.+

8. Interviewer Intimidation

Overcoming Interviewer Intimidation:Guy Raz and Jordan Harbinger discuss how they overcome intimidation when interviewing guests. They emphasize the importance of being comfortable in your own skin and taking people at face value. They also caution against trying to become friends with guests during interviews and wasting the audience's time.+
Tough Interviews:Guy Raz discusses the importance of holding people accountable in interviews, especially public officials, but also allowing space for guests to offer their perspective. He shares examples of interviews where he asked difficult questions and contextualized controversial topics.+

9. Sponsors

Customizable Clothing:Jordan and Jen talk about Indochino, a company that offers custom-fitted suits, coats, and casual clothing. They discuss the affordability and personalization options, including fabric, lining, lapel shape, and monogram. Listeners can get $30 off their purchase of $399 or more with promo code JORDAN.+
Advertisements Galore:Jordan talks about the show's sponsors, HostGator and OxiClean, and shares personal anecdotes about their products. He also reminds listeners to check out the show notes for discounts and a worksheet for the episode.+

10. Building Resilience

Building Resilience:Guy Raz shares his insights on what successful entrepreneurs have in common. He believes that the ability to withstand rejection is key to building a successful business. While some people may have a natural inclination towards persistence, most entrepreneurs develop this ability through experience. Raz emphasizes that building resilience is crucial for anyone who wants to succeed in business.+
Entrepreneurial Lessons:Guy Raz shares insights on how Mormons' exposure to rejection during their missionary work makes them great entrepreneurs. He also discusses how the key to creating enterprise is execution, not just having a good idea.+

11. American Opportunity

Opportunities and Privilege:Guy and Jordan discuss the American folklore idea that opportunity comes to anyone that's willing to work hard, and how privilege and luck play a role in success. They acknowledge the different forms of privilege, including race and gender, and the importance of creating opportunities for everyone to truly make it a level playing field.+
The Entrepreneurial Spirit:Guy and Jordan discuss the importance of entrepreneurship in driving innovation and real change. They explore how the decline in entrepreneurship over the past 30 years has affected society and how immigrants and first-generation Americans often come to the US to build their own businesses.+
America's History:Guy Raz discusses the importance of knowing America's history to make the country more humane and empathetic. He also compares America's approach to confronting its history to Germany's and how it has made them better global citizens. Jordan Harbinger adds his thoughts on depression and social media's impact on young people.+

12. Outro

Jordan Harbinger dispels the myth that entrepreneurship is only for the young and highlights the importance of therapy in dealing with depression. He also shares feedback from Guy's mom about the podcast and encourages listeners to share the show with those they care about.+