This short episode is the second in our experimental ‘side chat’ format.
In 2019, when I started thinking about doing a podcast on innovation in aid, I looked around to see what else was out there. At the time, one podcast stood out to me for its ability to capture the spirit of innovation in aid. It was the Terms of Reference Podcast, which Stephen Ladek ran from 2014 to 2018. Stephen recorded almost two hundred episodes with aid workers, social entrepreneurs, and other change-makers. His guests included CEO of FHI360 Patrick Fine, USAID’s Chief Innovation Officer Alexis Bonnell, the President of Chemonics Jamey Butcher, and the Head of the Innovation Accelerator at World Food Programme Bernhard Kowatsch.
As one does, I stalked Stephen relentlessly on the internet until he agreed to be on my show.
In our conversation, Stephen and I talk about what it means to be a podcaster and an entrepreneur in the aid industry. Stephen shares his secret to success over the years. We gripe about how this sector has plenty of policies and policy makers, and how it has platforms for diplomats and executives to speak – but it doesn’t have enough space to share the stories and lessons learned of real people working in the trenches. And, of course, we talk about the craft of podcasting, how far we’ve come, and how much farther we have yet to go.
About Stephen Ladek
Stephen is someone that self-identifies as an ‘entrepreneur’ in the aid and international development sector. He has spent two decades working in this sector, and ran a consulting organization (International Solutions Group, acquired by IMC Worldwide) through which he worked with many of the large non-profits in this space. He also ran aidpreneur.com, a community for development professionals to help us figure out how we can do our jobs, run our organizations, and use donor funding effectively. Today Stephen specializes in eLearning and Learning Management Systems, the applications and tools to provide effective education. He runs LMSpulse.com, the eLearningSuccessSumit.com, and, of course, a new podcast, The eLearning Podcast.
- Aidpreneur and the Terms of Reference Podcast: Stephen ran Aidpreneur and the Terms of Reference Podcast for four years from 2014 to 2018. All of the learnings, resources, episodes, and toolkits remain online and available at Aidpreneur.com.
- LMSPulse.com: Today Stephen runs LMSPulse, an online, independent resource for learning management systems (LMS). He also runs the eLearning Success Summit
- The eLearning Podcast is Stephen’s current contribution to the podcasting world.