The Startup Parent Podcast: Why & How the Show Started — Episode #001 with Mattan Griffel
Welcome to The Startup Parent Podcast (formerly Startup Pregnant Podcast): where we dive into the lives and stories of women starting businesses and families.
Let’s be honest: I feel like we’re all just trying to figure it out one day at a time—one sleep-deprived, coffee-fueled, bleary-eyed day at a time. Entrepreneurship and parenting are filled with deep, difficult, and joyful lessons about what it means to be a person and make work in the world.
No matter how much prep work you do, there is no way to anticipate the singular experience of having a baby or starting a business. In fact, there are a number of parallels between pregnancy and startups, and this podcast explores those intersections with the hope of learning what the two worlds have to teach each other. Along the way, we’ll talk about reinventing the way we think about parenting and work.
Here’s a behind-the-scenes look at why I started this show.
In 2014, I interviewed with One Month, the Y Combinator venture-backed startup focused on teaching people tech and coding skills, to join their rapidly growing team. While I interviewed, I was transparent about my plans to start a family. Eight months in I was promoted to VP. One month later, I realized I was pregnant. So today, two years later, I bring One Month founder and CEO Mattan Griffel on the show to discuss the perceived risks of hiring women who want to start families, and why he realized that this false cultural narrative is actually limiting himself in the search for great talent.
This desire to start a new story about what it takes to grow businesses and babies — and the overlap between entrepreneurship and parenting — was the impetus for starting this podcast.
The Startup Parent Podcast: Why & How the Show Started
The Startup Parent Podcast — Episode #001
ABOUT THE STARTUP PARENT PODCAST
We’re a weekly show that releases new episodes every Monday at 5:30 A.M. Find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play, or whenever you listen to podcasts. If you’d like to get new episodes delivered to you by email, sign up for the weekly newsletter with insights, strategies, and new ideas for working parents. If you’d like to sponsor the podcast, feel free to reach out. Lastly, if you like what you hear definitely leave us a review on iTunes.
It was incredibly hard to work the startup life while pregnant. The highs were great, and the lows were awful.
- Vomiting into a grocery store at Whole Foods.
- Feeling my little one kick for the first time.
- The sense of isolation both at work and in the company of moms-to-be.
- Reckoning with colleagues and city-dwellers who didn’t pay attention or notice made me dislike the city’s seeming lack of empathy.
I want this podcast to be the start of a conversation about the overlap between entrepreneurship, pregnancy, and parenting.
In today’s episode, I talk about the main four reasons I made this podcast a reality.
There are four main reasons I made this podcast a reality including (1) the flawed narrative of what it means to be pregnant as portrayed in popular culture, (2) the backwards methodology of startups that are self-described as disruptors, (3) why it’s important to create new ways of working, and (4) why I ultimately needed to find and listen to other women’s stories to root myself into the place and sense of what it meant to be a pregnant entrepreneur, and then later, to become a working parent. Listen in to why we got started, and I’ll also tell you about some of the inspiring people you’ll meet in the first series to come up ahead.
In this episode, we talk about:
- The surprising similarities between tech startups and pregnancy, and what it taught me about growth, time management, productivity, and uncertainty.
- Why I talked openly with my CEO about family planning and pregnancy before accepting the job, and how we approached all of the potential pitfalls ahead of us.
- The striking difference between what I expected of pregnancy and what it was actually like, and how frustrated I was at the mainstream media’s depictions of motherhood and parenting.
- The upcoming themes of the podcast, from what guests we’ll be talking to, to the topics we’ll be covering, and more.
The goal of this podcast is to interview at least 100 women in a rich tapestry of stories about motherhood, about work, and about startup culture.
Along the way, I hope you’ll enjoy discovering the similarities between starting a business and starting a family, and together, we can transform the way the world looks when it comes to working and parenting.
Quotes from the episode:
- If you limit yourself in terms of talent for the “safest” candidates, then you’re already handicapping your startup and its chance of being successful.
- I have this permanent map in my head of Manhattan and Brooklyn, and all of the different places I have vomited in this city of mine… I had morning sickness and night sickness, and it was a wild experience.
- There was something soothing simply about listening to the story of another woman. How did you teach yourself? How did you learn? Who did you lean on?
- You cannot take off your pregnancy suit. It’s such an incredible experience that forces you to change because of all the demands placed on you.
We partner with conscientious, kind, ambitious brands supporting startups, parents, and entrepreneurs. If you’d like to get your message in front of some of the smartest parents, mothers, and business owners in the world, send us a note by visiting us at www.startupparent.com/sponsors
- “How Kim Kardashian Pushed the Boundaries of Celebrity Pregnancy” in BuzzFeed
- So You’re Building A Company and Becoming A Parent: Are You Insane?
- The Short List of Must-Read Books on Pregnancy, Parenting, and Childbirth
- Sponsor the Podcast
About Mattan Griffel
Mattan Griffel is a professor at Columbia Business School, Y Combinator alumnus, and the Co-Founder and Chairman of One Month, an online video learning platform that teaches students to code. He was recognized as a member of Forbes 30 Under 30 in Education, and he serves as Ambassador for the Sandbox Network, a community of global leaders under 30.
ABOUT THE STARTUP PARENT PODCAST
We're a weekly show that releases new episodes most Mondays at 5:30 A.M. Find us on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play, or whenever you listen to podcasts. If you'd like to get new episodes delivered to you by email, sign up for the weekly newsletter with insights, strategies, and new ideas for working parents. If you'd like to sponsor the podcast, feel free to reach out. Lastly, if you like what you hear definitely leave us a review on iTunes.
WHAT READERS ARE SAYING:
"Startup Parent's take on motherhood, work, and rejecting hustle culture is everything I need in my life right now."
"One of the only newsletters I always read."
"If I hear one more meaningless "productivity tip" I might scream. Your newsletter is always refreshing and honest."
ONLINE PARENT GROUPS
Our private Startup Parent Facebook Community is for working moms navigating all things parenting, business, career, and children. We also have a brand-new Linked In Parenting Group for folks of all genders to join and share resources on parenting and business. Join us in one or both groups.
THE WISE WOMEN'S COUNCIL
Every year, we gather a group of women together to talk about pregnancy, parenting, marriage, partnership, work, business, children, and all the things that come up during this challenging season of life. Applications are now open.
ASK SARAH — BONUS EPISODES AND FIRESIDE CHATS
If you’re a fan of this podcast, you’ll love the private, ask-me-anything conversations with Sarah. When you become a Patreon backer, you'll get a brand-new episode every single month. Click here to become a back and get immediate access to the episodes.
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A few years ago, when we first had children, my husband talked to his workplace about parental leave. He knew that while he’d like to be home during the first few weeks during and after the birth, he was also interested in being able to be around with his kids while they grew up. So, the summer after our first kid was born, he shifted his schedule to work from 8am to 4pm. From there, he advocated for taking a four-week leave every summer to spend time with his kids. We’re not taking a full sabbatical this year because of the pandemic, but we will still push pause on a few things where we can.
Sarah K Peck
Founder, Startup Parent
Sarah Peck is a writer, startup advisor, and yoga teacher based in New York City. She’s the founder and executive director of Startup Parent, a media company documenting the stories of women’s leadership across work and family. She hosts the weekly Startup Parent Podcast and Let's Talk, her second podcast. Previously, she worked at Y Combinator backed One Month, Inc, a company that teaches people to code in 30 days, and before that she was a writing and communications consultant.
She’s a 20-time All-American swimmer who successfully swam the Escape from Alcatraz nine separate times, once wearing only a swim cap and goggles to raise $33k for charity: water. She’s written for more than 75 different web publications and and has delivered speeches and workshops at Penn, UVA, Berkeley, Harvard, Craft & Commerce, WDS, and more.