11 Best How I Built This Episodes for Every Entrepreneur

Ever wondered what it takes to build something extraordinary from scratch? How I Built This is a goldmine for anyone with a dream and the drive to make it happen. This podcast stands out for its intimate conversations that peel back the layers of entrepreneurship. Guy Raz guides the conversations, making each session an opportunity to learn from the unfiltered experiences of those who’ve built notable businesses and brands. From initial sparks of ideas to the details of overcoming obstacles, How I Built This covers it all. It’s not just about the endgame of success but about the resilience, creativity, and determination needed to get there.

Ever wondered what it takes to build something extraordinary from scratch? The podcast How I Built This is a goldmine for anyone with a dream and the drive to make it happen. This list of How I Built This best episodes isn’t just about my personal picks – it’s a mix of crowd favorites and the most talked-about stories. So let’s get started.

HIBT Lab! Saysh: Wes and Allyson Felix

  • Release date: March 16, 2023
  • Duration: 51 minutes

Imagine challenging a giant like Nike. That’s what Allyson Felix, America’s top track star, and her brother Wes did. After Nike offered a deal that didn’t support Allyson as a mother, they stepped away. This episode of HIBT covers their journey to build Saysh, their own shoe company. It’s more than a business tale; it’s a fight for women’s rights in sports. Hearing Allyson and Wes talk about their leap into the unknown, designing shoes that truly fit women, and ultimately seeing Allyson win gold in their Fown brand at the Olympics is beyond inspiring. 

Rick Steves’ Europe: Rick Steves

  • Release date: March 8, 2021
  • Duration: 1 hour 22 minutes

Rick Steves is a travel legend. Starting with a backpack, a tight budget, and a passion for Europe, he built a travel empire. From teaching classes to writing guidebooks and hosting a TV show, Rick’s journey is a masterclass in turning passion into profit. His story teaches resilience, innovation, and how to thrive even when the odds are stacked against you.

Khan Academy: Sal Khan

  • Release date: September 21, 2020
  • Duration: 1 hour 22 minutes

Sal Khan’s story of Khan Academy is an inspiring example of how technology can democratize education. His journey from tutoring cousins to creating a global educational platform is nothing short of remarkable. This episode shows the power of passion-driven innovation and its impact on global education.

Sal Khan returned to HIBT in 2023 with news about the future of education amidst the AI revolution. Using the same kind of AI technology as ChatGPT, Khanmigo, a new platform at Khan Academy, aims to be a personal tutor for every student, potentially transforming how we learn forever. With this new step, Khan continues to pioneer the future of educational innovation.

Wikipedia: Jimmy Wales

  • Release date: January 27, 2020
  • Duration: 42 minutes

Jimmy Wales’ creation of Wikipedia is a story of vision and the open-source movement. From a modest start during the dot-com boom to becoming one of the most visited websites globally, Wikipedia’s story is about the power of community collaboration. This episode explores the intersection of technology, knowledge, and community spirit.

Dyson: James Dyson

  • Release date: February 12, 2018
  • Duration: 42 minutes

Inventor James Dyson’s story is nothing short of inspiring. Picture this: over 5,000 prototypes and numerous rejections later, his bagless vacuum idea finally took off. Today, Dyson is a household name, proving that persistence and belief in your vision can lead to revolutionary success. This episode confirms the power of not giving up.

Ben & Jerry’s: Ben Cohen And Jerry Greenfield

  • Release date: November 20, 2017
  • Duration: 56 minutes

Ben & Jerry’s is more than just ice cream; it’s a story of friendship, unique flavors, and social responsibility. From a small ice cream shop to a global brand, Ben and Jerry showed that businesses could be both profitable and principled. This episode is an inspiring mix of entrepreneurial spirit and commitment to social causes.

Bumble: Whitney Wolfe

  • Release date: October 16, 2017
  • Duration: 41 minutes

Whitney Wolfe’s journey teaches resilience and innovation in the face of adversity. From her stormy departure from Tinder to creating Bumble, a platform empowering women, her story is about rewriting the rules in a male-dominated industry. This episode is a masterclass in turning challenges into opportunities.

How I Built This Best Episodes

Whitney Wolfe didn’t just visit HIBT once. She returned to the show in 2020 to talk about how Bumble added video chats. This feature wasn’t a big hit at first, but when people couldn’t meet up because of the pandemic, it suddenly became super popular. It’s like Whitney knew exactly what people needed, even before they did.

Then, Whitney came back to the show in 2023. This time, she shared how she kept Bumble growing strong during tough times and how she managed all this while becoming a mom for the first time. She even talked about her exciting ideas for using smart tech to help people feel less lonely

Whitney’s story is impressive because she keeps finding new ways to make dating better and more fun, no matter what challenges come her way.

Zumba: Beto Perez & Alberto Perlman

  • Release date: January 2, 2017
  • Duration: 37 minutes

The Zumba episode is a vibrant story of how a dance class mishap turned into a global fitness sensation. It’s a story of passion, innovation, and how embracing a mistake can lead to something extraordinary. This episode is a perfect mix of business savvy and the joy of dance.

Patagonia: Yvon Chouinard

  • Release date: December 12, 2016
  • Duration: 25 minutes

Yvon Chouinard’s Patagonia is a beautiful story about how a passion for climbing turned into a business empire with a conscience. Starting with homemade climbing gear, Yvon built Patagonia into a brand synonymous with outdoor apparel and environmental activism. This episode is a deep dive into building a business that stays true to its values while achieving tremendous success.

Airbnb: Joe Gebbia

  • Release date: October 17, 2016
  • Duration: 41 minutes

Joe Gebbia’s Airbnb story is a classic example of innovative problem-solving. What began as a way to pay rent transformed into a global phenomenon, challenging the traditional hospitality industry. This episode is a fascinating journey of persistence, creativity, and the art of turning a simple idea into a worldwide movement.

Spanx: Sara Blakely

  • Release date: September 12, 2016
  • Duration: 26 minutes

Sara Blakely’s Spanx story is a masterclass in turning a simple idea into a revolutionary product. Her journey from selling fax machines to creating a brand that redefined women’s wear is both inspiring and empowering. This episode is about innovation, self-belief, and the power of a great idea.

Each How I Built This episode offers unique insights into the entrepreneurial journey. They show that success is a blend of innovation, resilience, and the courage to pursue your dreams. These stories are not just about business but about the human spirit’s power to create and transform. Remember, the best episodes of How I Built This are those that resonate with your own entrepreneurial spirit.


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