Making An #impact Through The Power Of Voice
How podcaster Regina Larko from #impact is #ChangingTheNatureOfWork
Please tell us a little about yourself and your company’s story.
At #impact, we believe in the power of voice to inspire positive change. In 2016, I started the #impact Podcast from my tiny bedroom in Hong Kong with the vision to support inspiring changemakers to get the word about their worthy causes. This vision has not changed at all. But in less than 5 years, we have gone from an audience of one (my grandma – bless her, she doesn’t even speak English!) to become one of the top 10% most popular shows out of almost 2 million Podcasts globally, ranked by Listen Score, the estimated popularity score. I have been honoured to have some incredible women and men support me on my solopreneur journey over the past years. Currently we have 7 talented guest hosts and producers based in Hong Kong, Sydney, Berlin, Bali, Honolulu and Hong Kong recording for #impact. And as we share our stories, we reach a passionate, global audience interested in social change, sustainability, and community initiatives. I also teach and mentor new Podcasters on how to start and grow a Podcast that makes a positive impact. We are so proud of our graduates as they share their impactful stories on their own channels.
What does the phrase “changing the nature of work” mean to you?
To me, “Changing the nature of work” means thinking outside the box, being innovative and flexible. Covid has shown us that “business as usual” is just a concept that can fall apart anytime. For #impact, it meant we had to move most of our interactions online. We used to record our Podcast interviews in person, nowadays we record online. We moved many meetings online too and as it turns out, this has helped us be more productive and time efficient. I still believe in the importance of getting out of the home office, the power of in-person meetings and I love my co-working days so much. As a mom of 3 young children, being able to be in charge of my calendar, deciding from when and from where I work on a daily basis, is something that I value so much as I am running my own business. It is something that should become standard for the corporate world too.
What actions do you take to incorporate sustainability into your business?
At #impact we believe that every little action counts. Do I really have to print this document? Do I really need to take the car or the taxi or can I use public transportation? Can I bring my own cup and container to my co-working space? These are questions we ask ourselves always. We are a small business but we think big in a sense that we know that our little actions can have big impacts. We mindfully look for interview subjects, collaboration partners, sponsors that have sustainability at their heart too. We are doing our best to run our business as sustainably conscious as possible, but we are far from perfect. There is always so much more to be done.
What are some of the more challenging aspects of your business?
For me personally, the most challenging part is managing and containing my creative ambitions. There are so many things I would like to try out, so many Podcasts I would love to produce, so many stories that still need to be told. If I could, I would only focus on content creation, it’s what I am most passionate about and I love the process. But focusing and managing priorities, planning strategically, setting goals that will bring the whole business forward long term is a daily challenge that I am taking on more and more confidently.
Which business leader do you most admire and why?
My business coach Kari Enge from Rank&File. I am in awe for everything she does, and how she does it, with so much intention, focus and planning. I have learned so much from her ever since I started working with her around 2 years ago.
In your opinion, what makes Hong Kong a great place to live and work?
Hong Kong’s diversity! There are so many different cultures, languages, nationalities that co-exist in Hong Kong. This city never seizes to surprise and amaze me. The people I have met along the way on my #impact journey here in Hong Kong are incredible – discovering Banyan Workspace and connecting with it’s people for example! I love how all these people from all over the world have made Hong Kong home. It’s such a vibrant place. To me Hong Kong was definitely love at first sight and will always have a special place in my heart with all of my 3 children having been born here.
Having survived 2020, can you share something that you learned from the experience?
That mindset is everything. There were days I was overwhelmed, exhausted and frustrated. My son was born in March 2020, in the midst of the second wave. Or wait, was it the third..? It’s all a big blur now. Homeschooling my then 4 year old and 2 year old was a disaster. I had intended to come back from maternity leave in July, just when the next wave hit and schools closed again. But the more sorry I felt for myself, the harder it was on the whole family. When I finally accepted the things I could not change, I turned another out-of-office responder on, and trusted that perceived missed business opportunities would still be there when I was truly ready to return to work. I could finally enjoy the time at home with my kids. And as it turns out, business opportunities were indeed still here once I returned for good.
What excites you about your business in 2021 and beyond?
The Audio and Podcast industry is booming. There is a momentum and excitement around audio that I have not seen in the past years. I always felt it, I always knew it was there, but now I feel I don’t have to explain the power of audio anymore – people are experiencing it for themselves. It will be a fabulous year for audio and looking at the students I am currently working with, I can already promise you some more amazing Podcasts coming your way this year.
Can you share with us one of your favourite quotes? Why does it resonate with you?
“We can do hard things” coined by the writer Glennon Doyle in her book Untamed. I just started reading this book and this quote resonates so much. I know this will be a quote I will go back to whenever I face challenges.
What help or support are you looking for and how can our network get in touch with you?
I would love for you to listen and subscribe to our show and let us know what you think! Our current season shows you how the Sustainable Development Goals relate to you. If you want to leverage your own voice to make an impact, you will find a lot of resources to help you get started here.
One of my dreams is to invite even more guest hosts on our channel, people from all over the world sharing stories that inspire them with our growing, loyal audience. Just send me a note if you’d like to be part of our community! Find us at firstname.lastname@example.org