Innovative small business owners have all kinds of inspiring origin stories, but Casey Adams’s background is especially impressive. This entrepreneur, podcaster and social media influencer’s career began when he was still in high school. We chatted with Adams to learn more about his journey and how Slack helps keep his public relations company organized and productive.
Innovating early: Becoming a business leader as a teen
Tell us about yourself and your journey to becoming a podcaster, small business owner and influencer.
My journey to becoming a podcaster, small business owner and influencer began at 16 when I suffered a severe injury playing football. I was left with a neck brace and the threat of paralysis, but the experience sparked a passion for entrepreneurship and a fascination with the world of business, social media, technology and interviewing. With this newfound drive, I started my own podcast, The Casey Adams Show, from my bedroom as a high school junior. Over the course of five years, I have conducted over 300 interviews with some of the most influential and successful individuals in the world.
The success of my podcast paved the way for me to co-found MediaKits, which uses real-time data and analytics to help creators design professional media kits. In early 2021, we raised $1.5 million and officially launched the company in August of that year. In September 2022, MediaKits was acquired by Viral Nation, a leading force in the creator economy and the world’s first influencer talent agency.
In addition to running MediaKits, I am passionate about interviewing people, hosting gatherings with friends, learning about new technologies, pushing myself physically and helping others reach their full potential. I am dedicated to making an impact on young entrepreneurs through my story, my podcast interviews and my recent successes.
You’ve interviewed 300+ entrepreneurs. Has there been an interview that has stuck out for you? Who surprised you most and what did they share? Any lessons learned?
Having the opportunity to interview Larry King on my show was a truly memorable experience. As a seasoned journalist and interviewer, Larry had a wealth of knowledge and experience to share. His stories and insights were captivating and I found myself hanging on every word. One of the things that struck me most about Larry was his belief in the power of listening. As he famously said, “I’ve never learned anything while I was talking.” I believe this is a powerful lesson for all leaders and it’s something that I try to put into practice in my own work.
I have found that spending more time listening to my employees and team members has been incredibly beneficial for my leadership. By actively listening and paying attention to what they have to say, I have been able to gain valuable insights and perspectives that I may not have considered otherwise. This has helped me make better decisions and be a more effective leader. Overall, my interview with Larry King was a truly impactful experience, and his words continue to inspire me to be a better leader. I will always be grateful for the opportunity to have learned from him, and I strive to incorporate his wisdom and advice into my own work.
Weathering uncertainty as a small business
You recently spoke on a livestream discussing the future of work for small businesses. With outside forces like economic headwinds and increased competition looming in 2023, what should companies be thinking about to weather the storm?
As a small business owner, it’s important to be proactive and strategic when it comes to planning for the future of work. With increased competition and potential economic headwinds on the horizon, there are a few key things to consider. First and foremost, it’s important to stay agile and adaptable. The business landscape is constantly changing, and being able to pivot and adjust to new challenges is crucial. This means staying up to date on industry trends, being open to new ideas and technologies, and being willing to try new things. Another key factor is the ability to stay competitive. This means not only offering high-quality products and services, but also being able to offer them at a competitive price. This may require finding ways to streamline operations and reduce costs, as well as being mindful about pricing and promotions.
Finally, it’s important to focus on building strong relationships with customers and clients. In a crowded market, having a loyal customer base can be a major advantage. This means providing excellent customer service, being responsive to customer needs and building trust and credibility through consistent, high-quality interactions. Overall, the future of work for small businesses will require a combination of adaptability, competitiveness and customer focus. By prioritizing these key areas, small business owners can weather any storm and emerge stronger on the other side.
Working more smoothly with Slack
We know you’re a self-described productivity expert and Slack power user. What are some of the pain points you’ve had that have been solved by Slack and Slack features?
One of key features that has been particularly helpful is huddles, which allows us to quickly and easily create small group discussions within Slack. With huddles we can create ad hoc groups for specific projects or tasks, and we can have focused conversations without being interrupted by other messages in our main Slack channels. This has been particularly helpful for coordinating and collaborating on time-sensitive projects, as it allows us to quickly gather a team and discuss the task at hand without being distracted by other conversations. Additionally, huddles allow us to have synchronous discussions and get input from everyone.
How have you used Slack to build relationships and strong connections virtually?
Slack has been a valuable tool for building relationships and strong connections with my team. Direct messaging and huddles are good for personal, focused conversations with my team members. I’ve been able to get to know them better on a personal level and share updates about my life outside of work, or pictures of my family and pets. This has helped to create a more human connection with my team, which has in turn strengthened our professional relationships. With Slack’s various features, we’ve been able to foster a sense of community.
In your opinion, how can small businesses get the most out of Slack?
They can get the most out of Slack by taking full advantage of its features and integrations. Small businesses can streamline their workflows and improve productivity by using the tools they already depend on within Slack.
Some of my favorite Slack integrations are:
- Google Drive: This allows you to easily share and collaborate on documents, spreadsheets and presentations right within Slack. It saves time and improves asynchronous work across teams.
- Zoom: Allows you to easily schedule and join Zoom meetings. This makes it easier for your team to collaborate and communicate.
- ClickUp: ClickUp is a project management and collaboration tool. The integration enables users to manage their tasks, projects and team members within Slack, improving productivity. Users can create new tasks, assign them, set reminders and due dates and receive notifications. They can also use Slack commands to quickly search and access their ClickUp tasks and projects.
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