2016 was the first full year of Finance Career Launch and I have been blown away by the feedback so far. I want everything I do to be more useful to you each year, so I launched an end-of-year survey in late 2016 to learn more about who you are and what you need.
Thank you if participated in the survey. I appreciate the feedback and will do my best to implement some of the changes. I also wanted to share the results with you.
Based on the numbers, here is a typical Finance Career Launch “listener.” I’ve decided to use the term listener because, as you’ll see below, most people listen to the podcast. A survey never gives you a complete picture, so I’ve added commentary where I can based on one-on-one conversations.
- The typical listener is a male (80%) between the ages of 26-35 (75%). As I have mentioned since the beginning of the podcast, I would like to see more diversity here – nevertheless, I will use the masculine pronoun in describing the other attributes below to avoid switching back and forth between “he” and “she.”
- He is likely to live in the U.S. or Canada (92%), although I have spoken with people from the UK, China, New Zealand, Australia, Germany and other places in Europe. The amount of people listening outside the U.S. is really encouraging and makes me appreciate the power of podcasting.
- He is highly educated, having either a Bachelor’s degree (60%) or an advanced degree (28%)
- He is either a financial professional looking to advance (36%) or change careers (12%), or a non-financial professional looking to get into finance (24%).
- He listens to the podcast (96%), typically on a mobile device (92%) and has recommended it to others (60%). He is most active on LinkedIn (88%) and Facebook (72%).
- His primary challenges are not enough skills (54%), not enough money (38%), not in a job that fits (33%), and not able to get hired (33%). I will be reaching out to you about the first one so I can understand the specific skills you are looking to acquire.
- After the Finance Resume Course (60%), he most often buys Career Change Coaching (20%) from me.
The numbers above were very helpful, but I need to talk to you one-on-one to figure out what you mean by needing more skills.
Beyond the Numbers
In addition to the data above, I also read every comment you wrote. Here are some things I will keep doing as a result of your comments:
- Focus on Real Stories. I received so many positive comments about the interview quality and story format that this won’t change at all (except that I always want to come up with better questions). This is my favorite part about the site too, so I’m glad you feel this way. Thanks for letting me know – it is nice to know people like this stuff.
- Variety of Guests. Despite comments about lack of diversity in other ways (see #1 below), many people enjoyed the variety of financial fields covered.
- Separation of Interviews and Short Episodes. People liked the separation so they could find relevant topics more quickly. I will keep these separate, although my overall frequency may change from last year (more on that in a future episode).
Here are some initiatives I want to implement as a result of all the data:
- More Diversity in Podcast Guests. This one isn’t really a surprise because I felt it too, but I’m glad you told me. Most of the comments were directed at geography (more international and outside the Midwestern U.S.) but I would like to expand diversity in all aspects. Stay tuned for more details on this.
- A Mentoring Program. Several people said they would like to see this turn into a formal mentoring program – a way to get regular advice from me and other contributors. This is something I have wanted to provide as well so I will be working on it this year.
- Ways to Connect With Other Members. Honestly, this one kind of surprised me because of some one-on-one conversations I’ve had with people. Message boards were mentioned several times. This could be combined with #2 above, but I’ll have to figure out confidentiality for those who find it important.
Again, thank you if you participated. If you missed out last year, I’ll do it again later this year. Here’s to a great 2017!