We had the good fortune of connecting with Margaret Hedderman and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Margaret, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting a podcast?
At Startup Colorado, celebrating rural entrepreneurs through storytelling is part of our mission. When we looked at the most dynamic way of bringing founder stories to life, podcasting was the easy answer. I wanted to produce a narrative series that would transport the listener to each founder’s business – whether that’s a craft cidery on the Western Slope or a gravel biking event on the Eastern Plains. The entrepreneurial landscape in rural Colorado is incredibly diverse, bubbling up in unexpected places. My hope is that the Startup Colorado Podcast will help affirm that entrepreneurship can happen anywhere you call home.
A side benefit of producing the Startup Colorado Podcast, is that I’ve been fortunate to embark on two “podcasting road trips” through Colorado in order to meet all these entrepreneurs. Seeing the grit and creativity it takes to build a business in some pretty isolated locations has been inspiring. It will make anyone want to startup!
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I enjoy writing across mediums and working on different types of projects. It demands a diverse toolkit and the ability to switch brain functions (more on that in a minute).
At Startup Colorado, I write, produce and edit our podcast. Pulling together an audio story from hours of interviews is like a jigsaw puzzle – figuring out how to put a lot of disjointed pieces together into a compelling narrative. It’s a lot like writing a nonfiction essay, but is obviously a very different style of writing. I like the creative challenge of producing something for the page vs. something for the ear.
When I’m not working on the podcast, I also edit Startup Colorado’s entrepreneur blog. (Note, this is a different type of editing than cutting audio!) Editing someone else’s words and shepherding their story to the finishline activates a totally different side of my creative brain. I work writers of all backgrounds, each one requiring a different editing approach. It’s always rewarding to bring out the writer’s voice and elevate their story.
Because I enjoy working on lots of different types of projects, my schedule inevitably gets stacked with disjointed tasks. As I mentioned above, switching brain functions is the name of the game. I’ve had to learn how to lump similar projects together, so that I don’t have to toggle between emails, busy work, analytical activities, meetings, and random tasks. Creative projects like the podcast or the blog require steady, scheduled concentration and – at least for me – can’t be worked on here and there between other activities.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I would take my friend out of town! One of my favorite backpacking itineraries near Durango is a 25-mile-ish point to point through the glorious Chicago Basin, a mountain valley that sits at 11,000 ft. surrounded by 14ers. It’s a 3-day, 2-night hike beginning near the Vallecito Reservoir and ending at the wilderness pickup of the Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad. If Friend was interested, we could stay a couple nights in Chicago Basin and climb one or two of the neighboring 14ers. After spending several days in the Weminuche Wilderness, we’d kick back on the train and drink a cold beer from the Durango-based Ska Brewing. (I’ve done this 3 times now, and it never gets old!)
Naturally, we’ll have been dreaming about our post-backpacking victory dinner. Durango has a ton of restaurants and one can usually find the perfect thing to counter-act days of dehydrated trail meals.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I work with an amazing group of women. The Startup Colorado team is one of those rare instances in which all the right people come together and make magic happen. Our small but mighty team – led by the amazing Delaney Keating – is creative, compassionate, and endlessly driven to support the state’s rural startup community.
First image – Margaret Hedderman interviewing Connie Baker, CEO and Head Distiller of Marble Distilling in Carbondale, CO. Photo credit: Vanessa Copple, Startup Colorado Community Engagement Manager Second image – Photo credit, Taylor Grande, Startup Colorado Director of Partnerships & Ecosystem Development