Some of Australia’s most prominent entrepreneurs reveal how they built their fortunes from scratch and offer the secrets to their success, in a new podcast series How I Made It, from The Australian Financial Review.
Financial Review Rich List co-editor Julie-anne Sprague talks to Australia’s top business builders about their backgrounds and how they turned their dreams into realities.
The series canvasses stories from a broad range of entrepreneurs, highlighting growth from a range of industries. Among the interviews are fast food king Jack Cowin, women’s fashion retailer Jane Lu, Flight Centre’s Graham “Skroo” Turner, software developer Tony Walls and former NRL player-turned Rich Lister Wes Maas.
While their backgrounds may all differ, they all have one thing in common – starting phenomenally successful businesses that have landed them on the Financial Review Rich Lists.
How I Made It steps out of the boardroom and into the entrepreneur’s minds to find out what it takes to build wealth from the ground up, the lessons learnt and how taking big risks can pay off.
Episode one features Jack Cowin, who introduced Australians to KFC and Hungry Jacks, and built Dominos into a $12 billion giant.
Worth almost $5 billion and ranked 17th on the Rich List, Cowin opens up about his childhood and what it takes to make a business empire. He has 13 lessons for life and one of those is to never give up if you think you are right.
“Sometimes in combat, big companies take advantage of the fact that the little guy will fold,” Cowin told How I Made It.
Cowin was raised in Canada, at one point selling trees and shrubs door-to-door while studying psychology at university.
“That was the best education I ever had,” Cowin said.
“I was making more money in a summer job than the university professors were – and they hated it! No matter where you end up, being able to create an image of someone that can be successful at whatever the task is important. Do the best you can because people are watching, and if you’re successful that carries forward.”
The How I Made It series, sponsored by Charter Hall, is now available on all podcast platforms and through afr.com.
Host Julie-anne Sprague said the series offers a rare glimpse into how some of the nation’s best business builders think.
“What I love about How I Made It is it offers a fireside chat with some of the nation’s best business builders. You can learn so much by hearing how they interpret events and how they reflect on what they’ve created. “