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Shed Geek Podcast Provides Education Through Entertainment

by Karen Knapstein

By Shannon Latham

Shed Geek Podcast is the brainchild of Kyle Summers and myself, Shannon Latham. We have spent years working together, riding around the countryside opening dealers, looking for clients, doing escorts, and more. It seems we’ve been involved with every aspect of the shed industry at one point or another. 

Kyle and I met at church and have been friends ever since. We have been on this journey through the shed industry together. I started my journey in the shed industry as a procurement coordinator. That’s where I first learned about the product and how the process worked. I have learned so much since then. I’ve had the pleasure of working as a sales manager, working as a rent-to-own (RTO) rep, and more. I love finding new ceilings in this industry. It honestly feels like home. 

Kyle started his shed journey as a relationship manager. From there, he went on to become a sales manager and co-owner of three shed lots. And before Shed Geek Podcast, he was a marketing director. Most of the show’s marketing success is a result of Kyle’s efforts. He does a great job of relating to the industry through his marketing abilities. 

We love to brainstorm together on ways to help the industry; that’s what drives us. We love to learn, and we love to help others. We really are Shed Geeks. 

Shed Geek Podcast

We wanted to find a way to expose the industry to the rest of the industry. That’s how the Shed Geek Podcast came about. The podcast aired its first promo on March 8, 2021, and launched its very first episode on March 12. It’s the official podcast for the shed industry and has seen an overwhelming amount of support. In less than four months, we self proclaimed “Shed Geeks” have garnered nearly 5,000 downloads. 

Episodes include guests from every corner of the industry, from haulers, to builders, RTO personalities, and dealers. We focus on education through entertainment. We keep the underlying focus on “sheddy stuff,” but also bring sort of a “campfire setting” to the table. 

Episodes include dialogue about sales professionalism and processes, but there is also a lightheartedness that keeps laughter, goodwill, and a focus on lifting all in this industry to be better. The episodes air weekly (generally released each Wednesday) when the world is working perfectly. 

Podcasts thus far include (but are not limited to) “shed-lebrities”: Gideon Zook (Stoltzfus Structures), Richard Miller (AFG Rentals), Matthew “Motz” Weaver (My Shed Rental), Jason Graber (ShedSuite), Charles Hutchins (“The Shed Coach”), Tyler Mayhan (author of the book “Three Men and a Barrel: Life and Times of an Oklahoma Shed Builder”), Erica Goodnight (Union Grove Lumber), Jeff Huxmann (ShedHub.com), Liberty Sheds’ own Arlan Reihl and Mike Yoder, and Sam “Sambassador” Byler, founder of the Shed Hauler Brotherhood. 

In addition to scheduled talks with industry leaders, the Geeks will occasionally do an impromptu episode to keep listeners updated on progress, and help them stay informed about future guests and topics. Anyone in the industry can suggest show topics or request an appearance on the show by filling out the “Contact Us” section on the website or by emailing info@shedgeek.com

Right now, most episodes are recorded in Metropolis, Illinois, in my backyard shed that doubles as my office. Typically, interviewees will call in at a SHEDuled time and we record the episode. Editing and sponsorship advertisements are added in later. Most interviews involve just one or two people, but sometimes we do conference-type interviews with more than that. In-person interviews can be done with up to four people taking a seat at the microphone. We’ve done one in-studio episode so far and are looking into adding a permanent space in the near future. We also plan to add video to the show.

Shed Geeks On Location

We’ve had the pleasure of doing interviews at some of the shed industry-related events. For example, we recorded the podcast with Gideon Zook at the 2021 Shed Haulers Bash. Be sure to watch for us at future shed industry-related forums where we will be glad to discuss your being featured in a podcast. We can even set up a time and outline a discussion of what we hope to speak to you about. 

We believe it’s paramount not only to tell your story, but also to bring the shed industry education through entertainment. We are constantly brainstorming in the current studio and looking for more information, more networking, and more ways to help those in the shed industry. 

When we are riding around visiting and meeting new folks, we have the same conversations just with different people. We keep getting the same questions: How are sales? What are lead times? What’s everyone seeing in this area or that area? We hope to help bridge that gap by discussing these things with different personalities throughout the industry. 

We’re fascinated by the stories we hear, the stories about how businesses got started and what brought them to where they are now. We recognize that those who came before us have helped clear the path for us to have this opportunity, and we don’t take that for granted. It’s encouraging to be part of the process of moving the industry forward — together. 

We really are shed geeks; we literally visit every dealership we can. We enjoy stopping at a manufacturer and seeing new and cool things; some of these things you can only see by hitting the road and building relationships. 

We believe there is more to come — not just a podcast, but also opportunities to build around the Shed Geek brand. We have been very encouraged by all the positive feedback from others in the industry. 

Kyle (left) and Shannon record podcasts from Shannon’s backyard office shed in Metropolis, Illinois. Photo courtesy of Shed Geek Podcast

Don’t Be Shy

Occasionally we ask someone to be on the show and they are reluctant, but in most cases they come back and say, “I’m glad I did that; it was fun.” Or a listener will come up to us or email us and say, “I really enjoyed this episode” or they enjoyed a particular moment on one of the shows. Or they might say, “I’m glad that guy came on because I enjoyed hearing his story.” To me, that makes the extra effort worth it. 

The Shed Geek Podcast has been so much fun. I heard one person say it’s “the fun part of the industry.” I agree; it seems like we can all stand to have a little more fun. I think life is already serious enough, and if you look close enough, this industry is prone to stressful situations already. Situations like making the sale, getting a shed blocked up, building multiple sheds, and managing contracts just to name a few. I love being able to help lift others up. If we can do that through something like a podcast, then that’s perfect. 

One of my favorite parts of the show is being able to discuss our faith, and the God-inspired moments that help others. I heard a pastor say one time that when he preaches a sermon, it does as much for him as it does the crowd. I understand that. This podcast has given me an outlet to minister through work. What higher level of success could I possibly achieve? I love it! I love hearing the stories, I love meeting the people, I love being on this journey with my best friend. 

To Learn More

Learn more about the Shed Geek Podcast on Facebook. To be on the show, suggest show topics or meet the geeks, visit shedgeek.com. Watch for us at shed related events and be sure to introduce yourself. We love meeting others in the industry. Until then, we appreciate your support by listening, sharing our podcast episodes, and telling others when you can. 

For our Plain Community friends, we are currently working on a way to air the episodes on no-cost conference, bullhorn, and more. 

Thanks again for all your support and continued support. We will do our best to honor this industry, and give you the best education through entertainment we can.

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