What’s Next?

Gareth Cliff at CliffCentral

CliffCentral.com turned five on May 1st, a milestone for a small start-up that is now the leading podcaster in Africa.

It’s amazing how quickly we incorporate new habits into our lives. Twenty years ago very few people had mobile phones. Fifteen years ago, we used BBM, flip-phones and SMS. Ten years ago we started using smartphones, Facebook became mainstream and What’s App became the default for messaging friends and family. Five years ago podcasting was something most people didn’t know about. Now podcasting is mainstream and people talk about what podcasts they listen to, like we used to discuss our favourite TV shows.

Who can say what the next five years may bring? There will continue to be rapid change, innovation, development and disruption. Some jobs and businesses will survive and others will fail. The big success stories of today may be supplanted by unknown ideas thought up in a township shack or suburban garage. It is, without doubt, the most exciting time to be connected, creative, energetic and open-minded. All of this can be very disconcerting to people who value tradition and experience – people who like certainty and stability. But those people needn’t be afraid… even they end up benefiting from all these new ideas, technologies and changes.

My nephew was born in the same year we founded CliffCentral.com and I have used him as a reference to benchmark both growing up. On his first seaside holiday he would only go up to the water with his dad or mom, dip his toe in and run away. The ocean is a scary and intimidating thing to a small child. After playing on the beach for quite some time, he could eventually be coaxed into the water as long as he was holding someone’s hand. By and by he ventured deeper into the waves but couldn’t trust himself if the waves were any bigger than him. Last week he swam in the sea and for the first time dived under the waves on his own, with confidence. The passage of time and the patience to give room to experience will do amazing things for an individual or a business.

CliffCentral.com has learned to dive into the waves we started making five years ago.

Thank you to each and every one of you who have travelled this journey with us from the very beginning – and if you’re just dipping your toes into the sea of podcasting, welcome!

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