One Year Later: The Story Behind Skillab Podcast’s Journey

Khalil Tarhouni
3 min readJan 9, 2024

Sparing you all the beautiful quotes about the importance of starting and the magic of the 1.01³⁶⁵ equation, but in this blog post I’m sharing with you a practical example. In this piece, I’m celebrating one year of podcasting, the ups & downs, the lessons and, we won’t say it enough, how consistency (EP 018) played a major role. It’s funny because I targeted 30 episodes, and we ended up with 28 which reminded me of this 30 before 30: How I shot for the moon and landed among 28 stars. Coincidence? I don’t think so)

The start & season 1

Credit where credit is due, Emir Ben Zeyed was the genius behind Skillab Podcast. As a content creator and Marketing Manager at Future Skills Institue (FSI), he knew that launching a podcast to 1) start creating a new format of audio-visual content, 2) generate traffic and potential leads to FSI, was the marketing initiative. As I was supporting Emir and the team at that time, he invited me to record the first episode (EP 01 Lifelong learning) as the first guest. Emir wanted to chat about lifelong learning as I was preaching it on a daily basis.

The recording took place in a meeting room with 2 mics and his laptop. I prepare for the episode in a form of a mind map (EP 013 Mindmapping). It went well and we recorded a video for the promotion of the episode. It went so well that I suggested another episode about time management (EP 02) that we recorded right after the first one.

I liked the experience, but I respected the initial idea of Emir receiving different guests for different topics. Until, one day, he came to me with a little bit of shyness. “Listen Khalil, I don’t want to invite other people, let’s co-host the podcast”. And this is how it became our bi-weekly habit for 3 months. Agree on the topic, draft a script on ChatGPT (EP 07 on GPT), amend and adjust, record the episode, record the Insta Reels, edit, upload and share, repeat.

You get what you measure”. Personally, I wasn’t measuring anything. I was doing it for the sake of sharing and giving back. To be honest, reaching 100K views on an Insta Reel was something to be proud of. But how many people listened and how many of them finished the episode was not on the metrics I was watching.

Taking it to the next level

By the end of season 1, the motivation was high, and we wanted to take the initiative to the next level. We moved to Tunisia Podcast studio at The Dot, a proper studio for podcasting with high end Equipements (Emir continued to do most of the work). We spent more time on the topics analyzing the data of past episodes and the weekly trends. We switched roles, one episode I’m interviewed, the other, I was interviewing. Episode 018, we invite the first special guest, Heifa Bouslama, to talk about consistency and discipline. It was for the obvious evolution of the podcast. Then I invited close friends and great young Tunisians to share their modest experiences. We reached the milestone of 5000 thousand plays. Quality over quantity.

Going forward

As announced on social media, Emir is stepping back to focus on other exciting project, I wish hom all the best. Personally, I will continue the road with more guests and variety in the topics. I also tried a solo episode (EP 029 Lesson learned from 10 years of professional growth) that I might try again. The only thing I’m sure about is that it will continue with the same level of energy and dedication.

When reflecting on this journey, it’s natural to wonder about the ‘what ifs.’ What if we hadn’t embarked on this journey a year ago? Looking back, I’m grateful for every step taken. For those who are still hesitating, I urge you to silence that inner doubt and start today. The path might be uncertain, but the growth and fulfillment it brings are worth every moment.