Show cover of The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast

The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast

The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast is where a bit of business and byte of technology come together. This podcast is like the bits n bytes party mix for your listening pleasure. Karen Swyszcz, the host, (founder of Makinthebacon) chats with various entrepreneurs on what it's like to run your own business, how to stay productive, the importance of learning certain technology-related skills and more. Visit the website to learn more about the host and read the blog -


Ep. 043- Lori Chai: How One UX Designer Transitioned From Travel To Tech
In this episode, I chat with Lori Chai - a UX Designer and Co. Lab Alumna, about her experience living and working abroad in Japan (one of my bucket list destinations!).  She shares what drove her decision to transition in a UX career, the state of UX design in Japan at the time and how she started her own co-hosted podcast: Designer Sushi. For the first episode of this season, Lori was kind enough to be the guinea pig for the This or That segment. I had so much fun and a lot of laughs recording this episode. Enjoy!  You can follow Lori's podcast on Instagram: @designer.sushi and on Twitter: @DesignerSushi
67:20 3/13/23
Ep. 042 Ali Shah - TapeReal: Where human connection, authenticity and meaningful content come first
Note: This episode was recorded in March 2022.  Hi everyone! This is the final episode for 2022. I'm hoping to get back into a podcasting groove next year. I really enjoyed interviewing Ali Shah - co-founder & CEO of TapeReal. TapeReal is a social platform where human connection, authenticity, and meaningful content comes first. I came across his company through Equivesto, the Canadian equity crowdfunding platform. The previous episode (Ep. 041) is an interview with Equivesto's managing director, Alexander Morsink.  The mission of TapeReal is create a less intimidating space for aspiring creators. It's a place where they can document their journey, grow and evolve.   In this episode Ali, chats about how the start of his entrepreneurial journey began as a franchisor for Subway. (His dad, banker by profession, became a franchisor for Mr. Sub, when he came to Canada). He then founded several companies before starting TapeReal. We chat about the early days of TapeReal, how it was originally posed as an idea of having a synchronous conversation with someone, before pivoting to focus on asynchronous content.  We also chat about how social media is integrated into our lives and just how addictive it can be. (Especially TikTok! Since recording this episode, I have revived my TikTok account, but I am barely on it. Maybe that's a good thing?) LEARN MORE ABOUT TAPEREAL  Website: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram: YouTube:  
51:21 12/13/22
BONUS EPISODE: Checking In With a Life Update and Reflecting on My Podcasting Journey Thus Far
*Correction: I have been in my current role as a Product Manager at an e-commerce startup for just over a year now. The previous year and a bit, I was working on trying to break into the industry.  Popping in with a solo episode to share some life updates to explain why I've sort of been MIA.  Hoping to add a few more solo episodes to the mix in the future, including why and how I got into product management.  FOLLOW THE BACON BITS 'N BYTES PODCAST Twitter - @baconbits_bytes Instagram - @baconbitsnbytes LinkedIn - The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast This episode is not a video episode, but you can check out video episodes (starting at Season 3) on my YouTube Channel -
09:30 8/31/22
Ep. 041 - Alexander Morsink: How Equivesto is Leveling The Playing Field in The Angel Investing Arena
NOTE: This episode was recorded back in February 2022  The idea of helping people who never considered themselves to be investors, to be individuals, investing in a variety of different busineses where they could start creating more intergenerational wealth was something that was really meaningful to the both of us - Alexander Morsink , Co-Founder and Managing Director of Equivesto Equivesto is a Canadian equity crowdfunding platform, that allows all Canadians to directly invest in local businesses and exciting startup companies starting at as little as $100.  LEARN MORE - Follow Equivesto on: Twitter  @EquivestoInc Instagram @Equivesto LinkedIn  @Equivesto
40:53 8/5/22
Ep. 040 - Unlocking the Potential of Human Longevity with Cole Kirschner of Age Rate
In this episode I chat with the CEO and co-founder, Cole Kirschner of longevity tech company Age Rate. We chat about how AgeRate began as a capstone research project in university and how the company is   empowering the world with tools to demystify and optimize aging.   Use the code BACON at checkout or by using this link:  and receive 20% off.    AgeRate is a direct-to-consumer longevity company that aims to unlock the secret to living a longer and healthier life by redefining AgeRate. Founded in 2018, AgeRate has spent the last 3 years creating and developing a novel at-home blood test and mobile app that allows users to discover how well they are aging and what actions they can take to improve. The company has leveraged the expertise of world-leading researchers to develop a custom epigenetic analysis and proprietary algorithms to reveal a user’s biological age and up to 20 additional health and longevity insights. For more info on how you can participate in their beta testing visit Follow on social media: Twitter -  @age_rate Facebook - AgeRate Instagram -  @agerate
35:00 5/15/22
Ep.039 - Beau McCoy: Disrupting and Decentralizing The Education System
Note: This episode was recorded back in the end of August.  Imagine a world where teachers are doing Tik Tok inspired videos to educate their students and these short-form videos can be accessed by anyone from around the world.  Beau is CEO & Founder of SOLcademy - a new short-format educational video platform. He is on a mission to improve the quality and availability of learning. He went to Dartmouth College and worked as a software engineer before discovering his true passion for education. He was the first sales leader of GoGuardian, a very successful EdTech startup. He's evangelizing personalized and adaptive learning to achieve his goal of Equity for ALL scholars. He is an avid traveler and spent 2 years backpacking through Africa and Latin America.
38:48 12/14/21
Ep. 038 - Kishan Vasani: Leveraging Food Science and AI to Predict The Future of Food
"Food is a choice we make 3,4 times a day, what to eat, when we're hungry. We do it every single day of our lives and that is a very personal choice for various reasons." - Kishan Vasani , Co-Founder & CEO of Spoonshot.   Kishan has worked in the food-tech industry since 2011. He is the Co-Founder & CEO of Spoonshot, an AI and food science-powered insights company helping the industry uncover the future of food by predicting consumer needs, trends, and innovation opportunities.Before starting his own venture, Kishan worked in 2 leadership roles for 3+ years at a global online food ordering giant, JUST EAT. Also since 2008, Kishan has been the Co-Founder & Chairman of One Cause, an education-focused nonprofit that has raised over $1M to date for grassroots institutions. Website: Twitter:  @spoonshotx Connect with Kishan on LinkedIn:
47:23 8/10/21
Ep.037 - James Mulvany: How To Leverage Audio For Your Brand and Business
NOTE: This episode was recorded back in May 2021 That feeling when you get to interview the creator of a product you are absolutely in love with. I was beyond thrilled to have James Mulvany, founder of, and (my fave platform to connect with podcast guests and other podcasters). Really enjoyed learning about his entrepreneurial journey (he started his first business when he was 16) and about his 30 podcasts in 30 days experience (it was actually more than that). James also shares a lot of valuable advice with respect to podcasting- including how to be a great guest on a podcast and  on the flip side, how to create a great podcast.  How To Make A Sh*t Podcast article: Social Media:
46:34 7/6/21
Ep.036 - Amira Polack: Elevating Music-Inspired Fitness Experiences
Amira Polack is the Founder & CEO at Struct Club, an app for fitness instructors who design motion to music - and their fans, starting with spin (indoor cycling) & treadmill running. Amira's career has centered around technology, startups, and social impact and her opinion has been featured in TIME, Forbes, and the World Economic Forum Agenda. She earned her MBA at Harvard Business School and BA at Princeton. In this episode we chat about both her entrepreneurial journey and fitness journey and how they came together through Struct Club. What's also quite interesting is that we discuss how people have change their fitness routine because of the pandemic.   Find Struct Club on the App Store Instagram, Facebook & Twitter: @structclub Connect with Amira Polack at: Instagram: @amirapolack Twitter: @apolack YouTube:
52:29 6/3/21
Ep. 035 - Breaking Into Tech By Thought Diversity, Community & Collaboration
Note: This episode was recorded during the beginning of April 2021.  After having recently gone through the Product Management track of Co.Lab, I have a conversation with the co-founders Sefunmi Osinaike and Helen Huang on their difficult path to product management and why they want to provide confidence and practical experience for those looking to break into tech.  Helen is a first generation Chinese-Canadian, as well as an earth scientist turned product manager turned startup founder. After leaving her mark at companies such as Zynga, Microsoft and Github, she's gone on to co-found Co.Lab, a team-based education program for aspiring technologists. Helen is especially passionate about thought diversity, the power of active learning, and building inclusive communities. Sefunmi is the Co-founder & CEO of Co.Lab, an education program for aspiring technologists to help them break into tech. Sefunmi is a University of Waterloo, Electrical and Computer Engineering alum, and frequently draws from his experiences as an international student from Nigeria. As an avid storyteller, he has authored three books on non-traditional paths into technology. Website: YouTube: Twitter and Instagram: joincolab_io Twitter and Instagram: @heyohelen Twitter and Instagram: @sefunmioshy
50:43 5/18/21
Ep. 034- Lena Sesardic: Build Stuff That Solves Your Own Problems
Lena is a product manager turned entrepreneur, writer and speaker. After running an innovation lab as a product manager and getting her first taste of entrepreneurship, she quit her job in February 2020 to take a break from the corporate world and test her own ideas. Lena's projects include a self-published book called The Making of Product Managers and a customer interviews tool for venture teams at startup accelerators called Hypothesee. She writes about her entrepreneurial journey on her website - and contributes some of her writing to Product Coalition and The Startup, two large Medium publications. In this episode, we chat about her journey into product management and her more recent journey into entrepreneurship. We discuss the importance of building stuff that solves your own problems and why product managers have a critical skillset to become entrepreneurs.  Connect with Lena on Twitter: @lenasesardic LinkedIn :
51:22 4/21/21
The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast Trailer
Not ready to commit 30-60 min of listening time? What about 1 min? Check out this trailer for The Bacon Bits 'n' Bytes Podcast. Ciao for now! 
01:05 4/1/21
Ep.033 - Journeying Into The World Of XR with Eugene Capon, Social Media Futurist
A social media futurist, Eugene's forward thinking attitude towards how we connect using technology has been at the forefront of his mission to connect the world. In 2014 he graduated with a BA in Liberal Arts with an emphasis on "YouTube Studies" from Evergreen State. Upon graduation he went to work at the YouTube consulting Agency, Press Play. In 2016 he quit his job as an art director to pursue XR social media. Eugene's first project was producing the film "Journey VR". This film became an official selection at SIFF, a staff pick by Adobe and VEER, then would become the number one 360 video download on Steam for 30 days at the time of its release. A year later he would produce and host GLITCHED, the first in VR talk show to be ordered as if it were a TV show. The show revolved around interviewing large name tech and social media influencers like Barnacules Nerdgasm, iJustine, Jake Roper of Vsauce3, and Gear live. The show ran for a total of 3 seasons. Since then he has been an avid YouTube creator making 360 animated shorts which have gained millions of views on YouTube as well as making appearances to educate the masses on the evolution of the social media experience. Instagram: @capondesign Twitter: @CaponDesign Facebook: @eugenecapon Youtube:
49:31 3/14/21
Ep. 032 - Connecting People Through Shared Passions
UPDATE: The Passionfruit App is now available on both The App Store and Google Play app store and can be found by searching for "Passionfruit." Trying to connect with people can be quite difficult if your goals are not aligned or you don't share the same passion for something.   Passionfruit is the brainchild of creator Paul Deng who came up with the concept of his social app while volunteering at Toronto Distress Centres, where he realized that there was a need for people to make deep, genuine, and long-lasting connections. Without such connections, individuals can become isolated and may lack an adequate support network. Existing products and services often highlight superficial qualities like status or looks, which are unreliable when depended upon as foundations for long lasting relationships. In response, Paul’s vision is to create an app which helps people meet others on the same wavelength by using words and closeness. If someone near you is thinking about the same topics, the app matches you and gives you a platform to chat and break the ice. Discover what you’re passionate about, reach out to others with the same passions, meet, learn, and grow together through those passions and build a strong foundation for relationships. Sign up to receive updates about the passionfruit app. Follow passionfruit on Facebook: @passionfruitapp Instagram: @passionfruit_app Twitter: @apppassionfruit  
68:37 1/11/21
Ep. 031- Making Work, Work Better For Everyone
Jennifer Hargreaves is the Founder and CEO of tellent. tellent is a flexible work recruitment and social impact organization with a mission to create more equal opportunities for women to lead and earn. Through a job board and virtual networking platform, she supports women on their journeys to finding work that works for them (flexible work). tellent also helps forward-thinking and inclusive businesses to access professional and skilled talent when and how they need it so that they can thrive in our current economic climate and future of work. She was educated in Canada and has lived in worked in New Zealand, New York and London, UK. I had a fantastic discussion with her about her reasons for starting tellent, the benefits of a flexible work culture and how the pandemic caused a seismic shift in the way we work.
50:07 12/4/20
Ep. 030 - Empowering Women To Rise In Entrepreneurship
Women entrepreneurs account for only 16% of business owners in Canada. It's time to invest in change.  ELLA is a community and an accelerator for women, by women.  Their mission is to reduce the gap of gender inequality in entrepreneurship. They believe that every woman entrepreneur should have access to the community, information and resources needed to scale their business.  In this episode, I chat with Nicole Troster, the manager of the ELLA accelerator. We chat about ELLA's launch at the beginning of March 2020 and how like so many organizations and businesses, had to quickly pivot their offerings when the pandemic began. We also discuss the different reasons women want to start a business vs men, how many serial entrepreneurs dabble in and out of entrepreneurship and facing the hard truth of shutting down your business.  Learn more about ELLA: Twitter: @ellawomenyu IG: @ellawomenyu
32:52 11/11/20
Ep. 029 - What It Really Means To Be An Entrepreneur
"You never know what the market wants until you go and talk to them' - Ardalan Benam, AI scientist and serial entrepreneur. Ardalan is someone who really understands what it means to be an entrepreneur and provides some honest, no BS advice for those who are looking to get into this world. As he puts it, there are so many easier ways to make money and that you shouldn't get into entrepreneurship for the money.   
41:29 10/19/20
Ep. 028 - How To Master Your Money
Being a former personal finance blogger, but still a personal finance nerd, I loved having this type of discussion with Sandy Yong, Keynote Speaker and Award-Winning Author of The Money Master  Book.   Sandy Yong earned a business degree at Ryerson University in Toronto, Canada. After graduation, she started her career and began saving her hard-earned money. She naively invested in high-fee, high-risk mutual funds and soon lost thousands with the bumpy roller coaster ride of the stock market. Feeling frustrated and upset, she decided to take her money matters into her own hands and became a self-directed investor. Sandy successfully generated a 6-figure investment portfolio by the age of 27. Since then, she has been an avid real estate investor owning several rental properties with her husband. As a Keynote Speaker, she teaches female millennials how to invest in the stock market and in real estate. With her decade of experience and expertise, Sandy has published her award-winning book, The Money Master: Inside Secrets On How To Make Your Money Grow and Stay Safe. She has been featured in 70+ media outlets including Toronto Star, NBC News and Yahoo! Finance. In addition, Sandy proudly partners with CAMH: The Centre For Addiction and Mental Health. For every book purchase, she personally donates $2 to assist this charity with mental health research. Her vision is to help people feel comfortable conversing about money and mental health, as both can be sensitive subjects and have an impact on our daily lives. Website: FB: @themoneymasterbook Twitter: @moneymasterbook IG:  @themoneymasterbook  
46:07 9/25/20
Ep. 027 - How To Conquer Anything
Lee Chambers is one amazing individual.  He is a Wellbeing Consultant, Workshop Facilitator and Sleep Specialist. Through relearning how to walk after illness, working in different industries, and building 2 businesses, and studying a number of advanced qualifications, he has now brought all this together to improve wellbeing advancement. He does this by working with organisations to help them become more conscious and purposeful, defining values and communicating them with clarity. Wellbeing strategies are implemented that are measured and embedded. We chat about his entrepreneurial spirit as a child, starting a business during the 2008 Financial Crisis, his new book launching in November and his advice for the graduating class of 2020.  Connect with Lee: Facebook: @essentialisecoach Twitter: @essentialise Instagram: @essentialisecoach Youtube:
49:19 9/2/20
Ep. 026 - Breaking Down The Barriers Around Financial Literacy
From online banking to digital payment processing, the fintech industry has evolved and continues to evolve tremendously. In this episode, I have an open and honest conversation about finances with FinTech entrepreneur, Co-Founder and CEO of Ostrich, William Glass.  His mission is improving financial well-being globally. As founder & CEO of his company, Ostrich, William’s mobile app addresses financial literacy deficits by creating social community and accountability around money - think saving & investing with friends. In addition, William hosts the Silicon Alley Podcast providing a platform for entrepreneurs from all industries and backgrounds to tell their stories. William owns rental property and was a successful tech sales rep before starting his own business. He was also a Fulbright Scholar in Thailand. William is originally from Alabama and now resides in New York City. Site: Facebook: @williampglass3/@theostrichapp/@siliconalleypodcast Twitter: @williampglass3/@theostrichapp/@siliconalleypod Instagram: @williyg_iii/@theostrichapp/@siliconalleypodcast Youtube: EhNgA?view_as=subscriber
40:43 8/18/20
Ep.025 - How To Be A Great Leader, Entrepreneur and Run A Bootstrapped Business
 Adam Mendler is the CEO of The Veloz Group, where he co-founded and oversees ventures across a wide variety of industries: Beverly Hills Chairs, the leading seller of refurbished Herman Miller Aeron chairs in the country; Custom Tobacco, a one-of-a-kind e-commerce platform where customers can create fully customized, private-label cigars in real-time; and Veloz Solutions, a technology consulting and software development practice. Adam is a also a nationally acclaimed thought leader, writer and speaker on topics including leadership, entrepreneurship and management. Adam is the creator and host of the podcast Thirty Minute Mentors, where each week he goes one on one with one of the most successful people in the country on how they got to the top and how listeners can too. Adam shares how he got into entrepreneurship and provide valuable advice on leadership, bootstrapping your business, as well as going into business with a family member.  This interview was recorded back in May when we were still in lockdown, so we were also talking about how much we missed lifting weights and it wasn't the same with just resistance bands.  Follow Adam: Site: Instagram: @adammendler Twitter: @adammendler  
42:28 8/9/20
Ep. 024 - How Founders Space Became A Global Leader For Startup Innovation Hubs
Note: This conversation with Steve Hoffman (aka Captain Hoff) was recorded back in May when there were still many restrictions in place during the lockdown. He shares his insights on how the pandemic has affected both startups and investors and how he has never been busier, tackling the many things on his to-do list  Steve considers himself to be someone who was always innovating on his life, likes challenges and doesn't like routine (Something that many of us can relate to, including me!).  He held various roles as a moviemaker, game developer and helped found 3 venture-led startups before launching his own startup innovation hub in San Francisco. From there it has grown to an international network of incubators, entrepreneurs and investors with over 50 partners in 22 countries.  Key takeaways - That taking something offline and trying to shoehorn it online doesn't work as well - That a combination of leadership, curiosity and stamina are what makes a great CEO - Don't sweat the small stuff, it won't matter a year, 6 months or even 3 months from now Follow Founders Space on Social Media  Twitter: Instagram: LinkedIn: Facebook:: Book Make Elephants Fly: Site and Online Program Founders Space: Online Program: 
45:29 7/6/20
Ep. 023 The Importance of Sharing And Celebrating Our Failures (aka Fuckups)
*Note: This episode contains explicit language* In this episode, we're talking about the F-word. Failure or as others like to call it "A fuckup". I chat with Marsha Druker, the Founder and Director of Fuckup Nights Toronto about the importance of sharing the failure, especially for entrepreneurs and why children need to be educated about failure at a young age so they learn how to deal with it early on. She also shares a few of her own fuckups when first launching Fuckup Nights Toronto.  Learn more: Instagram: @fuckupnightsto Twitter: @FuckupNightsTO    
42:30 6/18/20
Ep. 022 - Shining Your Light And Enabling Others To Shine
Entrepreneur and cybersecurity expert Tawana Anderson tells her story of growing up in a rough neighbourhood and becoming a teen mom. She shares these experiences in her book, Bruised and Broken To Shine, available on her website and We also discuss how being broken is not necessarily a bad thing, in that you have to go through things sometimes in order to let that light shine through.  Connect with Tawana: IG: @tawana_shine FB: Tawana Anderson Shine
37:41 6/8/20
Ep. 021 - Developing Your PR Strategy During A Pandemic
Due to self-isolation and the current social distancing rules, it's no doubt that people are spending even more time online on social media, surfing the net, streaming shows and listening to podcasts.  This is the time where you may want to consider pitching yourself to journalists and to podcast hosts. Media expert Christy Laverty shares tips for entrepreneurs on how they can get visible in a big way with media coverage by being mindful in your approach during these unprecedented times. Follow Christy on Twitter: @ChristyALaverty and Instagram: @ChristyALaverty  Learn more:
45:41 5/26/20
Ep. 020 - Arlan Hamilton: The Woman Who Built a Venture Capital Fund From Scratch While Homeless
Arlan Hamilton is the incredible woman who built Backstage Capital from the ground up while homeless. Backstage Capital is a fund that is dedicated to minimizing funding disparities in tech by investing in high-potential founders who are people of color, women, and/or LGBT. Started from scratch in 2015, Backstage has now raised more than $10 million and invested in more than 130 startup companies led by underestimated founders. In 2018 Arlan co-founded Backstage Studio which launched four accelerator programs for underestimated founders in Detroit, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and London. Arlan was featured on the cover of Fast Company magazine in October 2018 as the first Black woman non-celebrity to do so, and her new book "It's About Damn Time", published by Penguin Random House was released on May 5, 2020.  You can purchase the book and enroll in her fundraising masterclass at Follow Arlan on Twitter and Instagram : @arlanwashere
21:53 5/12/20
Ep. 019 - Diversity in Tech and How Online Education is Changing The Way We Learn
Interesting fact: This episode was recorded the day before the COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic by WHO. In addition to discussing diversity in tech, Danielle Meadows-Stinnett of Octane Designs and I were also chatting about how education and the way people are learning is evolving. And now there is a surge in not just people taking e-courses but the consumption of online content overall.  Instagram: octanedesigns
30:44 4/26/20
Ep. 018 - Blooper Reel
Listen to some of the bloopers from recording Ep.018 with some of the team members from 6initiative.
02:48 4/13/20
Ep. 018 - How To Adapt, Engage and Inspire Your Community During Times of Uncertainty
The entrepreneurial journey has many ups and downs, sometimes on the same day- which is why it's so important to find a community that can support you along the way.  In this group interview, I chat with some of the members from the 6initiative team, an entrepreneurial community platform that provides resources, connections and guidance to side hustle/small business owners.  We chat about what makes their events so successful and how they've been engaging their community during the pandemic. Tune in to learn about why working from home (if you're able to do so)  can be beneficial, what their binge-reading and watching and what their definition of success is.   Connect with them on Facebook: @6initiative Instagram: @6initiative Site:
36:35 4/13/20
Ep.017 -Demystifying The World of Esports: A Billion Dollar Industry
There have been many misconceptions of competitive gaming, also known as Esports, but it is a billion-dollar industry with millions of people playing it around the world.  In this episode, I chat with Arwina Mogul, (Yes, that is her real last name), the CEO of the online gaming community platform,   She shares how her love for gaming began when she was a child. In high school, Arwina became even more serious about gaming. She would go to internet cafes, study the other players and ask questions on how they did certain moves/how long it took them to execute a move.  Her journey into entrepreneurship began with her first esports company she started on the side while she was working as a social worker. is her second esports company - where clients can use their platform to engage their customers through the power of gaming. 
35:37 3/22/20

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