Let’s face it, binge-watching is a winter staple (and a fall staple, and a summer staple…). Now that it’s time to break out the heavy blankets, you could do worse than indulging in a few seasons of entrepreneur-heavy televison. Whether you’re an armchair entrepreneur or a seasoned pro, the gods of Netflix and Hulu are bound to have something for you.
1. Shark Tank
Let’s get this one out of the way. Shark Tank is the ultimate show for budding entrepreneurs. To get your pulse racing and inspiration flowing, there aren’t many shows that are more relevant to the startup experience than this one.
2. Dragon’s Den
Dragon’s Den is the Canadian version of the Japanese version of Shark Tank (confused yet?), and it dials up the drama. Though the market is a little different from the one most Americans would be looking to crack, there are still valuable lessons to be learned around pitching, investor relations, and agility on the ground.
Techstars gets right in the weeds. Following the experiences of entrepreneurs in a New-York based startup accelerator, it’s as close to the world of incubators you’ll get before you’re actually in one.
4. Brain Games
Looking to get your brain working in ways you didn’t think possible? Here, you’ll pick up brain training tricks for that added mental flexibility that’ll keep you sharp as you navigate through negotiations, ideation and execution.
For those with a more design-focused bent, Grand Designs pays homage to human creativity in every episode. Host Kevin McCleod joins homeowners as they build or renovate their dream homes, documenting the trials, tribulations and triumphs over months – and sometimes years.
With a background in podcasts, host Jason Calacanis leaves behind a face for radio and gets down to business with a rotating squad of tech industry players. This is what you watch to keep abreast of the wackiest ideas trying to lift off in Silicon Valley.
The only fictional show on this list, House of Cards is a great example of how to stack the deck in your favor. Yes, there’s some heavy drama (and melodrama), but if you want to learn how to negotiate tricky terrain in business relationships, you won’t come up short on tips.
Dream big, and plan well. How I Made My Millions speaks to entrepreneurs whose ideas – some unorthodox, some deceptively simple – have raked in more than $1 million. The main principle? That good business savvy can turn any idea into a profitable business.
Apart from Gordon Ramsay’s infamous foul mouth, Kitchen Nightmares actually packs some serious business lessons into each hour-long episode. Taking failing restaurants and reviving them with essential rebrands, paring down menus to focus on what they do best, and enhanced promotional efforts, there’s plenty to be learned from Chef Ramsay.
10. The Profit
Host Marcus Lemonis puts his money where his mouth is by offering small businesses capital investments, as well as his industry knowledge. That combined with the fact that he’s given a stake in the company means that his interest is vested in more ways than one.