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The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett: E141: Classpass Founder: Quitting My 9-5 Led To A $1 Billion Business: Payal Kadakia

The Episode “E141: Classpass Founder: Quitting My 9-5 Led To A $1 Billion Business: Payal Kadakia” of “The Diary Of A CEO with Steven Bartlett

Payal is the founder of Classpass, the app that’s helped millions of users find their passion. Her own love of dancing encouraged her to start a business which enabled anyone, anywhere to find something they loved to do.

When Payal’s parents moved to America with no money and no connections, they had to completely start their life from scratch. Payal grew up in a home where her mother often wasn’t home, working late-night shifts to keep her family going. 

How far Payal has come. Today she shares exactly how she got there. The sheer determination with which she ruthlessly sets her goals and priorities, and then systematically chases after them with everything she’s got, was hugely inspiring to me, and I’m sure it will be to you too.


  • What made you different?
  • Batling between your passion and 9-5 job
  • Rebelling for your purpose
  • Changing careers and finding new communities
  • Confidence, purpose, and drive to success
  • Why did you start ClassPass?
  • What difficulties did you face starting your business?
  • Living in line with your values
  • What were you like as a manager?
  • Why did you step away from Classpass?
  • Work and family balance
  • Therapy sessions
  • Our last guest’s question




Payal’s book: 

Watch the episodes on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheDiaryOfACEO/videos

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Huel – https://my.huel.com/Steven

Myenergi – https://bit.ly/3oeWGnl

Vodafone Business – https://bit.ly/3NIM35n


A few years ago I was a broke, university dropout, living in one of the worst parts of the country, alone, with nothing but a laptop & a dream. Fast forward a few years, I’m the 29 year old ex CEO of one of the UK’s fastest growing companies. That company is called Social Chain. My world is intense, sometimes crazy, always challenging and always unpredictable. This podcast is simple, every week I’m going to share insights with you from guests with different backgrounds, experiences and learnings. I want to give you a look into what it’s like behind the scenes, being an entrepreneur, the deep, dark thoughts that nobody else will share with you and anything else that’s playing on my mind. This is not scripted and I don’t have questions I just see where the conversation takes me. This is the diary of a CEO, I’m Steven Bartlett. I hope nobody is listening, but if you are… keep this to yourself.

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