Steven Bartlett’s Diary of a CEO podcast is one of the most popular podcasts in the UK, an outlet for people in business, science and entertainment to share their experience.
When it was announced that the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, would be making an appearance, many were surprised to see a politician on the show, and even more surprised to see it feature one still in office.
Often when we see active politicians appear on popular platforms there is an ulterior motive such as electioneering or propaganda and it was assumed that this would be more of the same. However, this interview is far from that.
The podcast, in just under an hour and a half, offers a detailed view of what Sadiq Khan has gone through in his time as Mayor.
Khan gives us a genuine insight into his experiences and the challenges he has faced not only as a Muslim politician but as one of the most well-known Muslim politicians in the western world.
He also shows us all a side of him that has been hidden. He speaks about his upbringing, growing up in a council flat with nine family members and his relationship with his late father.
Khan also touches on the different ways his time in power has affected his family’s safety and also talks about the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire being his hardest day as Mayor, how he still “remembers the images” and “the heat” from the tragedy.
Some of the other topics he discusses include his belief that Donald Trump was obsessed with him, his faith and his own mental health.
One element that particularly stands out is his outlook on the London crime rate and its decrease throughout his tenure.
“In the last year, we have had a 55% reduction in teenage homicides…not enough but we’re making progress,” he said.
He attributes the decrease to things like youth work and youth programs that can help keep teenagers off the streets and emphasises the importance of having more youth mentees that can guide the younger generation and help solve young people’s issues from the root.
As citizens in London, we often feel distant from our representatives, the politicians that make the decisions that dictate our lives and we often dehumanise them because of this.
This is a much more intimate interview and it definitely breaks through all the smoke and mirrors of politics and gives us an honest image of the man behind the title and responsibility.
Above all this is an interview with Sadiq Khan the man, not just the Mayor of London.