The era of podcasting has opened up a wealth of resources and opportunities. As long as you have a device and a connection, you can access tens of millions of curated episodes. Some are purely entertaining, but many are designed with the purpose of helping committed students achieve their career goals.
Business and leadership podcasts, in particular, can educate and inspire students at all levels. MBA students find these podcasts particularly compelling, as they often dive into concepts explored via high-level coursework. From ten-minute business updates to in-depth interviews lasting well over an hour, these podcasts run the gamut. No, they cannot replace a solid education from a respected MBA program, but they definitely support higher learning and can help cement concepts learned in the classroom.
With so many excellent business podcasts available, choosing the right program can be surprisingly tricky. While one-off listening experiences can sometimes be valuable, many podcasts are more enjoyable when you commit to listening to most or all episodes. If you’re short on time, you’ll need to choose carefully to ensure you make the most of every listening minute.
To help, we’ve compiled a guide that not only highlights all the best business podcasts, but also divides them into categories that relate to your ambitious career objectives or personal attributes.
Top Business Podcasts
While many of the categories in this guide delve into specific business concerns, there’s something to be said for listening to comprehensive podcasts that cover all aspects of the business world. These general business podcasts should form the basis of your lineup:
- HBR IdeaCast. Hosted by two senior editors from the acclaimed Harvard Business Review, this weekly program dates back nearly as far as the concept of podcasting itself. Despite this, it has remained at the cutting-edge of all things business, tackling concepts such as modern pricing algorithms, AI in marketing, stakeholder capitalism, and more.
- How I Built This.When you crave entertaining stories but also want business inspiration, your best bet is the NPR show How I Built This. Hosted by podcasting genius Guy Raz, this intriguing program uses a narrative approach to teach valuable lessons about perseverance. Each episode details the origin story of a different business leader. Explore the intriguing background behind such familiar names as Mailchimp, Burt’s Bees, and Stacy’s Pita Chips.
- The Journal. While this Wall Street Journal podcastprovides enough news coverage to belong in the business news category below, many of its episodes are evergreen in that they provide enduring takeaways.
- The Busyness Paradox. This podcast, hosted by two business professors including one from The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, aims to end bad business practices by covering everyday business topics while sharing the latest strategies in business.
Small Business Podcasts
As you examine top business podcasts, you may quickly realize that many of them focus primarily on corporate developments. Following these can be helpful, but for the aspiring small business owner, it’s also important to seek targeted content. Find inspiration with these small business podcasts:
- StartUp.Hosted by former NPR contributor Alex Blumberg, this memorable podcast follows a different format than your typical business show. As a documentary series, it provides an inside look at the real lives that today’s entrepreneurs lead. While this podcast no longer produces new episodes, it’s worth listening to in its entirety if you can find the time.
- The Strategy Hour.Referred to by its hosts as an hour of pure strategy, this podcast offers actionable insights for listeners who are eager to grow their fledgling businesses. This should appeal greatly to anyone who has found success with a side hustle but is ready to move beyond this mindset to become a true entrepreneur.
- Marketing School.Doing less with more is always a key objective for small business owners — especially when it comes to marketing initiatives. To help, experts Neil Patel and Eric Siu provide useful strategies that allow listeners to make the most of every marketing dollar. Most episodes are incredibly short, but they’re packed with wisdom that would take ages to learn through the school of hard knocks.
Women in Business & Leadership Podcasts
Women in business often deal with challenges above and beyond what their male counterparts experience. These concerns are addressed in detail in the following business and leadership podcasts for women:
- She Did It Her Way.Often, the greatest leadership lessons come from personal stories. A variety of these are provided in the She Did It Her Way podcast which, as its name implies, highlights the unique methods female leaders have used to make their mark. Host Amanda Boleyn and a series of knowledgeable guests shed insight into how women can leverage their skills to make a difference without compromising the qualities they value most.
- Women Taking the Lead.Self-doubt is a huge problem among female entrepreneurs, but that doesn’t need to be the case indefinitely. Women Taking the Lead strives to overcome this issue by convincing women that they can lead with confidence.
- Goal Digger Podcast.Enjoy a more active podcasting experience with the Goal Digger Podcast which ups the ante by encouraging workshop-style participation. This approach allows listeners to get past the fears and other roadblocks that prevent them from pursuing their most compelling professional ambitions.
Business News Podcasts
Keeping up with the news can be tough when your schedule is packed, but it’s essential — headlines and the issues behind them can have a huge impact on your future entrepreneurial endeavors as well as your current efforts as an MBA student. Falling behind won’t be a concern when you make a point of listening to these business news podcasts:
- The Indicator from Planet Money.While Planet Money is a worthy addition to the podcast lineup for anyone interested in business or economics, the short-form edition known as The Indicator provides more targeted, time-sensitive information on a near-daily basis. You’ll gain insight into both major corporate ventures and personal finance concerns, which can influence your decision-making process.
- WSJ What’s News.Another excellent option from the Wall Street Journal, the What’s News podcast packs the information you need in just 10 minutes per day. If you have even less time to spare, check out the Minute Briefing for the news snippets you need.
- Business Story of the Day.It should be immediately clear based on the title alone why this NPR podcast deserves a spot on your download list. Similar to the popular News Story of the Day feature, the Business Story of the Day takes a top headline from Wall Street or elsewhere in the business world to help you make sense of the latest happenings when you’re short on time.
Whether your post-MBA plans involve launching your own business or ascending the career ladder at a major corporation, you’ll need to demonstrate sought-after leadership skills from the get-go. The right podcasts can help you develop these qualities, so be sure to listen to the following:
- EntreLeadership. As a business-oriented leadership podcast, financial expert and host George Kamel chats with a wide array of influential leaders, ranging from past Navy SEAL commanders to lead pastors and, of course, successful entrepreneurs.
- Out of Office.We often assume that office environment alone determines how leaders function. In reality, however, the most effective leaders draw on inspiration from many areas of life. This idea is heavily emphasized in the Out of Office podcast hosted by Bloomberg’s Mallika Kapur. This program includes intriguing interviews with several of today’s top names, such as the CEOs of Pfizer, Siemens USA, and even Valentino.
- Leadership Next. Fortune CEO Alan Murray knows a thing or two about effective leadership in a dynamic marketplace, as he makes clear in the Leadership Next Joined by senior editor Ellen McGirt, together they converse with several inspiring leaders who reveal how it’s possible to be successful without relying on the harsh leadership model of yesteryear. Instead, the goal is to inspire while tackling big issues such as diversity and inclusion.
Level Up Your Business Education
The podcasts outlined above can give you powerful insight into the rapidly evolving business world, but there’s no substitute for an MBA from a respected university. This degree can open doors, all while helping you develop the skills and resilience you need to make it in an increasingly competitive market. Look to The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga’s Gary W. Rollins College of Business for targeted training and an excellent boost to your career.
For more information on how The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga can help you pursue your career goals, contact us at https://www.utc.edu/mba.