Going to business school is an excellent way to learn about how businesses are run, how to manage them, and build them into successful operations. You graduate with the credentials and foundational education to enter the managerial ranks as you work your way towards the C-suite. What business school doesn’t always prepare you for is the nuances of the challenges you face on a daily basis. And as your career progresses, you may become less aware of societal changes that affect your employees and your organization. One of the best ways to stay on top of the changes is listening to the best business news podcasts put out by the top business schools in the U.S.
The best business school podcasts deliver information straight from the best business schools in America and the world to inform listeners of the latest news in business management. They’re accessible, offer different perspectives on issues old and new, and frequently feature interviews with business leaders. Business school podcasts are also plentiful and prolific which helps keep their content fresh as well as having a deep back catalog for research, a look at the zeitgeist, or to get an idea of what people were thinking about a particular topic in the past. Sometimes a business school podcast has a primary focus on itself in terms of topics, presenters, and interview subjects, but that can be beneficial for students who are thinking about attending that particular business school.
There are quite a few business schools that create and produce podcasts, and it can be a bit of a challenge finding ones that align with your interests. Following is a look at the best podcasts about business from the best business school podcasts to help you find podcasts that provide the insight you’re seeking:
1. Harvard Business Review
The Harvard Business Review is the magazine published by Harvard Business Publishing for Harvard University in Brighton, Massachusetts. It’s no surprise that one of the leading publications on business has no less than nine podcasts that complement the magazine, making it one of the best business news podcast around. The main podcast, HBR IdeaCast, focuses on current topics in business and conversations with leaders in business and management while Women at Work features conversations with women working in the corporate world and the challenges they face on a daily basis.
HBR Presents consists of podcasts curated by the magazine’s editorial staff and distributed on the HBR network. These podcasts include topics such as Race at Work, The Anxious Achiever which focuses on balancing mental health and work, and Cold Call which covers legendary case studies from Harvard Business School. Other topics include Coaching Real Leaders, Dear HBR, Exponential View, and After Hours. All of these podcasts deliver a focused look at their main topic and some cover topics that are tangentially related to the dominating topic.
2. Stanford’s Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders
Stanford’s Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders podcast offers a variety of topics in video and audio formats. Listeners have the option to get a visual accompaniment to the podcast or simply listen to the content. All topics are presented from an entrepreneurial point of view, and each episode features individuals who want to share their insights, discuss their roles as a business leader, and how they find innovative ways to create and offer a product or find solutions to existing problems. Some topics include how to build startups, the benefits of diversity in business, and solving access to healthcare.
3. Knowledge @ Wharton
The Knowledge @ Wharton podcast features speakers from the faculty, business leaders and other players that have something to say about the latest trends in business, breaking news that affect businesses, and market research from their own perspective. Each podcast addresses topics that cover social issues, race and money, business ethics, and the impact of government regulation on different business sectors that are currently in the news. The podcast has an extensive back catalog, and even though the topics reflect what’s in the news for that day or week, the information still has relevance for historical insight and understanding for a particular event.
4. Columbia Bizcast
The Columbia Bizcast is produced by the Columbia Business School and has a bit of an internal focus. Most of the podcast subjects relate to the school’s education offerings, interviews graduates in order to learn about how their careers have progressed since graduation, and faculty frequently talk about issues that business students face as well as the challenges facing businesses.
There’s a lot to learn from the podcast even though the topics of discussion tend to center around the business school. Listeners can learn more about what it’s like to attend the school, the kind of success students experience after graduation, and the issues facing young leaders in business. It’s one of the best business podcasts for students who are looking to or are attending business school.
5. Think at London Business School
The London Business School’s Think podcast focuses on a variety of topics that include finance, entrepreneurship, leadership, personal development, and more. Some podcasts feature interviews with industry leaders, others cover current topics and how they can affect the operation of a business, and the challenges facing entrepreneurs. The fact that this podcast is produced in another country adds a layer of interest for the listener as the language of business doesn’t change much from country to country, but the manner in which people approach business can be very different.
6. Stern Chats (NYU)
The New York University Stern School of Business features a podcast that’s produced by students in the MBA program. The mission of the podcast is to explore the stories from alumni, administrators, students, and faculty that don’t get written down. Those who attend and work at the school have extensive life experience in their area of business, but sometimes, their best stories are nowhere to be found. The podcast offers a platform for the telling of these stories for anyone to listen to and come away with insights that can help inform the listener of their own choices in any given situation.
7. The Insightful Leader (Northwestern University)
The Kellog School of Management at Northwestern University produces a podcast that focuses on topics including business insights, policy and the economy, leadership and careers and more. The core concept of the podcast is how to take thought and put it into action for the benefit of oneself, the organization, and the community at large.
Listeners will find an excellent back catalog of episodes to explore in each area covered by the podcast. There are topics that discuss how to negotiate for what you want from your employer and do so without fear, how to tell a compelling story with accompanying visuals during a meeting and not bore listeners, and topics like how a century-old family business managed to survive the pandemic.
8. How I Got Here (MIT)
The How I Got Here podcast is produced by two MIT Sloan School of Management alumni, Lara Mitra and Eric Eliasson. Its primary focus is collecting stories from people who didn’t know where to start their careers, much less where they wanted to be in five to 10 years. Each podcast features a single interview subject who talks about the issues they faced as they tried to figure out their career pathway, the struggles they had to work through, and how they handled the curveballs that came their way. The professionals interviewed for each episode include people who started their own company or have worked their way up the corporate ladder.
9. Darden Speaker Series (University of Virginia)
The UVA Darden Speaker Series is a catalog of 231 episodes that feature an interview with management leaders from a wide range of backgrounds. Podcasts include interviews and conversations with individuals such as Scott Price, Chief Strategy and Transformation Officer of UPS, Jean Case, Chairman of the National Geographic Society and CEO of the Chase Foundation, and Mahendra Siregar, Ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia to the United States of America to name a few.
Podcast topics are as diverse as the people invited to appear on the series. The speakers talk about their experience, the challenges facing businesses, the efforts they put into getting to where they are today, and the various challenges that organizations face on a daily basis.
10. Berkeley Haas Podcast Hub
The Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley features a series of podcasts that focus on different aspects of business management. The series include [email protected], Women of Haas, and Entrepreneurs. The [email protected] podcast is staffed and hosted by Black students and graduates of the business school while Women of Haas features female business students, graduates, educators, and leaders in the corporate world. The Entrepreneur podcast is hosted by students, educators, and leaders from all walks of life and fields of employment.
All of these podcasts bring a different perspective of what it’s like to be a student or graduate of the Haas School of Business, the challenges most face on a daily basis, how to find success through different avenues, and encouraging success stories from people with humble beginnings. The wide range of topics gives listeners insight to these issues along with broadening one’s own perspective.
What Can I Learn from Business School Podcasts?
The short answer is: A lot. The best business news podcast from the top business schools offers insights into the world of business leadership that’s hard to replicate in print. Podcasts with business leaders, industry experts, analysis of current and pending legislation, and frank discussion about the roles corporations play in cultural movements give you a window into the world you’re planning to enter. Business school podcasts are, in a sense, an extension of your education and help you learn more about what it takes to get your foot in the door and make your career a successful one.
Earning your MBA and working in a corporate role is more than joining the rank and file while following in the footsteps of those who came before you. Modern businesses need to be innovative and responsive to survive and succeed during a time when life changes almost daily. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a massive shift in how businesses operate with work from home becoming a norm and making organizations take a closer look at the amount they pay for office space. These effects are not short-term by any means, and business school podcasts are one of the best sources for staying up-to-date with how corporations are handling this seismic shift from the traditional 8-to-5 workday with a commute.
Business school podcasts also cover topics that go beyond finding your way into the world of leadership in a corporation. They also cover entrepreneurial topics that take a look at how small businesses manage to thrive for generations, how a small business owner can find solutions to problems they face such as funding a startup, and how to manage day-to-day operations. The best business news podcasts provide invaluable information for those who want to get their business off the ground and for owners who are looking for guidance, but can’t afford a business consultant.
The best business podcasts for students also talk about how graduates can start their career, the questions they have, and what they need to find in themselves to pick a career that’s exciting and satisfying. They’re valuable even if you’ve engaged in career counseling to figure out your strengths and weaknesses in terms of your aptitudes and talents. These podcasts also help you understand more about the personality traits you need to develop in order to become an effective leader in any organization.
How Do I Know if Business School Podcasts are Trustworthy?
There are a few ways to determine if a podcast is trustworthy or not. On a technical level, one way is to look at the viewer count for each episode or subscriber base for the podcast itself. A business podcast with a large amount of listens is one that’s disseminating quality information that is trusted by listeners. A large subscriber base also indicates that people want to stay updated and catch the latest podcast when it’s released. The best business podcasts provide solid information, interesting guests, and can produce content listeners want to listen to no matter the topic. But these aren’t the only metrics by which to judge the trustworthiness of a podcast.
The quality of the information that’s provided by the podcast is another indicator of trustworthiness. That is, you find the information being offered by the podcast and its speakers resonates with you on one or many levels. You can take what you learn and implement it within your organization with one degree of success or another. Not every concept will be a winner, but a business podcast that provides solid and foundational ideas to tackle an existing problem or introduces a new idea that improves efficiency is one that is worthy of trust.
Another sign of trustworthiness is the quality of the speakers and the topics they bring to the podcast. The best business news podcasts are ones that attract people from the C-suite at major corporations, and can also bring in business leaders from smaller businesses with extensive experience. People who have risen through the ranks to reach their current job titles are not going to talk on a less than reputable podcast. They have a reputation to protect, and if the podcast puts their reputation at risk, they’re not going to appear. This is true of podcasts of all sizes as even a small podcast is capable of delivering great information and news insights that are beneficial to listeners.
You should use your best judgment and listen to your instincts when it comes to determining the trustworthiness of a business podcast. Every podcast has positives and negatives, and you may not always like what you hear. The beauty of business podcasts is the sheer volume of podcasts available for listening. And the best part of all? Is the fact they’re almost always free.