The 5 Best Business Podcasts for Executives


By Tricia McKinnon

The number of podcast listeners is growing sharply.  More than 50% of Americans have listened to a podcast.  33% of people listen to at least one podcast each month.  According to a report by the New York Times growth in podcast listening is at its highest rate since Edison Research began covering podcasts in 2006. Consumers over the age of 55 are also starting to listen more. Within the millennial and teen demographics, 40% of people aged 12 -24 tuned into a podcast last month.  Streaming services such as Spotify, which have added podcasts, have also contributed to growth. If you want to get in on the trend here are five podcasts you can listen to, to learn more about business success stories as well as the information you need to stay informed.

1. The Tim Ferris Show. This podcast is hosted by Tim Ferris the author of the 4 Hour Work Week.  It was listed as one of the top ten most downloaded Apple podcasts in 2018.  Ferris conducts in-depth interviews with world class performers so that listeners can obtain a better understanding of the strategies and tactics used to achieve high levels of success.  Guests have included Kevin Systrom (Co-Founder of Instagram), Doug McMillon (CEO of Walmart), Tobi Lutke (CEO of Shopify), Seth Godin (author of Permission Marketing), Reid Hoffman (Co-Founder of LinkedIn) as well as other highly successful individuals such as entertainers like Jamie Foxx.

2. How I Built This. NPR’s Guy Raz profiles the stories of how well known businesses grew from their early days to the successes they are today.  If you are interested in learning the details behind how companies such as Glossier, Five Guys, Away and Kate Spade grew into the brands you love then this podcast is for you.   

3. Masters of Scale. In this podcast, entrepreneur and LinkedIn Co-Founder Reid Hoffman, similar to Guy Raz, talks about the growth drivers behind successful businesses. Some of the guests on this podcast have included: Ariana Huffington, Founder of HuffPost, Danny Meyer, Founder of Five Guys and Howard Schultz, Chair and Former CEO of Starbucks.

4. HBR Ideacast. Sarah Green Carmichael, Executive Editor at Harvard Business Review (HBR), hosts this podcast which profiles thought leaders in business and management.  Recent episodes include: the right way to get your first 1,000 customers, why US moms are so stressed - and what to do about it and the harsh reality of innovative companies.

5. eMarketer’s Behind the Numbers. This podcast is about digital media, advertising and tech. While the other podcasts focus on the bigger picture if you want more granular business data this podcast is a great source.  It discusses topics such as how cord cutting is impacting pay TV, Facebook and how it is evolving as well as the latest developments with Amazon.  Not only does it cover these trends but it provides the numbers to back them up.


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