“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.”
— Plutarch, On Listening to Lectures
For the longest time, I listened strictly to music and/or sat in silence while I worked. In my free time I produce music, so saying I am a music lover would be somewhat of an understatement.
Two months ago, a life-changing transformation took place. I became the father of a beautiful 6 week old fur-baby, Lilly.
Recently Lilly decided to snack on my speaker cables (sweet angel) and before I took the time to replace them, I decided to try listening to entrepreneurial focused, small business podcasts from my computer speakers, as it had been a couple years since I made a habit of listening to The Art of Charm during my morning commute. I haven’t looked back.
The cables have since been replaced and I have (somewhat) puppy-proofed my speaker arrangement, but I have not switched back to music. Once again, I’ve found myself entranced in the ocean of amazing podcasts available at our modern-day fingertips.
As a small business owner & entrepreneur myself, I have re-discovered the value to be found in listening to great podcasts including motivation, inspiration, productivity tips, organization, communication, health & science breakthroughs, and much more. Plus, sometimes it’s nice to switch things up from strictly discussing small business web design & digital business development.
Some of my favorite business (& other) podcasts are linked below. (Say, ‘thank you, Lilly!’)
If you have other small business podcasts you enjoy listening to, please feel free to share in the comments below.
Most of these are all safe for work, except for the Joe Rogan Experience. This is likely the least ‘business focused’ of all of the podcasts below, but there are also some very entertaining episodes to be explored. If it’s not your cup of tea, skip it and check out the rest.
Tony Robbins Podcast
- It’s hard to listen to Tony Robbins and not be inspired.
- One of my personal life influences / motivators.
- One of my favorite authors.
- Language is safe for work.
- Topics include – Motivation, Inspiration, Business, Confidence, Organization, Goals, etc…
Tony Robbins is an entrepreneur, best-selling author, philanthropist and the nation’s #1 Life and Business Strategist. A recognized authority on the psychology of leadership, negotiations and organizational turnaround, he has served as an advisor to leaders around the world for more than 38 years. Author of five internationally bestselling books, including the recent New York Times #1 best-seller MONEY: MASTER THE GAME, Mr. Robbins has empowered more than 50 million people from 100 countries through his audio, video and life training programs. He created the #1 personal and professional development program of all time, and more than 4 million people have attended his live seminars.
The James Altucher Show
- Very Informative & Entertaining.
- One of my personal-favorite authors.
- Occasional strong language but not overbearing.
- Topics – Wide range including: Business, Writing, Marketing, Sales, Entrepreneurship, Misc. Other Topics
- About: http://www.jamesaltucher.com/about/ (Full description is an entire interview)
James Altucher hosts various guests on each episode of his podcasts. Most of them have at least one book published and interestingly, James has without failure, read their books before on the show. This is very impressive considering there are around 175 episodes to-date.
I first discovered James on Quora (one of my favorite apps / websites) and naturally gravitated toward his writing style and some of his life experiences he writes about regarding his past business experience, making and losing money, etc…
Since he has read the books written by his guests on the show and remembers amazing details about them, he is able to get into their minds and effectively portray a fresh perspective during his podcast. I have picked up something from every episode I have listened to.
Tim Ferriss Show
- Informative, Entertaining, Motivational, and the topics are generally applicable to real-world situations.
- Another one of my favorite authors (The Four Hour Work Week is a must-read)
- Occasional Strong Language
- Topics – Wide Range including: Business, Making Money, Life Optimization, Time Optimization, Efficiency, etc…
The Tim Ferriss Show is generally the #1 business podcast on all of iTunes, and it’s been ranked #1 (of all podcasts) on many occasions. It was also selected as iTunes’ “Best of 2014” and “Best of 2015.” In recent months, downloads have shot past 70,000,000 downloads.
Each episode, Tim deconstructs world-class performers from eclectic areas (investing, sports, business, art, etc.) to extract the tactics, tools, and routines you can use. This includes favorite books, morning routines, exercise habits, time-management tricks, and much more.
- Very entertaining but if you work in retail or have customers walking in, this is likely not a good ‘at-work’ choice.
- Entertaining real-world information and opinions.
- Nice break from inspiration & business discussion.
- Very strong language.
- Topics include – nearly everything in life. Funny stuff, serious stuff, and everything in-between.
The Joe Rogan Experience podcast is a long form conversation hosted by comedian, UFC color commentator, and actor Joe Rogan with friends and guests that have included comedians, actors, musicians, MMA instructors and commentators, authors, artists, and porn stars. The Joe Rogan Experience was voted the Best Comedy Podcast of 2012 on iTunes. In addition online listening, fans can watch a videocast of the show live on Ustream or tune in on Sirius XM’s “The Virus” channel on Saturdays at Noon ET and Sundays at 5:00 AM and 6:00 PM ET.
TED Radio Hour
- Thought-provoking topics.
- Shows tend to make good conversation topics.
- Every episode contains language which is safe for a workplace environment.
From NPR, the Ted Radio Hour brings you fascinating and insightful speakers on a broad range of topics from global issues such as fighting hunger to individual journeys into the source of happiness. Based on the phenomenal TED Talks series, the show is hosted by Guy Raz and available on demand in weekly episodes.
The Art of Charm
- Great, useful topics which are mostly all applicable to real life.
- This is one of the first podcasts I ever followed and I still keep up with it from time-to-time.
- Each episode has a ‘cheat sheet’ which comes along with it, on the website. This is beneficial to review and see if the episode is something of interest prior to listening.
- Topics include – business, personal development, confidence, style, entrepreneurship, productivity, etc…
You’ll learn top strategies to improve your career, confidence, lifestyle and love-life from top experts like life and business-hackers Tim Ferriss, Ramit Sethi and Noah Kagan to Seth Godin, Simon Sinek, Olivia Fox, The Art of Charm team and more.
- Excellent podcast, particularly for creatives but not exclusively, which hosts a different person on each show, most of whom have started very successful endeavors.
- The description of the show gears itself towards primarily ‘creatives’ but I would consider any business / entrepreneurial endeavor to have a creative aspect / necessity to it.
- Topics vary but area generally centered around the requirements, lessons, and implications of building a business and life around a creative drive.
Profit. Power. Pursuit. explores what it means to build a business and life on your creative drive. We uncover both the strategic and the tactical components of how creative people make money, take control of their businesses, and pursue what’s most important to them so that you can too.
- Topics include – lifestyle optimization, time optimization / productivity, becoming the best version of yourself, ground-breaking scientific and nutritional breakthroughs, and more.
Tech entrepreneur Dave Asprey is the man behind Bulletproof Radio, a podcast all about streamlining your life and becoming the best version of yourself physically, mentally and emotionally. Each week he brings you the knowledge of doctors, biochemists, nutritionists and meditation experts to help you find this “bulletproof” state within yourself.