A podcast roundup

Black-and-white photo of professional microphonesA few weeks ago, I asked my newsletter readers if they’d like a roundup of recommended podcasts, and the answer was, resoundingly, YES.

I also asked them for their recommendations.

Herewith, therefore, are my own suggestions and some of my readers’. Note: unless flagged as “only on Spotify,” you can find these on pretty much any podcast platform you prefer.

First, my suggestions – since – hey, this is my blog, right?

Single-season podcasts: 

Pete Buttigieg, our current Transportation Secretary, did a 15-episode series in 2020 called “The Deciding Decade.” Super interesting stuff, with interviews of all types of people, including several “minisodes” (shorter episodes) with young leaders – some barely into their teens. 

Michelle Obama’s podcast, aptly titled “The Michelle Obama Podcast,” is a fascinating journey through what it’s like to be the First Lady and a whole lot more. I believe it’s only on Spotify.

Hold onto your hats for this one: Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen! Yes, they did a podcast together, called “Renegades: Born in the USA.” It’s just delightful, even as they explore deep topics like what it means to be a man, racism in the U.S., and fatherhood – along with music (yes, Obama sings in one of the episodes).

Ongoing series:

For business geeks, “The Reboot Podcast” is a deep dive into the world of startup founders. Reboot CEO, author, and extraordinary coach Jerry Colonna interviews – and often does in-the-moment coaching with – business founders, CEOs, and others on the emotional impact and struggle of being a startup founder and entrepreneur. It’s a master-class on coaching, and also fascinating on business. 

Simon Sinek has a lot of fun on his “A Bit of Optimism” podcast, which I only recently discovered. It’s interesting for both his, well, fun, and, of course, the eclectic roundup of people he interviews.

Greg McKeown’s podcast “What’s Essential” has recently taken a bit of a turn into heavily promoting his second book Effortless, which I have to say I’m finding a little tedious. (I do recommend Effortless, and definitely his first book, Essentialism.) Still, other episodes are insightful and enjoyable, and I’m sure he’ll get back on track soon. 

Well-known therapist, speaker, and author Esther Perel has a couple of podcasts, both a tad intermittent and, if you’re interested in relationships personal and professional, very worth listening to. “Where Should We Begin,” on personal relationships, has, I believe, stopped production, but there are plenty of past episodes to listen to; “How’s Work,” obviously about work issues, took a break but is, I think, back in production. New episodes are apparently only being released on Spotify.

Many readers – and me too! – recommend Brené Brown’s two podcasts, “Dare to Lead” and “Unlocking Us.” It’s Brené Brown – need I say more? Well, yes: I will say that some episodes are great, and some less so. But in the end, that’s true of any podcast. Although you can find past episodes of “Unlocking Us” on iTunes, new episodes – and all “Dare to Lead” episodes – are only on Spotify.

Likewise, I had several suggestions – including my own – for Alan Alda’s podcasts “Clear+Vivid” (about communication) and “Science Clear+Vivid.” Yes, this is the Alan Alda of M*A*S*H fame (and other excellent shows and movies). He’s delightful, and so are his interviews. 

Other people’s recommendations

I can’t speak to any of these since I haven’t (yet) listened, though I was intrigued to find some new to me that I’ll be checking out.

Actually, that’s not entirely true: I do know, and enjoy, Sherry Essig‘s and Anne Robie’s “Flowing East & West: the perfectly imperfect journey to a fulfilled life.” They publish insightful, intriguing interviews and personal reflections on the “perfectly imperfect” journey we’re all on through life, career, and relationships. 

Krista Tippett’s “On Being” is a perennial favorite for many. I have to admit … I’ve tried, but can’t get into it. Still, so many people love the show, so it’s undoubtedly my problem! (ha!) 

Jeff Toister suggested “Bagman – Rachel Maddow’s excellent podcast about Spiro Agnew” and “Throughline – NPR production shedding light on the history behind current events.” I know nothing about either of these, but they sound intriguing.

For professional speakers, Jeff says, “I really like Jay Baer’s Standing Ovation podcast, where keynote speakers dissect the stories they use in their presentations.” I’ve added it to my list – and notice that it seems to have stopped production in late 2020. But there are plenty of episodes to catch up with!

There you have it: an eclectic roundup of podcasts for your enjoyment!

(By the way, if you’re wondering why I placed this post in the “Owning your career” category, it’s because these podcasts – and others, of course – are an excellent way to learn, develop your personal and professional insight, and grow.)

gljudson Owning your career