When was the last time you listened to an inspiring business lecture? You don’t have to step foot on campus or even be enrolled in business school to hear from some of their most talented professors, brightest students, and successful alumni. Many prestigious business schools host free podcasts or personal on-demand broadcasts. These university-level broadcasts are highly entertaining and intellectually stimulating. The business school podcasts selected for this list have something to offer everyone, whether an aspiring business student, seeking an online MBA, or a seasoned professional. They will keep you up-to-date with the latest business news, offer advice about applying to graduate school, and discuss current market trends.
Podcasts are also great for people seeking a career transition. You can hear the good, the bad, and the ugly from people who have already experienced life in the c-suite office to see if that’s really the path you want to take. If you decide to pursue a business career, the knowledge gained from podcasts can help you walk into your interviews with confidence. Many online MBA programs allow students from a non-business background to waive prerequisites if they are able to demonstrate knowledge of basic business concepts or create a portfolio with business work samples. Podcasts can help you waive these prerequisites, which can save you thousands! The benefits of listening to podcasts from Harvard, Stanford, Berkeley, and MIT are endless. Amazingly, these are free, and the only cost is 10 minutes to one hour of your day! Check them out!
This series features a behind-the-scenes look at entrepreneurs, including setbacks they faced along their journey. Inside secrets are shared by experts, so think of each talk as free consulting or a candid chat with a mentor with relevant experience. The most recent talk, “Why Startups Fail,” was the collaboration of a Harvard and a Stanford business professor. Some of the other noteworthy guest speakers include Katrina Lake, founder of Stitch Fix, spreading the message that anyone can be an entrepreneur in “Making Entrepreneurship More Inclusive,” and MasterClass entrepreneur David Rogier, who offers advice on “Finding the Right Motivation.” Business meets sports in “Bridging the Gap Between Sports and Tech” by Miami Heat’s Andre Iguodala. If you’d like to join a live conversation digitally, tune in weekly on Wednesdays from 4:30-5:20 via YouTube Livestream. You can also subscribe to have weekly episodes automatically uploaded for you to listen to at your convenience.
HBR offers something for every business persona with nine unique podcast options. Need advice on a work-related dilemma? Listen to Dear HBR to have all of your workplace problems resolved. Female business leaders will appreciate Women at Work, featuring conversations on advancing women’s role in the workforce. Race at Work tackles the tough reality of how race affects your career path. The importance of mental health is spotlighted in Anxious Achiever and offers true stories from leaders who have faced and overcome their own struggles. Techies will be intrigued by Exponential View, which focuses on the role AI plays in 21st-century businesses. If you want to get a taste of case studies before starting college or grad school, Cold Call is the perfect podcast for you. Want your daily dose of business news? Try listening to After Hours. Coaching Real Leaders and HBR IdeaCast is like meeting with a personal trainer, but for business.
This thought-provoking podcast gives students a glimpse of life in the classroom at Columbia Business School, from current students, professors, and the dean, to graduates who are making a difference in the world today. Choose to listen to lectures from highly acclaimed professors such as “Analytics in Action,” “The Truth of Secrecy,” and “The Polarization Project.” Successful Columbia alum regularly appears as guests of this socially conscious, business-centric podcast. Recent contributors have included MBA alum Carolyn Disbrow, who is currently the Senior Director of Brand Marketing for CNN. Other personal memoirs are shared by the CEO of non-profit Children’s Aid, former pro athletes, retired military, and leaders of startups. Services these individuals provide range from cooking lessons for refugees to solar power operations in Mexico. The key message is to use your knowledge to give back to others. Learn and be inspired by their unique stories so you too can leave a legacy.
The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania partners with SAP, The Boston Consulting Group, and other large corporations to bring you up-to-date news coverage from a business perspective. Several new podcasts are added daily on current events, such as President Biden’s proposed infrastructure bill, pension plans, company-mandated COVID vaccine policies, mortgage rates, and the stock market trends. These events are summarized, and commentary is provided by Wharton’s business professors, world-renown CEOs, and prominent business figures to offer a broad spectrum of views. If you are interested in self-improvement, listen to the following talks: “Learning to Be a Better Leader,” “How Entrepreneurs Identify New Business Opportunities,” and “Black Women Leaders: Navigating the Intersection of Gender and Race.” The majority of these podcasts are offered in manageable 20-45 minutes sessions. Download on iTunes for instant access to all of the news stories you need to be an informed business professional.
The University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business has featured leaders spanning the world on their podcast. Guest speakers have included the president and CEO of the Federal Reserve, a chairman of the National Geographic Society, and the ambassador of the Republic of Indonesia. These influential leaders speak openly about what they wish they would have learned in college and the journey to acquiring leadership positions. Darden also hosts C-Suite Insights with some of the most powerful men and women in business. These intriguing talks include topics such as “How to End Information Inequity” by the president of Mastercard and “What’s the Future of Finance for Women?” by a female investment banker at Barclays. Tune into the Darden Founders Project if you’re interested in learning about startups by Darden MBA alum. Darden college applicants can learn about what it’s really like to attend through the Experience Darden episodes. Additional Darden podcasts include Research & Relevance, The ExecMBA, and Interdisciplinarity.
This podcast is delivered by one of the world’s leading business schools, so you are sure to receive expert opinions on important issues facing the world today. Subject material includes analytics and big data, people management, personal development, and strategy. Want to see how your thoughts stack up against industry leaders? Executives chime in on “Are CEOs Paid Too Much?” and answer questions such as “Can Robo-advice replace professional fund managers?” If you are ready to unleash your leadership potential, try checking out “Barriers Preventing You from Being a Better Leader,” “How to Go from Good to Great,” and “Building Your Career Strategy.” Budding entrepreneurs will appreciate the intimate accounts from those who were once in their shoes in the “Start-Up Diaries” and “Real Stories: The Entrepreneur’s Journey.” Find the inspiration you need to make an impact on the world from alumni who share their success stories in “Three Ways to Make an Impact.”
One of the world’s premier business schools, Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, brings you insights from leading experts and business school faculty. The emphasis is on personal and professional development. The great content is presented by the former CEO of DuPont, NBA athletes, and military colonels. These podcasts are great for a quick coffee break because most of them range from about 10 to 15 minutes. In these short bursts, you can learn to “Give Better Feedback,” hear “Advice on Advancing Your Career,” and discover tricks to “Knock your Next Business Presentation Out of the Park.” The information is presented in a very relatable manner, making you feel like you are just having a conversation with a colleague over lunch. They only add about one episode per month, but there are currently 160 episodes, which gives you plenty of previously recorded podcasts to catch up on.
If you long to join a student organization but aren’t currently enrolled in school or attend virtually, join Stern Chats, a New York University MBA student-ran podcast. The seven officers that comprise this podcast team uncover the most exciting stories about students, faculty, administrators, and alumni and offer life lessons. This vibrant community has 320 members and welcomes both NYU students and non-students to join. Members will receive regular emails with newsletters, business updates, and exclusive invites to virtual and live business events. Attending these events offers a great opportunity to network with the NYU student body and other business professionals. Making these connections could even lead to your next job. This is definitely a podcast you’ll want to listen to frequently and be part of! New podcast episodes are released every week during the school year. Follow this dynamic group on Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
In How I Got Here, MIT’s Sloan School of Management shares stories of how professionals landed in their current roles. This podcast is only in its second season but already features stories from hotshots such as the MBA Admissions Director at Harvard Business School, Chief Business Development Officer at Weight Watchers, and President of Guild Education. Students will be relieved to hear that even some of these leaders had difficulty choosing a career and were unsure of the next step they wanted to take on their career path at times. These episodes were designed with the goal of helping students hone in on their dreams. Students who need a bit more inspiration can even sign up to request a free 1:1 career chat. Space is limited, and students can upload a resume, provide additional information about their unique situation, and choose from a list of concerns such as the need to prepare for an interview or need help networking.
Haas School of Business is an extension of Berkeley, home to over 1,400 MBA students annually. With such a large student body, they are able to offer several podcasts. Listen to Here@Haas to hear stories about life on campus as an MBA student. Alumni stories are featured on OneHaas, and BSBA alumni can tell their stories on Haas Undergrad BSBA Alums. Haas prides itself on being diverse and features Black@Haas to highlight stories of African American students and Women of Haas to spotlight accomplished female students and community leaders. Haas Fintech tackles the latest financial technology issues. The Entrepreneurs podcast is all about those initial challenges founders overcame with their startups. Students at Haas are invited to join the podcast team, make recommendations for future guest speakers, or nominate a fellow classmate who exhibits excellent leadership principles. Multiple episodes are uploaded each week and sometimes even each day, so there’s always something interesting to listen to.
Why listen to a podcast instead of Top 40s music on your morning commute? You can impress your boss by casually sparking up a conversation in the staff room over your morning cup of coffee or gain a new sense of confidence when pitching new ideas during meetings. If you are new to business, you can acquire the common jargon you are likely to hear at the office. You may not earn a degree from sitting faithfully through podcasts, but the knowledge you gain may just give you a boost in earning a promotion or pay raise.
If you are currently in the midst of applying for business schools, find out if the schools host podcasts and begin listening. It will familiarize you with the school’s ideology prior to enrolling. Listening to the podcasts of prospective business schools will help you get a feel for what it would be like as a student. For example, you can learn about student organizations you may want to join. Business competitions and other special events may also be highlighted in episodes. Some podcasts also offer great admissions tips, so you can ensure your application gets accepted even by the toughest admissions teams. If your business school requires you to take the GMAT, find podcasts that discuss study strategies. Set aside time to study. Find out if your company offers financial assistance for college and what you need to do to apply for this benefit.
Wherever your current situation is, and whatever your future aspirations are, listening to podcasts is a simple and easy way to access current business information and tips. All you have to do is pick one and start listening.