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Want to grow and learn new insights to apply in your events company without having to attend a conference, schedule another meeting, or take a course? Podcasts are for you. (Better yet, they’re free and you can listen anywhere!)

Podcasts have seen a huge boom in the past few years(according to CBS News, two-thirds of us now listen!) and you can find them on any subject imaginable. Here are some podcasts that will provide you with takeaways that you can apply to your event company.

How I Built This with Guy Raz

I did some crowd-sourcing for podcast ideas and by far, this one came out on top! Each episode features the mastermind behind well-known companies such as Evite, Chipotle, TOMS, Wikipedia, and Starbucks. (Plus, if you haven’t picked up my book recommendation, there’s an episode on Ben and Jerry’s!) Guests featured on How I Built This are very forthcoming with their mistakes, lessons learned, and advice, making this a podcast you’ll find yourself listening to episode after episode.

Choiceology with Katy Milkman

Can we train ourselves to make better decisions? Podcasthost Katy Milkman certainly believes that we can and she has the credentials to prove it. Milkman is a Professor of Operations, Information and Decisions at the Wharton School (University of Pennsylvania). In Choiceology, she and her guests explore why we make the decisions we do and how these choices affect our lives and businesses. You’ll gain insights from the stories of irrational decisions and learn how to apply better decision-making skills in your daily life.

Coaching For Leaders with Dave Stachowiak

If you want to develop your leadership skills, give this podcast a try. Episodes center around a business “how-to” and Stachowiak and his guests provide expert, applicable guidance. You’ll find episodes on how to handle the ‘problem guy’, how to become a ‘superboss’, how to get teams to stop fighting, and how to co-manage. As this podcast emphasizes, “Leaders aren’t born, they’re made” and tuning in will have you well on your way.

This Week in Startups

If you want to hear stories from other entrepreneurs, this podcast is worth a listen. Ranging from inspiring to hilariously funny, you’ll find yourself relating to entrepreneurs’ tales of being at both their best and worst. While the organizations featured are web businesses, you’ll find strategies for building your event company, motivating team members, and leveraging innovation. Plus, if you prefer to watch the conversation unfold,this podcast is also available in video format.

The Accidental Creative

This podcast is all about developing daily practices that will help you thrive in life and work. Host Todd Henry (author of The Accidental Creative, Die Empty, and Louder Than Words) interviews business leaders, writers, and artists on topics like becoming more productive, developing the right mindset as an entrepreneur, hosting better meetings, and managing your time. With most episodes clocking in under 30 minutes, this is time well spent learning valuable strategies.

Radical Candor

This podcast has sadly been on hiatus since 2017 but the existing episodes are worth a download. We’ve all had bosses that we hate. This Podcast is all about how not to be that boss. Hosts Kim Scott and Russ Laraway Tell relatable stories and will change your perspective on management. Topics Include giving feedback, spending more time hiring (and less time firing),getting over the need for perfection, and there’s also an episode devoted to new managers. The employees at your event company will thank you for listening!

The Tim Ferriss Show

Tim Ferriss, best known for his book The 4-Hour Workweek, hosts an entertaining podcast featuring every type of guest you can imagine (actors, therapists, scientists, journalists,artists, you name it!) and a wide range of themes. Some episodes explore multiple topics, while others do a deep dive on one. No matter the subject though, Ferriss always provides application points for listeners to employ in their personal and professional lives. Ferriss also hosts Q&A episodes where he takes inquiries from listeners and provides practical advice, usually based on his own ‘guinea pig’ testing of various theories.

Since podcasts are all about practical tips, here are some of mine for getting more listening done!

- Subscribe to your favorite podcasts or have them automatically download to your phone. They’ll be there waiting for you!

- Get through content quicker by listening at a faster speed. Most podcast apps include this feature. (Or the opposite – if you like taking notes while you listen, slow it down!)

- Put them on in the car. If you’re worried about missing traffic announcements, run your navigation app on your phone as well –it will interject with updates.

- Invest in wireless headphones and listen while making dinner, cleaning, going for a walk, or at the gym.

- Take a few minutes to relax and enjoy your podcast with the time you’ve saved from implementing event management software. Quickstaff will help you arrange schedules, assign staff, delegate tasks, and keep all your event notes organized. Start your free trial!

Photo credit: FernandoArcos