Entry By Jason Brick
As a small business owner, if you're not listening to business podcasts, you're missing a top opportunity for keeping your mental tools sharp. They let you learn new skills, keep up on events, and challenge yourself -- all while you're driving your commute, running errands or working out. The biggest problem with this form of media is finding the quality 'casts in the flood of available options. Do yourself a favor by checking out these six top business podcasts broadcasting this year:
- Manager Tools It's been operating since 2006, but remains one of the top podcasts for managers and business owners. Each cast addresses a specific skill ranging from greeting team members each morning to handling succession of a new manager. Runtime is about 30 minutes.
- Quick-and-Dirty Tips Not one cast, but a whole network of 5-to-10-minute programs on a wide range of topics. Business owners will get the most out of "Get It Done Guy," "Sales Guy" and "Grammar Girl." These little bites of information are great for short runs to the store and similar brief tasks.
- EntreLeadership A newer project by personal finance guru Dave Ramsey, in which he applies his "Dr. Phil of Money" personality and approach to management and leadership in small businesses. Some sample topics include using influence instead of authority, and basic time management. Runtime is 20 to 45 minutes.
- The Startup Success Podcast Focuses on skills, news and practices for startups and microbusinesses, but most of the information is broadly applicable to small and medium companies. Also includes frequent interviews with authors and thought leaders. Each episode runs about 40 minutes.
- Work-At-Home SuccessThis 45-minute podcast bills itself as one-stop-listening for work from home business owners. Topics range from work habits to interviews to product reviews. Mostly focused on microbusiness success, it still has a thing or three you can apply to your team in a larger context.
- Social Media Today Podcast Less of a "traditional" podcast than it is the broadcast of a several Social Media Customer workshops and webinars, this is the next best thing to a college class on emerging and hot business technology, especially what's up with internet and social media marketing. Run times vary according to the topic and style of presentation.
Naturally, 2012 saw more than 6 excellent podcasts go out into the world. Tell us about your favorites -- or a new one to include in our 2013 roundup -- in the comments below.