5 Productivity Podcasts that Will Change the Way You Work

If I bought every single amazing, life-changing book on productivity or self-improvement that people tell me to get, I’d have a stack of never-opened books and about $400 less in my bank account. And I do. My attention span is abysmal, but I’m not the only one. Our fickle focus sadly just doesn’t allow us to sit down and read a book on enhancing our productivity. What’s worse, the high-speed world we live in renders us about as productive as a school of salmon trying to swim up a waterfall.

To be more literal, we get push-back by everything around us and when we finally think we’re making progress, we get overwhelmed. Or eaten by a bear (figuratively).

But one form of media that’s been growing in popularity is the podcast. You can listen to a podcast nearly anywhere. While commuting to work, you can probably complete one episode. The podcast is a source of entertainment that is digestible, short, and actually helps improve your life habits.

So, I took some time away from listening to three guys being hilarious to find out if there are any free podcasts about productivity. Here is a list of some of my favorites:[bctt tweet="5 #Productivity #Podcasts that Will Change the Way You Work, by @ErikRNye"]

productivity podcast back to work
productivity podcast back to work

Productivity Podcast: Back to Work with hosts Merlin Mann & Dan Benjamin

Not only is Back to Work one of the most insightful commentaries on how we work, it’s also hysterical. The creator of 43 Folders, Mann has spent a lot of his career with his focus on how we battle things that take us away from being productive or creative.

Whether you’re struggling with multitasking, organization, or even a crippling fear of failure, one of the 250+ episodes in this productivity podcast will have what you need.

If you’ve got a short attention span like myself, Merlin Mann will make you feel right at home. He’s quick, witty, and extremely intelligent about work habits, tech, and productivity. And you’ll find that a variety of episodes cover all three of those things.

Expect to get a few weird looks on public transit when you start giggling to yourself out of nowhere. But, it’ll be worth it.[bctt tweet="Back to Work, @hotdogsladies @danbenjamin, is an insightful #podcast on how we work—@ErikRNye"]

productivity podcast beyond the to-do list
productivity podcast beyond the to-do list

Productivity Podcast: Beyond the To-Do List with host Erik Fisher

For nearly four years, Erik Fisher's Beyond the To-Do List podcast has served as a life coach to thousands of listeners. In an attempt to sift through all the lifehack-y gimmicks trending around the internet, Fisher gets right down to the root of the issues.

Assisted by his guests, his podcasts explore different ways to approach productivity and what helps them get things done. You'll find a variety of different topics and discussions from the creativity process to using Evernote more effectively.

In general, Beyond the To-Do List focuses on the balance between work and life. Many episodes will pinpoint a helpful productivity tool and discuss how your personal life can benefit from it.[bctt tweet=".@ErikJFisher's #podcasts explore different ways to approach #productivity, says @ErikRNye"]

productivity podcast 99% invisible
productivity podcast 99% invisible

Productivity Podcast: 99% Invisible with host Roman Mars

If you’re a Radiolab fan, but would like something less curling-up-and-crying-in-your-bedroom-out-of-both-joy-and-sadness, 99% Invisible might be more your flavor.

You’ll recognize the similarity right away: beautifully edited interviews with thoughtful and intelligent individuals. But, each episode focuses solely on the interesting things in the world that typically escape our attention. Architecture, design, advertising techniques; 99% Invisible shines a spotlight on the creativity and thought process behind these things we take for granted.

Your purpose for listening to this should be inspiration. If you’re feeling blocked, this podcast will give your mind the creative spark it needs.[bctt tweet="If you're feeling blocked, @99piorg @romanmars will give you a #creative spark, says @ErikRNye"]

productivity podcasts unthinkable podcast
productivity podcasts unthinkable podcast

Productivity Podcast: Unthinkable with host Jay Acunzo

Speaking of creativity, content creation guru Jay Acunzo released a new podcast last week. This podcast is geared toward anyone whose job involves creativity, meaning its principles can be applied to any job.

There are only two episodes at the moment. But if it’s anything like Acunzo’s blog, Sorry for Marketing, it’s bound to be a great resource for anyone looking to improve their productivity. And judging from the first two episodes, it’s on the right trajectory.

The very first episode explores the concept of quality vs. quantity and how they aren’t necessarily opposites. Episode two covers juggling side projects.[bctt tweet="Unthinkable by @JayAcunzo is bound to be a resource for improving #productivity, says @ErikRNye"]

productivity podcast accidental creative
productivity podcast accidental creative

Productivity Podcast: The Accidental Creative with host Todd Henry

The Accidental Creativeis about discovering practical methods to help spur you into having productive habits. Having written a book of the same name, his podcast counterpart features different guests he invites on the show to discuss finding your voice, morning mantras, and other ways of ensuring you’re at your best.

Henry doesn’t just talk about what you can do right; many of the episodes discuss some of our bad habits and how we can overcome them. You might not even realize you were performing a bad habit; one episode discusses a common trap people get themselves in when they emulate others or even past versions of themselves.

When he’s flying solo on his podcast, it feels very much like you’re attending a seminar. It definitely wouldn’t hurt to take notes.[bctt tweet="The Accidental Creative by @toddhenry feels like a #productivity seminar—@ErikRNye"]

These definitely aren’t the only productivity podcasts out there. What are your favorites? Let us know in the comments below.

Author Erik Nye is a technical marketing student in our spring 2016 cohort. Looking for a talented marketer to manage your content strategy? Reach out to Erik at erik.r.nye@gmail.com.

Photo credit: Wyred Media via Flickrcc