Finance teams are always busy, and there's never enough time to learn and explore on the job. Which is why podcasts make for an exciting opportunity.
You can access insightful and valuable conversations while you work, commute, or get a little exercise. The big issue is just knowing which to subscribe to.
So our friends at CFO Connect asked their expert community for their favorite audio programming. Their answers include a few that get into the weeds on finance topics, and some that are strictly for pleasure.
Here are the top finance podcasts - plus a few extra-curricular options - available right now.
Strictly finance podcasts
While all the podcasts on this list were chosen by CFOs and feature plenty of finance topics, some cover broader topics. We’ll get to them soon, but let’s begin with the truly finance-focused options.
1. CFO Yeah! by CFO Connect
Oh yeah, we’re starting with the newest selection on the list. CFO Yeah! is from our friends at CFO Connect themselves, and features the very same community members who made this list. The concept is simple: in-depth interviews with CFOs from fast-growing, innovative companies. Episodes so far include leaders from Zapier, Strivr, Checkr, Fiit, Notion, and more.
The show gets into how finance teams and processes are built, and there are plenty of actionable takeaways. But the chief goal is really to answer the question: how do great CFOs spur growth in modern companies? You’ll have to listen to find out.
2. CFO Bookshelf with Mark Gandy & Bruce Reed
You can probably guess this one from the title. Each episode, Mark and Bruce discuss the best finance books on their shelves. They also invite special guests to do the same, with backgrounds ranging from FBI agents to stand-up comedians, but always with serious finance experience.
And while we’re talking books, take a look at CFO Connect’s reading list for CFOs.
3. Accounting Best Practices with Steve Bragg
Accountants looking to up their game will certainly enjoy Steve Bragg’s contributions to the craft. This is a very outcome-oriented show, simply hoping to make you a better accountant.
While many others on this list are more conversational and designed first to entertain, Steve’s here’s to educate. You’ll absolutely learn both fundamentals and smart tricks, and you can’t help but leave better informed.
4. Cloud Accounting Podcast with David Leary & Blake Oliver
The Cloud Accounting Podcast is part-accounting, part-technology news. The hosts tackle key issues impacting finance practitioners - particularly in the US. From IRS updates to PPP loan schemes, they dive into the key issues for accountants right now.
They also look closely at the cloud accounting market. Learn about key changes for the big players in payment processing, expenses, and reconciliation software. It’s the perfect choice for those wanting to know what’s worth knowing in cloud accounting.
Entrepreneurial & leadership podcasts
Branching out slightly from core finance discussions, these shows explore the art of building and scaling modern businesses. And they usually contain case studies from people who've been there, done that.
5. Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffmann
Reid Hoffman is co-founder of LinkedIn and a Grelock investor. But he may actually be better known for his influence upon and stories about so many of the world’s successful tech companies.
This show features interviews with founders and CEOs of the businesses most listeners would love to build one day. “Most episodes begin with an entertaining tale that sets the stage for Reid to reveal a new theory about scaling. It then unfolds like a detective story as he tests and turns the idea with some of the most iconic masters of scale on the planet.”
Certainly sounds enticing.
6. How I Built This with Guy Raz
We’ll get to another wonderful NPR podcast shortly. Similar to Masters of Scale, Guy Raz’s program looks at the inspiring stories behind top technology companies and their products.
And it’s not all success stories. Guy also uncovers the failures and missteps that founders frequently confront along the way.
7. The Goal Digger with Jenna Kutcher
Much of the rest of the podcast world could take note: this show is all about women entrepreneurs. Recorded from her own closet, Jenna Kutcher talks to the impressive leaders building products with epic results.
Naturally, the show looks closely at goals, and how successful entrepreneurs measure success. It’s more focused on small business and solopreneurship, but there’s plenty to be learned for anyone who cares about business and branding in general.
8. a16Z Podcast by Andreessen Horowitz
Andreessen Horowitz is one of the better-known venture capital firms in Silicon Valley. Which means this podcast typically covers tech and startup news, particularly in the San Francisco area.
But of course, you’ll hear from founders and leaders from all over the world. And whatever a16z says tends to be gospel in the tech world, so it pays to listen.
9. Pivot with Kara Swisher & Scott Galloway
Famous as a co-founder of Recode, and the most plugged-in tech journalist around, Kara Swisher talks to NYU professor Scott Galloway about the biggest stories in tech, business, and politics. Not much is “off limits,” and the two hosts love to speak their minds on the big stories of the day.
10. HBR IdeaCast with Alison Beard & Curt Nickisch
Want to listen to senior editors from Harvard Business Review talk business and leadership with senior business leaders? This is the podcast for you.
The show has been around since 2006, and the archives are full of fascinating conversations with just about everyone you could hope to hear from. Enjoy!
Smart podcasts for smart people
Of course, CFOs don’t only care about the ins and outs of finance. And podcasts are a great choice for curious people from all backgrounds who want to learn new things while dividing their attention.
These suggestions aren’t strictly finance or company growth, but you’re guaranteed to learn something new with each episode.
11. Planet Money by NPR
National Public Radio (NPR) has a range of great current affairs and interview podcasts, all of which are wildly popular. And perhaps because of the link to the economy, this was the favorite for CFO Connect’s finance community.
The pitch is pretty great: “imagine you could call up a friend and say, ‘meet me at the bar and tell me what's going on with the economy.’ Now imagine that's actually a fun evening.” The show explores the global economy without turning it into a dull lecture.
12. Freakonomics with Stephen J. Dubner
It’s hard to imagine that many readers haven’t heard of the Freakonomics books. But many may not be aware of the fantastically successful podcast by the same name. Just like in the books, Stephen J. Dubner looks at the more curious aspects of the economy, with great narratives to keep you hooked the whole way.
13. Make Me Smart with Kai Ryssdal and Molly Wood
“Together we make sense of today,” claim hosts Kai and Molly, the two award-winning American journalists who dive into mostly economic news in 30 minutes or less.
It’s entertaining, insightful, and perfect for the commuters among us.
Other favorites from the community
These don’t exactly fit neatly into one of the above categories, but they were still popular among the CFO Connect audience.
14. Ten Percent Happier with Dan Harris
With a refreshingly realistic goal in mind, this show aims to give listeners the tools to remain calm, focused, and ultimately happy. You’ll hear from meditators, scientists, and the odd celebrity, all with the aim of crafting a more disciplined and fulfilled mind.
15. The Knowledge Project with Shane Parrish
“The simple goal of ‘benefiting from the lessons that other people paid for’ has resulted in one of the most popular podcasts in the world,” says the website. You get to learn from others’ mistakes and triumphs in building businesses and lifestyles, all from the safety of your own headphones.
16. Revisionist History with Malcolm Gladwell
Malcolm Gladwell is another voice requiring no introduction. Famous for his “10,000 hours” theory and at least a handful of best sellers, Gladwell puts a unique spin on historical moments, rethinking what actually happened (and why).
Titles include “Dragon Psychology 101,” “Analysis, Parapraxis, Elvis,” and “Miss Buchanan’s Period of Adjustment.” Which should be more than enough to have you hooked.
Subscribe to a few favorite finance podcasts
Podcasts are now one of the easiest ways to learn and be entertained without devoting your full attention. You can listen while your cook, drive, or run, and soak up new knowledge as you go.
They're an excellent tool to help up-skill on the side, or to help kill a few hours of admin work. (Perhaps during closing time?)
Above are a few of the favorites from the CFO Connect community. Would you add any other shows? Let us know.