by Dianna Brodine, managing editor, Plastics Business

I have a love/hate relationship with podcasts. I love the ease of them, and it’s great to be able to pop in my earbuds and listen while I’m out for a walk or replying to emails in the office. The Armchair Expert Podcast is (as far as I’m concerned) the best thing ever, and I can go down the rabbit’s hole with all sorts of true crime podcasts and never emerge. But, business podcasts can seem a bit … dry … so I went on a hunt for episodes with a bit more edge. Here are my recommendations for those who want the message and the lesson without the boredom.

Business Wars

business-wars-podcastNetflix vs. HBO. Nike vs. Adidas. Business is war. Sometimes the prize is your wallet or your attention. Sometimes, it’s just the fun of beating the other guy. The outcome of these battles shapes what we buy and how we live. Business Wars gives you the unauthorized, real story of what drives these companies and their leaders, inventors, investors and executives to new heights – or to ruin.

Sample podcasts:

• Ford vs. Chevrolet: Technology in the Fast Lane

• Harley and the Biker Wars: The Freedom Wars

• Anheuser-Busch vs. Miller – The Beer Barons

Spectacular Failures

spectacular-failures-podcastCorporate crookedness. Family feuding. Hilariously half-baked decisions. Host Lauren Ober tackles some of the most spectacular business failures of all time, and what could have been done to avoid them. Some of these stories are shocking. Some are funny. Some are just downright sad. But each one will give you a totally new perspective on big business … and big failure.

Sample podcasts:

• Toys R Us Goes Bust

• The Inferno that Transformed American Labor

• Family Fighting Sends U-Haul on a Detour

Cautionary Tales

cautionary-tales-podcastWe tell our children unsettling fairy tales to teach them valuable life lessons, but these Cautionary Tales are for the education of the grown-ups – and they are all true. Tim Harford (Financial Times, BBC, author of “Messy” and “The Undercover Economist”) brings you stories of awful human error, tragic catastrophes, daring heists and hilarious fiascos. They’ll delight you, scare you, but also make you wiser.

Sample podcasts:

• Bowie, Jazz and the Unplayable Piano

• How Britain Invented, Then Ignored, Blitzkrieg

• Buried by the Wall Street Crash

A Book from the MAPP Executive Director

eternal-impactAnyone who has heard Troy Nix speak at a MAPP Benchmarking & Best Practices Conference knows the man can command a room. With heartfelt stories and impactful messages, his opening message is my favorite thing at every conference event. Now, there’s no need to wait for October to roll around – Nix has published Eternal Impact: Inspire Greatness In Yourself And Others.

Drawing on three decades of reflection and positively influencing people, Nix shares his unique philosophy that will inspire, inform, motivate and empower you. Available at most online retailers, this mix of compelling stories, humor and practical advice will show you how to make changes to positively affect more people.