5 in 5: Picks for National Podcast Day

At Joe Smith, we’re a team full of podcast lovers. Even though our commutes haven’t yet returned, you can still find us in the habit of seeking inspiration while we do the dishes, walk the dog, or mow the lawn.

In honor of National Podcast Day, check out these series that we’re listening to right now:

How I Built This with Guy Raz

What it is: This NPR podcast hosted by Guy Raz will have you thinking about what the next big “thing” is. Every episode delves into the origin story of well-known company through casual (yet pointed) Q&A between Guy and the company’s founder. This podcast has featured companies like Spanx, Peloton, Clif Bar, and others.

Why we like it: It provides a behind-the-scenes look at how companies really come to be, and what it takes to turn a dream into (profitable) reality.


What it is: Sweathead is a delightfully refreshing strategy-focused podcast hosted by journalist-turned-strategist and agency veteran Mark Pollard. With Mark at the helm, the show explores different processes and mindsets for developing brand and communications strategy while checking any ego or assumptions at the door.

Why we like it: It is plainspoken, fun, and a valuable reminder for how simple but integral good strategy really should be.


What it is: Love personality tests? We’re big fans of the Enneagram, and this podcast uses it to explore the different parts of human personality for the sake of self-improvement. Host Ian Cron guides conversation with artists, business leaders, and others who share their enneagram findings and how their personality has helped transformed who they have become.

Why we like it: Business revolves around relationships, and you cannot understand others until you really understand yourself.

Revisionist History

What it is: Acclaimed author and speaker Malcom Gladwell’s podcast considers events of the past that deserve another look – stories that warrant deeper analysis, more context, or additional viewpoints. Each episode connects culture, sociology, and history in ways both unexpected and fascinating.

Why we like it: Gladwell makes seemingly farfetched connections that result in “lightbulb” moments – it’s a masterclass in finding insights from disparate sets of data that reframe our understanding about entire subjects or moments in time.  

The Bright Sessions

What it is: One of the most acclaimed “audio dramas” in recent years, it’s a quirky science fiction series that even non sci-fi fans will love. It follows a group of therapy patients who each have unique supernatural abilities. 

Why we like it: A departure from the nonfiction podcasts on our list, The Bright Sessions was first released back in 2015 and it had us hooked from the start. Set in a world that is parallel to ours, it’s nice to be able to just get lost in a story. This one is incredibly binge-able too, with four seasons plus two spin-off shows set within the same world. Enjoy it…and remember, stay strange.

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