Well, yes. Let’s start with the ‘why’ of listening to podcasts, and hopefully, that will convince you about the should.

You probably hear the words ‘upskilling’ and ‘reskilling’ routinely. While there is a chance that they may be construed as mere buzzwords, in this particular case they actually do mean something. To succeed in an increasingly competitive job market, it is imperative that we stay abreast of what is happening in our respective professional fields. Staying on top of one’s game is no longer about simply being aware of the latest developments in the technical aspects of one’s profession; it is as much about enhancing soft skills, which have often been overlooked in professional development. The good news is there is a definite trend of organisations, as well as employees, embracing comprehensive or well-rounded professional development.

You’re probably thinking, ‘What does this have anything at all to do with listening to podcasts at work?’

Podcasts are a great learning tool – this is the point we really want to make. Sure, a few podcasts may be considered by serious-minded folks as frivolous and empty calories. But there are plenty of podcasts that are comprehensive explorations of mental wellbeing, communication skills, developments in science and tech, sustainability & climate change, politics and current affairs, art, cinema, philosophy…there are now excellent podcasts on every topic under the sun. Podcasting is increasingly diverse, with perspectives from people and voices that hitherto did not have a platform on conventional media networks. Podcasts are leveling the field in an unequal world, and are proving to be an excellent window through which to acquaint ourselves with voices and views that would otherwise not have reached us. We believe comprehensive development is as much about the concerns of our immediate personal lives as it is about empathy for the world around us, a world that is getting smaller each day as its citizens become more global.

You, reader, are one such global citizen. You are perhaps working with international clients; you may be living in a country whose culture is utterly unfamiliar to you; you might even think yourself a misfit in some social contexts at work. Try a podcast – open your ears to views outside your own comfort zones or echo chambers, and it may just open your mind. Many of us will also benefit from podcasts that help us get better at our work, our communication, even our understanding of the world.

2020 has been a rough year – even the introverts amongst us are sick of working in silos. How often have you caught yourself staring blankly at the computer or wasting time on social media? I know I have – often! Concentrating on the job at hand has been difficult during such a time because our work can often bleed into non-work hours despite our best efforts to separate the two. This is where a podcast is a simple, efficient tool. Put on a podcast of your liking – it helps relieve stress. Listening to a riveting story improves your comprehension and increases your concentration; if you’re feeling stifled, listening to the lives and tales of others may help unshackle your mind from your surroundings. Perhaps a small dose of the larger world, and what the many amazing people in it are doing, is just the sort of pick-me-up you need. Perhaps podcasts ought to be your next adventure.

You are in luck – there is so much to hear.

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