Best Podcasts for Leaders in Education

Key Points

  • Podcasts are a great way to push your thinking through accessible, bite-sized conversations.

  • Education leaders should listen to voices inside and outside of education for tips on management and leading.

Tom with Dr. Roberta McFarland
Tom Vander Ark interviewing Dr. Roberta McFarland on the Getting Smart Podcast.

Podcasts are one of the best ways to learn in small doses and hear from a wide range of diverse voices on a given subject. The Getting Smart team is passionate about redefining and reimagining leadership, particularly as it pertains to learning and education. We’ve identified a handful of our favorite leadership-oriented podcasts that we believe will best provide timeless advice to principals, superintendents, and edleaders.

While the themes and settings are not always schools and learning, we think that the wisdom these conversations hold will help you in your day-to-day leadership role.

Getting Smart Podcast

This is a shameless plug for our own podcast — but mostly because it speaks directly to what this blog is about! Every week we have on edleaders or thought leaders in what’s next in learning to discuss what they are seeing in the field and what that means for YOU. Be sure to subscribe and check out some of our greatest hits here:

The Knowledge Project

This is a podcast from Farnam Street that is hosted by Shane Parrish, a die hard proponent of mental models. The podcast’s slogan is “helping you to master the best of what other people have figured out.” These conversations have ranged from Bill Belicheck to Daniel Kahneman to Adam Grant.


Akimbo is Seth Godin’s podcast that marries entrepreneurship, leadership and doing creative work. These podcasts typically feature questions from listeners and a monologue style musing on a related topic.

Brené Brown Podcasts

Brene Brown is one of the most well-known voices in leadership today. Her advocacy for vulnerability and changing how we lead has turned her into a bestseller, celebrity and thought leader. These episodes feature conversations with inspiring people about what makes them tick.

Iowa BIG Podcast

This podcast from one of our favorite programs in the country highlights the how and the why of school leadership. From student features to community building, this podcast is a great representation of how to connect school and community to what matters.

The 180

“Featuring leading voices in American education, health and child development, The 180 explores how to transform 21st century education – how to turn it around – using 21st-century science.”

Simon Sinek Podcast

Titled ‘A Bit of Optimism,’ this podcast seeks to “inspire people to do the things that inspire them so that, together, each of us can change our world for the better.”

Remaking Tomorrow

On the Remaking Tomorrow podcast, Gregg Behr and Ryan Rydzewski interview leading thinkers, practitioners, and experts in education.


Join four friends as they have conversations with important thinkers and leaders in education to help get a better idea of where education is now and where it is headed.

Group Project Podcast

Dr. Jared Smith interviews school and system heads about leadership, growth and the future of education. This podcast is perfect for educators looking to enhance their professional and personal lives.

The McKinsey Podcast

A business and management podcast featuring conversations with leading experts. The series features topics ranging from leadership and change management to digital, analytics and deep-dives into specific regions and industries.

What podcasts would you add to the list? Which conversations challenge your mind and heart to continue growing, improving and including?

Getting Smart Staff

The Getting Smart Staff believes in learning out loud and always being an advocate for things that we are excited about. As a result, we write a lot. Do you have a story we should cover? Email [email protected]

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