Thought-provoking Podcasts That Will Fuel Your Social Impact Aspirations

If you’re in the business of fixing the world – in other, more practical words, if you’re a social entrepreneur – you know that success doesn’t come handed on a silver platter. At times, you get tired, you run out of ideas or solutions, and the world seems like a big pile of mess that you just cannot fix. What you can do, however, is look beyond your immediate circle to the wider ecosystem. There is a wealth of knowledge out there, obtained after much trial and error. Explore other stories and let yourself be inspired by them!

One of the easiest (and trendiest) ways to do that is by listening to podcasts. The wonderful thing about them is that you can basically squeeze in an episode anytime and anywhere you want to. Whether you’re lying on the couch, feeling guilty about that business plan you’ve been avoiding, or you’re bursting with motivation during your morning run, you can just put your earphones on, press play and let the voices of the people at the other end of the recording draw you in. It will almost feel like you’re being let in on a well-kept secret.

So, if you are on the lookout for high-quality options, here is a list of 10 podcasts every social entrepreneur should listen to. Most of them even have a touch of Viennese Schmäh and a number of guests you may have already met at Impact Hub Vienna.

Thought-provoking Podcasts That Will Fuel Your Social Impact Aspirations

Future Weekly – der Startup Podcast!

Every week, Daniel Cronin and Markus Raunig take a seat in front of their mics to discuss the most interesting news and developments concerning Austrian startups, technology and the future as a whole. The topics presented in Future Weekly range from the power exerted by tech giants to the explosion of e-commerce and even the more lighthearted TikTok dilemma. Needless to say, there are plenty of lessons to learn from these experienced entrepreneurs, especially as they engage in dialogues with their Rockstars of the week – the changemakers who have excelled at bringing about a positive impact.

> Listen to the Future Weekly podcast


Gründer und Zünder 

He shares his knowledge because it brings him joy – this is how Florian (Flo) Kandler, entrepreneur, book author, “pitch doctor” and the mastermind behind Gründer und Zünder describes himself. In this podcast, he interviews startup founders, experts and investors from Austria to give you an insight into how you can build fundable companies and ensure long-term growth. If you’ve kept an eye on our community, some of the guests’ names might even strike you as familiar: Ali Mahlodji has been featured with tips on how to understand innovation and prepare a good talk; and Michael Kowatschew, the creator of the Contract Tracing App Novid-20, has recently given some practical advice on how to put together a large team in a matter of weeks.

> Listen to the Gründer und Zünder podcast


Inside Impact – der Podcast mit Wirkung 

Produced by the Social Entrepreneurship Center of WU Vienna, Inside Impact – The Podcast with Purpose focuses on four main topics: Organizational Resilience, Volunteering, Impact Investing and Social Entrepreneurship. Each of them comprises analyses of trends, developments, the difficulties one might encounter when in charge of a social impact initiative and the qualities needed to change the face of the communities we live in. With this in mind, it should not come as a surprise to you that Impact Hub Vienna is well-represented too: Lena Gansterer, our Partnerships Director, was invited to talk about how and where social impact entrepreneurs can find support for their ideas (Spoiler alert: Lindengasse 56 would be a good place to start).

> Listen to the Inside Impact – der Podcast mit Wirkung podcast


Thinking twice 

This time, sustainability is the key word. Thinking twice, the podcast hosted by Sophia Ernst, sets out to motivate listeners to start their own sustainable business by finding out about the blunders that other social impact entrepreneurs have had to overcome and the lessons they’ve learned. Whether we’re talking about fair fashion, environmentally-friendly hygiene products or the fight against plastic spoons, there are plenty of stories and initiatives for you to explore. Our personal favorites? There’s no room for debate here – Claudia Bergero and Sara Falkner, the creators of the sustainable chewing gum Alpengummi.

> Listen to the Thinking twice podcast


There is a wealth of knowledge out there, obtained after much trial and error. Explore other stories and let yourself be inspired by them. One of the easiest (and trendiest) ways to do that is by listening to podcasts.

Carpe diem 

Being in charge of a team, finding investors, handling logistics, generating an actual income while saving (at least a tiny fraction of) the world, all of this can feel quite stressful at times. What you may need in order to wind down for a little is for someone to remind you this: Carpe diem. Seize the day! Daniela Zeller and Holger Potye are there to do just that. In their feel-good podcast, they sit down with a variety of people from all possible fields to help you find balance and enjoy life. Plus, they happen to have celebrated their 50th episode with a guest we believe is particularly special: Perrine Schober, the founder of the social tourism initiative Shades Tours.

> Listen to the Carpe diem podcast


Die Ali Mahlodji Show 

Yes, we’ve already mentioned his name and you know he is a cherished member of our community, but there is a reason why he is thought to be such a good speaker – he can speak. And he can also make other people speak, asking the right questions and prompting them to share their stories. In his podcast, Die Ali Mahlodji Show, Ali engages in in-depth conversations with politicians, journalists, researchers and even teenagers so as to show you that you have the power to design your own future. In case you’re wondering, we recommend that you begin exploring this podcast with Episode 15, which features DariaDaria, the best-known sustainability influencer in the German-speaking area.

> Listen to the Die Ali Mahlodji Show podcast



Inspiration with a parallel to media and communication: this is what Maximilian Hecke and Matthias Neumayer promise to deliver by means of their podcast beatframes. Once you’re done dancing it out on the energizing intro tune, you will discover success stories from household names such as Rainer Nowak, Matthias Strolz or Julia Dujmovits. There are special treats for social impact entrepreneurs too: Episode 26 features Philipp Stangl, who explains why weighing up on your consumption habits is worth the effort and talks about his (mouth-watering) business Rebel Meat.

> Listen to the beatframes podcast


Startup School Radio 

We’re getting a bit nostalgic with this one, as the last episode hit the podcast scene 4 years ago, but trust us, it’s worth taking a listen. Startup School Radio was a weekly podcast broadcast from the very campus of the Wharton School in San Francisco. In the 49 episodes, various partners from Y Combinator took turns to discuss the difficulties of managing a company alongside startup founders and investors. At the time, some of the initiatives presented were just taking off, but now they are well-established businesses whose strategies you will definitely want to hear about!

> Listen to the Startup School Radio podcast


The Tim Ferriss Show

The Tim Ferriss Show has been ranked the no. 1 business podcast multiple times, so there is probably no need to introduce it anymore. There are no less than 456 episodes teeming with knowledge from personalities such as LeBron James, Jamie Foxx or Malcolm Gladwell, and the topics put forward cover everything from supporting doctors during a pandemic to writing powerful books. There is honestly little more you could ask for from a podcast, especially seeing as many of the interviews are so open and raw.

> Listen to the Tim Ferriss Show podcast


How I Built This

We thought we might go out in style, so we picked this podcast to remind you that, whatever problem your social impact business is devoted to, you are building a movement. Produced by NPR and hosted by Guy Raz, How I Built This is all about sharing the stories of the entrepreneurs that have turned an idea, sometimes even a mistake, into a brand many of us now know or use: from Instagram to Airbnb, from Canva to Zumba, they all started out as a mere thought, were pulled back by various obstacles and yet made it to the top. Who’s to say you are not headed there as well?

> Listen to the How I Built This podcast


Want to go from listening to podcasts to producing your own podcast?

Together with zimtfilm and Austrian Webinars, Impact Hub Vienna has prepared a web conferencing equipment offer to help you take your events online! Now you can rent a professional online event equipment, including a webinar case that is perfect for aspiring podcast producers. Click here to find out more information.