Table of contents
- Skype for Business
- Microsoft Teams
- Google Hangouts
- Ring Central
- Google Calendar
- Don’t be afraid to make a phone call.
- Use video as a way of connecting, and remember to stay professional.
- Look forward to the weekly team meeting.
- Collaborate on files, projects and presentations together in real time.
- Be vocal and add meaning in Slack channels.
- Be all over Google Calendar, or your organization’s calendar system.
- Manage projects, deadlines and ideas among Trello in remote teams.
- Start a “water cooler” channel in Slack or Teams.
- Schedule virtual lunch dates.
- Keep company culture human through personal milestone updates.
- Start a virtual company-wide book club.
- Have a post-work cooking competition among teams or coworkers.
- Start a joke-of-the-day or video-of-the-week email chain or channel.
- Start meetings on a positive personal note, and commit it to tradition.
- Plan an organization-wide virtual talent show.
- Take breaks to play an online game with colleagues (if company culture allows).
- Start a company-wide chain project.
- Try out “Know Your Team” for bringing social elements to virtual work.
- Use “Donut” for going on ‘first dates.’
- Reiterate that your virtual office door is always open.
- Institute a monthly online lunch-and-learn.
- Start a remote work mentorship program within your organization.
- Use WhatsApp for work (ideal if you have a “work phone”).
- For freelancers, follow up with clients, and utilize ‘snooze.’
- Create a drop-in happy hour via Zoom for coworkers or clients.
- Use social media to connect with clients, vendors and networking contacts.
- Interact during webinars using Q&A with Zoom or GoToWebinar.
- Make yourself available, and be first to respond when contacted.
- Join a professional network and meet other like-minded professionals.
- End every day with a FaceTime.
- Surprise someone with a ‘real phone call.’
- Try video over Instagram.
- Make time for group calls like sharing virtual dinners.
- Party on Netflix with your best buds.
- Practice a new language with a friend in another country.
- The Morning Brew newsletters
- Podcasts to stay updated with current events
- Podcasts to stay updated with web development, technology and photography
Are you thinking about how to stay connected when working remotely?
You’re not alone! We’re all feeling a little disconnected, working from home (some of us, permanently).
Connecting with your coworkers when you work remotely doesn’t have to be a pain, or a chore, or a struggle.
Staying connected while working from home should come naturally, whether it’s speaking with clients, vendors, coworkers, managers or direct reports.
I thrive off of human connection, big time.
I like all these things, but I also appreciate my flexible work-from-home schedule.
To combat feeling lonely while working from home, we’re fortunately blessed with the type of technology that makes interacting with another real person easy, at the click of a button.
That’s why so many work from home trends have immediately shaped how we connect with one another.
This is not the way it always was, which is apparent if you Google “ways to stay connected while working from home” and stumble across the article from 2007. You’ll see quickly how much has changed (for example, the word “teleconference”… What’s that?).
In the tips below, we’ll cover the baselines of remote work communication, the apps and tools that get you ready for keeping in touch while working from home and a list of great ways to stay connected with coworkers, clients and friends.
Let’s get started, first touching on helpful recommendations for communicating when you work remotely.
10 Helpful rules for remote work communication
These are my 10 best things to keep in mind for communicating as a remote worker.
If you’ve ever heard of “being seen and not heard,” it’s the opposite for someone working from home.
You want to be heard, and also hopefully “seen” (on video)!
Through your communication, whether it’s via email, text, phone, chat or social media, here’s when and how to communicate:
- Communicate often.
- Communicate when you have doubts.
- Communicate when you have questions.
- Communicate when you have concerns.
- Communicate when you have feedback.
- Communicate when you have results or successes.
- Communicate your schedule.
- Communicate updates.
- Communicate eloquently.
- Communicate clearly.
Remember: seeming ‘unavailable’ or MIA is one of the most common mistakes people make when working remotely.
Communication apps and software for working from home
You’re probably an expert when it comes to tips for working from home effectively, and those tips start with communicating, over apps and software that you live and breathe on a day to day.
Here are a few of the apps, websites and software packages that we use daily while working remotely. Maybe you’ll get some new ideas!
Slack is a social and professional communication platform that enables organizations to have streamlined communications. It is an app that is popular with tech companies and remote-first organizations, startups and online social or professional communities.
I personally really like Slack. It makes communicating fun (maybe too fun?) and has a lot of options for an organization or network of people. Slack lets me keep in touch with my colleagues and also any offshore teams we work with.
I belong to ten ‘Slack workspaces.’ This means that within my Slack application, both on desktop and on my phone, I can toggle between a client’s “workspace” (a “workspace” being a virtual place where I can access the contacts within a certain organization, along with its channels) and a professional network, like Ladies Get Paid or Remote Year.
Within each workspace, you can join channels that are either public (open to any member of said workspace) or private, meaning that a channel is only for those who are invited, to keep information private from the rest of the organization in that workspace.
In addition, you can direct message anyone, in order to have a one-on-one conversation, and from there, you can create smaller dialogues among more than two people if you’re talking about a topic or have something to discuss. You could be having instant communication, or conversely, asynchronous communication.
Slack also makes communication streamlined, because you can react to a message or announcement with an emoji, rather than ‘blowing up’ the amount of text that would be entailed by replying with, “Great!” or “I agree!”
Slack’s pretty cool, and some organizations (mostly social ones) choose to have the unpaid version, which, if you’re using it, do take note that it only stores 10,000 of the most recent messages, organization-wide.
If the Slack community has 30,000 people, this typically may mean (according to user activity) that you won’t be able to see or search any messages more than seven days in the past.
In any case, Slack is a great communication tool for organizations, and if you want to make big changes, you can recommend it. You could even start your own Slack community.
If you have multiple workspaces, using a tool like 1Password can help keep all of your passwords organized.
Skype for Business
Skype for Business is popular with more traditional corporations.
Within Skype for Business, you have an internal communication system with a ‘buddy list,’ inspired by AIM of the 90s (it seems), where you can access all corporate contacts within a network or organization.
You can see users’ photos, titles and names, and you can create direct instant messages or create groups.
Skype for Business integrates with other platforms like Microsoft Office, so it can link to Microsoft platform programs like Outlook, Calendar, SharePoint and OneDrive.
Lastly, you can join a Skype for Business meeting by simply clicking the “Join Meeting” button, whether on desktop or mobile.
“Teams,” as it’s now called, seems to be Microsoft’s answer to Slack.
It’s a Slack-y program with a list of members of your organization on the left side and chat space on the rest of the screen.
You can also receive phone calls and video calls within Teams, if your organization permits, and therefore, you can receive voicemails there as well.
Personally, I don’t like Teams. It’s clunky. It’s not as fun to use as Slack, at all. It’s not tech-friendly and I keep trying to delete it from my computer, but it keeps coming back.
If you have any strong opinions about Microsoft Teams for remote work, feel free to let me know.
WhatsApp is a chat app that I was introduced to back when I lived in China as an expat, around 2011. It was first released in 2009, which makes it a bit like a veteran among other apps!
I paid $1 for WhatsApp in 2011. I’m not sure how. I later found out that WhatsApp is free and I shouldn’t have been charged $1. In any case, I’ve definitely gotten my dollar’s worth in the last decade.
WhatsApp first started as being the ideal way to send someone a text message ‘over the Internet’ if you were both in other countries. I still consider it more effective and reliable than iMessage when I’m traveling and far from home.
Surprisingly, or not surprisingly, I even use WhatsApp while I’m home on my couch or in my home office to talk to friends that have Androids, as it feels faster than sending them an SMS and not knowing if my iPhone is agreeing with the whole SMS bit.
Back to discussing if you can use WhatsApp for work, the answer is sure.
If you have contacts (clients, vendors, colleagues) who are in other countries, WhatsApp (from your work number) is an ideal way to have each other at your fingertips if you have to speak outside of work platforms.
WhatsApp is also useful for anyone who wants to set up a big group chat.
Did you know that WhatsApp will allow you to have 256 members of a single group chat? This is useful for people who have something in common, like having attended an event all together, or planning a project on the go.
Most people we know also use it for large friend groups to keep in touch.
Formerly known as Gchat, yes, it’s Google Hangouts!
Hangouts, as it now goes by, allows you to chat with your Google/Gmail contacts, and give them a voice call or a video call. I’ve had interviews, meetings and chats all over Google Hangouts.
For organizations that use Gmail as a default mail platform, Hangouts is ultimately how you wind up speaking with coworkers within an organization.
If you’re working from home with your partner, be sure to give your significant other, or roommate, some space when taking a video call, so that the background of the call remains professional.
I was introduced to Ring Central in 2020.
It has been one of the more interesting ways to keep in touch with work contacts and perform work communications. Here is why.
Ring Central is a phone app that you can have within an organization. For my usage, I have a Ring Central phone number that is completely different from my personal phone number. It’s a work phone number.
I have the Ring Central app on my personal cell phone. When I get a call through Ring Central, it has a different ringtone from when I get a call via my regular personal cell phone number.
Ring Central also has a voicemail. It also has a ‘do not disturb/DND’ function that I could employ on weekends if I didn’t want to receive any work calls or texts.
You can add contacts to the Ring Central contacts book without adding a work contact to your personal cell phone contacts. That’s really convenient and I like the ability to split things up.
I also use the Ring Central app on my computer. In fact, I downloaded the old one, and the new one, and often when I get a text message, it automatically opens both applications. I could probably delete one or the other, but as you can tell, I’m not the greatest at deleting apps I dislike and don’t need.
What’s really convenient about using Ring Central as a remote work communication method is that I can type texts from my desktop, just like when Mac users use iMessage from the desktop app. This is a lifesaver.
I can’t imagine typing texts to work contacts with a tiny keyboard on my phone and making my thumbs sore.
Overall, Ring Central is a bit of a clunky app that is definitely not beautiful and maybe not even so fun to use (I get errors that photo files are too big to send in the new desktop app, but the old version lets me send them, for example); however, if you learn its nuances, it is functional, and it gets the job done.
Google Calendar is life, as expressed in our guide to most useful apps we use. Google Calendar is where I store all my information across organizations, events, clients, companies and personal, regarding where I need to be (online) and when.
I like that Google Calendar allows you to send events with the ‘event location’ as the URL for a Zoom call, for example, and when it’s the start time for that event, all you have to do is click the URL and you’re entering a meeting. It’s so seamless.
Zoom is a video platform that allows professionals to meet, and even hold conference-style sessions, over video.
Heads up! If you want to improve your video quality, check out this unique webcam setup from Moment.
With Zoom, there are options like a Q & A box for the attendees, break-out sessions (I was in my first auto-break-out-session in a Zoom event this week), panelist and admin abilities and screen sharing.
Zoom also lets you record sessions, meaning you can save a file afterward and reference it again, if you are the host. Zoom also has a few emojis, some virtual backgrounds (so you can hide your messy bedroom) and some fun (although very basic, and almost painfully-so) filters like hats and sunglasses.
What I like about Zoom is the simplicity of doing a screen share and sharing what’s on your screen in the form of a presentation.
I also really like the features of being able to draw, highlight and erase, and “mark up” your screen for the viewer(s) while presenting.
Zoom is for sure here to stay, and I also use it socially with family across the country so that we can get some face time every week.
Fun ways to keep in touch with coworkers while working remotely
Hopefully your coworkers are fun and want to stay connected with you, and with each other. Finding cool ways to stay connected is the answer for how to cheer up employees working from home.
It’s been proven that spending time on non-work activities with coworkers strengthens working relationships.
When you’re in the office, you grab lunch with a coworker, dip out to the coffeeshop below the office or take your team out for a happy hour.
When you’re working from home, how do the social activities and human interactions translate into online methods of communicating? We need some fun ways to stay connected virtually!
Here are a few perfect ideas.
Don’t be afraid to make a phone call.
E-mails are easy to ignore.
So are instant messages and Slack DMs.
With a phone call, you can get your point across, make sure your tone is not misunderstood and you can put a voice to your name.
Especially when you become remote, keeping in touch with coworkers in a phone call helps avoid misunderstandings.
If you need to block out any background noise, check out our guide on how to remove background noise from calls.
Use video as a way of connecting, and remember to stay professional.
If you plan to have a video call, or if you’re expected to dial into the team meeting with video, make sure your home office setup is in tip-top shape!
There are lots of things to keep in mind when video-ing coworkers, like looking presentable and ready, and having background noise eliminated. One thing is for sure, though: you don’t actually have to wear pants.
Are you tired of having your laptop’s camera below face-level? Invest in a laptop stand, to get your laptop propped up and get your camera at the same height as your head. Try the Roost laptop stand, or a budget alternative, Nexstand.
Look forward to the weekly team meeting.
Instead of cancelling a virtual team meeting if everyone claims they’re too busy or things came up, reschedule it for a better time. Seeing other humans on the other end of the screen confirms to everyone that you exist behind the words in the emails.
Collaborate on files, projects and presentations together in real time.
Have you ever worked on a shared Google spreadsheet and been delighted with seeing your colleague’s edits in real time? To me, that’s one of the coolest gifts that technology has given us.
Never have to worry about losing a file again. Check out Backblaze to make sure your files are safe and secure.
Be vocal and add meaning in Slack channels.
If there were ever Slack rules, they would be, “Refrain from ‘blowing up’ channels by adding one-word answers or meaningless contributions.”
In order to make Slack fun, yet effective, start channels about being productive or about ways to optimize work, and invite others. Create custom emojis that have to do with your organization’s vernacular or trusted vocabulary words. Bring up issues before others can, and provide solutions and positivity.
Today I started a new Slack channel in my organization to give kudos to other coworkers who do something great. I hope it sticks. I hope others see this idea and spread the positivity to their companies.
Be all over Google Calendar, or your organization’s calendar system.
Schedule even the smallest catch-up session, and it will likely go appreciated by the recipient.
People (including you, and me!) can be very protective of the time in their days, so keeping meetings scheduled, succinct and on-time can be a small thing that goes far.
Manage projects, deadlines and ideas among Trello in remote teams.
Use Trello for staying on task.
Trello is a cool tool that makes to-do lists and progress kind of fun again (in my opinion), for distributed teams.
Be collaborative by starting custom tags, color-coding and setting accurate deadlines.
Start a “water cooler” channel in Slack or Teams.
Remember the water cooler and coffee station in the office?
Well, it might be far away, depending on how far you are from said office, but it doesn’t mean the chit-chat is dead.
Start a “water cooler” Slack channel that employees can ‘drop by’ when they need a little pick-me-up or 2-minute break. Ask how your colleagues’ days are going, offer some relevant news or fun facts, or ask a question everyone can answer.
Schedule virtual lunch dates.
Put time in the calendar for having lunch over video with a coworker who used to be your lunch buddy, or, grab some time with a colleague across the country, or across the ocean.
“Lunch” is just a placeholder! Grab virtual coffee as a social get-together idea, or, like I wrote above, have your lunch at 1pm your time with a colleague in an international office who’s just starting her day.
Keep company culture human through personal milestone updates.
Start a Slack or Teams channel (or recurring email) for milestones in employees’ lives, like engagements, weddings, babies and accomplishments. Everyone loves a good ‘congrats!’ GIF here and there.
Pets count, too! Does your organization have a virtual place to share photos of cats, dogs and birds, and other fuzzy members of their families at home? Pet adoptions totally count as personal milestones.
Start a virtual company-wide book club.
This can be done over Slack, where members join a channel, and a book is voted upon, and then a date set by which to finish it and meet.
The ‘book club’ itself can take place in a virtual meeting over Zoom, attended by every member of the club on a month or semi-monthly basis.
Make sure you communicate clearly (see tips above) about the deadlines and which chapters have to be read by when. I definitely showed up to my first book club virtual meeting having read the wrong chapters.
Have a post-work cooking competition among teams or coworkers.
What if cooking was graded by how it looked, and not how it tasted? Would we all be champions?
This is good news for chefs who focus on plating, not taste, because if you hold a company-wide cooking competition, the photos are what count!
To hold a virtual cooking competition at work, set some rules, like a theme, or a challenge (“Ingredients must cost less than $20” could be an idea).
Then, give the contestants time to prepare. If they will be live-presenting their creations, make sure everyone is available and that the date is on the calendar well in advance.
Then, the voting! How will voting be done? Will you have a panel of judges, or will the entire organization vote from their desks at home?
This is a type of event that could take place monthly or semi-annually so that everyone can look forward to it.
Start a joke-of-the-day or video-of-the-week email chain or channel.
If your coworkers are witty, fun-loving and into comedy, share jokes or videos that will make people chuckle as they scroll through their emails.
I once had a coworker and we had a 40-some-odd-long email chain of memes. That’s a fond memory of the year 2014. I wish someone would send me weekly memes these days! (Feel free to email me.)
Start meetings on a positive personal note, and commit it to tradition.
Begin meetings with a, “Today I…” or “I just ate a…” to bring to mind that you’re all human first, and remote workers, second.
Small wins are good, too. For example: “Today I made coffee all by myself and didn’t spill any while walking to my desk in my home office.”
I bet you can hear the virtual applause already.
Plan an organization-wide virtual talent show.
If you’re in touch with your company’s head of culture or HR lead, propose a company-wide talent show that can be scheduled over Zoom. It can be for fun, or competitive with scoring.
Take breaks to play an online game with colleagues (if company culture allows).
Join colleagues in online and virtual games like Scrabble, or whichever other competitive online games exist these days.
Only lighthearted ones, though, as we don’t want to see anyone’s super-dark competitive side quite yet.
Start a company-wide chain project.
A great idea for dispersed companies with virtual teams is starting a company-wide project.
It could be ‘writing a movie,’ or ‘rewriting a popular TV show,’ with each department lead, or employee, adding a new sentence each week on a threaded email.
Need to check your grammar to prevent embarrassing typos when you’re sending a company-wide email? Check out if Grammarly is for you.
Try out “Know Your Team” for bringing social elements to virtual work.
Best for remote teams or departments, this communication tool proposes questions that build rapport, and icebreaker questions for new hires.
It integrates with Slack.
Use “Donut” for going on ‘first dates.’
Donut is a cute Slack integration that randomly “sets up” pairs of employees in the Donut channel to go on virtual first dates (that can also be translated into real life).
I’ve used Donut both in person and virtually, and have made some cool connections.
Donut will randomly pair you, ask an icebreaker question like, “If I were a superhero, I’d be…” and then it checks in with you a week later to make sure you “met,” however the meeting took place.
Reiterate that your virtual office door is always open.
Keeping your virtual office door open is more of a mindset and something to say, but it’s worth keeping in mind.
Make sure colleagues feel comfortable cold-calling you or asking for help, rather than being worried about ‘bothering you,’ conversely.
Institute a monthly online lunch-and-learn.
Lunch-and-learns are a great way for an employee with a certain specialty to share a skill with the rest of an organization.
Anyone can virtually “drop in” (while also eating lunch) and learn about this specialty or skill, with a Q+A session at the end.
Start a remote work mentorship program within your organization.
If anyone at the organization is new to remote work, be the first to offer to answer questions – for example, provide this work from home guide for first-timers.
Best ways to network and keep in touch with professional contacts
Not all work relationships are with coworkers, especially if you are a small business owner or freelancer.
Your closest contacts may be clients, vendors, editors, artists, service providers or many types of other relationships.
Which types of ways are appropriate for managing remote relationships with professional contacts and colleagues?
Make sure to learn how to network remotely!
Use WhatsApp for work (ideal if you have a “work phone”).
WhatsApp is a fine tool to use for reaching clients or work contacts, especially if you have a separate work phone, work phone number or even a Google Fi number.
WhatsApp makes it so that international calls don’t cost a heap of money, and you can video as well.
More tips on saving money here… did you know how much money you’re saving by working from home? See our outline of all those epic WFH perks, in this article.
For freelancers, follow up with clients, and utilize ‘snooze.’
The snooze button can be magical for freelancers, especially if you’re waiting on updates or developments from someone outside your organization.
I snooze my emails, and if I don’t hear back by a specified date, I politely follow up for information I need in order to move forward.
Create a drop-in happy hour via Zoom for coworkers or clients.
Looking for a way to provide an online meetup or virtual meet-and-greet? Create a Zoom meeting link and send it out to clients or vendors, who can ‘swing by’ your online happy hour and drop by for a chat.
Use social media to connect with clients, vendors and networking contacts.
Social media is power, especially in the creative world! Be honest, proactive and clear when demonstrating your offerings or business updates over platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Interact during webinars using Q&A with Zoom or GoToWebinar.
Webinars are mostly one-directional in that a speaker provides information to attendees, but engaging with speakers or hosts through Q&A sessions can create meaningful relationships.
Never hesitate to ask a question, receive an answer and follow up with a personal email later.
Make yourself available, and be first to respond when contacted.
While being glued to your work phone, work email or work Slack can be tiring, exhausting and less-than-optimal for mental health, it is part of the remote work hustle.
Even if you don’t have time to fully answer an email, I like to reply with a “Hi, I’m reading this and will reply soon – don’t worry!” as to not look like I’m ignoring anyone.
The challenge is always going to be that you simply don’t know what’s going on at the other side of the screen, so think of solutions that work for you.
Join a professional network and meet other like-minded professionals.
I’m part of several online networks of professionals outside my specific work, organization and industry, and this is what has changed my professional life so much since the start of my membership into all of these.
I regularly communicate with contacts via Remote Year, some of which have become professional relationships, to my pleasant surprise.
I can say the same for the Ladies Get Paid (LGP) women’s network, which has afforded me opportunities like hosting a webinar about remote work starter tips for women.
Ways to stay connected with friends and family when working from home
In addition to staying connected with coworkers and fostering a sense of companionship, we need fun things to do virtually with friends who may not live in our city anymore, or whose schedules simply don’t line up with ours.
Here are some fun ways to stay connected with friends, and family as well, when working remotely from home.
Staying connected with people in your life is the key to a successful work-life balance when you work from home, so always remember to strive for unwinding after a day in your home office.
End every day with a FaceTime.
I’ve been ending my day (or therefore starting my evening) with a FaceTime call more and more.
I have a group chat with my high school friends and we finally figured out that you can hit “FaceTime” in your iMessages and it sends an invitation for a video call to everyone in the chat.
You can then video with anyone who answers!
Surprise someone with a ‘real phone call.’
A real phone call: what’s that?
We talk to our parents on the phone, and it helps catch up on our days and what’s going on in our lives so much more clearly than text messages.
Pick up the phone to make a call, and hear someone’s voice! It’ll make you smile.
Try video over Instagram.
Video chatting over Instagram is one of the newcomer video methods, in addition to video via WhatsApp, Google Hangouts, Facebook messenger and more.
Although I don’t do it often, if I’m talking in-depth with a friend over Instagram (usually started by chit-chat about a photo!), I’ll click on “video” to surprise him or her.
Make time for group calls like sharing virtual dinners.
We shared dinner the other night with another couple of friends who live in Washington, DC, and it nearly felt like being on a double date. I recommend!
Party on Netflix with your best buds.
Our friend Cyd from @goaltraveler introduced us to Netflix Party.
What’s Netflix Party? I had to know!
With Netflix Party mode, you can simultaneously stream with friends: there’s a chat window and play/pause option, so that everyone’s synced. Sounds like virtual movie night to me!
Practice a new language with a friend in another country.
The last cool way I like to feel productive and engaged while also seeing friends’ faces is practicing Spanish with friends in Argentina.
FaceTime makes people all over the world feel connected, and the boundaries don’t stop with the borders of your home country!
I FaceTime with my friend Ayelen and she talks to me completely in Spanish, so I have to keep up. She corrects my grammar, answers my questions and teaches me slang.
I also have to figure out what she’s saying because of her charming Porteño accent.
My tip is to make a weekly time to FaceTime with a friend who’ll teach you another language, because some of the best learning can be done right in your home.
Stay up-to-date with current events
While working from home, Dan and I have missed regular chit-chat that we used to have with coworkers and friends.
Dan used to spend a bit of time making coffee at his office and Becca would enjoy meeting up with friends who worked in the same part of Manhattan.
In our free time during the work day, we’d catch up with people and talk about things that they recently found interesting.
This might have been talking about a new iPhone or a new book that someone read. Maybe it’s an interesting podcast, or three.
Because we work from home now, and we don’t get this chit-chat anymore, we feel like we miss out on current events.
Dan and I both subscribe to different news outlets and media, as not only do we want to stay in touch with local news, but we like to stay in touch with things in our respective professional interests.
The list below includes both of our recommendations!
The Morning Brew newsletters
If you’ve followed our story, you know that we love to talk about coffee. The Morning Brew newsletters give us a snapshot of current events in a few different categories.
I subscribe to the main mailing list and Dan also subscribes to the technology and marketing lists. We like to read this newsletter as we’re drinking our morning coffee or waiting for some water to boil (to make coffee).
- Subscribe to the Morning Brew newsletter
- Subscribe to the Morning Brew emerging tech newsletter
- Subscribe to the Morning Brew marketing newsletter
Podcasts to stay updated with current events
I’ve always found it challenging to find news that I want to read about, and then sit down to actually read about it. It’s also overwhelming to figure out where to begin!
In March 2018, after coming back from our trip around the world while working remotely, I somehow fell into listening to podcasts.
I learned that I could ‘digest’ the news, and learn more in-depth about it, by plugging in a podcast while I was walking or doing chores at home.
Soon, I became totally addicted (in a good way!).
I love talking at length about the podcast shows I follow, and most are related to current events or politics.
I find that listening to a podcast about these topics makes the news more interesting to get into, and I feel that podcasts have become a routine for me now.
Consider This, by NPR
This podcast comes from NPR, which is a good source of news that also puts out a podcast called “Up First.” A friend introduced me to the NPR podcasts earlier this year!
Today, Explained, from Vox
Somehow, “Today, Explained,” became one of the podcasts I listen to every single day. I am not kidding! I like that the host is funny and light-hearted, and the topics are all current, and varied.
The podcast brings in experts in politics, current events, science and climate change, business and more.
NY Times: The Daily
Many people will consider The Daily one of their go-to podcasts for what’s going on in the world, right now, from one of the most reputable sources (the NY Times).
I like The Daily because I trust the information, and the lengths of the podcasts are very palatable, at 20-25 minutes.
The Economist Podcast
The Economist is one of the podcasts I try to listen to because it exposes me to topics I usually wouldn’t hunt down in my regular news.
This podcast focuses on business-related topics, and gives a scope of how they affect the world.
Pod Save America, from Crooked Media
Pod Save America brings humor to American political events and the hosts are very enjoyable.
These are usually longer-form, sometimes between 50 or 70 minutes long.
Podcasts to stay updated with web development, technology and photography
Dan listens to a few podcasts to help stay connected to current events happening in the technology world.
Here’s a list with some highlights about what to expect from each podcast.
Shop Talk Show
You’ll hear a conversation about some of the latest news in web development.
You may hear something new about a browser, or a new web technology.
Other days, you may hear about different code editors or CMS platforms. You’ll learn something every time you listen.
Listen to Shop Talk Show
Waveform: The MKBHD Podcast
I subscribe to MKBHD on YouTube and he’s my go-to source for tech news. His podcast goes a bit deeper into talking about new technology that comes out.
I like this because it keeps you up-to-date with new phones, computers, gaming consoles and more.
Listen to Waveform
The Stalman Podcast
The Stalman podcast will brief you on everything about being a creator. This podcast is great for anyone in the world of photography, videography and tech.
The podcast is really well done, and there is also a video component that you can watch.
Listen to (or watch) The Stalman Podcast
The Colin and Samir podcast
Now that we’re talking about creator podcasts, The Colin and Samir podcast is a good one for staying connected to creator news, marketing ideas and more.
They are great storytellers and break down a lot of popular content that is currently relevant.
Listen to (or watch) The Colin and Samir podcast
The Matti & Pete Show
Matti Haapoja and Peter McKinnon run this show. They often talk about YouTube trends, entrepreneurship and gear.
Aside from running this podcast, they are some of my favorite YouTubers (I wrote about some of my favorite photography YouTubers here!).
Listen to (or watch) The Colin and Samir podcast
The Vergecast is hosted by Nilay Patel and Dieter Bohn.
Their intro speaks for itself when they say: […] informative look at what’s happening right now (and next) in the world of technology and gadgets.
You’ll hear relevant news in the tech world and opinions on things like phones, apple devices and more.
Listen to The Vergecast
Adobe XD’s Wireframe podcast reveals stories surrounding user experience and the art of design.
This is a great listen for uncovering design, not only in visuals, but in design experiences with everyday life. Some of the episodes are truly interesting!
Listen to Wireframe
One more thing: are you going back to the office in a hybrid model, or part time? Check out our guide to transitioning back to the office and you’ll be glad you did.
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Last updated on December 28th, 2021