Podcast Brunch Club

Working Hard or Hardly Working? November 2020 listening list

Podcast Brunch Club listening list: Working Hard or Hardly Working?

The average person spends more than 90,000 hours of their life at work. For some people, a job is just that — a place we go for eight hours per day. For others, their work is an integral part of their identity.

Regardless of where you fall on that spectrum, the way we work was in the midst of a massive transformation, accelerated in some cases by COVID-19. From automation to the passion economy, the lines between work and life are blurrier than ever — which is not always a good thing.

This playlist will examine what the future of work might hold for all types of workers, and provide some insight on broader questions about work and identity.

(Curated by Jenna Spinelle, one of the leaders of the global virtual PBC chapter.)

Some of the links in this post may be affiliate links. If you use these links to buy something PBC may earn a commission.


Get the full listening list on your podcast player of choice using these platforms:

WORKING HARD OR HARDLY WORKING? Podcast Listening List Running List of PBC Podcast Listening Lists
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Podcast: The Digital Workplace
Episode: Work Minus Monotony with Byron Reese (March 2019, 28 min)
AI is coming…to make you better. Byron Reese has been thinking about and observing technology for a long time. He says as long as we keep learning, we never need to worry about losing jobs, especially if you are a plumber. Reese is the author of The Fourth Age: Smart Robots, Conscious Computers, and the Future of Humanity.
Listen on app of choice (via Podkite) or via Podchaser or Podyssey
Podcast: Recode Daily
Episode: The future of work pt 1 (May 2020, 25 min)
Because more people are working from home, employers are increasingly using software that monitors much more than just your hours on the clock.
Listen on app of choice (via Podkite) or via Podchaser or Podyssey
Podcast: Curious Minds: Innovation in Life and Work
Episode: Anne Helen Petersen on Workplace Burnout (September 2020, 43 min)
How did we get to a place where life’s become an endless treadmill of work? In her latest book, Can’t Even: How Millennials Became the Burnout Generation, Anne Helen Petersen tackles this question. She argues, “You’re taking things that are meant to be leisure, that are meant to be those joyful corners of your life that are not work, and you’re turning them into work.”
Listen on app of choice (via Podkite) or via Podchaser or Podyssey
Podcast: Hidden Brain
Episode: Bullshit Jobs (September 2018, 45 min)
Have you ever had a job where you stopped and asked yourself: what am I doing here? If I quit tomorrow, would anyone even notice? In 2013, anthropologist David Graeber wrote an article (and then a book) in which he described these types of positions as “bullshit jobs.” He received a flood of responses from people for whom this label struck a chord — people who felt their work was, essentially, meaningless.
Listen on app of choice (via Podkite) or via Podchaser or Podyssey

Bonus podcast episodes:

Recommended Books

PBC Podcast Episodes about the Working Hard or Hardly Working? Podcast Playlist

Conversation Starter Questions

  1. How has COVID-19 impacted your work? Do you see things go back to the way they were before the pandemic?
  2. Have you ever experienced burnout at work? How did you deal with it?
  3. How does the job you do now compare to the job you thought you would have growing up?
  4. What do you think your job will look like in 10 years?
  5. How did the idea of “bullshit jobs” land with you?


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