Cover image of Corner Office from Marketplace

Corner Office from Marketplace

Kai Ryssdal’s Conversations From the Corner Office brings you inside the room with the business and cultural leaders transforming our economy. In this business leadership podcast, Ryssdal interviews experts and entrepreneurs on a wide range of topics from the news of the day, successes, failures and what’s next.

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What if all learning happened online?

Coursera is one of the largest companies offering “MOOCs” — that is, massive open online courses. Launched in 2012 by two Stanford professors, Coursera partnered with universities to offer college courses for free. In the years since, Coursera has grown to offer certificates and even full college degrees for a fraction of the cost of on-campus degrees offered by its partner universities. It has also expanded into offering employee training for businesses. Coursera CEO Jeff Maggioncalda says he thinks online learning could just be the future of higher education.


18 Sep 2019

Rank #1

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Ford and Jim Hackett’s big bet on an electric Mustang

When Jim Hackett became CEO of Ford Motor Co. in 2017, he pledged to make the automaker leaner and invest more in electrics and hybrids. The Mach-E, an electric Mustang SUV, is the first look at that investment and Ford’s strategy to take their best-selling brands and electrify them. An electric version of the F-150 is expected in 2021. Will it be enough to overcome other challenges for the auto industry today, like tariffs, climate change and changing consumer preferences? Kai Ryssdal spoke with Hackett at the launch of the Mach-E Sunday night in Los Angeles to find out.


18 Nov 2019

Rank #2

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SpaceX’s Gwynne Shotwell says we’ll be on Mars within 10 years

SpaceX may be the face of the private space industry now, but it wasn’t always that way. In the 16 years since its founding, the company went from curious newcomer to leading the sector. And the reason? It’s made a business out of building and launching affordable, reusable rockets, attracting clients like NASA who use SpaceX rockets to get their devices into space. Elon Musk may be the company’s founder and CEO, but Gwynne Shotwell has been the company’s chief operating officer for over a decade and is the person running the company day to day. Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal took a tour with Shotwell of SpaceX’s flagship manufacturing facility, where they talked about the state of the commercial space industry, what it’s like to run a rocket company and the plan to put people on Mars within 10 years. Editor’s note (Dec. 12, 2018): The headline has been updated.


12 Dec 2018

Rank #3

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Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg on manufacturing in America today

Dennis Muilenburg started as an intern at Boeing in 1985 and never left. The aerospace company is America’s largest exporter, the Defense Department’s second-biggest contractor, and since Muilenburg became CEO, its annual revenue topped $100 billion for the first time. We visited the company’s headquarters in Chicago to talk with Muilenburg about biking 10,000 miles a year, his differences with the president, and why manufacturing in America today is “harder than it’s ever been.”


11 Feb 2019

Rank #4

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JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon doesn’t think he has too much power in this economy

Jamie Dimon has been at the helm of JPMorgan Chase since 2005. As the largest bank in the United States, it manages nearly $3 trillion — more than the gross domestic product of several countries. Dimon is also the longest-serving chief executive on Wall Street. “It is a scary place to be,” he told Marketplace’s Kai Ryssdal. Ryssdal spoke with Dimon about a wide range of issues, including interest rates, wages and the financial crisis.


3 Oct 2018

Rank #5

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Why no Wall Street CEO went to jail after the financial crisis

Millions of people lost their homes, their jobs and their savings during the financial crisis. The resulting recession destroyed over $30 trillion of the world’s wealth. Although the crisis grew out of big banks’ handling of mortgage-backed securities, no Wall Street CEO served time for it. So what happened? We spent the past year reporting on how the crisis changed America, and this was the question we were asked the most. On this special episode of Corner Office, we have the answer.


26 Feb 2019

Rank #6

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Glassdoor CEO says where you work is one of the most important decisions of your life

Glassdoor is one of the world’s largest job and recruiting sites. It’s probably best known as a place where you can rate your employer and get salary information for different companies. Before co-founding Glassdoor, chief executive Robert Hohman started his career as a software developer at Microsoft and was one of the earliest employees to work on Microsoft Expedia Travel Services, an online travel platform that would later become Expedia. Hohman sat down with us to talk about why he became interested in starting this company and the importance of transparency in employment.


5 Dec 2018

Rank #7

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Habitat for Humanity’s Jonathan Reckford on the business of helping

Since Jonathan Reckford became the CEO for Habitat for Humanity in 2005, the nonprofit housing organization has grown to help nearly 30 million people improve their housing conditions. “An interesting hybrid between a global corporation and a denomination,” he said. But as the world faces a growing affordable housing crisis, his work faces the same barriers as many people trying to find shelter. He spoke with us about some of the challenges to building affordable housing in a for-profit world.


11 Dec 2019

Rank #8

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RERUN: Jamie Dimon on what keeps him up at night

Jamie Dimon led JPMorgan Chase & Co. through the financial crisis. Today, it’s the largest bank in the United States, managing nearly $3 trillion – more than the gross domestic product of several countries. Now, though, he’s more worried about cyber security. And yes, he does know what he wants to do when he (eventually) retires. This interview was originally released October 3, 2018


10 Apr 2019

Rank #9

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David Nussbaum of America’s Test Kitchen on working with cooking superstars

David Nussbaum knows whatever he’s doing with “America’s Test Kitchen” is working when he attends events with hosts Bridget Lancaster and Julia Collin Davison. “You’d think I was with Michelle Obama and the ex-president,” he said. America’s Test Kitchen continues to grow, expanding from TV and magazines into podcasting, and attracting more than 400,000 paying subscribers to its website. Nussbaum spoke to host Kai Ryssdal about why the $10,000 spent developing each recipe on average is totally worth it; how he’s attracting a new and younger audience; and why he took the job at America’s Test Kitchen in the first place.


20 Nov 2019

Rank #10

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How Baby2Baby turned one photo into thousands of diapers

Kelly Sawyer Patricof and Norah Weinstein knew they wanted their nonprofit, Baby2Baby, to do big things to help kids living in poverty. But they didn’t realize that a photo featuring Jessica Alba and Nicole Richie at one of their first events would lead to a donation of 100,000 diapers and a totally new strategy for growth. They talked with us about running their nonprofit as a business, working together as co-presidents and why their work is nowhere near done.


3 Dec 2019

Rank #11

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For Lisa Kaz, the LA Auto Show is a family business

Not long after Lisa Kaz graduated college with a computer science degree, she joined her grandfather in the auto show business. Today she’s the CEO of the LA Auto Show and the conference that happens immediately before, AutoMobility LA. She talked with us from the show floor about the challenges of running an auto show today and the technology she’s most excited to see in the cars of the (near) future.


25 Nov 2019

Rank #12

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Goodyear CEO Rich Kramer talks about changing the tire shopping experience

If you own a car, then you know that taking it to the shop can be a pain. But the Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company wants to make it easier to understand how the rubber — literally  — meets the road. One of the largest tire companies in the world, Goodyear has been around for over 100 years. Chairman and CEO Rich Kramer tells us although tires haven’t changed much, consumer behaviors and technology have.


23 Jan 2019

Rank #13

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Inside the business of basketball with Los Angeles Lakers CEO Jeanie Buss

The Los Angeles Lakers are more than just a basketball team. They are also a global brand worth $3.3 billion, one of the most successful franchises in the NBA and fundamentally an entertainment company with outsized influence. Lately though, the team has struggled to deliver on the court, missing the playoffs five years in a row. Back in October, we drove across town to the Los Angeles Lakers’ new headquarters in El Segundo, California, to talk with CEO and co-owner Jeanie Buss. She showed Marketplace host Kai Ryssdal around her basketball empire and talked about some of the tough choices she’s had to make trying get the Lakers back on top.


2 Jan 2019

Rank #14

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Delta CEO Ed Bastian on why he’s spending big on airports

When we last talked with Ed Bastian in 2016, he had only just been appointed CEO of Delta Air Lines. This time we caught up with him at Los Angeles International Airport as he stepped off a flight from Atlanta. He talked about the company’s plans to spend billions on remodeling and updating airports across the country, including $2 billion at LAX; why he thinks his airline has figured out how to break through the boom-and-bust cycle of the industry; and what he said to the CEO of Boeing.


15 May 2019

Rank #15

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The IMF’s Christine Lagarde knows you’re anxious about the future

One of the few women leading global economic policy today is Christine Lagarde, the head of the International Monetary Fund. She says the biggest problems of our day, from cyberthreats to climate change, can’t be solved “by turning inwards, by looking at your belly button.” She describes herself as part architect, part firefighter and explains why she thinks banks would be better off if more of them had female CEOs.


27 Mar 2019

Rank #16

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Kaiser Permanente’s CEO on the evolution of health care

It’s open enrollment time for health care plans, so we’re talking to Bernard Tyson, CEO of Kaiser Permanente, one of the country’s largest health care and hospital organizations. He sat down with us to explain the dilemma of health insurance costs and what patients are getting with their coverage. “There are two parts to the affordability that I think about all the time,” Tyson said. “The affordability of coverage and the affordability of care. Those are two very different things.”


7 Nov 2018

Rank #17

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Jane Rosenthal is a film producer with a side gig as a CEO of the Tribeca Film Festival

Running the Tribeca Film Festival is Jane Rosenthal’s side hustle. Rosenthal co-founded it with her producing partner, Robert De Niro, in the aftermath of 9/11 when few visitors wanted to make their way downtown. Her more than 50 credits include movies like “Meet the Parents,” “Bohemian Rhapsody” and the upcoming Martin Scorsese directed crime drama “The Irishman,” which will be released by Netflix later this year. She talked with us about why she doesn’t like the word “content,” what she does like about video games and why she’s excited for the way Netflix has disrupted the movie business.


24 Apr 2019

Rank #18

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The RealReal CEO Julie Wainwright isn’t afraid of growing too fast

Would you buy a used luxury brand handbag? Maybe a watch or some shoes? Think Gucci, Chanel, Louis Vuitton, to name just a few. Julie Wainwright, CEO of The RealReal, knows pre-owned luxury goods are a big market, which led her to start her company. “We should be over a billion [dollars in sales] next year if we do our job right,” Wainwright told us during a tour of her e-commerce center in Secaucus, New Jersey.


17 Oct 2018

Rank #19

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How Duolingo’s CEO harnessed our game addiction for good

You already know Luis von Ahn’s work. He helped create CAPTCHA, the technology that helps control spam on the internet and crowd-sources humans to help computers read and digitize old text. In 2012, he co-founded Duolingo, a free language learning app. To him, the app was meant to solve “this mismatch where most of the people trying to learn a language didn’t have $1,000, whereas the software that would teach you a language cost about $1,000.” Von Ahn says there are now more Americans learning on his app than there are in the public school system. Why? Because Duolingo works like a video game.


13 Mar 2019

Rank #20