Unless you have been living under a large rock, or not heard of YouTube, you have probably come across something known as TED Talks. What are TED Talks? Well they are a wide selection of speeches from thought leaders that cover many different issues in society and business.
If you were to attempt to watch them all then good luck. There are literally hundreds of them. So unless you have unlimited time on your hands (we hope you don’t) then it is only worth looking at the ones which are relevant to you. Here are our favourite business-related TED talks that we think you’ll not only enjoy watching but be inspired by.
Seth Godin - How to get your ideas to spread (2007)
Seth Godin is renowned globally as a marketing guru and this video from ten years ago shows exactly why. This may have been BIP (before the iPhone) but Seth’s understanding of audience segmentation and how to target the ‘freaks’ is genius in its simplicity.
Simon Sinek - How great leaders inspire action (2009)
Ever wondered why influential business leaders are great at inspiring their organisations and employees? This is a fantastic speech that creates a digestible hypothesis in understanding the psychology of great leadership. This particular video is also the third most watched Ted Talk of all time - so really worth a watch.
David Blaine - How I held my breath for 17 minutes (2009)
Admittedly the title is a bit of a giveaway. But it does retreat from the typical business dynamic to something that really looks at how much a human being can endure. If this death defying feat from of one of the world’s most incredible and audacious individuals doesn’t inspire you we don’t know what will. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME!!
Steve Jobs - Stanford college address (2005)
An incredible speech to listen to from arguably the most influential figure of the 21st century so far - who also dropped out of college. If you want a lesson on perseverance and staying strong this is will help you immensely. Imagine being fired from your own company, only having your new company bought by your former employer! The rest as they say is history and Apple is now a global superpower.
Sam Richards - A radical experiment in empathy (2010)
Being an inspirational leader requires understanding of how other people feel. This is a critical component of being not just a business leader but a good human being. Sociologist Sam Richards has an in depth look at empathy by using the case study of the Iraq war and why a lack of empathy lead to disastrous consequences in the troublesome region.
Daniel Levitin - How to stay calm when you know you’ll be stressed (2015)
Something we could all do with improving at. But when you’re running a business you might feel more prone to stress than others who don’t. This is understandable as you have a lot to juggle. Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin goes into his methods of how to stay calm and composed in tricky situations. We think many of you will be experiencing this so this is a particularly useful video.
Elizabeth Gilbert - Your elusive creative genius (2009)
Successful novelist Elizabeth Gilbert dissects the stigma of creativity and looks at how anyone can find their inner genius. So if you’re either a creative business or looking to do an innovative campaign then this talk might just light up your bulb. Brilliant for some ‘out the box’ thinking.