The collection of over 2,000 videos is freely accessible on the web. They feature some of the world’s leading minds covering such diverse topics as leadership, disability, creativity and even chimpanzees.
With so many TED Talks to choose from, you might not know where to start. So we’ve put together 20 of our favourites to help you start to think differently and bring you closer to your goals.
Whatever your career stage, or role in your organisation, there’s a talk here for you. Some of them may make you laugh, some may make you cry, but all of them have the power to broaden your mind, lift your spirit and inspire change.
Indulge yourself in a little personal development time — sit back and watch these compelling short videos.
On problem solving & innovation
Sweat the small stuff
Do you have a Chief Detail Officer in your organisation? Ad man Rory Sutherland explains what that means and why you need one. Watch out for the amusing quadrant slide at the end.
Creative problem-solving in the face of extreme limits
Think you need a big budget and endless resources to make an impact? Think again. Innovation strategist Navi Radjou reveals how entrepreneurs in emerging markets are using ‘frugal innovation’ to do more (and better) with less. And he has some tips for you too.
The world needs all kind of minds
Drawing on her first-hand experience with Autism, Temple Grandin explores the different kinds of minds we have and how they are all brilliant and invaluable. Don’t miss the Q and A at the end.
On creativity & happiness
Do schools kill creativity?
Sir Ken Robinson, a leading education advisor, gives an engaging and light-hearted presentation with a serious message. Our education system is letting us, and our children, down by not valuing creativity enough. Very thought-provoking.
The power of vulnerability
In one of the most popular TED Talks of all time, Brené Brown discusses human connection, vulnerability and how living wholeheartedly may make you happier. What does that mean? Watch it to find out.
The happy secret to better work
Psychologist Shawn Achor explores the path to happiness, its uneasy relationship with success and what can happen if you seize the ‘happiness advantage’. He’s another brilliant storyteller who’ll put a smile on your face.
Do what you like, like what you do
Bert Jacobs is not your typical ‘business man’. His message is simple – be optimistic and open-minded and you’ll change both yourself and the world around you. He did just that and grew a hugely positive and altruistic lifestyle brand. This talk rocks.
On communication & presentation
Your body language shapes who you are
This talk explores how our non-verbal communication influences not only the way the world sees us, but the way we feel. Social psychologist Amy Cuddy includes a few power-posing tips to help strengthen your personal presence.
The secret structure of great talks
Presentation expert Nancy Duarte shares the dynamic structure she uncovered for creating powerful speeches that pack a punch. It’s something to bear in mind when you’re preparing your next presentation.
How to speak so that people want to listen
When you speak, do people listen? Sound specialist Julian Treasure unpacks the seven deadly sins of speaking and offers you some tools for better voice communication. It ends with some handy exercises.
On work & stress
Why work doesn’t happen at work
Does this typical workday sound familiar? Jason Fried, a serial software entrepreneur, highlights the problems of the modern workplace and offers some practical solutions.
All it takes is 10 mindful minutes https://www.ted.com/talks/andy_puddicombe_all_it_takes_is_10_mindful_minutes
Andy Puddicombe was once a monk. In this refreshing 10-minute presentation, he explains how stepping out of your life for 10 minutes a day can help you live more peacefully in it.
How to make work-life balance work
Nigel Marsh is the author of bestseller Fat, Forty and Fired and co-founder of Earth Hour. In this motivating talk, he shares his observations on work and urges us to take responsibility to design the life we want without delay.
On confidence & identity
The skill of self-confidence
Leading sports coach Dr. Ivan Joseph has seen how practice and self-affirmation can wipe away doubt and fear. Listen to his thoughts on confidence, self-belief and focusing on what we do right for a change.
Embracing otherness, embracing myself
Actor Thandie Newtown reveals her struggles with her own background and how she discovered who she really was. This is a revealing and deeply authentic speech with a far-reaching message.
How do you define yourself?
Lizzy Velasquez delivers an incredibly touching 13 minutes on looking different, beating the odds, and defining yourself — regardless of what cards you’ve been dealt. Try not to cry.
On leadership & success
How great leaders inspire action
Leadership expert Simon Sinek believes there’s a simple reason why some companies and people succeed greatly while others with the same resources don’t. The answer to the headline comes right at the end.
Success is a continuous journey
Success is hard won, but keeping it can be harder. Success analyst Richard St John shares his eight principles to success and why he had to do them twice.
A kinder, gentler philosophy of success
Western society has developed specific definitions of success and failure and likes to pass judgement freely says philosopher Alain de Botton. He proposes that our individuality is the solution to all this harshness. Don’t miss the tabloid headline experiment around the 10-minute mark.
How to start a movement
In this three-minute presentation, watched over 4.8 million times, Derek Sivers uses a candid video clip to illustrate what, and who, you need to start a movement. The visuals really stick in your mind!