Three TED Talks that will make you rethink work

TED is a nonprofit that hosts conferences around the world with one goal: Spreading ideas. There are over 1000 TED Talks – a series of videos that explore ideas from biology to philosophy to tying your shoe. But one subject keeps popping up in discipline after discipline – the way people work. Experts examine motivation, creativity, and even physical health with one goal in mind – making you more effective in the workplace.

Each of these clips will help you reexamine and improve the way you work:

The Carrot and the Stick

Motivating a team is a delicate art. But have we become too reliant on monetary rewards to produce the best work? Is that even an efficient way to spur creativity?

Dan Pink, a career analyst, examines decades of data suggesting traditional rewards aren’t always as effective as we thought and proposes some new ideas on how to motivate with different resources such as autonomy and creative freedom. 

Walk the Talk

If you work in an office, odds are you spend too much time sitting. On average, office workers sit 9.3 hours per day. This sedentary situation leads to a whole host of health problems and, consequently, business problems like low motivation, more sick days, and decreased creativity.

Presenter Nilofer Merchant, a consultant who has worked 20+ years with some of the most innovative companies, now walks about 20 miles per week by scheduling walking meetings. They’re healthy, stress relieving, and help her think outside of the box just by being outside of the office. 

Why > How > What

Great leaders approach ideas from a different perspective than regular people do. They don’t focus on how the idea works. They’re concerned with why the idea exists. 

Simon Sinek, author of the book “Start with Why,” explains how innovative leaders such as the Wright Brothers – who were uneducated, unfunded and unknown – outperformed rival teams who had degrees, money and influence to spare.




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