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The Best TED Talks to Inspire Everyday Leaders

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There are certain times in life when you really need a push to move forward irrespective of the fact you are a student, employee, or an entrepreneur. Caught up in life’s different dilemmas, one is always vulnerable to losing hope but there are certain triggering factors which can put you in the light. These TED talks about everyday leaders in different aspects of life will help you realize your true potential as a leader and overcoming your struggles:

1. How Great Leaders Inspire Action by Simon Sinek

How do you think leaders have been able to drive entire nations behind them? People like Martin Luther King, Jr., Steve Jobs, and so many other leaders have truly inspire people by strongly believing in the cause themselves. Sinek emphasizes that a person’s own faith in a particular cause plays a huge role in convincing others of it too. He says, “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” This doesn’t necessarily imply the profit because that is a result of all the hard work. The ability to answer why your organization exists and why should others care for it is what will truly motivate people to perform well.

2. The Puzzle of Motivation by Dan Pink

The current corporate system coerces the people to perform well because they continuously live in the fear of being overthrown by others. All the rewards and punishments should revolve around improving the efficacy of the workplace and enabling them to bring out the best in them. As per Pink, entrepreneurs need to rethink how they are running their businesses and how to become motivational leaders for their employees.

3. Every Kid Needs a Champion by Rita Pierson

Being one of the most inspiring speakers around, Rita believes that every child needs someone who will believe in him unconditionally. In a child’s education, the connections and relationships hold immense importance. A mere conversation can bring drastic effects in a child’s life and make him live a better one. Inflicting in a child that they are somebody and they deserve education is one way of making them motivated to build a better future for themselves.

4. Everyday Leadership by Drew Dudley

Dudley emphasizes that people have associated being a leader with bringing a huge change in the society. It has been reserved for people who are working on a greater magnitude like running a country or heading a firm. There are certain instances when we make a huge impact in someone else’s life without even realizing it and that is the reason that we should be sharing our “lollipop moment”. This phrase means a turning point in your life when someone else has said or done something which truly moved you. Dudley says that celebrating such moments is one way of realizing how we are shaping the community and becoming good leaders in our own space.

5. Listen, Learn … then Lead by Stanley McChrystal

Discussing his life as a military general, McChrystal talks about the ability to listen to others and learn from them before leading a team. Leadership is not just about giving away orders and waiting for others to act upon them. Rather, it is about giving everyone a chance to say something and following such a strategy which is suitable for everyone.

6. How I Learned to Read – and Trade Stocks – in Prison by Curtis “Wall Street” Carroll

Brought up as a child who was even deprived of the most basic necessities like food and shelter, Carroll resorted to a life of crime to fulfill all his needs. Ending up in jail, he was introduced to the term “stocks” by a fellow prisoner. His biggest struggle in prison was when he picked up a book to read but that eventually lead him to have the most precious gifts of self-worth, knowledge, and discipline. Despite living in a complex environment, he chose to commit crimes and had to take the responsibility for that. His way out came when he chose to guide people to manage their finances in an attempt to give back to the community.

7. Why We Have Too Few Women Leaders by Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg is the successful author of ‘Lean In’ and talks about the evident lack of women in fulfilling different leadership roles in the society. Shedding some light on the differences between men and women in the office and explaining the discrimination which the women face, she gives a few insights on how women can feel strong about themselves. She shares a few tips for the aspiring women leaders who want to take their career to the next level.

8. What it Takes to be a Great Leader by Roselinde Torres

Torres has spent 25 years of her life working in different Fortune 500 companies and advising over 200 CEOs. In the past few years, she has noticed a disturbing change in the leadership preparation cycle with superstars reaching a certain mark and then falling back yet again. The current leadership can be defined and judged based on three questions. The first question is about the anticipated changes, the second one is about the diversity between personal and professional stakeholders, while the third is whether a leader is courageous enough to abandon the practices which brought success in the first place.

9. The Unexpected Benefit of Celebrating Failure by Astro Teller

Not many people are comfortable in exploring big and risky ideas and projects so they are looking for something which will easily work out for them. How can innovation be encouraged if people don’t try? Failure should be celebrated because it tells you what not to do in order to succeed and this learning will be futile for your strong future.

10. Why 30 is Not the New 20 by Meg Jay

People in their 20s are given a notion that they have a lot of time so they don’t really need to worry about making some important life decisions. On the contrary, getting yourself straight through this period of time will ensure that your future is secure. The things learned during this phase and the shaping up of the personality serves as a trajectory for the rest of your life so Jay urges people to start thinking about their life seriously during their twenties.  

All these talks are under 30 minutes so they won’t be taking much of your time and are definitely worth a shot. If you like these TED Talks then you may like our earlier post on top motivational TED Talks too.