Five TED Talks to Empower and Inform Entrepreneurs

There are many lists of the Best TED Talks for Female Entrepreneurs, for Women in Business, By-and-For Females. I did not want to create another list.

As Rachel Hollis put it in a post I scrolled into recently: “You can buy all the pretty coffee mugs in Anthro. You can screenshot every motivational quote you see. You can pin every inspiring quote card on Pinterest. You can do EVERYTHING motivational and still feel unmotivated. Motivation isn’t about wanting to do something...motivation is about having a WHY strong enough that you’ll do things you don’t feel like doing. Why THIS dream? Why do you NEED to get out of debt? Why do you NEED to reach a new revenue goal? Why do you NEED to grow your team? WHY? You have to know! Your goal is a fire in your belly...your WHY is the gasoline.”

There is so much inspiration, so many empowering women empowering women. And every single one is a vital step in the right direction: Uplifting. Still, there can be more. I am all for the inspiration and lists of resources, but I do hope that this collection will be something more for you than a list to thumb through.

This list is not meant as a blind copy-and-paste of TED videos; my goal here is to curate a collection of ideas that are independent but interconnected. My hope is that these don’t just get your riled up but that they also test your perception and give you the tools to move forward with more information. The goal is to spark your WHY.

Let’s try, starting here, to take a moment from the endless scroll of inspiration and listen word by word. Maybe you hate what you hear; maybe it does not connect; maybe her words are not for you. But to choose to listen with your brain turned on, to seek information and form your own opinion—that, my female entrepreneurs, is empowering.  

 
 Photo of Rocio Lorenzo from TED

Photo of Rocio Lorenzo from TED

Rocio Lorenzo

Are diverse companies really more innovative? Rocío Lorenzo and her team surveyed 171 companies to find out -- and the answer was a clear yes. In a talk that will help you build a better, more robust company, Lorenzo dives into the data and explains how your company can start producing fresher, more creative ideas by treating diversity as a competitive advantage.


 Photo of Casey Brown from Boost Pricing

Photo of Casey Brown from Boost Pricing

Casey Brown

Your boss probably isn't paying you what you're worth -- instead, they're paying you what they think you're worth. Take the time to learn how to shape their thinking. Pricing consultant Casey Brown shares helpful stories and learnings that can help you better communicate your value and get paid for your excellence.


 Photo of Sheryl Sandberg by Drew Altizer

Photo of Sheryl Sandberg by Drew Altizer

Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg admits she was terrified to step onto the TED stage in 2010 -- because she was going to talk, for the first time, about the lonely experience of being a woman in the top tiers of business. Millions of views (and a best-selling book) later, the Facebook COO talks with the woman who pushed her to give that first talk, Pat Mitchell. Sandberg opens up about the reaction to her idea, and explores the ways that women still struggle with success.


 Photo of Regina Hartley from TED

Photo of Regina Hartley from TED

Regina Hartley

Given the choice between a job candidate with a perfect resume and one who has fought through difficulty, human resources executive Regina Hartley always gives the "Scrapper" a chance. As someone who grew up with adversity, Hartley knows that those who flourish in the darkest of spaces are empowered with the grit to persist in an ever-changing workplace. "Choose the underestimated contender, whose secret weapons are passion and purpose," she says. "Hire the Scrapper."


 Photo of Aimee Mullins from TED

Photo of Aimee Mullins from TED

Aimee Mullins

The thesaurus might equate "disabled" with synonyms like "useless" and "mutilated," but ground-breaking runner Aimee Mullins is out to redefine the word. Defying these associations, she shows how adversity -- in her case, being born without shinbones -- actually opens the door for human potential.