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Five TED Talks To Inspire Your Leadership Style

Sheryl Sandberg Talks About Leaning In At TEDTalk

When we think of leaders, our thoughts usually leap to world icons the likes of German chancellor Angela Merkel, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, or media mogul Oprah Winfrey. But there are other leaders who are shaping today’s leadership in their own way. Most of them will never make headlines but some of them have graced the TED Talk stage to share their unique perspective on leadership.

Here are five Ted Talks that will ignite, inspire, and perhaps even change, your leadership style.


1. On Learning


What: What Adults Can Learn From Children

Who: Adora Svitak, child prodigy

Why: When a 12-year-old says that word “childish” should be abolished because it addresses behaviours often seen in adults, you had better sit up and pay attention. Adora’s leadership style based on childhood strengths that we sometimes lose as we grow up – bold ideas, wild creativity and optimism.

Length: 8:12


2. On Best Practice


What: What It Takes To Be A Great Leader

Who: Roselinde Torres, leadership expert at US consulting firm, BCG

Why: There is a lot to say for someone, who is so intrigued by the intricacies of leadership, that she took a year off to understand it better. Roselinde travelled the globe to learn the characteristics of thriving leaders, what they do differently and the preparation practices that led to their growth.

Length: 9.15


3. On Listening


What: How To Speak So People Want To Listen

Who: Julian Treasure, sound consultant

Why: A talk that might help the world sound more beautiful. That description in itself is enough to want to listen to Julian’s TED Talk. Here, he introduces the seven deadly sins of speaking, and shares vocal exercises and tips on how to speak with both power and empathy.

Length: 9:58


4. On Decision Making


What: How To Make Hard Choices

Who: Ruth Chang, philosopher

Why: Her career transition from lawyer to philosopher was what guided Ruth to study how to make hard choices. The cornerstone of her research is that hard choices are hard because one option is not better than the other and that there is no best option overall.

Length: 14:41


5. On (After) Leaning In


What: So We Leaned In … Now What?

Who: Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook

Why: You did not think we would leave out a global female leader, did you? Especially not one who was told that she could not be a serious business executive and speak about being a woman at her first TED Talk in 2010. Here is Sheryl talking about what happens after you lean in.

Length: 16:52


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