Global

211 articles

40 Books to Enjoy this Summer: The TED Reading List

Looking for your next great read? We've got a few (dozen) suggestions for you.

Whether your weeks ahead contain travel, vacations or just longer and lazier days than usual, our list of recommendations from TED speakers has books for all moods, activities and tastes. When you want to understand why we humans do what we do 1. Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions by Dan Ariely (TED Talk: Our […]

The Myth of the Intrapreneur

Innovation is a company-wide endeavor, supported from top to bottom by systems, structures and a culture that nurtures transformative ideas.

The Post-it note. Facebook’s “like” button. The Sony PlayStation. These products are all held up as legendary examples of the power of intrapreneurship – entrepreneurial creativity and innovation within large, established organizations. Since the term was coined in the 1980s, intrapreneurship has been sold to companies as a catchall solution for fostering innovation. It’s been promoted […]

Why Today’s Leaders Need to Know About the Power of Narratives

Crafting meaningful narratives that reshape the way we think, feel and act is the utmost strategic leadership challenge.

When Jack Ma, China’s iconic business leader and founder of the e-commerce giant Alibaba, spoke at the World Economic Forum’s Annual Meeting in 2017, the corridors were packed with ministers, business leaders and journalists eager to hear from him.  How would he evaluate the 2016 U.S. election results and President-elect Donald Trump, whom he had […]

7 Customer Service Lessons from the Best Uber Driver Ever

This Toronto Uber driver has maintained a 4.99 rating after driving nearly 5,000 passengers. When I climbed into his car, I found out why.

I’ve probably taken an Uber two or three times a day for the past couple years. And every time I idly check the driver’s rating and number of rides. I’ve found even pretty high marks usually mean good but not great service. 4.5? Get ready for loud GPS directions. 4.7? Messy trunk with no suitcase […]

4 Ways to Ensure You’re Always Learning

Making sure the learning environment in your business never goes stagnant.

Workplace learning isn’t a one-time event that you can launch and then move on to other things. Like most worthwhile initiatives, it requires ongoing care and maintenance if it’s going to provide lasting value. As U.S. Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Thomas J. Donohue said in his 2018 State of American Business address: “We need […]

How Marketers Can Connect Profit and Purpose

The journey to purpose is not a tactic. If not authentic, customers will see right through your feel-good message.

Six years ago, Harvard’s Michael Porter and FSG’s Mark Kramer made the bold statement that shared value – the idea that the purpose of a company is to achieve both shareholder profit and social purpose – would “reinvent capitalism.” They encouraged companies to go beyond corporate social responsibility and integrate social impact into their competitive strategy. Since […]

Listen, Amplify, Include: Leadership for the Modern Age

Leaders in all walks of life would be wise to adopt a philosophy of radical inclusion.

Retired Gen. Martin Dempsey, former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and Berkeley professor Ori Brafman come from very different backgrounds. One is a 41-year veteran of the U.S. military, the other a 41-year-old liberal academic. But they share a common passion: helping people develop new forms of leadership for the modern age. In […]

The Right Way to Respond to Negative Feedback

With the right approach, our biggest critics can become our greatest champions.

Feedback, as they say, is a gift. Negative feedback, in particular, can be valuable because it allows us to monitor our performance and alerts us to important changes we need to make. But processing and acting on negative feedback is not always easy, and there’s comparatively little guidance on how to navigate the hard feedback […]

In a Fast-Changing World, What Should Workers Learn?

Leaders must evolve from gatekeepers of knowledge to facilitators of learning.

At a time when workplace transformation is accelerating, building skills for the future can feel like an impossible task. Keeping up with what we need to know right now consumes our time and attention, and who can even predict which new technologies and tools we’ll need to adopt? The answer isn’t to give up, of […]

Happiness at Work Doesn’t Just Depend on Your Employer

Contentment at work isn't about happiness gimmicks. It's largely about how bosses treat their people.

When Google promoted a software engineer named Chade-Meng Tan to the role of “Jolly Good Fellow,” his career – and the entire culture of Silicon Valley – took a sharp turn. Meng, a cheerful employee valued for his motivational qualities, went from developing mobile search tools to spreading happiness across the organization. Happiness became his […]

4 Hidden Reasons You Might Be Rambling at Work

Here’s when and why you might be overdoing it – and what to do instead.

Several years ago, someone sent me a Fortune 100 executive for coaching. His main problem? “He talks too much.” I was curious to see what that would look like. So when I met with him, I asked a question that required some elaboration. He ended up rambling for 45 minutes nonstop. I was exhausted. When […]

5 Ways to Project Confidence in Front of an Audience

You might have a great idea or results to share, but if you don’t deliver your message with confidence, it will fall on deaf ears.

When you are presenting or speaking in front of an audience, you’re being judged on your confidence and competence, not just your content, and the way you appear and sound matters. A study on CEOs giving IPO presentations found that even hardened financial advisers judge a leader’s “competence and trustworthiness” within as little as 30 […]

Graduation Advice You Wish You’d Gotten, from 25 TED Speakers

Whether you put on your cap and gown last week — or last century — these honest answers can give you some insight and guidance.

“If you don’t know what you want to do with the rest of your life, you’re not a failure. Give yourself time and get yourself experience to figure things out.” — Angela Duckworth (TED Talk: Grit — the power of passion and persistence) “Although I think I already knew this back when I graduated from […]

Want to Move Fast on a Strategic Opportunity?

Deploy a focused team, and get out of the way.

No doubt about it: We live in a rapidly changing world. Disruptive technologies, shifting customer behaviors and emerging business models are shaking up nearly every industry. If you are going to survive and succeed amid this change, you need to move in a fast and adaptable way. Yes … even if you’re a huge global […]

23 Female TED Speakers Tell Us About the Books that Shaped Them

These books can provide wisdom and inspiration for the next generation of women leaders.

Here are the books that profoundly influenced women from our speaker community, and they’re just as wonderfully diverse as TED itself. Jane Eyre  by Charlotte Brontë When I read this book for the first time as a deeply odd fifth-grader (or, as Jane says, “poor, plain and little”), it felt like grasping onto a life […]

How Humble Leadership Really Works

Certain forms of top-down leadership are outdated and more importantly, counterproductive.

When you’re a leader, you are merely overhead unless you’re bringing out the best in your employees. Unfortunately, many leaders lose sight of this reality. Power can cause leaders to become overly obsessed with outcomes and control and therefore, treat their employees as means to an end. As I’ve discovered in my own research, this […]

5 Lessons Other Small Business Owners Have Already Learned

Go ahead and take some notes – there's no need to repeat these small business mistakes.

Experience is a very good teacher, and every small business owner learns some lessons the hard way. But you can avoid many hassles and headaches by learning from the mistakes of other entrepreneurs who have already faced the same issues you’re facing. Here are five lessons small business owners have learned that they wish they […]

To Take Charge of Your Career, Start by Building Your Tribe

Without tribes, it would be impossible to remember who we are and imagine who we might become.

Show me a person who sees uncertainty as opportunity, and I’ll show you a person who has mastered the new world of work. Sue Ashford, Amy Wrzesniewski and I have collected many stories that show as much for a study of knowledge and creative workers. We heard freelance journalists, consultants, designers, software engineers and executive coaches […]

Female Workforces Can Revolutionize Latin American Business

To bring change to SMEs, public policies are not enough. Entrepreneurs and managers must also embrace the cause of gender equality.

Daniel Velasquez owns a small snack manufacturing firm in Honduras, which produces plantain chips sold in bodegas across the country. A few years ago, Daniel was struggling to consistently find enough plantains that met the company’s quality standards. Supply issues are a typical headache for business owners, but the solution to Daniel’s problem came from […]

How to Deal With Life’s Risks More Rationally

An economist explores how to weigh risk in our personal and work lives more accurately.

The world is an uncertain and risky place. The news constantly bombards us with scary situations from school shootings to gruesome murders. Risk is everywhere and associated with everything. For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention a decade ago estimated 234,000 people a year ended up in emergency rooms because of bathroom injuries […]

Small Business Success: Charlotte Mobile Makery

Do you have the initial ingredients to survive in the startup world?

Shannon Hale and Jess Murphy recently left their jobs and started a small business together. Was it a difficult decision? “It was the worst decision I ever made,” Jess told me. OK … just kidding. She never said that. In fact, Jess said something very different. “Best decision ever,” she actually said. “Shannon and I […]

Avoid Plateaus to Keep Your Competitive Edge

Companies that settle into a comfortable plateau are vulnerable and may become obsolete.

Knowledge calcifies. People begin to believe the status quo is the only logical way to do business. When presented with ideas for change, they mostly see obstacles. When you are stable and stationary, you are a sitting duck, easy to copy and vulnerable to commoditization. You quickly lose your edge. To achieve quantum leaps in […]

What Type of Strategic Thinker Are You?

How do executives shape their long-term vision?

Supply chain and operations executives are increasingly involved in making supply chain strategy decisions that have long-term implications. But how do these executives, whose job responsibilities involve mainly short-term decision making, think about the long term? Researchers at MIT CTL asked this question seven years ago. The findings of their multi-method study, which involved collecting survey […]

The Best Way to Network in a New Job

Here's how to learn the ropes in your new organization.

Anyone who hopes to hit the ground running in a new organization must first cultivate allies – a network of people who can provide the information, resources and support needed to succeed. But few onboarding programs offer concrete advice on how to build those all-important connections. Our research during the past decade shows that replicating the […]

What Disasters Teach Us About Avoiding Mistakes at Work

How can people and artificial intelligence cooperate to achieve what neither could individually?

On the late morning of Jan. 28, 1986, the space shuttle Challenger took off in Cape Canaveral, Florida, only to break up midair within two minutes – and come crashing down into the Atlantic Ocean. All seven crew members were killed. The multimillion-dollar project went tragically and disastrously wrong due to an inexpensive rubber O-ring seal, […]

What Do DC, Davos and Helsinki Have in Common?

The purpose zeitgeist is global in reach – it sits at the intersection between profit and purpose.

Think about the “purpose” of business. Is it to make money? Satisfy market demand? Give dignity to workers? Make the world a better place? The short answer is: yes. And whether it’s the boardroom of a global corporation in Washington, D.C., the shared workspace of a startup hub in Helsinki, Finland or the thin air […]

Becoming Global Citizens To Rebuild Trust in Our Globalized World

The great moral challenge is living together ethically as global citizens and celebrating the connectedness of our technological world.

The erosion of trust in a civil society is one of the greatest moral challenges in the world today. Democratic societies are anxious. Leaders – and the general public – are worried about extremism, terrorism and radicalization. Educators and experts are rightly concerned about those who perpetuate approaches that resemble indoctrination. Such threats are making us […]

Business Lessons From Black Panther

As in the superhero film, corporate leaders wrestle with transforming or maintaining their company culture.

A futuristic fantasy, a high-tech spy adventure, a cultural event. That’s how millions of moviegoers and critics describe the blockbuster film, Black Panther, taking the world by storm. This action thriller pairs high-powered action with technology, innovation and transformation. The sci-fi flick about the aforementioned superhero shattered box office records, with the highest-grossing February weekend […]

The Best Internal Candidate Might Come From an Unlikely Place

Proven winners are great additions to any team. But finding a leader who can develop new talents makes everyone a winner.

Nearly a decade after Gallup released “Strengths-Based Leadership,” which asserts that great leaders are always investing in strengths, we are learning that the opposite may also be true. According to Gallup, when work focuses on individuals’ strengths, employees are six times more likely to be engaged in the job. That makes intuitive sense. Yet, when […]

The World Needs to Build More than 2 Billion Homes

Housing is arguably this century's greatest challenge. Here's why.

By the end of this century, the world’s population will increase by another 3.6 billion people. According to the U.N., the global population is set to reach more than 11.2 billion by the year 2100, up from the current 7.6 billion. And that is considered “medium growth.” The upscaling required in terms of infrastructure and development, […]