2 TED talks to watch before you start your new business

There is a plethora of accessible material out there for those wanting to start a business, including networking events, blogs, podcasts, and online videos.  In particular websites like Entrepreneur on Fire and BBC Radio 4 programmes such as The Bottom Line and In Business have regular interviews with business owners, entrepreneurs and investors which are rich with lessons on what to do and what not to do.  This is going to be a faster way of assimilating a lot of useful information than reading books, so I would strongly recommend you have a look, see what takes your fancy and get listening or watching while you’re commuting or at the gym.

If you’ve never heard of TED and TED talks, then now would be a great time to change that.

There are so many TED talks that I love, it was incredibly difficult narrowing it down to my top two for someone thinking about creating a startup.  It was tempting to pick talks by famous entrepreneurs like Steve Jobs, Larry Page and Sergey Brin.  Or renowned motivational speakers like Tony Robbins and Simon Sinek who challenge us to think about why - very important to get clear in your own head before you get too far in your venture.  Instead, I wanted to draw your attention to a couple of shorter talks that really grabbed me and gave me a different perspective, which is what TED is all about.

While starting a business can bring satisfaction, enjoyment and fulfillment for many, it is certainly not a silver bullet to happiness, freedom or wealth!  So, why not start by understanding what makes you tick, and then get to the business of making that happen, whatever it might be. Both of these short talks will hopefully get you thinking about what really makes you happy on the inside and what it is that you really want to achieve most in life.

Shawn Achor: The Happy Secret to Better Work - 12minutes

This talk by Harvard researcher and author had me in stitches and challenges our views of how work and success bring happiness.  Many people hate their jobs but s that really at the heart of the problem and is a new job, or starting a new business the key to happiness?

Candy Chang: Before I Die… 6 minutes

An artist from New Orleans, Candy has works on use of public spaces to drive collaboration, connection and reflection in communities.  Her Before I Die… walls are a global phenomenon.


TED believes in the power of ideas to change attitudes, lives and, ultimately, the world. On TED.com, they are building a community of curious souls to engage with ideas and each other around the world, all year long.

Even if you don’t start a new business this year, join the community of curious souls, join the soup.