Entrepreneur

‘The riskiest thing you can do now is be safe’ – The Top 10 TED talks for startups

The iconic TEDx conference is in Berlin tomorrow with the spacey theme of Future 3.0.

The auspicious conference will be showcasing speakers like head of communications agency Red Onion, Stephan Balzer,Tape TV founder Conrad Fritzsch, and media technologist Deanna Zandt, along with more that you can check out here.

In honor of the innovative and technological theme of the TED conferences, we’re showcasing the most inspiring and useful TED and TEDx talks on entrepreneurship and tech.

Do what makes you happy – Chip Conley

Founder of Joie de Vivre Hospitality, hotelier and author Chip Conley is in search of the intangible measurements that make a difference – he thinks what makes people happy should be a top priority. Decide for yourself if you think his hierarchy of survival, success, and transformation is the key to happiness both in business and life.

“The intangible of happiness is something we should measure and value as government officials.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/889

Pitching to VCs – David S. Rose

This speech is one any practical entrepreneur can’t pass up. David Rose uses his years of experience both raising millions of dollars for his own startups and later investing millions of dollars in others startups. So instead of asking your friends for pitch advice, tune in to his top 10 tips for a successful pitch and fire up the PowerPoint. The take-home message of the speech? Effective pitches are short and sweet.

“I want you to say, or I want you to convey, that you are going to die if you have to, with your very last breath, with your fingernails scratching as they drag you out.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/353

Life as a Bootstrapped Entrepreneur – Richard Branson

While not strictly a talk, this TED interview with iconic entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson deserves a place on this list purely for comic value, oh, and some insights from Branson into his startup experiences. From explaining how he accidentally stole actress Goldie Hawn’s ring to successfully building up the Virgin empire, Branson has a fair amount of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs, even if his Virgin ‘Mates’ branded condoms weren’t such a success.

“I was dyslexic, I had no understanding of school work whatsoever, and I certainly would have failed IQ tests. If I’m not interested in something I just don’t grasp it. … For example, I haven’t been able to know the difference between net and gross. When I turned 50 somebody took me out of the boardroom and drew me a diagram and drew a net in the sea and the fish were pulled from the sea into the net and said that’s the profits in the net. So I finally got it!”

Sweat the small stuff – Rory Sutherland

Ad man Rory Sutherland is sick of people turning to the flashiest and most over-the-top solutions to problems and gets us focusing on the simple, it-was-right-under-my-nose-the-whole-time kind of ones. We like those ones.  To illustrate, he uses behavioral economics and hilarious examples.

“Once you have a very, very large budget, you actually look for expensive things to spend it on.”

Simon Sinek — How great leaders inspire action

Author Simon Sinek gives a key insight into what drives human decision-making and success, along with the motivations that make customers choose products. Sinek’s message is that organizations and leaders should stop marketing with the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of a product and start focusing on the ‘why’ – why products are so different and what the brand’s motivations are. So everyone can be as successful as Apple!

“All the great and inspiring leaders and people in the world, whether it’s Apple, Martin Luther King, or the Wright brothers, they all think, act, and communicate in the exact the same way — and it’s the complete opposite to everyone else.”

Trial, error, and the God complex – Tim Harford

Tim Harford talks about being resourceful and avoiding God complexes at all costs. He believes we’re simplifying a vastly complex world and we need to use trial and error so we can variate from our beliefs and get unique solutions. You might argue that promoting trial and error is hardly groundbreaking, but Harford is convinced of the massive benefits of learning from our mistakes.

“It is very difficult to make good mistakes.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/1190

Four principles for the open world – Don Tapscott

Don Tapscott’s speech on how the world is becoming more connected through technology and social media defiantly falls into the inspiring TED talks category. He’s one of the world’s leading authorities on innovation, media, and the economic and social impact of technology. His four principle on how this open world will lead to an age of empowerment and freedom, set to the inspiring background music of Monzart’s Pachebel Canon, almost brings a tear to the eye.

“These kids (of the current generation) have no fear of technology … sort of like I have no fear of a refrigerator.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/1492

How to get your ideas to spread – Seth Godin

Seth Godin is a marketing guru and successful entrepreneur who can tell you to how to stand out in a world saturated with products and time-strapped customers. According to Godin, you need to stop targeting the average person in the market, as they are very skilled at ignoring you. Definitely handy, as he points out all those brands that are doing it right.

“The riskiest thing you can do now is be safe. The safe thing to do now is be at the fringes, to be remarkable. If it’s very good, it’s not going to be successful, it’s too boring.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/28

Why you have to fail to have a great career – Larry Smith

Economics professor Larry Smith is sick of people failing to reach their potential. He thinks there’s something decisively wrong with the fact that people are wasting their talents in uninspiring jobs because they are afraid to follow their passions. A good kick in the pants for all procrastinating entrepreneurs.

“Some of you will find your passion, but you will still fail; you’ll fail because you will not do it. You have invented a new excuse, any excuse to fail to take action, and this excuse I’ve heard so many times: Yes, I would pursue a great career, but I value human relationships more than accomplishments. … But do you really want to look at your spouse and kids and see them as your jailers?”

Lies, damned lies and statistics – Sebastian Wernicke

Finally, if you happen to be one of the TEDx Berlin speakers, you’ll want to listen to this last talk by statistical whiz Sebastian Wernicke, who did an analysis of TED speeches and found a tongue-in-cheek formula for creating the perfect TED speech. See, TED does have a sense of humor.

“Let’s look at the list of the top 10 words that statistically stick out in the most favorite TEDTalks and in the least favorite TEDTalks. So if you came here to talk about how French coffee will spread happiness in our brains, that’s a go.”

http://ted.com/talks/view/id/846

This story originally appeared on VentureVillage, VentureBeat’s Berlin-based syndication partner.

This story originally appeared on venturevillage.eu.


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