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Inspiring TED Talks About Finance

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In a world of fast-paced changes and innovations on each corner, there isn’t a lot of time or space to take your time and get acquainted with everything that might interest you. While there are many useful things to pay attention to in today’s world of finance, this is definitely an area to follow. Namely, the experts, scientists, and influential people in politics, economy, and culture are gathering each year to give unique insights and share their knowledge of these areas. The highly anticipated TED Talks gather over several million watchers from across the globe who are looking to improve their knowledge without hesitation or doubt in the usefulness of the facts they’ll pick up along the way.

Just the Nuggets

  • TED Talks started as a small forum that gathers a few important and knowledgeable people in the areas of technology, entertainment, and design.
  • Today, it is one of the leading conferences with a few million watchers across the globe, and it hosts some of the key figures who are willing to share their knowledge and engage with a wider audience.
  • They are joining and following this event each year to learn the innovations and useful practices from the successful experts in the areas of business, finance, and culture.

The Importance of TED Talks

TED Conference LLC was founded back in 1984 as an influential media organization based in New York City. With the title Ideas Worth Spreading, TED was created by the British-American Emmy-winning broadcast designer, Harry Marks.

Marks joined his skills and insight into the areas of technology, entertainment, and design with the American architect and graphic designer, Richard Saul Wurman. Together, they decided to invent a place where people with bright and innovative ideas could exchange their thoughts and skills regarding these areas of business. What once started as a small conference of few influential and expert speakers later became one of the most talked-about and visited sights for people around the globe who are looking to educate themselves on the topics of finance, entertainment, and technology.

The very first conference held in 1984 featured some of the most prominent and influential people in tech who have become the number one innovators of the most useful innovations in today’s age. It included demonstrations of the first design of the compact disc, which was co-developed by the tech giants Philips and Sony. In addition, the conference was also the starting place of the first Apple Macintosh computer, which was presented in front of the selected few members of the digital elite.

However, it should be noted that this conference was highly unsuccessful—at least financial wise. Simply, it required a lot more money than it earned, which is why it took over six years for the TED brand to establish itself as a regular occurrence. Not only that—the TED Talks began to mark a significant rise in attendance much later, around 2009. Since its establishment in 1990 as one of the top events to watch, the TED Conferences were regularly held and attended until this year. 2020 marks the first year for the cancellation of the event due to the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Considering the importance of this event in the world of technology, entertainment, and design, here is the list of some of the most important and impactful TED talks about finance over the years.

1. Tammy Lally’s Let’s Get Honest About Our Money Problems

Tammy Lally is a certified money coach and an established TED speaker, who touches the uncomfortable topics about money and finances with a sharp and straight arrow. Her directness and honesty about the controversial topics that affect your economic state make a lot of people uneasy. Still, it seems to be working, since Lally is one of the most influential people in the financial world with over several hundred thousand readers and followers across the globe.

Back in 2017, Lally held a highly impactful TED Talk on the topic of money problems. Particularly, she raised the controversial question of why we tend to hide our money problems.

Why has money become a dirty word? When we don’t have it, we hide that fact about us. However, when we do have it, things seem to be taking on a loop of hiding it with even more effort, fearful of what our surroundings’ reaction will be regarding our financial stability. How do we break out of this cycle?

In this TED Talk, Lally answers the tough questions about the mentality of the general public, which is based on hiding these facts even from the ones closest to them, as well as how and why it is important to change that. She touches the subject of money shaming, which is harmful to people around us, no matter their backgrounds, education levels, or origin. By addressing our money struggles without hesitation or stigma, the financial situation can significantly improve. The first thing to do is, to be honest with ourselves and others when it comes to this conversation.

2. David Burkus’ Why You Should Know How Much Your Coworkers Get Paid

For far too long, the salary information was kept in the utmost secret from our coworkers. It is also stated as a hard-line limitation in many employment contracts or listed as a clearly forbidden topic to discuss. However, lately, the influential financial figures have started to state the obvious—this top-secret topic is actually only beneficial for employers and corporations.

With the emergence of the controversial conversation about the pay gap between men and women as well as people of color, investors, and financiers across the globe are starting to see these contract clauses for what they really are. And that is—a way to protect and prolong these inequalities within the company structure.

In his passionate TED Talk back in 2016, Burkus has stated the importance of transparency as a value that should be honoured in all areas of business, especially when it comes to our finances and earnings. Burkus is an associate professor of management at the Oral Roberts University in Oklahoma who is a dedicated speaker for equality when it comes to compensation regardless of gender, race, or ethnicity.

3. Curtis “Wall Street” Carroll’s How I Learned to Read — and Trade Stocks — in Prison

Curtis Carroll is currently serving a 54-years-to-life sentence for burglary and murder in the San Quentin Prison in California. Being imprisoned at the young age of 20, Carroll was able to overcome illiteracy in prison and began studying the stock market soon after, which particularly piqued his interest. Soon after, Carroll became a dedicated stock market researcher who looks up to the most influential figures in finance and business, including Bill Gates and Warren Buffett.

The nickname Wall Street was given to Carroll by his inmate soon after his transfer to the San Quentin prison in 2012. While serving here, Carroll has joined forces with the inmate Troy Williams to start a financial literacy program suitably named F.E.E.L. which stands for Financial Empowerment and Emotional Literacy. Soon after, Carroll has started to collaborate with Zak Williams, the son of the late actor Robin Williams. Together, they teach the financial literacy class for inmates that shows them how to take charge of their financial lives after they are released from prison.

In his powerful TED Talk from 2016, Carroll delivers a heartfelt testimony about his life journey that is honest, raw, and relatable. Dressed in his prison uniform, Carroll was able to keep the audience captivated while they listened to the astounding story of a man who overcame the impossible and made a future for himself in unusual circumstances.

4. Paul Piff’s Does Money Make You Mean?

Paul Piff is a social psychologist and the associate professor of Psychological Science at the University of California, Berkeley. In his TED Talk back in 2013, Piff raised the question of people’s behaviour and consciences changing as their financial status does. He looked back at his research of how people tend to shift their beliefs and views of themselves depending on how their finances change.

By using the example of a rigged game of Monopoly, Piff is showing how people are easily agitated under the effect of their finances going up or down—even during a simple game with friends! He also touches on the subject of inequality when it comes to income and salary, as well as the tendency that people have to behave badly as their funds grow. Also, he studies the way emotion is able to shape relationships and form connections in regards to the money situation taking place.

5. Cameron Herold’s Let’s Raise Kids to Be Entrepreneurs

Cameron Herold is a successful business consultant with over two decades of experience in finance and investing. He began to build his career at the young age of 21. Today, he is the CEO and founder of COO Alliance, which teaches organization and business structure to successful financial professionals.

In his TED Talk back in 2010, he touched the topic of parents who are responsible and able to raise their children to become successful entrepreneurs. He emphasizes the importance of educating the kids at the earliest age to value the importance of money, as well as learn skills that will serve them later in life, and not only money-wise. One of the highlights of Herold’s TED Talk argues why you should not give your children allowances at any age, as well as which useful habits regarding spending you should transfer to them instead.

Closing Notes

TED Talks is a unique place that gathers the most influential and skillful people in the field of finance, technology, entertainment, and design. Each year, it hosts a variety of experts from across the globe, giving them the platform to share their knowledge and specialities in these areas with the general public. This is one of the longest-standing conferences in the world, and for a good reason, it raises and teaches the new generation of successful entrepreneurs and investors worldwide.

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