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Here at The Exeter Group we are frequently conducting trainings and coaching sessions, on a variety of topics, at healthcare organizations around the nation. One of our favorite resources to use in our trainings and coaching is TED Talks. Short, informative, and engaging…What’s not to love?

In no specific order, here are 5 of our favorite TED talks for training and coaching:

1. Want to get great at something? Get a coach.* by Atul Gawande

*This video does begin with some graphic content.

We all know that we are never too old to learn, but do you think that you might be too experienced to be coached? Have you ever found yourself in a rut, wondering, “Is this as good as I am going to get?” Atul Gawande makes a compelling case for coaching and explains how coaches can provide the push you need to ensure that you never stop improving or learning. ”It is not how good you are now; it is how good you’re going to be that really matters,” Gawande says.

2. The happy secret to better work by Shawn Achor

Looking to brighten your day? This TED Talk from Shawn Achor will do exactly that and leave you to wrestle with an intriguing question. What if, instead of focusing on success, you took some time to focus on being happy? You may not be able to do this all the time, we know that you are busy, but we also know you are 31% more productive when you are positive. That is more productive than you will be after that fourth cup of coffee. Listen to this Talk for some actionable ideas on how to quickly boost your mood, and your effectiveness.

3. Are you biased? I am by Kristen Pressner

Implicit bias and unconscious bias are probably terms you have heard. Have you taken the time to think about what they might mean for you professionally, or for your organization? Have you thought about the fact that you might have a bias against everything you yourself represent? These are the questions that Kristen Pressner tackles, and she provides a straightforward method to check if your biases are limiting you.

4. How to gain control of your free time by Laura Vanderkam

What could you do with an extra 72 hours a week? Is there a hobby you have been meaning to start, or are there friends you really want to catch up with? The good news is that there are 168 hours a week, and while 96 of those hours are allocated to sleep and work, those leftover 72 hours are yours. Laura Vanderkam discusses how we can make the most out of these hours and find the time for the things most important to us, all while still fulfilling our obligations.

5. Why good leaders make you feel safe by Simon Sinek

What culture exists at your organization? Do employees choose organizational success over personal success, or do they undermine others so that they succeed personally? When leaders foster a culture of trust and make employees feel “safe,” everyone succeeds. Simon Sinek delves into the challenging task of creating trust as the big, but critical, ask we make of our leaders.

We all know that it is important to manage our time appropriately, be positive, remain open to feedback, manage our biases, and make our teams feel safe in the workplace. So, while these talks might not have told you anything “new,” we believe they provide an innovative way to look at these topics. We hope that you learn from and enjoy these TED talks for training and coaching as much as we and our training and coaching participants have. We would love to learn from you as well; please leave a comment letting us know if you enjoyed these talks, and what your favorite TED Talks are.


Kara Genereaux is an Organizational Development Project Analyst, specializing in the construction of high quality deliverables such as leadership assessments, individual development plans, training materials, benchmark analysis and research, qualitative and quantitative data analyses, and training and coaching plans. Passionate about reducing healthcare disparities across underrepresented populations, she is dedicated to facilitating positive interactions in the field of healthcare between people and business.