Top 5 Ted Talks to Watch Before Starting Your First Job

first job

After college, it’s easy to feel lost. You might not know who you are, or what you want to do. While that’s completely natural, don’t lose sight of what really drives us to succeed and be happy.

These speakers give you the tools to help you ace your job interviews, networking events, and even your first job. Once you learn about these successful ways of thinking and living, you’ll feel closer to your goals, and infuse your job search with meaning.

Here are the top five Ted Talks that will leave you feeling motivated.

1. Why You Can’t Find Your Calling

We’re constantly urged to find our passion.

How often are we encouraged to find our passions, plural? Not everyone has a professional soulmate. Some people have more than one calling. If you fit into this category, you’re a “multipotentialite.” Multipotentialites often have trouble fitting into the workforce, because there’s no real place for them. Learn why having more than one passion is actually an inspiring quality that drives workers to accomplish more.

2. Body Language and Your Job Search

I’ll never forget a conversation I had with my former CEO. He asked me how I was, and I traded in the standard “Fine, thanks. How are you?” for a, “Not so great today.”

He insisted that I hold my head up high, puff my chest out, and stand up straight. If I changed my physical stance, my mood would soon follow. This six-foot-three, bright-smiled, executive power figure actually said, “Fake it till you make it.”

I didn’t listen to him. I went home sick thirty minutes later.

But, I never forgot his advice.

One of the most inspiring Ted Talks we’ve ever seen tackles this hugely popular question: “Can you fake it till you make it?”

Amy Cuddy asks, “We know that our minds change our bodies. Is it also possible, that our bodies change our minds?” More importantly, can our bodies change our minds in job interview, a college classroom? And, can this change in body language make us successful?

Before your next job interview or networking event, watch this Ted Talk. You might just become the most successful person in the room.

3. You Won’t Find Your Passion, Unless…

Larry Smith wants you to understand why you won’t find your passion. Excuses, laziness–or simply mistaking passion for anything other than what it is: flaming hot, I’ll die-without-it, inspiration.

“If this were 1950, being competent would’ve given you a great career,” says Larry. And, he’s right. Competence isn’t good enough anymore. Watch the full video to find out what is.

4. Why Women Aren’t Leaders

“When you ask men why they did a good job, they’ll say, ‘I’m awesome.’ (Obviously, why are you even asking?) If you ask women why they did a good job, what they’ll say is someone helped them. They got lucky. They worked really hard. Why does this matter?…Because no one gets [ahead] if they don’t think they deserve it.” — Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO

Don’t have 15 minutes? At 11:40, Sheryl Sandberg really starts to break down exactly why women aren’t becoming leaders. She explains how women can put themselves in a position to choose between leadership and family when the time is right.

5. The Secret to Success (It’s Not Intelligence)

If you haven’t yet seen Angela Lee Duckworth’s talk about the key to success, now is the time to watch it. Success isn’t always intelligence or luck; it’s also endurance. The ability to triumph in the face of multiple failures, that’s what CEOs and all-star careers are made of.

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image credit: Amy Cuddy, via

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