HR Professional TED Talks

  • Regina Hartley: "Why the Best Hire Might Not Have the Perfect Resume
  • Shawn Achor: "The Happy Secret to Better Work
  • Simon Sinek: "Why Good Leaders Make Us Feel Safe
  • Margaret Heffernan: "Forget the Pecking Order at Work
  • Mary Schaefer: "Putting the Human Back into Human Resources

Human resources professionals should spare a few minutes in their busy schedules to continue building their workplace strategies with resources like HR TED talks. Started in 1984, TED.com has exploded with more than 2,400 free, short lectures under 18 minutes that spark curiosity with "ideas worth sharing." Diverse speakers in 110+ languages have recorded TED talks to inform, persuade, and inspire their audiences. Human resources TED talks focus on methods for making mediocre workplaces into great corporate cultures where talent is cultivated and productivity soars. If you're seeking new tips to strengthen employee performance, we believe these five TED talks are worth HR managers' precious time.

1. Regina Hartley: "Why the Best Hire Might Not Have the Perfect Resume"

Regina Hartley, the 25-year HR management veteran for UPS Information Services, delivers helpful tips to recruiters in this 10-minute TED talk called "Why the Best Hire Might Not Have the Perfect Resume." Recorded in 2015, the lecture centers on the belief that candidates who look ideal on paper may lack the grit, passion, and purpose to flourish as employees. Hartley suggests hiring the underestimated "Scrapper" who has been empowered by fighting against adversity.

2. Shawn Achor: "The Happy Secret to Better Work"

Positive psychologist and CEO Shawn Achor has garnered over 12 million views for his 13-minute TED talk, "The Happy Secret to Better Work," in Bloomington. He cites a study finding that 75 percent of job successes are predicted by employee optimism levels, workplace support, and stress relief. Through hilarious examples of unicorns, Achor inspires HR managers to help employees move beyond the cult of average to happiness and increased productivity with an optimistic corporate culture.

3. Simon Sinek: "Why Good Leaders Make Us Feel Safe"

Simon Sinek, the Columbia University professor who published the classic Start With Why, debuted the 12-minute "Why Good Leaders Make Us Feel Safe" as one of the top HR TED talks in 2014. Giving examples from CEOs like Charlie Kim and Bob Chapman, he shows how organizational leadership must involve fostering trust and cooperation. Human resources staff gain perspective on ways to make employees feel respected, instead of just headcounts, to boost corporate efficiency.

4. Margaret Heffernan: "Forget the Pecking Order at Work"

Filmed at TEDWomen in May 2015, "Forget the Pecking Order at Work" is a 15-minute seminar filled with insights on social cohesion from Margaret Heffernan, a former CEO of five businesses who authored the book Willful Blindness. HR professionals are pointed to lab research where selectively bred chickens fatally pecked one another. While that sounds gruesome, Heffernan's stories reveal how human resources requires emotional sensitivity to avoid stifling employee performance by fierce internal competition.

5. Mary Schaefer: "Putting the Human Back into Human Resources"

Mary Schaefer, a former DuPont HR manager who started the business Artemis Path, Inc., gave this insightful TED talk in Wilmington to discuss "Putting the Human Back into Human Resources." She uses the Gallup statistic that bad HR costs the United States up to $550 billion annually to prove the need for better workplace culture. Human resources professionals are taught how to treat employees more humanly to appreciate their positive contributions and spark greater engagement.

Watching keynotes delivered by accomplished HR professionals can give you the pointers needed to tackle your workplace's biggest issues. You'll be armed with the know-how to reduce negativity, resolve conflicts, better communicate corporate goals, and more. In addition to these HR TED talks, search the directory for guest speakers like Barry Schwartz, Mellody Hobson, Rainer Strack, and Ricardo Semler too.

Related resource:

Top 15 Cheap Online Master's and MBA in Human Resources Management Degree Programs