If you're determined to get a job that requires an MBA, by all means spend the time and money to get one. However, if you want to know more about business than 99.9 percent of your colleagues, you can spend a day watching these TED Talks.


1. Why we do what we do

Tony Robbins discusses the invisible forces that make us do what we do and how to use them to your advantage.

2. The puzzle of motivation

Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don't: that traditional rewards aren't very effective.

3. The happy secret to better work

Shawn Achor argues that happiness inspires productivity and that the concept that we should work to be happy is backwards.


4. Why work doesn't happen at work

Jason Fried explains why the office isn't a good place to get work done and why people who work elsewhere are more productive.

5. Why we have too few women leaders

Sheryl Sandberg looks at why a smaller percentage of women than men reach the top of their professions, and offers advice to women aiming for the C-suite.

6. Your body language shapes who you are

Amy Cuddy shows how standing in a posture of confidence, even when you don't feel confident, can positively affect your brain and influence your chances for success.


7. Life lessons from an ad man

Rory Sutherland explains how advertising adds value to a product by changing our perception, rather than the product itself.

8. How to get your ideas to spread

Seth Godin spells out why, when it comes to getting our attention, bad or bizarre ideas are more successful than boring ones.

9. Where good ideas come from

Steven Johnson shows how history belies the idea of a eureka moment and that good ideas tend to emerge from environments rather than individuals.


10. How economic inequality harms societies

Richard Wilkinson explains what happens when rich and poor are too far apart: real effects on health, lifespan, even such basic values as trust.

11. Learning from dirty jobs

Mike Rowe tells some compelling and horrifying real-life job stories that provide insights about the nature of hard work and how it's underappreciated in society today.

12. Rich people don't create jobs

Nick Hanauer has been raising the hackles of his fellow 1-percenters, espousing the contrarian argument that rich people don't actually create jobs.


13. Do schools kill creativity?

Sir Ken Robinson makes the case for creating an education system that nurtures rather than undermines creativity.

14. How to succeed? Get more sleep

Arianna Huffington shares a small idea that can awaken much bigger ones: the power of a good night's sleep.

15. Build a tower, build a team

Tom Wujec presents some surprisingly deep research into the "marshmallow problem"--a simple team-building exercise.


16. Why we think it's OK to cheat and steal (sometimes)

Behavioral economist Dan Ariely studies the bugs in our moral code and how we're predictably irrational--and can be influenced in ways we can't grasp.

17. How to spot a liar

Pamela Meyer shows the manners and "hot spots" used by those trained to recognize deception.

18. Five ways to listen better

Julian Treasure shares five ways to retune your ears for conscious listening--to other people and the world around you.


19. How to speak so that people want to listen

Julian Treasure demonstrates some useful vocal exercises and shares tips on how to speak with empathy.

20. A kinder, gentler philosophy of success

Alain de Botton makes an eloquent, witty case to move beyond snobbery to find true pleasure in our work.

21. The surprising science of happiness

Dan Gilbert challenges the idea that we'll be miserable if we don't get what we want and explains how to feel truly happy even when things don't go as planned.