6 Best TED Talks for Communicators

tedTED talks represent the very best of what curious people armed with high speed Internet connections can do—spread and discover great, inspirational ideas.

Few examples of digital storytelling are as popular or entertaining than these easily digestible and entertaining presentations, which cover topics ranging from science and technology to design and business. Some are ingenious, some are beautiful, some are funny and all are informative.

Here are a few of our favorite TED talks that have lessons specifically catered for PR pros:

Social psychologist Amy Cuddy shows how our body language affects how others see us, but may also change how we see ourselves. She explains how “power posing”—standing in a posture of confidence, even when we don’t feel confident—can affect testosterone and cortisol levels in the brain, and might even have an impact on our chances for success.

Filmmaker Andrew Stanton ("Toy Story," "WALL-E") shares what he knows about storytelling—starting at the end and working back to the beginning. (This video contains graphic language.)

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg looks at why a smaller percentage of women than men reach the top of their professions—and offers 3 powerful pieces of advice to women aiming for the C-suite.

Nigel Marsh says work-life balance is too important to be left in the hands of your employer. He lays out an ideal day balanced between family time, personal time and productivity—and offers some stirring encouragement to make it happen.

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership, all starting with a golden circle and the question: "Why?" His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King and the Wright brothers.

Sound expert Julian Treasure says that, in our louder and louder world, "We are losing our listening." In this short, fascinating talk, Treasure shares five ways to retune your ears for conscious listening—to other people and the world around you.

Follow Brian Greene on Twitter: @bw_greene