NEW YORK (MainStreet) Often, when you see people talking about money or personal finance, you dismiss them as those trying to sell you insurance or some investment "opportunity." But when they speak at a platform like TED Talks--the pop, Zeitgeisty lecture series--you tend to take notice and trust that the intentions at least stem from a good place. Using some of the most contemporary tools for presentation, these speakers talk about a complex yet common issue and lay it out there in the simplest format for the audience to grasp. The intricacies of personal finance and money management are best explored in the following TED Talks discussions and presentations by experts.
1. Schlomo Benartzi Saving for tomorrow, tomorrow br> "People insure their iPhones more than their lives." Using this statement, Benartzi highlighted the very common mistakes people make with regards to their personal finance. Benartzi is a behavioral economist whose main purpose for hosting this TED talk event was to change the habit of people who spend money the second they have it. Budgeting and discretion are stressed.
2. Matt Weinstein What Bernie Madoff couldn't steal from me
Starting off with an anecdote where he receives the Bernie Madoff scam news while on a trip to the Arctic, Weinstein meanders his way quickly to telling how once people let go of the money aspect when it comes to investing, it's actually easier to enjoy some other luxuries in life. Weinstein is also the founder and CEO of PlayFair, a corporate team building training consultancy. Using examples from such fun activities like the ones he prescribes as part of his job, he highlights how personal finance can often gain a lot from areas that are non-monetary in nature.
3. Jessica Jackley Poverty, money and love
Jessica Jackley, the founder of Kiva.org, used to be one of those people who "need to help" when it came to poverty. Then she heard a speech by Bangladeshi economist and Graameen Bank founder Muhammad Yunus, who spoke about microcredits, which are loans given out to people who are too poor to qualify for traditional loans. This changed her and inspired her to form Kiva, an organization that loans as little as $25 to crafty entrepreneurs. So if you need to know how to turn small amounts into great returns, this might be the TED talk for you.
4. Geoff Mulgan Post-crash, investing in a better world
If there's one TED talk for mid-level entrepreneurs investing in the post economic crash world, this is it. Especially aimed towards entrepreneurs who invest in socially constructive ventures, this talk poses questions in their favor -- asking why the post crash bailout helped only big industry and not small time investors. This talk is especially significant for those who want to build on socially constructive ideas and also make them sort of crash proof. The basic DNA of this talk is how a financial crisis can also be looked upon as a chance for positive change when it comes to small scale investment.
5. Cameron Herold Let's raise kids to be entrepreneurs
One of the most candid TED talks ever, this Cameron Herold presentation might resemble more of a confession than inspiration. He talks about cheating on his university exams and using outsourced work as his own. He uses all of these anecdotes to highlight how he took control of his life and personal finance by not training to work a 9-5 job but rather create a company that hires others to do so. Highly critical of the current education system that stresses kids to be lawyers, doctors and accountants--not free thinkers who take risks--he argues in favor of entrepreneurial approach to education.
--Written by Preetam Kaushik for MainStreet