In its fourth year TEDx Des Moines explored the theme of “shift.”  The event leaders were a dynamic mix of local thought leaders as well as global experts. Attendees were asked to do the following:

Embrace disruption and move past yesterday’s perception.  Explore this new space.  Awaken an awareness suited to confront tomorrow’s challenges.  Discover in yourself an agent of change.  Prepare for “shift.”

The morning of Sept. 8, 2013, began with an inspiring speech by George Aye with Greater Good Studio (@georgeaye).  George learned through self-exploration and failure that the strong emerge and grow more knowledgeable. Learning from each process and showing that while “shifting” we can have bumps in the road, but that in these shifts we can find solutions for end users.  During George’s career, he heard the statement: “We’d have a great service if it weren’t for all these people.”  Really? Is this something that a business would say when working with consumers on a daily basis?  Well, yes. We all feel this way at times. The light at the end of the tunnel is finding how to handle all of the “people” and shifting our thoughts.

Scott McLeod also did an amazing job in speaking to the shift in today’s society to transition the extracurricular to the curricular. Many people will roll their eyes and question why people make video diaries of their daily activities and post it to the web. Well, the reality is that the generation in school today has known nothing more than the Internet being a simple extension of daily life. They don’t know what it is like to not carry a phone in their pocket. We need to focus on the curricular today that eliminates fear, eliminates control and advocates for empowerment. The young generations today have proven themselves to be thought leaders and doers on their own. Why don’t we get out of their way and let them be amazing?

All speaker content can be located on the TEDxDesMoines YouTube channel. I encourage everyone to experience the inspiration via the videos if you were unable to attend the event. And in 2014, step up and make it a priority to attend and be inspired to change.

“A good question is never answered. It is not a bolt to be tightened into place but a seed to be planted and to bear more seed toward the hope of greening the landscape of idea.”
–John Ciardi