The former CEO of five businesses, Margaret Heffernan explores the all-too-human thought patterns that lead organizations and managers astray.

Why you should listen

Margaret Heffernan was born in Texas, grew up in the Netherlands and was educated at Cambridge University. She produced drama and documentary programs for the BBC for 13 years, then moved back to the US where she became a serial entrepreneur and CEO in the wild early days of web business.

Heffernan's third book, Willful Blindness: Why We Ignore the Obvious at Our Peril, was named one of the most important business books of the decade by the Financial Times. In 2015, she was awarded the Transmission Prize for A Bigger Prize: How We Can Do Better than the Competition. In 2015, TED published Beyond Measure: The Big Impact of Small Changes. As lead faculty for the Forward Institute's Responsible Leadership Programme, Heffernan mentors CEOs and senior executives of major global organizations.

Margaret Heffernan’s TED talks

More news and ideas from Margaret Heffernan

News

A first glimpse at the TEDSummit 2019 speaker lineup

May 21, 2019

With TEDSummit 2019 just two months away, it’s time to unveil the first group of speakers that will take to the stage in Edinburgh, Scotland, from July 21-25. Three years ago, more than 1,000 members of the TED global community convened in Banff, Canada, for the first-ever TEDSummit. We talked about the fracturing state of […]

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Business

Career advice for millennials (and really, anyone) from Margaret Heffernan

July 3, 2015

It’s a few months after graduation, which means the luckiest new college grads are knee-deep into internships and entry-level jobs. How to stand out? Business writer Margaret Heffernan suggests: Start by taking a coffee break with your coworkers. Companies grow best, she suggests, when workers are connected by social bonds. Heffernan’s TED Book, Beyond Measure: […]

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Business

TED@BCG focuses on the many meanings of growth

July 1, 2015

Growth is usually a good thing. For a person, it means more wisdom; for a business, it means more profit; for a country, it means increased prosperity. But growth has a darker side too: aging, a sense of impersonality, waste and pollution. At TED@BCG — the latest TED Institute event, held on June 30, 2015, […]

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