TED talk
Art Coordinator Kristina Newman-Scott. Photo @knewmanscott.

From hot Twitter takes to viral cat videos, the internet is full of entertaining ways to procrastinate. But if you’re looking for inspiring content to push you out of your seat and onto your business hustle, nothing beats TED Talk – a powerful and influential video series where experts around the world share their wisdom from their professional and personal lives. So of course there are a bounty of successful Caribbean-Americans who deliver inspiring speeches about their entrepreneurial journeys, and the valuable insight they’ve earned along the way. The road to success is a long, winding road. So to spark your next business venture, or inspire that extra burst of courage, check out these motivating TED talks below.

Black Business body

Tell your Failure Story: Felicia Hatcher

Jamaican-American Entrepreneur Felicia Hatcher‘s accomplishments may be a mile long as the co-founder of gourmet catering services Feverish Popsicles, STEM training program Code Fever and the influential industry conference event Black Tech Week. But in her TED talk, Felicia seeks to disrupt the shiny, perfect narrative of the classic “success story.” She instead advocates for more open discussion about failure. “Success doesn’t look like what we think it’s going to look like,” says the tech advocate. “Sharing our failure stories makes us understand that failure is a part of the process. Bumps in the road are a part of the entrepreneurial process.”

The Pattern of Small Moves: Christine Souffrant

Haitian-American entrepreneur Christine Souffrant discusses how you can change your own reality by “following your patterns” – the natural talents that you are born with that transcend through industries and skills. She’s developed a three-step system to maximize your professional potential. “First, audit your experiences with powerful, reflective questions,” says Souffrant. “Then test your triggers and explore new experiences. And finally execute, to transition into a lifestyle you truly want.” In this video, she guides us through her own professional journey to help viewers decode their own professional stories.

Side Hustlas: Jullien Gordon

The child of Caribbean immigrants, business coach and motivational speaker Jullien Gordon knows the value of hard work. But in a business climate full of uncertainty, Gordon rejects the traditional career model of working 9 to 5. Instead, Jullien Gordon offers sound life and business advice to an audience of teens regarding the need to create multiple streams of income through side-hustles. Gordon suggests that this generation has the ability to position itself to “create value, be valued, and do work that aligns with their values.”

What is fi yu cyan un fi yu – Kristina Newman-Scott


A life-long career is full of difficult decisions. Should I leave my job or just stay? Is my passion worth pursuing professionally? When faced with unexpected choices, Jamaican-born artist and art administrator Kristina Newman-Scott has treasured her grandmother’s adage “What is if yu, cyan un fi yu. “This means if it belongs to you, it’s already yours,” says Scott. “And if it doesn’t, it wasn’t meant for you in the first place.” She has used her advice to shed doubt and be open to opportunities, which has led her from Edna Manley College in Jamaica to Director of Culture for the State of Connecticut.

Innovation requires getting people right: Eliot Salandy Brown

“Business shapes our world,” says British-Trinidadian anthropologist Eliot Salandy Brown. “And we believe that business should shape our world in a way that works for us.” In his TED Talk, he uses examples to demonstrate how companies often misunderstand people. Drawing from the disciplines of sociology and anthropology, Eliot demonstrates how inquiry can help companies find ways to innovate and really enhance the customer experience at all levels.


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