The Business of IT Blog

Top TED Talks on Digital Transformation

3 minute read
Laura Shiff

With the concept of digital transformation permeating almost every industry this year, it is crucial that organizations take notice and evolve. For leaders and key decision makers especially, it is vital to understand the different aspects of digital transformation for business as well as ways to ensure it is successful.

We have put together a list of some of the most popular TED Talks surrounding digital transformation, covering topics from AI and Machine Learning to the role of digital transformation and organizational change in general. These digital transformation TED Talks discuss ideas about new innovations in the field, their implications, advantages, and potential consequences.

(This article is part of our Tech Books & Talks Guide. Use the right-hand menu to navigate.)

Digital Leadership vs Digital Transformation

Nelson Phillips

Digital transformation is about fundamental changes needed in our organizations where we work, the society where we live, and, perhaps less obviously, the nature of the leaders and leadership we need. In this TED Talk, Professor Nelson Phillips argues the point that our digital leadership needs to get as good as our abilities to create and apply innovative digital technologies, leaving behind the traditional methods in its wake.

Why Digital Transformation Has Little to Do with Technology

Tobias Burkhardt

For most people, the potential of our digital future is extremely intimidating. In this presentation, Tobias Burkhardt discusses the idea of how technology’s exponential computing power and intelligent algorithms are nothing if our human mindsets can’t handle them. He covers ideas about how future generations can use technology to completely disrupt life we we know it, but only if they believe they can in the first place.

5 Ways to Lead in an Era of Constant Change

Jim Hemerling

Organizational change expert Jim Hemerling believes that adapting current business processes should be invigorating and exciting instead of something to dread. In this talk, he outlines five strategic imperatives for how leaders can turn company reorganization into an empowering, energizing task for all. These all involve putting people first and start with connecting to a deeper sense of purpose, instilling teams with the capabilities they need to be successful through change.

The Difficulty of Digital Transformation & How to Make It Happen

Rico Dittrich

Currently working as Digital Analytics Specialist at Google, Rico Dittrich specializes in collaborating with large German retailers to set them up for the future of online measurement, attribution, and automation. In this presentation, he shares three examples of major German companies and how they can utilize digital technologies to transform their business, providing a sample framework for other companies looking to do the same.

Big Data Is Better Data

Kenneth Cukier

In this TED talk, presenter Kenneth Cukier looks at the role that Big Data currently plays in the modern world and how technological advancements have already solved many common problems. By looking at the nature of work and how that is changing too, Cukier discusses how simply reframing challenges could help organizations understand how digital transformation could impact their company and its operations.

How to Start a Movement

Derek Sivers

In this bite-sized TED Talk (two minutes total), presenter Derek Sivers uses a nontraditional method to explain how to start a movement. By showing a humorous video clip, Sivers explains how digital leaders must be willing to not only take a plunge to spark radical change, but that they must have strong followers who believe in their vision, as well.

Why Not Robot?

Scott Klososky

Do you wonder how robotics, AI, Machine Learning, and other technologies will affect your life? Scott Klososky shares his vision of how machine intelligence could impact humanity in the close future as well as many years from now. He leaves his audience contemplating revolutionary ideas about the benefits and potential problems as well as how companies can approach these future trends.

How Data Will Transform Business

Philip Evans

As technology advances and changes, business strategies also need to be adapted. Speaker Philip Evans presents on the ways that technology is disrupting the value chain as we know it as well as how business models must adjust in response. He argues that business strategy is dramatically changing and organizations need to adopt a different concept of it in order to succeed and thrive in the digital future.

How to Build a Business That Lasts 100 Years

Martin Reeves

If you want to build a business that lasts, there may be no better place to look for inspiration than your own immune system. In this TED Talk, strategist Martin Reeves applies biology concepts to organizations. He explains how executives can apply six principles from living organisms to build resilient businesses that flourish in the face of change, including during digital transformations.

Ensuring a Successful Transformation

BMC offers a structured approach to digital transformation that helps businesses respond swiftly and effectively to digital disruption. Learn more in the blog series, “Digital Transformation that Endures.”

How to evolve IT to drive digital business success

When IT and the business are on the same page, digital transformation flows more easily. In this e-book, you’ll learn how IT can meet business needs more effectively while maintaining priorities for cost and security.

These postings are my own and do not necessarily represent BMC's position, strategies, or opinion.

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About the author

Laura Shiff

Laura Shiff is a researcher and technical writer based in the Twin Cities. She specializes in software, technology, and medicine. You can reach Laura at