When I moved to NYC over 13 years ago, I had a lot of new things to learn. I quickly discovered the difference between the uptown and downtown platforms on the subway, that you have to carry cash at all times, and that I would miss local radio because I no longer had a commute or a car in which to listen to it.
I also was working at a venture-backed start-up for the first time and realized this wasn't just another sales gig. My curiosity was at an all-time high. But, my 5th-floor walk-up apartment was so small I could flip pancakes while sitting on the toilet, so I had to get a coworking space. A pre-WeWork coworking space on Lafayette where I'd dutifully would go every day and stay as if I was Fred Flinstone waiting for the horn to sound at 5pm. During the day, I'd either pack my lunch or go out and get Chicken and Rice from a bodega or the street cart. As I opened up lunch, I'd log into what I called TedTalk University and follow the same routine every day:
- Log into YouTube.
- Go to the TED page.
- Sort videos by Most Viewed.
- Watch the next unwatched Most Viewed video.
- Take notes.
Over the course of my first few years in NYC, I watched hundreds, if not thousands of TED videos. They sent me down trails of my favorite presenters and favorite topics. I started trying to sequence them for others, "if you want to learn quickly about XYZ topic - here are the first 5 videos to watch."