My First TEDx Talk

What an absolute honor.

I had the privilege of speaking at TEDxSMU Hilltop in September. The theme of this year’s TEDxSMU is reThink.  I’ve dreamed for many years about speaking at a TED event, of any kind, and I finally feel like I have something worth sharing on such an amazing stage.

The idea I shared was simple: above money, power, connections, or even luck, what turns an idea into a reality is an unwillingness to accept no as an answer, from others, and perhaps more importantly, from yourself. I highlighted examples of amazing accomplishments in the face of a stream of naysayers and doubt, like Peter Thum’s Ethos Water and Fonderie 47 and Harvey Lacey’s Ubuntu Blox. I also talked about men who have pulled themselves out of incredibly difficult life circumstances and turned into titans of industry, such as Daymond John and Robert Herjavec. While I called these examples out to demonstrate known success stories, I also discussed the never ending hurdles I’ve faced in launching my own company, Mizzen+Main.

It has been nearly a year’s worth of work to bring Mizzen+Main to life, and we’re really only just starting. I have heard hundreds and hundreds of “no’s” – but it was never a question whether I would keep going. Please check out the talk below and let me know what you think by connecting with me on Twitter @KevinSMU.

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