Recap: TEDxVienna Adventures Within Work- Unusual Times Call for Inspiring Events

The day started out with an “exhibition on work” tour given by the Technical Museum’s tour guides. They walked us through a timeline of industrial revolutions and the evolution of different jobs and tools over time. It was interesting to see machines that belong to vanished jobs of the past, while also examining innovative devices of the future, like 3D printers, all in the same exhibition.

Talks: this is what we came for. 

After a warm welcome from the director of the Technical Museum Vienna, Peter Aufreiter, our TedxVienna curators Vlad Gozman and Alina Nikolaou began the Talks Session of AW Work. They introduced the audience to the topic of work and to the very first speaker of the day, Annemarie.

Annemarie started her talk with the statement “Put your feet on the ground.” She told the touching story of how she rose to the top of the career ladder only to later fall and start over. She explained how she used a three-step process, visualize-feel-act, for her swift recovery from a devastating skydiving accident. Although the odds were against her, she visualized, felt and acted on a healthy recovery.
Then, Florian presented his model of business, wherein he uses his own experience as a violinist in various orchestras to improve people’s management and leadership skills. He talked about his personal experience with leadership and shared stories of his workshops, all while reminding listeners that “It is not the conductor who makes the sound, but the orchestra.” During his interactive session, he picked an attendee from the audience and guided him through the process of identifying his leadership style by knowing his musical piece and effectively leading the orchestra team. Within only 20 minutes, the attendee, who had no previous experience with music, connected with his team so well that they were even able to lead Florian’s team of four professional musicians!

Finally, Markus, a professor of strategic management, gave an insightful talk on emerging technologies such as AI, and their impact on current business organizational structures. “Change manifests itself while we speak” he said while explaining all aspects of potential change that we can expect in the future of workplaces.

Interactives: cherry on top.

In the Lila Raum, members of the Technical Museum team showed attendees how to create models for 3D printers. Meanwhile, in the Tech Lab, 3D prints and laser cut tags of the TEDxVienna logo were made for the participants. Specialists also answered questions about the future of 3D printing and sustainability. In the meantime, others could take pictures in the Filmstudio, choosing backgrounds for their
own personal photographs – for example, choosing to be onstage themselves at a TEDx event. What is more, people from different working backgrounds had the opportunity to share their thoughts with other professionals. This was done by simply writing their advice and experiences onto post-its, which were then placed onto the wall to be read by all.

The end 

Finally, there was a warm goodbye session in the Festsaal, where our curators Vlad and Alina closed the event with some final notes. Those who got to conduct in Florian’s interactive session even received a present: a conductor’s stick. The audience was asked once again “what work meant to them”, and whether it is our passion, journey or simply a means to earn money, we all expanded our understanding of work during the day.
How about you? What is your definition of work?

Written by: Asli Ertem, Marie Krebs
Header and photo credits: Manuel Hambrusch

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