Category Archives: TED

The importance of introverts

Please watch and learn from the following video about being an introvert and working with them.

Paul S Allen (I am an introvert)

Susan Cain: The power of introverts

Stanley McChrystal – on Leadership

“A leader can let you fail and not let you be a failure”

Stanley McChrystal


Regardless of how McChrystal left the military what he says in this video still rings true.

If he spoke his mind and that disagreed with current policy so be it. If William Wilberforce did not speak against the status quo then we may still have slavery. It takes one voice to make a difference and sometimes that voice will appear objectionable.

Paul S Allen

John Wilson Drive 4

TEDxDunedin (A Reflection) 3

TED: ideas worth spreading


TEDxDunedin once again has produced a chance to participate in conversations with significant people from within the community of Dunedin. These people are making a difference in the communities they live and to the world beyond.

The third TEDxDunedin event was held at Diesoline Espresso in Dunedin, 12 November 2010

Three local Dunedin people presented very interesting topics.


Professor John Tagg

Professor John Tagg, microbiologist and founder of Blis Technologies, discussed how we are more microbe than human and that we depend on these microbes to protect and help us survive.

As a boy Prof Tagg had a strep infection that lead to rheumatic fever and as a result was on antibiotics for ten years. This lead him on a search to find a better solution to dealing with streptococcus infections.

He discovered that there are good streptococcus and bad ones and that if you encourage the good ones the protect the body against the bad ones.

This lead to the foundation of  Blis Technologies a Dunedin based biotech company producing products full of the good bacteria to fight strep infections to bad breath.


Pip Laufiso – Educator – The Epistemology of Reciprocity

The presentation from Pip was warm, friendly and a challenge for all of us to give back to the community.

The presentation was built around her late mother Eti, using the initial of her name to enhance the importance of reciprocity.

E = Education

T = Tenacity – Having the audacity to carry things through, dedication to build a vision.

I = Interdependence – linked to values and culture, giving back.

O le ala i le pule, le tautau

The pathway to leadership is through service (a Samoan saying)

“To serve other, your family is to learn how to accept and carry responsibility. ”

(Check out my article “Strategic Leadership”)

She shared again the axiom “there is no ‘I’ in team”; “There is always a way”; the expectation of ourselves to be ready when others need our help; and to hold on to faith.

Pip gave a truly heart warming presentation with a clear message to get involved.


Francisca Griffin – Naturopath – Weed Medicine

“Weeds are plants in the wrong places” or are they, they could be the plants we need, our medicine our natural healers.

Francisca gave an enlightening talk on how common “weeds” can be used for both food and for therapeutic remedies. Four example were given

  • Calendula– Colouring rice, spicy, and for burns
  • Chickweed – Good for sunburn or nappy rash
  • Yellow Dock – for removing splinters (an example was given how it helped to remove a slither of glass )
  • Stinging Nettle – High in iron, and used as a remedy for many ailment in history

The challenge facing the use of herbs and plants in naturopathic remedies is competing with high budget pharmaceutical companies and the presumption that they have the control of the scientific community. Yet we need to remember for thousands of years these plants have been used successfully to treat people. and that many pharmaceuticals are based on making synthetic versions of naturally occurring chemicals.

  • The questions that I have about this is how do I know what plants “weeds” are good to eat or use in remedies?
  • How safe are they?

And importantly…

  • Do I now have an excuse to never weed the garden again?


TED and TEDxDunedin provide an chance to be exposed to new ideas to be challenged to think and widen your world view.

We are surrounded by amazing people who all have a passionate story to tell… if only we would listen.

If you get a chance to go to a TED event GO.

Paul S Allen

Previous reflections

TEDxDunedin 1

TEDxDunedin 2

Blown Away Dandelion

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