The Power of Storytelling, Innovation, and Power of Play | Sarah Yourgrau

Sarah Yourgrau is a storyteller and innovator who believes in the transformative power of feel-good narratives. Sarah examines how storytelling shapes our future and drives innovation and inspiration. Learn about Sarah’s unique approach to leadership, the tools she finds invaluable in her work, and her belief that we all have the power to change our lives and the world around us.

Key Takeaways:

The Role of Storytelling in Shaping Our Future: How narratives can inspire us to co-create the realities we desire.

Innovation as a Playful Endeavor: The importance of embracing curiosity, experimentation, and collaboration.

Leading with Empowerment: Creating environments where team members feel safe to explore new ideas and take risks.

Join us at TEDxLogan Circle 2024 to hear Sarah Yourgrau’s unique perspective on innovation, leadership, and the transformative power of storytelling.

Share in two to three sentences what your talk is about.

In my talk, I explore how the stories we tell in mainstream media are the most powerful force shaping our future. I'll explain how feel-good storytelling not only inspires us to collectively reimagine our worlds, but also fuels us with the energy required to co-create the realities we desire to live in.

Based on your talk, what industries are you rethinking innovation?

Entertainment, Marketing, Non-Profit Sector, Philanthropy

Share two or three words that best describe who you are as a person.

Optimistic. Tenacious. Warm

Describe your feelings about the TEDxLogan Circle event.

Getting to share my TEDx talk at the inaugural TEDxLogan Circle is a dream come true. The theme “Rethink Innovation” feels more authentic to my mission and way of being in the world than any other subject, and it’s not lost on me the opportunity to share these ideas in one of the most influential cities in the world. Monica and her team of volunteers at TEDxLogan Circle have continued to exceed all my expectations, really ensuring that this event won’t just be symbolic but truly generative - for both the participants and audiences alike.

What do you hope more people will understand about innovation?

I hope more people will understand that innovation is more about cultivating a mindset of “play” versus a firm, scientific approach. In a culture where our sense of worth often feels tethered to our results, it’s easy for the playful exploration needed for innovation to be overlooked. Yet, innovation really thrives when we challenge norms and take risks, diving into uncertainty for brand-new results. Cultivating a playful mindset encourages curiosity and experimentation, which help us unlock new avenues for growth. Ultimately, embracing innovation as a playful endeavor unlocks untapped potential for progress in both personal and professional spheres.

What does being an effective leader mean to you?

Being an effective leader, to me, means empowering my team to feel safe to explore new ideas, experiment, and take calculated risks without the fear of failure. It's about taking the time to understand the unique communication styles of each team member to ensure that everyone feels engaged and valued as active participants in our collective quest. By setting a high bar for performance, while also firmly recognizing everyone's unique capacity to meet it, I’ve found I can create an environment where innovation can flourish and where people feel safe to share and try out new ideas. This approach fosters trust, creativity, collaboration, and continuous improvement, ultimately leading to greater success and fulfillment for all of us. Most importantly, it holds the balance of audacity and humility.

What resources or tools do you find invaluable in the work that you do?

First and foremost, the most invaluable aspect of the work I do is the people I get to do it with. Storytelling and production is a team sport. Period. Nothing meaningful can get done in a silo, which is why having a dedicated and passionate team by my side is essential. From brainstorming sessions to executing complex scenes, every project is a collective effort that relies on the combined skills, expertise, and creativity of everyone involved. Collaboration across a diverse range of backgrounds is what makes the best magic.

What is “your why?”

My 'why' is deeply rooted in the belief that we all have the power to change our lives and the world around us. In a world that often tells us who we are and what we can't do, I'm driven to remind folks that nothing's set in stone. Even in our toughest moments, there's a chance to rewrite our stories, redefine our paths, and create a future filled with new opportunities. It's about realizing our own agency and making meaningful change, not just for ourselves, but for everyone.

What is your favorite way to rest and unwind?

Meditation, journaling, spending time in nature, and having a good belly laugh - these are my go-to’s to put the infinite potential of life back in perspective and to help me feel less like a machine and more like a human again; back into a state of playfulness and “true-seeing”.
Picture of SARAH YOURGRAU

SARAH YOURGRAU

Sarah Yourgrau is a storyteller and innovator who believes in the transformative power of feel-good narratives. Sarah examines how storytelling shapes our future and drives innovation and inspiration. Learn about Sarah's unique approach to leadership, the tools she finds invaluable in her work, and her belief that we all have the power to change our lives and the world around us.

ABOUT THE SPEAKER
Join us at TEDxLogan Circle 2024 to hear Sarah Yourgrau’s unique perspective on innovation, leadership, and the transformative power of storytelling.