Why do we often find ourselves searching for inspiring speeches?
Public speakers draw large crowds because they fill our need for positive reinforcement and inspiration. After two of the craziest years in our company’s history, we wanted to pay tribute to the resilient men and women who gave us the assurance to keep going and provide a list of, as #22 Robert Kiyosaki would say, “real” teachers — people who speak from experience.
#50 – Natalie Nixon
Natalie Nixon is a creativity strategist, top change management keynote speaker, advisor, and a strategy, foresight, and innovation expert. As president and founder of Figure 8 Thinking, LLC, she advises leaders on unique approaches for process transformation and leveraging creativity as an innovation resource to more rapidly achieve priority business goals.
She is a global speaker and the author of the award-winning The Creativity Leap: Unleash Curiosity, Improvisation and Intuition at Work; the editor of Strategic Design Thinking: Innovation in Products, Services, Experiences, and Beyond; and a regular contributor to Fast Company on creativity, design thinking and the future of work.
#49 – Mike Walsh
“...Actually, our real job is not to work. Our real job is to design work.”
Mike Walsh is the CEO of Tomorrow and author of best-selling leadership book, The Algorithmic Leader – How to be smart when machines are smarter than you. Mike is always on the cutting edge of technology and consults for corporations who want a leg up on how to position their organizations to meet the demands of the future.
Oftentimes it’s a new idea that makes all the difference for your business and Walsh has a surplus of thought-provoking content on his YouTube channel to spark your next big innovation.
#48 – Amanda Gore
Amanda Gore is a top emotional intelligence keynote speaker and best-selling author. She uses the principles of emotional intelligence to transform the spirit of people and cultures by changing perceptions, improving relationships, connecting people, managing change, leadership, innovation, and team dynamics.
Amanda understands that getting down to business isn’t all about targets and optimizing clickthroughs. The heart and profit center of every business is about how people think, and consequently, feel about themselves; and how they make others feel. How we feel about a personal or business relationship informs every part of our decision to invest with them.
Amanda’s action-packed performances offer an abundance of use-it-now tools to create deep, lasting relationships at every level — with family, customers, colleagues, and clients.
#47 – John O’Leary
At the age of nine, John O’Leary experienced a fire explosion that burned 100% of his body. Given that he only had a one percent chance to live, John fought the extraordinary odds.
After spending five months in a hospital and undergoing dozens of surgeries, he lost all of his fingers, and had to relearn how to write, walk, and feed himself.
Because John persevered through such a tragic experience, he’s able to share his life’s lessons to audiences far and wide, inspiring them to live their lives to the fullest, embrace each moment, and celebrate joy.
#46 – Blake Morgan
Blake Morgan is a leader in customer experience. She is a keynote speaker and customer experience futurist and author of two books.
She has worked with Comcast, Allstate, Genentech, Accor Hotels, Accenture, Adobe, Cisco, Parker Hannifin, Ericsson, Verizon, and more. Blake is a guest lecturer at Columbia University and the University of California, San Diego as well as adjunct faculty at the Rutgers executive education MBA program.
Blake contributes to Forbes, the Harvard Business Review and Hemispheres Magazine. She is the host of The Modern Customer Podcast, The Be Your Own Boss Podcast, and a weekly customer experience video series on YouTube.
#45 – Liz Wiseman
Liz Wiseman is a top leadership keynote speaker, researcher and executive advisor who teaches leadership to executives around the world. She is the author of The New York Times bestseller Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter, The Multiplier Effect: Tapping the Genius Inside Our Schools, and Wall Street Journal bestseller Rookie Smarts: Why Learning Beats Knowing in the New Game of Work.
She is the CEO of the Wiseman Group, a leadership research and development firm headquartered in Silicon Valley, California. Some of her recent clients include: Apple, AT&T, Disney, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Nike, Salesforce, Tesla, and Twitter. Liz has been listed on the Thinkers50 ranking and in 2019 was recognized as the top leadership thinker in the world.
#44 – David Nurse
David Nurse is an NBA life optimization coach, bestselling author of Pivot & Go, and worldwide motivational speaker. As a former professional basketball player and coach for the Brooklyn Nets, he has helped more than 150 NBA players with their personal and professional development.
Off the court, David has led Fortune 500 CEOs and entrepreneurs, tech moguls and finance wizards, Hollywood actors and musicians alike to find their genuine rhythms by focusing on mindset pivots – ones that allow us to shift our perspective by incremental, but profoundly powerful, degrees. He has spoken in more than 50 different countries on the topics of overall personal development, confidence building, leadership, and motivational growth.
David will be hosting our free How to Inspire Your Employees in 2022 event on December 22nd, alongside other Top 50 Keynote Speakers.
#43 – Nadja West
Nadja West is the first African American Surgeon General of the U.S. Army, first African American woman 3-star General in the Army, and the highest-ranking woman to graduate from West Point.
Nadja has more than 20 years experience in executive leadership, crisis management, and disaster response – instrumental in crafting the DOD medical response to the Ebola crisis. Nadja was named one of Washington’s Most Powerful Women by Washingtonian Magazine. Today, Nadja speaks on how to effectively lead teams through times of uncertainty and crisis.
#42 – Jessica Mathews
Jessica Matthews is the founder and CEO of Uncharted Power, an award-winning power and data infrastructure technology company that develops infrastructure solutions for communities, facilities, and the Internet of Things.
Jessica was invited by President Barack Obama to the White House to represent small companies for the signing of the America Invents Act in 2012, and currently serves as an Ambassador of Entrepreneurship for Nigeria. In 2016, she raised what is presently the largest Series A ever raised by a black female founder in history, and was selected to ring the NASDAQ opening ceremony bell, representing all Forbes 30 Under 30 alumna.
Jessica inspires audiences to use innovation and tech disruption to power the needs of people, businesses, and communities worldwide.
#41 – Jane Chen
Jane Chen is a top entrepreneur speaker and the co-founder and CEO of Embrace, a social enterprise that aims to help the 15 million premature and low birth-weight babies born every year, through a low-cost infant warmer.
Her innovative idea takes the place of costly and technical incubators, allowing her technology to reach more remote villages around the world. Recently, Embrace Innovations launched a new line of baby products, Little Lotus, using the Embrace technology for the US market.
Jane was selected as one of Forbes’ Impact 30 and as a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Jane is a TED Fellow, Echoing Green Fellow, and Rainer Arnhold Fellow. She is a recipient of the Economist Innovation Award and Fast Company Innovation Award. She has also been recognized as Social Entrepreneur of the Year by the World Economic Forum.
#40 – Admiral William H. McRaven
“Without daring greatly, you will never know what is truly possible.”
Admiral William H. McRaven is a recognized national authority on U.S. foreign policy and has advised Presidents George W. Bush, Barack Obama, and other U.S. leaders on defense issues. He has held leadership positions in higher education including CEO and Chancellor of the University of Texas system.
Admiral McRaven is the author of four books including, Make Your Bed: Little Things That Can Change Your Life and Maybe the World, based on his 2014 University of Texas Commencement Speech that received worldwide attention. He uses personal narratives drawn from his own experiences to impart lessons in teamwork, personal accountability, resilience and leadership to his audiences.
#39 – Amy Mahjoory
Amy Mahjoory is an expert real estate investor & educator, HGTV personality, best-selling author, networking coach and top entrepreneur keynote speaker.
For the past 21 years, Amy has studied the art of strategic networking. Before pursuing her passion in entrepreneurship, Amy was a highly recognized global leader in procurement, logistics, and operations management for Dell.
#38 – Chris Gardner
That book was the basis for a film starring Will Smith who earned a Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Academy Award nomination for his performance.
As a motivational speaker, Gardner shares some of the steps that he had to take and obstacles he overcame to get from where he was to create the life that he wants to live.
He introduces audiences to the concept of Spiritual Genetics, the part of each human being that is beyond the scope, reach or understanding of science, medicine or technology.
Chris also details the importance of the “Ps” in our lives: Promises, Passion and having a Plan and the C-5 Complex (Clear, Concise, Compelling, Consistent and Committed to the plan).
#37 – Lisa Bodell
“We are taught to follow rules, not challenge them… The companies that are more simplified and more innovative give permission to challenge.”
Lisa Bodell is the Founder and CEO of FutureThink, which enables organizations to kill complexity, create space for innovation, and fast track work that matters. As a futurist and expert on the topic of innovation and simplicity, she serves as a global council member of the World Economic Forum, and has helped thousands of senior leaders ignite innovation at Google, Cisco, Citigroup, U.S. Navy War College, Pfizer, and more.
Lisa has brought her message to over 30 countries and nearly 100,000 people and is the author of two award-winning, best-selling books: Why Simple Wins and Kill the Company: End the Status Quo, Start an Innovation Revolution. Her keynotes leave audiences inspired to change, and arm them with radically simple tools to get to the work that matters.
Lisa Bodell is a former guest on Episode 119 of the Real Leaders Podcast where she shares more on how to kill conformity. She also will be speaking at our free How to Inspire Your Employees in 2022 event on December 22nd, alongside other Top 50 Keynote Speakers.
#36 – Dr. Jessica Houston
Dr. Jessica Houston travels around the world empowering thousands as an inspirational speaker and corporate trainer. She has overcome poverty, depression, low self-confidence and intimate partner violence, which fuels her passion to inspire others to live abundant and satisfying lives, despite any obstacles they may encounter.
Dr. Houston’s key message is also influenced by her extensive career in social work, consulting and higher education. She currently serves as a professor at Purdue Global University and owns and operates a successful personal and professional development training company that provides services to small businesses, colleges, corporations and nonprofit organizations.
#35 – Maurice Clarrett
“My thing isn’t to talk to them, my thing is to listen.”
Maurice Clarett was a household name in Columbus, OH known for his viscous running style, nose for the endzone, and bringing the university its first national championship in 32 years (2002). However, Maurice claims his life began when football ended. Following the national championship, he was penalized for academic misconduct and dismissed from the university. After a failed attempt to get into the NFL, Maurice resorted to narcotics and even picked up an armed robbery charge.
In his book One and Done: How My Life Started When My Football Career Ended he describes how his time reading success books in jail opened his eyes to a new belief in himself.
Maurice now owns his own real estate investment organization, nonprofit organization, and consults at the University of Connecticut to listen and influence young men on how to create a better life for themselves.
#34 – Heather Monahan
Heather Monahan is a best-selling author, top inspirational keynote speaker, entrepreneur, and founder of Boss In Heels. Having successfully climbed the corporate ladder for nearly 20 years, Heather Monahan is one of the few women to break the glass ceiling and claim her spot in the C-suite.
As a Chief Revenue Officer in media, Heather Monahan is a Glass Ceiling Award winner, named one of the most Influential Women in Radio in 2017 and Thrive Global named her a Limit Breaking Female Founder in 2018.
Heather’s new book Confidence Creator shot to #1 on Amazon’s Business Biographies and Business Motivation lists the first week it debuted on Amazon. Heather is a confidence expert and is currently working with Fortune 500 companies and professional sports teams to develop confidence.
Heather will be speaking at our free How to Inspire Your Employees in 2022 event on December 22nd, alongside other Top 50 Keynote Speakers.
#33 – Kim Perell
Kim Perell is an award-winning entrepreneur, bestselling author, CEO, and angel investor, who has made headlines for her transformative story of a startup entrepreneur to leading tech CEO and prominent angel investor.
A great believer in paying it forward, Kim’s passion is to help others achieve success. Kim is an early stage investor in over 80 start-ups, 16 of which have successfully been acquired by some of the largest Fortune 500 companies. Kim’s first book, The Execution Factor, The One Skill That Drives Success, is a national bestseller, designed to help others achieve success in business and life by mastering execution.
Kim’s achievements as an entrepreneur have been widely recognized. She has been named one of AdAge’s Marketing Technology Trailblazers, Business Insider’s Most Powerful Women in Mobile Advertising, is an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and was named Entrepreneur of the Year by the National Association of Female Executives.
#32 – Barb Stegemann
Barb Stegemann is a top motivational virtual keynote speaker, social entrepreneur, one of Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women, and the Founder of 7 Virtues. Barb is also the author of the bestselling book, The 7 Virtues of a Philosopher Queen, which has empowered women (and men) to launch companies, run for public office, and end bullying.
Barb became known to millions of Canadians when she became the first woman from Atlantic Canada to land a venture-capital deal on the CBC TV show Dragons’ Den for The 7 Virtues Beauty. She went on to become the “Top Game Changer” in the history of the show for creating her social enterprise.
As a keynote speaker, Barb has opened for Erin Brockovich, and is often invited to moderate panels and attend events as a delegate with world leaders such as Bill Clinton.
#31 – Carla Harris
Carla Harris is a Vice Chairman, Managing Director and Senior Client Advisor at Morgan Stanley. She is responsible for increasing client connectivity and penetration to enhance revenue generation across the firm. In August 2013, Carla Harris was appointed by President Barack Obama to chair the National Women’s Business Council.
Ms. Harris is a top finance keynote speaker and was named to Fortune Magazine’s list of “The 50 Most Powerful Black Executives in Corporate America”, Carla is the author of the book, Strategize To Win.
#30 – Inky Johnson
In 2006 Inky Johnson’s career as a defensive back at the University of Tennessee suddenly ended when he suffered a hit that left his arm paralyzed. However, Inky did not allow his premature departure from the NFL get in the way of pursuing a life of purpose and impact.
Now he is an acclaimed inspirational speaker and inspires audiences to embrace adversity. He also hosts the Serendipity With Inky Johnson podcast where he has insightful dialogue about how chance events can alter one’s life. He has worked with many Fortune 500 companies, universities and professional sports organizations.
#29 – Devon Still
“You know, leaders don’t really start out at the front of the lines. Leaders one day have the courage to get out from the back of the line and walk up to the front and lead.”
Devon Still is a renowned speaker, author of Still in The Game, top podcast host, coach, former NFL professional athlete, Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year, and a Penn State University All-American. In Devon’s eyes, he is most importantly a father, helping his daughter, Leah, publicly “beat up cancer” – a pediatric cancer-fighting journey that has inspired the world. As CEO and Founder of the Still Strong Foundation, he provides assistance to families whose children are battling cancer.
As a presenter, Devon captures the hearts and minds of millions each year, delivering actionable insights that lead to individuals becoming *Playmakers in the game of life and business. Many well-known organizations, ranging from the FBI, Procter & Gamble, and Virgin, have invited Devon to speak at their events and share his winning playbook on increasing performance.
#28 – Tim Grover
Tim S. Grover is the CEO of ATTACK Athletics, Inc. He is well known for his work with elite champions and Hall of Famers, including Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Dwyane Wade, and hundreds other NFL, MLB, NBA, and Olympic athletes
Grover is recognized as the preeminent authority on the science and art of physical and mental dominance and achieving excellence.
He is the author of the national bestseller RELENTLESS: From Good to Great to Unstoppable and Winning: The Unforgiving Race to Greatness.A featured columnist at SI.com and Yahoo.com, he also appears on ESPN, Fox Sports, and other media outlets.
Tim delivers keynote speaker addresses and is a consultant to business leaders, athletes, and elite achievers in any area who want to know how the best can get better in anything they do. He teaches the principles of relentless drive, results-driven performance, and mental toughness.
#27 – Les Brown
Les Brown has been a mainstay in the world of renowned motivational speakers for many years. He is a highly sought-after resource in business and professional circles for Fortune 500 CEOs, small business owners, nonprofit and community leaders from all sectors of society looking to expand opportunity.
He is a leading speaker on achievement and delivered his messages to audiences as large as 80,000 people, energizing them to meet the challenges of the world around them.
Brown received the National Speakers Association coveted Council of Peers Award of Excellence (CPAE), and its most prestigious Golden Gavel Award for achievement and leadership in communication. Toastmasters International also voted him one of the Top Five Outstanding Speakers Worldwide.
#26 – Nick Vujicic
Nick Vujicic started off with a disadvantage unknown to most of us – Nick was born without legs or arms. Nick has faced tremendous obstacles in his life, but he didn’t let that stop him from finding his purpose and allowing the world to see the light that he had.
Millions of people have listened to Nick as they have found hope, purpose, and the strength to overcome their challenges through Nick’s inspirational speeches. Nick’s passion is to inspire and equip the world to know that we all can rise above adversity and overcome every disability of the heart and mind.
#25 – Vernice “FlyGirl” Armour
Vernice “FlyGirl” Armour is a top inspirational speaker, America’s first African American female combat pilot, and the author of Zero to Breakthrough. FlyGirl’s fresh style and contagious energy jump off the stage and move people to action.
After completing two tours in Iraq, Vernice left the military and launched VAI Consulting and Training, LLC, where she produced over six-figures in revenue within the first 12 months and over a million in the first five years by applying her Zero to Breakthrough™ Success Model.
Vernice reveals her process and philosophy to help leaders, teams and organizations adopt a “breakthrough mentality.” Outlining a variety of fundamentals, she provides key examples and insight on how a mission-focused mindset can lead to success and achievement.
#24 – Colonel Nicole Malachowski
Colonel Nicole Malachowski served as a mission ready fighter pilot in three operational F-15E fighter squadrons and has flown over 188 combat hours in both OPERATION DELIBERATE FORGE and OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM. She served in combat as an F-15E Flight Commander, F-15E Evaluator, Instructor Pilot and Flight Lead.
Upon her medical retirement, she voluntarily authored recommendations to the Chief of Staff of the Air Force on how to improve the support of the Air Force’s wounded, ill, and injured, specifically those patients enduring complex and chronic illnesses.
#23 – Brendon Burchard
After a near-death car accident Brendon Burchard knew it was time to make some changes in his life. Today he is considered one of the world’s leading high performance coaches. Brendon is one of the most-watched, quoted and followed personal development trainers in history.
Brendon is a sought-after speaker, sharing the stage with other top keynote speakers including Sir Richard Branson and Tony Robbins.
#22 – Robert Kiyosaki
Robert Kiyosaki has spent decades sharing his knowledge of personal finance and business practices. What first started as a board game, with the goal to teach people personal finance and investment principles, has transformed into an educational business empire.
Robert had published over 26 books, primarily through his Rich Dad Poor Dad series. The original book has sold over 41 million copies and has been translated into 51 different languages. This series wakes people up to how they can make smart investments and reach financial freedom.
Although Robert is highly successful in real estate and business building, he is most passionate about teaching. He has spoken to audiences worldwide and inspired them to start making their own money and reach their goals.
Robert knows that the traditional advice for how to build wealth is flawed and outdated. He provides his audience with the tools and knowledge for how to build wealth in today’s day and age.
#21 – Brian Tracy
Brian Tracy has been a mainstay in the field of motivational speaking for decades.
Prior to founding Brian Tracy International, he was the COO of a $265 million dollar development company and enjoyed widespread success in sales and marketing, investments, real estate development and syndication, importation, distribution, and management consulting.
He has consulted for more than 1,000 companies and addressed more than 5 million people in 5,000 talks and seminars throughout the US, Canada, and 70 other countries worldwide. As a keynote speaker and seminar leader, he addresses more than 250,000 people each year.
He is the author of over seventy books that have been translated into dozens of languages. He has written and produced more than 300 audio and video learning programs, including the worldwide, best-selling Psychology of Achievement that has been translated into more than two dozen languages.
#20 – Ben Newman
Ben Newman is known as a powerhouse storyteller. He can be found with Top Fortune 500 companies in boardrooms and stages around the world as well as with some of the world’s elite sports teams.
He was featured in 2018 on ESPN’s Rolling with the Tide for his work with the National Champion Alabama Crimson Tide Football Team. He also works with Lavonte David, captain of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl Team.
As a speaker and performance coach, he connects purpose and drives accountability for Microsoft, AB InBev, Kansas State Football, Miami Dolphins, Northwestern Mutual, Mass Mutual, Wanzek Construction, and other elite companies around the globe. You can also find him speaking and giving back to the military.
Ben Newman is a former guest on Episode 115 of the Real Leaders Podcast where he shares experiences that fuel his burn, how the key to changing your mind is through the heart, and that being real is what is missing in today’s business environment. He also will be speaking at our free How to Inspire Your Employees in 2022 event on December 22nd, alongside other Top 50 Keynote Speakers.
#19 – Ray Lewis
Ray Lewis is recognized as one of the most dominant defensive players in the history of the National Football League. He led the Baltimore Ravens to victory in Super Bowl XXXV where he was named Super Bowl MVP, and again in Super Bowl XLVII.
In 2000, he became only the second player in NFL history to win both the NFL Defensive Player of the Year and Super Bowl MVP awards in the same year. He was inducted into the NFL Hall of Fame in 2018.
He has drawn from those experiences in his 17-year career plus valuable lessons learned from his personal life to bring a unique brand of motivation and inspiration to some of the biggest companies in the world.
He co-founded Power52 Foundation with a vision of strengthening communities from the inside. The 501(c)3 nonprofit foundation is dedicated to training and employing at-risk individuals in the clean energy industry,
Ray Lewis is a former guest on Meet the Real Leaders, our free monthly networking event for values-aligned CEOs, where he shared “What Professional Athletes Can Teach CEOs About Impact — For a Return on Investments.”
#18 – Laila Ali
Laila Ali is a world-class athlete, fitness & wellness advocate, TV host, home chef, founder of the Laila Ali Lifestyle Brand, and mother of two.
Laila is heralded as the most successful female in the history of women’s boxing. In 2012 when women’s boxing was included in the Olympics, Laila was the first woman in history to provide expert commentary for NBC Sports.
Laila speaks to empowering young women to find their strength, spirit, and power from within.
#17 – Dorie Clark
The New York Times described Dorie Clark as an “expert at self-reinvention and helping others to make changes in their lives.” She is the author of Stand Out, which was named the #1 leadership book of the year by Inc. magazine as well as a Top 10 Business Book of the Year by Forbes.
Dorie teaches at Duke University’s Business School and Columbia Business School. She has spoken for an impressive range of companies and universities including Google, Microsoft, Yale University, and Harvard Business School.
She has been called a “branding expert’ by the Associated Press, Fortune, and Inc magazine. She works to inspire and teach people all she knows about personal branding, career reinvention, and leadership.
Dorie teaches her audience how to be recognized for the leaders that they are and leave the room feeling empowered to take action and make an impact.
#16 – Andy Frisella
Andy Frisella is the CEO of one of the world’s leading nutritional supplement companies, 1st Phorm International based in St. Louis, MO. He also founded and runs five other businesses that collectively generate $200 million in annual revenues.
He hosts The Real AF podcast and formerly The MFCEO Project, a business/success oriented podcast that been ranked as #1 Business/Entrepreneurship/Personal Development podcast on the planet for nearly four years straight.
He is one of the highest paid keynote speakers in the world and has been recognized as one of the world’s leading authorities on customer retention and loyalty, company culture, and the marketing techniques it takes to build both brick-and-mortar and online direct-to-consumer retail businesses from the ground up.
He has also written a best-selling series of children’s books that promote entrepreneurial values and the success mindset.
Frisella was also named Entrepreneur of the Year in 2016 and has been featured in Forbes, Inc., and Entrepreneur Magazine and many other publications.
#15 – Jully Black
Jully Black is a Canadian icon, singer, and speaker. Jully co-founded the Empowered In My Skin summit which is a women empowerment summit that works to teach people that they can be the first domino in creating world change.
Jully is known as “Canada’s Queen of R&B Soul”, but she also works hard to use her career and voice to bring attention to causes that are near to her heart. She has travelled the world taking part in philanthropic efforts.
She is a vocal advocate for the LGBTQ+ community as well as a WE Day ambassador. Jully has had a very impressive career and list of accomplishments, but uses her platform for good and to bring attention to issues that she believes are important.
Jully Black works hard to transform the world for the better and to inspire individuals to be the catalyst of change.
#14 – Dr. Eric Thomas
Dr. Eric Thomas is a motivational speaker and minister who heads ETA, an education consulting, executive coaching and athletic development firm. He specializes in giving motivational talks to college and professional athletes. In fact, LeBron James credited Thomas as part of his inspiration for winning the 2012 NBA championship.
He is a regular contributor to ESPN and Fox News and has performed voice-over work for Major League Baseball and the National Football League. Many of his sermons and motivational speeches are on YouTube where they have found a large following over the years.Thomas has also published three books: The Secret to Success (2012), Greatness Is Upon You: Laying the Foundation (2014) and Average Skill Phenomenal Will (2016)
#13 – Heidi Hackemer
Heidi Hackemer is the Executive Creative Director at Oatly and the founder and chairman of Wolf & Wilhelmine, a brand strategy firm with the goal of helping companies make a positive impact on the world.
Her keynotes tell a story, are edgy, and captivating. You will be sure to walk away with new ideas and swear words to add to your vocabulary! Hackemer gives new life to dull products and brands which distinguishes her from many of the others on this list.
Her company, Wolf & Wilhelmine has an all female leadership team passionate about working with brands to align their business goals with positive change. The company leaves traditional approaches at the door and is focused on finding innovative ways to change the world, with the help of the business community.
She also co-founded Creative Alliance, which matches social movements with powerful professionals who can facilitate the movement. She has been an advisor for some of the top brands in the world as well as the Obama White House.
When it comes to grassroots activism and having a natural ability to predict what’s next in the world, Heidi is an expert. She works hard to give social movements the platform they need to create the positive world change that they are fighting for.
#12 – Ed Mylett
Ed Mylett was a standout Division I baseball player and had hoped to play Major League Baseball but a major injury dealt a final blow to his athletic aspirations.
He turned his drive and determination to the business world where he quickly climbed the ladder at WFG. Forbes has listed him as a Top 50 Under 50 with a net worth of more than $400 million.
A highly sought-after speaker, Mylett spreads his messages of living an epic life through his podcast #MaxOut With Ed Mylett and he has recently published his first book, #MaxOut Your Life: Strategies for Becoming an Elite Performer.
Mylett also proudly supports charitable and community initiatives such as the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America, the All for One Foundation, and the National Leadership Foundation.
#11 – Daymond John
Daymond John is a pioneer in the fashion industry but perhaps just as well known as a Shark on ABC’s Shark Tank. He is also a multiple New York Times best-selling author, branding guru, and motivational speaker.
As a businessman, he first broke through by turning an original $40 budget into FUBU, a $6 billion fashion game-changer.
In 2013, President Barack Obama appointed Daymond a Presidential Ambassador for Global Entrepreneurship to focus on promoting the power and importance of entrepreneurship on a global scale
He created his brand consulting company, The Shark Group, to reveal the secrets that made FUBU a multi-billion-dollar global brand and reinvigorated the once defunct Coogi brand into the biggest fashion line in its space.
He is a charismatic speaker who brings his quintessential rags-to-riches success story of sacrifice, hard work, and perseverance to audiences worldwide.
#10 – Rachel Hollis
What started as a food blog has turned into a best-selling book, one of the most successful podcasts in the world, and a media company. Rachel Hollis has spent the past few decades turning her passions into a career.
Rachel has published nine books. Girl, Wash Your Face is her most well known and has sold about 4.5 million copies since 2018. She is also the host of The Rachel Hollis Podcast which features interviews with the leaders in business, media, and lifestyle and shares their insight for how you can level up your life.
As the founder and CEO of RISE, a personal development conference, Rachel is passionate about motivating women to start life-changing habits. Through RISE and her media company, The Hollis Company, Rachel hosts many live events. The goal of these events is to provide people with the tools to create positive and lasting change in their lives.
Rachel is one of today’s most sought-after keynote speakers for her expertise in entrepreneurship and the authentic connection she forms with her audience.
#9 – Ryan Holiday
Ryan Holiday is an American author, marketer, and entrepreneur who writes on the topics of stoicism. Stoicism is the endurance of pain or hardship without a display of feeling and without complaint. Stoicism is teaching you to grind out whatever you may be going through for the greater good.
Ryan wrote an article called, Here’s The Strategy Elite Athletes Follow To Perform At The Highest Level. The coaches mentioned in Ryan’s article all emphasized how they trust the process. Nick Saban, University of Alabama football coach, tells his team to concentrate on what they can manage. All they have to do is go step by step–just think about the task at hand and nothing else. Any difficult situation can be broken down into pieces.
Ryan has spoken over hundreds of times relating to topics of his books in more than a dozen countries.
#8 – David Goggins
David Goggins is a retired Navy SEAL and is the only member of the U.S. Armed Forces to complete SEAL training (including two Hell Weeks), the U.S. Army Ranger School (where he graduated as Enlisted Honor Man), Air Force Tactical Air Controller training and best-selling author of the book, Can’t Hurt Me.
He has also completed over 60 ultra-marathons, triathlons, and ultra-triathlons, setting new course records and regularly placing in the top five and once held the Guinness World Record for pull-ups completing 4,030 in 17 hours.
He’s an in-demand public speaker who delivers impactful messages of personal accountability and how to go beyond motivation to achieve your personal best. Goggins has shared his story with hundreds of thousands of students across the country, numerous professional sports teams, and at several Fortune 500 companies.
He is also a member of the Patriot Tour, sharing the stage with Marcus Luttrell, Taya Kyle, and other retired Special Operators.
#7 – Lisa Nichols
From a struggling single mom to a millionaire entrepreneur Lisa Nichols’ story has inspired countless men and women. She is one of the most requested motivational speakers as well as a corporate CEO, and media personality with an audience of over 80 million people.
As founder and CEO of Motivating the Masses, Inc., Lisa has used her life experience and inspiring message to transform the lives of individuals and the trajectory of many businesses. Lisa’s nonprofit, Motivating Teen Spirit, has successfully impacted 270,000 teens and supported over 2,500 teen dropouts in returning to school.
Lisa is the best-selling author of seven books. Her most recent book, Abundance Now, goes deeper into creating a clear and practical blueprint for personal success. Lisa uses her books as a tool to grow closer and dig deeper with her fans on how to transform their lives.
Her impact on people’s lives is great and she works hard to teach her audience how to transform their lives for the better and to discover their potential.
#6 – Jon Gordon
Jon Gordon is a bestselling author and keynote speaker whose work about positive leadership has inspired audiences around the world.
Gordon has been featured on The Today Show, CNN, CNBC, FOX and Friends, and several newspapers and magazines.
As a highly sought-after motivational speaker, Gordon’s talks have challenged and influenced leaders in a dynamic range of industries and professions.
His clients include The Los Angeles Dodgers, The Atlanta Falcons, Campbell Soup, Dell, Publix, Southwest Airlines, LA Clippers, Miami Heat, Pittsburgh Pirates, BB&T Bank, Clemson Football, Northwestern Mutual, Bayer, West Point Academy, and many others.
Jon will be featured at our free How to Inspire Your Employees in 2022 event on December 22nd, alongside other Top 50 Keynote Speakers.
#5 – Jocko Willink
Jocko Willink is a retired US Navy Seal who it appears has never taken a day off — co-authoring multiple books including #1 New York Times bestseller Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win. Willink rewires skeptical business managers into inspired accountable leaders and hosts top-rated Jocko Podcast. His ranking jumps to #6 this year because of his infamous 2021 Monday Instagram motivation speeches that make you want to get up and do some burpees.
He is also the co-founder of Echelon Front, where he serves as Chief Executive Officer, leadership instructor, speaker and strategic advisor.
Jocko served for 20 years in SEAL teams. After he returned from tours in Iraq he was named as Officer-in-Charge of training for all West Coast SEAL Teams. In this role, he spearheaded the development of leadership training and personally instructed and mentored the next generation of SEAL leaders who have continued to perform with great success on the battlefield. Jocko is the recipient of the Silver Star, the Bronze Star, and numerous other personal and unit awards.
Jocko has also authored the Discipline Equals Freedom Field Manual, a New York Times Bestseller, and the best-selling children’s books: The Way of the Warrior Kid, and The Way of the Warrior Kid: Marc’s Mission
#4 – Mel Robbins
Mel Robbins has done it all. She has had 12 different careers during her time as a working adult. This has led her to going through failure time and time again. She has taken all that she has learned and turned it into a way to inspire and teach others how to break their own negative, self-sabotaging.
She had grown her audience by providing insight into how to control your life and steer it towards the direction you want. Mel has a TedTalk with over 26 million views, over 60 million people interact with her social media monthly, and has sold over 5 million copies of her book, The 5 Second Rule.
Mel has mastered how to take daily habits and turn them into positive life changes. She went from letting her anxiety, people-pleasing, and self sabotaging take over her life, to rewiring her brain to allow for positive self talk and tools to build a better life.
Mel’s mission is to share simple, proven tools that anyone, at any age, can use to change thinking and behavior patterns.
#3 – Tom Bilyeu
Tom Bilyeu is best known as a co-founder of Quest Nutrition. It was the second-fastest-growing private company in North America on the Inc 500 for 2014. The company grew by 57,000% in its first 3 years and became a billion-dollar business within 5 years of its launch.
He is known as a serial entrepreneur and thought leader who can deliver impactful keynote speeches or lead breakout sessions on business strategy, brand building, mindset, and leadership.
Tom regularly inspires audiences of entrepreneurs, change makers, and thought leaders at some of the most prestigious conferences and seminars around the world, including Abundance 360, A-fest, and Freedom Fast Lane. His deep passion for storytelling combined with his insights from building a billion-dollar business allow him to deliver powerful speeches that routinely garner top praise.
#2 – Brené Brown
Brené Brown is a research professor at the University of Houston where she holds the Huffington – Brené Brown Endowed Chair.
Brown has spent the past two decades extensively studying courage, vulnerability, shame, and empathy. She is the author of five #1 New York Times bestsellers: The Gifts of Imperfection, Daring Greatly, Rising Strong, Braving the Wilderness, and Dare to Lead. She also hosts two podcasts, Dare to Lead and Unlocking Us.
Her TED talk, The Power of Vulnerability, has more than 30 million views and remains one of the top five most viewed TED talks in the world.
#1 – Tony Robbins
Tony Robbins is perhaps the most well-known of all motivational speakers in the world. For the past 40 years, he has been an entrepreneur, #1 New York Times bestselling author, philanthropist, and life/business strategist.
He is the author of six internationally bestselling books and has delivered his messages of empowerment to more than 50 million people from 100 countries through his audio, video, and life training programs. More than 4 million people have attended his live seminars.
Robbins is also the chairman of a holding company with more than 50 privately held businesses and combined sales of more than $6 billion a year.
His non-profit foundation has awarded more than 2,000 grants and other resources to health and human services organizations. As part of his ongoing mission to end hunger, Robbins’ 1 Billion Meals Challenge with Feeding America has helped provide over 425 million meals in the last four years to those in need and is on track to provide 1 billion meals by 2025.
Who has given you inspiration in 2021? Let us know in the comments!
This list was submitted by Trevor Oldham and modified by Real Leaders