The Most Requested Speaker Topics For 2020
From keynotes on diversity and equality, to workshops on leadership and communication, we decided to look towards the most requested speaking topics trending for the year ahead.
With 2020 already moving along at a rapid pace, our MD Nick Gold has noticed that clients are looking at the micro and macro-economic and political environment, with a strong focus from businesses on moving forward and making decisions in uncertain times.
“We are seeing businesses looking at topics that will help them grow and develop as they are looking towards the future more than ever before.”
Nick adds that “there is increased understanding from business about their employees and how the workplace needs to develop in order for teams to be happy, stimulated and challenged to deliver amazing outcomes.”
With this in mind, we sat down with our wonderful experts to discuss some of the challenges event organisers are facing and how external speakers are providing them with valuable insights and tangible solutions.
Sustainability experts, environmentalists, and conservationists are ideal keynote speakers for educating companies on how to practice and implement sustainability in the workplace and has been a steadily increasing topic for clients.
Lucy informed us “clients are looking towards changing the culture of their company to be more sustainable, and also sharing tips internally that can be implemented on a personal level to tackle the issue of sustainability”.
“We’re losing vast amounts of forests, soil and species and severely compromising our future”, says environmentalist Natalie Fee . “The climate crisis coupled with the growing demand on resources … could mean game over for life on earth as we know it. The choices we make now are some of the most important the human race has ever had to make”.
The demand for diversity, equality and inclusion speakers has almost triples in the last few years. With greater diversity across gender, race, disability, age, and numerous other factors within the workplace, businesses have reported greater productivity across the board.
Debbie mentioned, “powerful diversity and equality keynote speakers who deliver diverse perspectives allow clients to educate all employees about the incredible benefits of this resource, available at their fingertips, and how to best manage people from diverse backgrounds”.
"Where there is no diversity," as successful business leader Dr. Suzy Walton states "boards make bad decisions, unless their decision-making is challenged by people who have a different perspective".
Health and Wellbeing Speakers all have a common aim: to share tools to improve everyone’s wellbeing.
“There are two different approaches that we are seeing from clients”, says Lucy . “The first is educating the HR department to think differently when it comes to workplace wellbeing, and the second is educating all staff on ways to manage their health.”
Mental health speaker Petra Velzeboer shares that …“it isn’t all about removing stress, it’s about helping to understand the difference between useful stress and detrimental stress, learning to listen to our bodies and understand our minds so we can put the things in place that allow us to thrive: both personally and in our teams.”
If you want to be the best possible leader then you need to learn from the very best, so it’s no surprise that Leadership continues to be a highly requested topic. Scott has noticed an increase in clients needing advice on authentic leadership, and how to get the best out of employees. “Having to deal with a range of stakeholders with different personalities, both internal and external, can be challenging when you want to remain as authentic as possible. It’s something that clients are turning to experts for advice.”
As the only female diplomat to have negotiated with the Taliban, Claire Smith says to “Learn your craft. Walking into a crisis as an inexperienced newcomer and emerging as a hero is for the movies. Practice, observe, watch, learn, listen. After every crisis, have an honest wash-up exercise.”
"Technological innovation is changing social, political and business norms," explains Tim . "Sectors need to keep abreast of this, and individual companies within sectors have to be nimble, dynamic and, at the very least, aware of the threats."
Technology experts provide the insight, foresight and technical knowledge that leaders and their teams need to harness the most complex advances in every field. They decode intimidating jargon to reveal a constantly evolving world that is changing in exciting ways, an important aspect for many businesses when planning for the future.
Dan Cobley , former Google UK MD shared with us that “…technology will change your industry more than you can imagine, and if you don’t take action now, you will be left behind.”
For organisations undergoing growth, restructuring or downsizing, the experience and expertise of change management specialists and business consultants can help and turnaround situations.
Matt noticed that clients are looking externally to understand how to “steer the ship in uncertain times”, but also taking into consideration external influences on a market and how to “steady a ship that is being battered in multiple directions”.
After losing his legs at the age of five and having to embrace this extreme change, Spencer West wants clients to know “… that change is possible, and we all have the ability and responsibility to redefine what’s possible for ourselves and others.”
Being able to communicate effectively is one of the most important skills in life. It is communication that allows business to flourish, or in worse cases, fail. A skill that can take a lifetime to master, being able to effectively communicate within teams and bring people together to work towards one common goal is essential in today’s businesses.
Dan has noticed that many event organisers need to know the best way “to manage both cross-culture and multi-generational workforces, and how to get the best out of these teams”.
As humanitarian Andrew MacLeod reminisces on one of his most successful missions, he recalls having to pull a group consisting of “… foreign aid workers, foreign military, Pakistan military, local civil society groups and many others.” Within the mission they had to “… come up with a common operational plan to ensure that those 3.5 million would survive winter in damaged and destroyed towns and villages. The key to that [was] leadership and communication.”
Innovation is the catalyst for growth, success, competitive advantage and therefore profitability. Innovation speakers provide valuable insights and information about future trends, as well as both motivating and inspiring audiences with what can be achieved.
Matt adds that many organisers need to stay “ahead of the curve by finding out what is potentially around the corner in order for them to plan and prepare how to deal with the changes it could bring to their business”. He also mentions that a hot topic for many clients is learning the skills and ability to “foster an innovative mindset within a workplace”.
Innovation expert James Poulter predicts that “Voice is the next major interface shift. From voice ordering, to dictation, next generation customer services to immersive storytelling and voice assisted everything - this is the next big consumer and business transition.”
With everything from sustainability and communication to mental health awareness, diversity & innovation, these are the most requested topics we are seeing for 2020!
So, how will you share the power of the spoken word with your audience?
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Top Image photo by Richard Clyborne of Music Strive
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