Big name motivational speakers – can their tips help transform your business in 2020?


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Many people turn to motivational speakers in their personal lives, but can you apply those same nuggets of wisdom to business?

The short answer is yes. So here are our top three picks for motivational speakers who can help improve your leadership skills and drive your business growth.

  • Tony Robbins – mastering yourself
  • Brené Brown – being vulnerable
  • Carol Dweck – using growth mindset


Tony Robbins: Self-mastery

For the past three decades, Tony Robbins has been talking about self-mastery. He firmly believes that fear is what holds one back and confidence will allow one to move forward successfully.

Much of what he hopes to instil when coaching clients is a sense of self-belief. He believes in himself and talks in such a way that others start to believe in themselves. Robbins is a particularly powerful speaker because he practices everything he speaks about, with obvious great success.

How to portray confidence as a leader

The main point is that success is more about your attitude than your ability. Talent, knowledge and skill are important, but they will not take you over the tipping point from achievement to excellence.

According to Robbins, the most important piece of business advice he offers clients is this:

“There are always two businesses you’ve got to manage. There’s the business you’re in, and the business you’re becoming. If you just manage the business you’re in, you’re going to get knocked out by a new technology or new competition. But if you’re constantly managing those two businesses, you won’t have to quit or pivot, because you’re always doing something to innovate, or to change, or to improve.”

To utilise Robbins’s teaching in your own life, focus first on how to achieve mastery of your own mind. You may try:

  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Simply taking quiet time to reflect


When you can master your mind and your own state of being, you can conquer your fears. They will still be there, but you can move past them. Believe in yourself, and your team will follow.

Brené Brown: Vulnerability

Although this may seem contradictory to Robbins’s message, in fact the two go hand in hand. Confidence is linked to understanding that we’re all vulnerable, rather than denying it.

Brené Brown has spent the past two decades researching courage and vulnerability. She has translated those findings into meaningful and actionable advice for business leaders.

  • Daring leadership requires knowing – and showing – that we don’t always have the answers.
  • Focus on asking the right questions, sharing knowledge, and holding ourselves accountable.


How to build the courage to show vulnerability as a leader

In her bestselling book, Dare to Lead, Brown writes the following:

“One of the most important findings of my career is that courage can be taught, developed and measured. All it requires is a commitment to doing bold work, having tough conversations and showing up with our whole hearts. Easy? No. Choosing courage over comfort is not easy. Worth it? Always.”

Brown offers resources to help build vulnerability and courage – and the language around these important emotions – into businesses. Courage allows us to be brave and afraid at the same time, to take the important steps forward that will lead to success. And we show vulnerability when we acknowledge that something is important to us, and we will be disappointed if we don’t succeed.

Consider how to build these emotions into your business:

  • What new idea or innovation do you feel excited about, but also uncertain?
  • Do you trust your team enough to share this idea with them?
  • If so, how do you encourage others on your team to be brave and choose courage over comfort?
  • If not, how will you work to build a trusting environment?


An important component of this involves being yourself and nurturing a kind environment where others can feel free to be themselves without risk of backlash.

Raising new ideas and innovations will still be scary and require courage, but without this a business will not flourish and stay ahead of the competition.

Carol Dweck: Growth mindset

Carol Dweck began her research into attitudes about failure over 30 years ago. Today, her findings are implemented in schools and businesses around the world.

The fundamental tenet of her research is that every person has underlying beliefs about learning and intelligence that give them either a fixed mindset or a growth mindset.

  • In a fixed mindset, the person believes intelligence or talent in a certain area is a fixed skill and there’s nothing they can do about it. They therefore perceive failure as a limit of ability.
  • In a growth mindset, the person believes that intelligence and talent in an area can be learned and improved through effort and time invested. Therefore, failure is an opportunity to grow.


When an individual has a growth mindset, they will put in the extra time and effort to improve and that leads to higher achievement and greater success in any given field.

How to develop a growth mindset

The great news is that anyone can develop a growth mindset. Not only is the brain incredibly malleable, but we can increase the brain’s ability to learn and grow through simple choices we make every day such as:

  • Reading
  • Asking questions
  • Practice
  • Sleep
  • Nutrition


Consider your attitudes towards learning and growth. Do you think you can learn anything you put your mind to? Do you enjoy a challenge? Or do you give up when frustrated?

Embracing a growth mindset – and working to develop one if you’re in a fixed state – will allow you to see failure as a source of growth. This will encourage innovation in your business.

Taking what works for you

Of course picking what works for you is an important first step – it’s up to you to decide what can give you and your company the greatest benefit. But certainly with self-mastery to conquer your fears, the courage to show vulnerability and make brave choices, and a growth mindset to innovate and learn from failures, you should be well-placed to inspire your teams and grow your business.