Laura Gassner Otting

At a glance:

Author, Catalyst, and Coach Laura Gassner Otting inspires people to push past the doubt and indecision that keep great ideas in limbo by helping audiences think bigger and accept greater challenges that reach beyond their current, limited scope of belief.

Author, Catalyst, and Coach Laura Gassner Otting inspires people to push past the doubt and indecision that keep great ideas in limbo by helping audiences think bigger and accept greater challenges that reach beyond their current, limited scope of belief.

She delivers strategic thinking, well-honed wisdom, and perspective generated by decades of navigating change across the start-up, corporate, nonprofit, political, as well as philanthropic landscapes. Laura dares audiences to find their voice, and generate the confidence needed to tackle larger-than-life challenges by helping them to seek new ways of leading, managing, and mentoring others.

Laura’s rebellious and entrepreneurial edge has been well-honed over a 25-year career that started when she dropped out of law school to join an unknown southern governor’s presidential campaign, and ended up as a Presidential Appointee in Bill Clinton’s White House, where she helped shape AmeriCorps.

She left a leadership role as the youngest Vice President at a nationally respected search firm when she realized that her boss’s definition of success didn’t align with hers and, instead, founded and ran one of the fastest growing search firms in the country, partnering with the full gamut of mission-driven executives, from start-up dreamers to scaling social entrepreneurs to global philanthropists. In 2015, Laura sold that firm to the team who helped her build it, both because she was hungry for the next chapter and because she held an audacious dream of electing our nation’s first female president. (Whomp whomp.)

Along the way, while serving on Hillary Clinton’s National Finance Committee, she was cajoled into doing a TEDx talk which became so popular that it launched a speaking career. Laura has now spoken across the United States and internationally to universities, companies, conferences, accelerators, TEDx events, and the US Military.

She is the author of the Washington Post Best Seller Limitless: How to Ignore Everybody, Carve Your Own Path, and Live Your Best Life (2019), which debuted at #2 on the Washington Post bestseller list, right behind Michelle Obama, and which Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts chose as one of her Favorite Books of 2019, as well as Mission-Driven: Moving from Profit to Purpose (2015). Her forthcoming book, Wonderhell, is expected in April 2023.

Through her own commitment to give back, Laura has helped build a local Montessori school, co-founded a women’s philanthropic initiative, advised a start-up national women’s PAC, grew a citizen-leadership development program, and completed five charity-inspired marathons, projects emblematic of her passions and values. She’s turned on by the audacity of The Big Idea and that larger-than-life goal you just can’t seem to shake. She’s an instigator, a motivator, and a provocateur, and she’s never met a revolution she didn’t like, just ask her enduringly patient husband, two almost-grown sons, and troublesome puppy with whom she lives outside of Boston, MA.

  • Live Limitlessly

    Many of us spend our lives pursuing a singular idea of success, one that was created for us by someone else. We give votes to those who shouldn’t even have voices and strive to go faster and faster even as we find ourselves falling further and further behind. We chase gold stars, we check all the boxes, we Lean In – and we still feel incomplete.

    In this keynote, Laura teaches you how to ignore the rules that created your limits, align your energies and your actions, and do work that really matters so that you can live your best life. Aimed at entrepreneurs and misfits, idealists and dreamers, as well as anyone seeking to align who they are with what they do, this talk lights a fire within that catalyzes energy and
    excitement towards becoming the change agent needed to maximize impact.

    (Loved by All Audiences, from Business Owners to Network Marketers, Entrepreneurs, Empowerment Audiences, and Anyone Looking to Align their Career to their Life's Calling or Purpose.)
  • Limitless Confidence: Mastering Your Leadership Voice

    Self-doubt and uncertainty consign great ideas to limbo, hindering your team from exploring the big opportunities that will differentiate your company and disrupt the marketplace. That changes now.

    Through this interactive experience, Laura catalyzes the confidence of audience members, so that your up-and-coming talent can fully embody that aspirational state of leadership, and leave understanding what they need to do to activate that leader inside of themselves.
    Together, they explore this mindset, the actions it inspires and how they create a momentum of contagious confidence which can’t be reversed.

    Audience members leave with a physical manifestation of their own personalized roadmap directing them to find and own the very core of their leadership voice, and with the confidence to make that dream a reality.

    (Empowering to Younger Audiences and Those in Early Careers, Aspiring Corporate Leaders, Corporate Managers, and Empowerment Audiences.)
  • The Limitless Leader: Engaging Your Full Workforce

    Demographic shifts in the workforce have led to conversations about purpose and meaning that have heretofore never been had. Millennials, GenXers, and Boomers alike are all demanding that their work matters more. And, yet, only one-third of the US workforce reports that they are actively engaged in their work. Why? Because we are using an outdated scorecard which measures the value of a job – title, money, prestige, among others – without adding in the most important part of the equation: the employee. We know that engaged workers are 22% more productive and profitable for their employers, but what recruits the employee doesn’t retain them.

    Backed up by a 20-year career in executive search and a three-year research project (comprising nearly 6000 responses from 74 different countries from before, during, as now as we come out of the pandemic, Laura Gassner Otting teaches leaders how to unlock their employees’ engagement to not only make them limitless, but make their companies and their profits limitless too.

    (Aimed at Leaders & Managers, Talent Strategists, Leadership Thinkers, Human Resources Professionals)
  • Limitless Sales: Ignite Meaning to Connect and Win

    Your clients don’t buy your products. They don’t buy your services. They don’t buy your brand.
    They buy the solution that you provide to the problem that they have.

    In order to win at the sales game, your audience must connect to why this product, this service, this brand actually matters to them, and be able to community that meaning as they build mutually beneficial relationships with your clients.

    As an entrepreneur who has spent her whole life selling, Laura knows first hand how to do this. Through this straight-talking keynote, Laura will teach your audience why what they are doing isn’t working, and show them an easy, personal, and meaningful way to do it better.

    (This research-based keynote is for direct sellers, MLM team leaders, entrepreneurs, community builders, and anyone who has to sell anything at any time... ahem, all of us.)
  • Welcome to Wonderhell (Coming 2023)

    Every time we achieve anything, we think we will be met with happiness, satisfaction, glee. Instead, we find a faster pace, a deeper hunger, bigger goals. And inside of that faster pace, deeper hunger, and bigger goals, we find self-doubt, uncertainty, anxiety… stress. Each success, large or small should feel wonderful, but all too often it feels a bit like hell.

    Based on Laura’s wildly popular TEDx talk, Laura helps your audience explore that moment when success turns to stress, where achievement opens a portal to everything we can become, if only we allow ourselves to embrace our ambition, renegotiate our relationship with the tsunami of mixed emotions, and stay uncomfortable just a little longer.

    This talk is a dare all wrapped up in a roadmap. Audience members leave this talk believing that they can – and should – do everything they want to do with their one big, juicy life.

    (This motivational talk originated from Laura finding herself in Wonderhell and is the result of more than 100 conversations with glass ceiling shatterers, Olympic medalists, start-up unicorns, and everyday people like you and like me. It’s for everyone.)

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