With an uncanny knack for connecting quickly with warmth and humor, plus years of practical relevance and experience (ex-Google, ESPN, HubSpot, NextView VC; current author and documentary host/producer), Jay Acunzo delivers keynotes that move people to action. Whether it’s with 40 global brand executives, 400 fire chiefs, or 4,000 fired up marketers, Jay challenges attendees to break from conventional thinking and supposed “best practices” in a way that drives greater results for companies and careers alike.


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How to Escape Conventional Thinking to Become the Exception Others Love

We live in a world flooding with best practices, conventional wisdom, and trendy tactics. Every day, dozens of supposed “right” answers both internally and externally promise that they will deliver our best results. It’s all we can do to simply keep up, let alone take control, get proactive, and finally do our best work. It’s like we’re trapped. We’re stuck on this always-spinning wheel of reactive decisions and commodity work, and this wheel leads straight to the one place we don’t want our companies or careers to be: average.

It’s time to escape this cycle. It’s time to break the wheel.

In this fast-paced, inspiring talk, award-winning documentary host and former Google and startup brand-builder Jay Acunzo will hand attendees a sledgehammer. They’ll learn how to find clarity more quickly among the noise, cutting through past precedents and buzzy trends that only create sameness in their niche. Through science and story, Jay will share a framework to more successfully think for yourself when surrounded by conventional thinking. This isn’t about being a rebel. It’s about driving real results for companies and careers alike. In the end, attendees will become the welcome exceptions to the status quo.

While everyone around them merely survives, they’ll know how to thrive. Remember: Finding "best practices" isn’t the goal. Finding the best approach for you is. Jay’s presentation will inspire and empower people to do exactly that.

In this talk, attendees will learn:

  • The psychological barriers to making good decisions at work.

  • The one behavior change that can help them overcome these barriers.

  • Why this change can make creativity feel more logical than lofty.

  • How to create a personal, team-wide, or company-wide “decision-making filter” to more quickly and confidently find the best approach in each new situation.



Breakout sessions are considered on an event-by-event basis. These are the current offerings available:



Pushing Past "Talking Topics with Experts" to Create Your Industry's Top Podcast

"Launching a podcast" is the new "starting a band" — everybody's doing it, and everybody dreams of being the rockstars at the top. A few weeks later, you're struggling to keep it going, and your product sounds like it was made in a garage. Worse, everybody is trying to play the exact same song — there's so much sameness!

Yes, podcasting is really freaking hard. If done right, however, your show can be a powerful vehicle to achieve multiple tough-to-accomplish goals: holding audience time and attention, fueling your channels with endless content pulled from the show, and developing meaningful relationships with both your listeners and your guests.

But you simply can't fake this. You're exposed. You have to master the mechanics of great storytelling and interviewing. No amount of tech and no secret tactic can save you.

In this practical-yet-entertaining workshop, award-winning podcast host and original series creator Jay Acunzo will deconstruct what makes the best podcasts soar. You'll dive deep into the component parts of launching a successful series concept, and you'll walk away inspired to grab the mic, launch your show, and become the apple of your audience's eye — err, ear.

Get ready to become a podcast master.



Why Others Don't Buy Your Ideas (and How to Fix That)

I know what you’re thinking: The reason we’re not doing better work isn’t me -- it’s them. The boss, the team, the budget, the demands of the everyday, or the “way we do things” in this industry — they all contribute to the friction you feel whenever you push to do things the right way.

How in the heck can we stop thinking and convincing and testing and just start DOING better work?

Well, it turns out that the things that fuel our desire to improve our approach are the very same things that hurt our ability to get buy-in and execute. But here’s the thing: The solution isn’t more budget or newer tech. It’s not a better boss or colleagues. It’s not a more innovative product or a more forward-thinking industry. It’s something much more in our control: the way we communicate our ideas to ourselves and others.

In this powerful and practical breakout session, award-winning podcaster and former Google and startup brand-builder Jay Acunzo will help you turn inspired ideas into buy-in and action. You'll deconstruct the problems preventing us from getting buy-in and learn the mental models you can use to find what makes you an exception from peers … and convince others you should deploy that in your work. In the end, you’ll walk away ready to stop selling your ideas and start sharing why your ideas should exist.

We all want to do better work. It’s time to go from sick and tired to fulfilled and inspired, to the benefit of our careers, our companies, and our customers.