Hire Michael as a Keynote Speaker


Michael's speaker reel

Michael's TEDx talk

Yes, Michael delivers to a distributed audience. 

"Michael – you were just brilliant and we received so much feedback on how much people enjoyed and engaged with your session. People have said how eager they are to use several of the techniques discussed in their daily approach. So, many take-aways there and lots of happy participants! You are a great model of how to best run an engaging virtual session – we had so much more interaction and engagement than we normally do."

~ Shelley Easton, World Food Program, March 2020

You can listen to speeches about leadership all day long.

Heroic stories. A neat set of principles. A well-honed lesson or two.

You might be moved. You might be inspired. You might even be awed.

But does anything actually change?

For most people, not really. The effect of most leadership keynotes is about the same as a cup of coffee: a tasty, temporary buzz with little lasting effect.

But what if people left an event with a new way of leading already in their bones?

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“Michael's session was short, sharp, engaging and effective. His high-energy, high-impact style was a great match, and his clear and compelling content was well received and easy to apply. Leaders have already applied learnings (at home and at work!) and we're looking forward to the ongoing focus and impact of more coach-like leaders.”

Steve Morrow, Global Talent, Salesforce

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"Being a coach-like manager and being coached is a core part of our culture at Microsoft. It's how talented people thrive and grow. Michael Bungay Stanier has helped evolve how we think about coaching and how it can bring our growth mindset to life."

Jean-Philippe Courtois, President, Microsoft Global Sales, Marketing and Operations EVP, Microsoft Corporation

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From advice-driven to curiosity-led

Michael Bungay Stanier is the author of six books including The Advice Trap and The Coaching Habit, the best-selling coaching book of this century. Named the #1 Thought Leader in Coaching in 2019, Michael is the Founder of Box of Crayons—a company that’s trained more than 100,000 leaders, managers and individual contributors around the world to be more coach-like. 

Michael is a champion for putting curiosity at the heart of leadership. His goal is simple but difficult: to help people stay curious a little bit longer, and rush to action and advice-giving a little more slowly.

He’s also brilliant at creating practical, interactive sessions that literally and in the moment move people from that old way of leading to a new, better way.

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The power of curiosity: stronger humans, stronger performance

The effect of increasing people’s capacity for curiosity ripples throughout an organization. It increases individual impact, it increases team effectiveness and it increases team agility and resilience.

The challenge has always been how to teach curiosity in that in a way that feels credible, robust and practical, and connected equally to business outcomes and individual growth. We’ve all experienced sessions that have felt too theoretical, or touchy-feely, or just … a bit weird. 

Michael’s keynotes ground curiosity in the reality of the participants, a reality that is typically one of overwhelm, busy-ness and distraction. He gives them “next day ready” tools. And he has them practice them in the moment, so the change of behaviour has already begun.

Michael’s equally comfortable in front of a group of 20 or a crowd of 10,000.

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"Leadership is not about giving the best advice, it is about unlocking the potential of the people around you. Thank you, Michael Bungay Stanier, for reminding us of that and for providing such concrete thoughts on how to do it!"

Hubert Joly, Executive Chairman and former CEO, Best Buy

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“like Simon Sinek—but funny.”

attendee at ATD, where Michael averages a rating of 4.98/5

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The Five Question Leader

Available for delivery to a distributed audience.

Mastering five essential questions can help managers and leaders increase the focus, courage and resilience they need to have more impact in the work they do.

 In this practical, interactive and engaging keynote, participants:

  • See the three vicious circles that keep them busy, overwhelmed and exhausted.
  • Own up to the five reasons they might not be coaching, and then remove that resistance.
  • Get three fast-to-master techniques to ask a question well (it’s harder to do than it sounds!)
  • And of course, learn and practice the five core questions they need–including the best coaching question in the world—so they can focus on the work that matters.


  • This is Michael’s most popular session.
  • 60-90 minutes.
  • Best for general audiences from 10 to 10,000.
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“To get more from your people, you need to grow their capability and engagement, and step up yourself. A great way to do that is to give less advice and do more coaching.” 

Jeremy Darroch, Group CEO, Sky

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How to Tame your Advice Monster

Available for delivery to a distributed audience.

In theory, everyone knows that staying curious is probably a good thing. In practice? People are advice-giving maniacs!

Someone starts telling you about a situation which you don’t fully understand, with a context you don’t know, involving people you’ve barely met … and after about 10 seconds, you’ve got some initial ideas you want to share with them.

Why are we so bad at staying curious? It’s our Advice Monster. We’ve got to tame our Advice Monster.

In this powerful workshop, participants will:

  • Understand the impact of AGH!: the Advice-Giving Habit.
  • Learn about the three personas of the Advice Monster.
  • Own up to just why they love to give advice.
  • Design a strategy to change their behaviour, so they can stay curious a little longer, and rush to action and advice-giving a little more slowly.


  • This is Michael’s newest program.
  • 60-90 minutes.
  • Great for audiences looking for a more personal and provocative program.
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The Coaching Dojo

Available for delivery to a distributed audience.

“In theory, theory and practice are the same. In practice, they’re not.”

Thus spoke Yogi Berra, baseball philosopher. This is not a traditional keynote, but a dojo, a fishbowl, a hot seat. Designed and customized for the audience and the physical location, the objective of this session is for participants to see great coaching, then practice and learn. In the tradition of the dojo, this is a coaching “black belt” passing along wisdom.

In this highly practical, learning-focused session, participants will:

  • See real-time coaching.
  • Practice real-time coaching.
  • Experience real-time coaching.


  • This is Michael’s most hands-on session.
  • 60-90 minutes.
  • Best for audiences who’ve already received some Box of Crayons training (www.boxofcrayons.com)
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So you’d like me to come and give a talk ? Thank you!

It’s kind of you to consider me as a speaker. I do love to be on stage in front of a crowd (and then in the crowd, interacting); and over the years I’ve gotten pretty good at it, if I do say so myself.

Through lots of trial and error I’ve discovered that I need to limit my number of speaking gigs per year to thirty or less. (I made the commitment that five of these thirty will be at a reduced rate for non-profit or other social-good-doing organizations.)

Limiting my number of speaking gigs means that I’d love to hear your very best pitch on why I should come and speak at your event. I’d love to give it a “Hell, yes!” because in my being-deeply-intentional-about-my-choices-world, the alternative is “no”.

I’m influenced by things like:

  • Who’s in the audience, how many are there, and what are they up to in the world?
  • Where is the gig, and is it somewhere cool, or a place I’ve never been before, or a place where some of my friends live so I can visit them?
  • Will this help me become known to other people? How high-profile is this?
  • Can you pay my fee? I’m expensive (albeit great value), so I’d love to know that you have sufficient budget.
  • Will it help me escape some of Canada’s winter? I do love it when I’m leaving snow-bound Toronto for warmer climes…
  • Will this give me some cool footage of me speaking? Will you be filming this? Have a cool set? Use a confetti gun?
  • Do we have some connection? Is this a referral? Were we raised together by a pack of koalas in the Australian outback, only to be tragically separated when young, and this is our last chance at a reunion? Something else?
  • Are you willing to buy copies of my books for participants?

Thanks for taking the time to fill this out. I appreciate you thinking I might be a fit.

(As a note, I don’t give free keynotes in exchange for exposure or book sales.)

Looking for Box of Crayons programs?

Box of Crayons is a learning and development company that helps organizations transform from advice-driven to curiosity-led. They offer a range of training solutions that are delivered by exceptional faculty around the world. You can learn more at BoxOfCrayons.com.