With Christmas just around the corner, over the past few weeks (or maybe days!) everyone has been frantically ordering, wrapping and buying gifts ready for the big day. Many of the presents that will be given and received this Christmas will have been purchased from brands that we have come to know and love.
As a nation we are obsessed with big brands whether old or new, and behind every brilliant product there are equally brilliant people. Many of these people also happen to make fantastic public speakers and as a speaker bureau, we are lucky enough to work with them on a regular basis.
These business speakers help us to gain a fascinating insight into what it’s like to work behind the scenes for some of the nation’s favourite companies and apply their experiences in leadership and management to motivate and inspire others. So, here is a small selection of the people behind the gifts you might find under your tree this Christmas:
We have a lot to thank Jo for – she is the mastermind behind Green & Black’s chocolate, which I’m sure will make an appearance in many people’s stockings over the Christmas period! Jo speaks about how she built her ethical brand from scratch after it was established in 1991, leading it from strength to strength and ultimately earning the Fair Trade Mark long before it was acquired by Cadbury. Jo emphasises the importance of putting the customer first, taking risks and making difficult decisions in business. This ultimately paid off for Jo, who’s chocolate is undeniably one of the nation’s favourites!
For active commuters, ‘fold up’ Brompton bikes have become synonymous with city life over the last few years and Will is the man behind the magic. Leading the way in British manufacturing, customer centric Will speaks about the importance of building a reliable, durable product which customers will love and which they will be able to keep for years to come. Will also shares his innovative plans for expanding Brompton in the future, constantly thinking outside the box to make his company the best it can be. As an added extra, when Will is booked to speak for a conference, chances are a Brompton bike will make an appearance as he often chooses to cycle his way onto the stage!
LEGO is a brand that has been known and loved for years and for children, it is a Christmas present classic! Speaker bureau favourite, Christian spent 25 years with LEGO, working as the Head of Global Brands and Business Development and speaks about how he lead LEGO to take a massive risk by choosing to discontinue their wide range of toys overnight and only produce the plastic bricks for which they are now globally renowned. Working with LEGO during the 1990s, Christian was also the marketing brains behind the LEGOLAND theme parks. On top of all of this Christian also happens to be a delight to work with offstage, which is a very welcome bonus!
Holly is one of the co-founders of notonthehighstreet.com, an enormously popular website which provides a platform for small, independent companies to sell their products. Holly’s brand has grown into a multi-million pound business and chances are you may have ordered a Christmas present from the site this year. What sets Holly apart as a speaker is her energy and enthusiasm. She emphasises the importance of happy staff and good leadership, explaining that this is paramount to success. Holly is also the UKs ambassador for Creative Small Businesses and uses what she has learned from this role to offer advice to bigger businesses in turn.
Rob is the designer and founder of Trunki, ride on suitcases for children, which have fast become a must have family travel accessory. Rob talks very honestly about the challenges he faced when starting his own business – you may be familiar with him following his well-known appearance on Dragons Den, where he suffered a setback after being rejected by the dragons. However, Rob came back fighting and uses this experience to highlight the importance of reliance and perseverance in business. Rob delighted us this Christmas by sending us our very own JLA branded Trunki full of sweets, which has taken pride of place in the speaker bureau office!
These are just a handful of the people we work with at JLA speaker bureau. If you would like to know more about any of the names featured, or if you need any further suggestions, please contact us.
A very Merry Christmas from everyone at JLA!