motivational speakers that’ll get your team firing on all cylinders

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Deciding whether or not to hire a motivational speaker for your organization can be difficult. Before you consider hiring a motivational speaker, you might ask yourself, what are the benefits? Or Is it worth taking time out of the workday for employees to listen to a motivational speaker? We’ll let you be the judge, but here are just a few reasons you may decide to hire a motivational speaker:

What are the benefits of hiring a motivational speaker?

  • Setting apart some workday time for employees to listen to a motivational speaker can  keep them fresh by offering a nice change of pace from the daily routine.
  • Motivational speakers can promote innovation by offering new perspectives. They can help your team think outside of the box and find better ways of doing things.
  • Motivational speakers can help drive home your company’s goals. They can work alongside the management of your organization to help communicate your organization’s goals. Motivational speakers can provide a unique outsider’s perspective and add inspiring motivational stories and examples to help employees catch the vision and better grasp company objectives.

motivational speakers

What should you consider when selecting a motivational speaker?

  1. Your Goal

Before you select a motivational speaker, you’ll want to ensure that you have a clear goal in mind behind having them speak. Ideally, hiring a motivational speaker should lead to higher employee engagement, increased efficiency, and higher productivity. Whatever your goals may be, take time to consider how they contribute to overall employee happiness and to the success of your organization. Look for motivational speakers who share your company’s values and who can do a good job understanding your goals and delivering when it comes time for the presentation.

organization goals

  1. Your Industry

If your company is in the tech industry, it’s unlikely you will want to hire a dentist as a motivational speaker. It’s often best to choose a motivational speaker who is very familiar with your industry and who can provide expert advice and motivational stories from their work within your specific industry. That being said, picking a motivational speaker outside of your industry can also be exciting and motivational at times. Professional sports figures, for example, can provide a unique perspective and also get people excited about attending the seminar or presentation.

  1. Your Budget

It will come as no surprise that the big name motivational speakers are more expensive to hire than those with less of a following and less experience. Consider your budget before you select a motivational speaker. You may opt to find a figure who is well respected in your specific community but who has less of a national following. On the other hand, you may decide that in order to make a bigger impact, you wish to hire from a list of famous motivational speakers. These people may have many accolades, followers, and a wealth of experience. Again, it all comes down to your goal. Often, bigger name speakers can have a bigger impact, so saving up budget in order to hire them may be a good idea.

Who are some of the best motivational speakers?

Before you decide on a motivational speaker, you’ll want to make the considerations we’ve outlined above and do some personal research. We’ve taken some time, however, to provide a short list of some of the most famous motivational speakers along with some of their key quotes, so you can get a head start on deciding which speaker would best fit your company’s unique needs.


Famous Motivational Speakers

Tony Robbins

Tony Robbins is a life and business strategist and the author of several international bestsellers including Unshakeable: Your Financial Freedom Playbook, Unlimited Power, Awaken the Giant Within, and Money: Master the Game. Robbins’ personal and professional development program is top notch, and he is a renowned motivational and seminar speaker.

Accenture named Tony Robbins one of the “Top 50 Business Intellectuals in the World” and the Harvard Business Press has deemed him one of the “Top 200 Business Gurus.” Tony has received numerous other rewards from the likes of Fortune Magazine, American Express, and Worth Magazine.

Robbins also gives back to the world through his philanthropic efforts which include an affiliation with Feeding America and a number of school, prison, and service organization programs. His humanitarian efforts include providing fresh water to over one hundred thousand people per day in India.

tony robbins

Quotes by Tony Robbins

  • “A real decision is measured by the fact that you’ve taken a new action. If there’s no action, you haven’t truly decided.”
  • “Successful people ask better questions, and as a result, they get better answers.”


Deepak Chopra

Born in New Dehli, Deepak Chopra is a highly successful public speaker and author. He is also a tireless advocate of alternative medicine. Chopra preaches what he calls “perfect health,” a state “that is free from disease, that never feels pain,” and “that cannot age or die.” He founded The Chopra Foundation and cofounded The Chopra Center for Wellbeing.

Chopra has authored more than 85 books that have been translated into more than 43 different languages, including several New York Times bestsellers. Chopra was ranked the seventeenth most influential thinker in the world by The World Post and the Huffington Post. Deepak Chopra has taught at Columbia Business School and the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.

deepak chopra

Quotes by Deepak Chopra

  • “I often say ‘pursue excellence, ignore success.’ Success is a by-product of excellence.”
  • “There are no extra pieces in the universe. Everyone is here because he or she has a place to fill, and every piece must fit itself into the big jigsaw puzzle.”


Gary Vaynerchuk

Gary Vaynerchuk is a colorful digital marketing and social media guru. He runs VaynerMedia and VaynerX in New York and has been seen as one of the most exciting and insightful modern thinkers and motivational speakers. Vaynerchuk was born in the Soviet Union and didn’t come to the United States until 1978. His books have made the New York Times bestsellers list four times.

In addition to being a highly touted speaker with interesting views, Vaynerchuk is also an angel investor. Companies he backs include Uber, Twitter, Snapchat, Tumblr, Facebook, and many others. Before Gary became a successful thought leader and digital marketing professional, he was a well-known wine critic who ran his family-owned business and led it to wild success.

gary v

Quotes by Gary Vaynerchuk

  • Legacy is greater than currency.”
  • “When it all comes down to it, nothing trumps execution.”


Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell is an expert in human behavior and social psychology. He was born in England and resided in Canada for many years. Gladwell has been a writer for The New Yorker for several years and has written five books, all of which have been New York Times bestsellers.  

Malcolm Gladwell’s book, The Tipping Point, was called one of the best books of the decade by Amazon buyers. Gladwell’s other books, Blink, and Outliers, were also given numerous awards. Malcolm Gladwell’s podcast series called Revisionist History reixamines historical events and figures who were misunderstood or overlooked. The episode entitled My Little Hundred Million won a Webby Award.

Malcolm Gladwell

Quotes by Malcolm Gladwell

  • “It’s very hard to find someone who’s successful and dislikes what they do.”
  • “The key to good decision making is not knowledge. It is understanding. We are swimming in the former. We are desperately lacking in the latter.”


Magic Johnson

A former NBA basketball star, Earvin “Magic” Johnson Jr. was one of the most renowned point guards to ever play the game. He played for the Lakers for 13 years and won several NBA championships. He now serves as President of the Los Angeles Lakers. Johnson tested positive for HIV in 1991 and is an active proponent of and advocate for safe sex. He has been named one of the 50 Greatest Players of All Time by the NBA.

Magic Johnson’s investment company, Magic Johnson Enterprises, has partnered over the years with several large companies including Best Buy, Burger King, T.G.I. Friday’s, and Starbucks. It has purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers and the WNBA’s Los Angeles Sparks. As part of the partnerships, Magic Johnson has spoken to the Disney Imagineering staff.

Magic Johnson

Quotes by Magic Johnson

  • “You’re the only one who can make the difference. Whatever your dream is, go for it.”
  • “I’m a big believer in dreaming. If you don’t dream it, you can’t become it.”



We hope this has helped you determine the benefits of hiring a motivational speaker and figure out what you need to understand before you hire one. Take some time to do some research and find the best fit for your specific organization. A motivational speaker may be just what you need to get your employees firing on all cylinders.

By o.c. tanner
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