Scott’s Sample Topics
Scott is a speaker and trainer whose style is highly engaging, humorous, research and story-based, and practical. Audiences walk away energized and armed with tools, based on his “WHIP It” philosophy–using What you Have In your Possession. Perfect for conferences, rewards and recognition events, leadership meetings, manager/employee training, employee rallies, in-services, assemblies, teambuilding sessions, and more.
Below are Scott Carbonara’s sample topics. Each program is customized to your organization–and can be delivered from a one-hour keynote to a full-day workshop. Whether you are looking for a keynote, half- or full-day program, or a multi-year program, Scott can deliver what you need to invigorate a positive, performance-based culture.
Scott’s “WHIP It!” Programs:
Using What you Have In your Possession
TOPIC #1: Engagement Starts with You
Whether your goal is to increase your personal engagement, maximize the engagement of your team, navigate change, or improve the culture with which you face your customers—this humorous, uplifting, practical, research-and-story-based session inspires audiences to reignite by using Scott’s W.H.I.P. philosophy (What you Have In your Possession). Scott challenges the standard definitions of success and happiness, and shares 5 concrete tools rooted in positive psychology to help create sustainable positivity and performance—while spreading it to others. Learn to master the energy you and your team bring to the workplace and life—for increased results. As a result of this session, participants will be able to:
- Understand the connection between discretionary effort and engagement
- Gain resilience in the face of adversity and challenges
- Spread engagement like a virus using 5 simple tools
TOPIC #2: Leading in Times of Change: Thriving in Uncertainty
Back when you learned to drive a car, you were taught to approach every green light with the awareness that the light could change at any moment. Stoplights change. It’s their nature, what they were designed to do. Lights changing is logical, rational, and expected. So then why are there so many accidents at intersections? Similarly, even when people anticipate and expect change, they are often caught off guard by it. And then how do they respond? They push back like the change is meant as a personal threat to their happiness and wellbeing. When you’re in the role of overseeing change, it’s imperative that you grasp the rollercoaster that some people experience the moment they hear, “I need to let you know about some changes you can expect….” Want to become more effective in your change efforts? Learn tips for navigating this process—learn how to connect, collaborate, and integrate lessons from the people-side of change. Participants will learn:
- Why acceptance is not the desired end state during change
- How to foster a culture that thrives through change
- Five practical tools to staying resilient through change
TOPIC #3: Values-Driven Leadership
All organizations seek the same things: great people, loyal customers, and sustainable profits. So to stand out from the competition, companies invest in the newest cost-cutting technologies, robust social media campaigns, and cutting-edge product innovations. But does that work?Scott believes that we’re quick to believe that new means better, but it doesn’t always. In fact, Scott teaches that the newest thing in leadership is not new at all. It’s actually quite old. Old is the new new. The new new is about values, something that every person and organization has either etched in their hearts or mounted somewhere on a corporate wall. Scott teaches that strong, thriving organizations set themselves apart by intentionally building a culture that serves as their key differentiator. At the HEART of that culture are core values. In this session, participants will define and refine the core values that drive them. They will learn to tap into the core values of those around them. And they will learn to how to put real H.E.A.R.T. into the values of their organizations! Participants will learn—
- How to become AWARE of their own values, the values of others, and the values of their organizations;
- How to stay ALIGNED to their core values…or to get back into ALIGNMENT if they stray;
- How to ACT as a values ambassador by focusing on the H.E.A.R.T. (Hire!, Educate!, Advocate!, Reward!, and go Tell it on the mountain!)!
TOPIC #4: Get PSST! Igniting Employee Engagement
Today’s leaders are desperate to do more with less in an industry filled with change and uncertainty. These same leaders know that an engaged culture translates into loyal customers—a crucial piece in today’s complex marketplace puzzle. If you can’t reduce your workload or increase your staffing budget, your most assured tool for maximizing performance and productivity is through tapping into your employees’ discretionary efforts. Once you have applied Scott’s WHIP principle (What you Have In your Possession), it’s time to Get PSST… That is, it’s time to get Personal, Strengths-based, Social, and Targeted with each employee to maximize engagement and performance! Learn how to inspire your team to want to give their best, through the practical and often fun principles in Scott’s book A Manager’s Guide to Employee Engagement.
- Learn ways to tap into employees’ personal strengths
- Discover how to position people into their areas of strength for maximum performance
- Become equipped with tools for getting targeted with employees’ passions and interests
TOPIC #5: Beyond Mindfulness: Getting It Right When It Matters Most
How do you “get it right” when the situation is complex? How do you operate from your “Best Self” even when you are pressured to blow up? How do you enter situations with empathy, while still communicating what is most important to you? How do you avoid getting into the same rut in difficult conversations with others? This introduction to the concepts in the upcoming book and model, Getting It Right When It Matters Most*, is designed to aid your thinking, feeling, and behaving when—The outcome really “matters” to you professionally or personally; The situation is challenging, and there are no clear right answers; and the relationship is critical for success. When your “Best Self” controls your actions, you obtain your best results; when your Worst Self makes an appearance, you lose control, and actions suffer as a result. Learn how to keep your Best Self in the drivers’ seat. Participants will:
- Recognize how people respond when threatened—in order reduce tension and increase successful outcomes.
- Understand and apply age-old mindfulness techniques for keeping one’s mind, body, and emotions in control before the situation grows out of control.
- Process, slow down, and resolve critical situations more effectively—choosing a response that reflects a best intention rather than a reaction.
- Apply learning agility to challenging situations to achieve positive outcomes.
*(book coauthored with Tony Gambill)
TOPIC #6: Beyond the Checklist: Building a Customer Service Culture
Imagine a dentist advertising, “We sterilize our equipment,” or, “We wash our hands between patients.” Not exactly high standards, right? Actually, those are just hygiene level standards, not true differentiators. It’s hard to imagine an organization attracting or retaining business using that marketing approach. In fact, by drawing attention to such low standards, such a campaign would likely hurt instead of help their business. But ironically, many organizations do something similar by touting the words customer service in their brochures or mission statements as if those words do anything to breathe real customer service into their organizations. The antidote to becoming just another generic commodity in your community is to make customer service your key differentiator. This session builds the awareness, alignment, and actions that promote best-in-class customer service around hiring, training, communicating, measuring, and rewarding results. As a result of this session, participants will be able to:
- Understand that customer service starts with leadership
- Articulate a customer service mantra
- Promote a unified customer service vision
TOPIC #7: Build Relationships Like a Leader
What’s the difference between a successful leader and a not-so successful one? It must be the training, right? Successful ones have more and better training. Or it could be college degrees, couldn’t it? Or professional designations, right? I mean, if a leader receives excellent training, education, and certification, he must be destined for success, right? Hardly. We all know people possessing the right degrees from the best schools who then add to their academic credentials professional designations, so after the comma behind their last names you’ll find a trail of letters like Ph.D, CPA, PMP, ERP, CRM, SCP, etc. Yet those letters do little to guarantee success. In truth, most successful business leaders have fewer degrees, but know how to build more rewarding relationships. Scott Carbonara, aka, The Leadership Therapist, first developed his relationship building-skills while working with some of the most difficult clients: dysfunctional families consisting of juvenile delinquents and abusive parents. He then moved to a multi-billion dollar healthcare company in corporate America where he learned to connect with a very different breed of individuals and leaders: senior executives and employees. Today, Scott shares his 8 Relationship-Building Tools in this highly entertaining yet relevant keynote. As a result of this session, participants will be able to:
- Understand and resist the fallacy of an outside-in perspective;
- Grasp the importance of relationships—by the numbers—in order to avoid becoming just another statistic; and
- Apply 8 relationship-building tools at work and beyond.
TOPIC #8: Coaching for Performance Excellence
For years, Scott provided one-on-one coaching for leaders, and over time he saw a trend: most leaders hadn’t been taught a simple, practical coaching method that could be applied universally to a variety of people performance issues. Partnering with training and behavioral change leaders, Scott developed this highly customizable, interactive program contains the must have concepts required for anyone who chooses to lead others. Using a proven behavioral model linked to adult learning methodologies, Scott takes leaders on a journey designed to help them maximize employee performance. During the workshop, leaders will learn:
- Why people do what they do
- What motivates and discourages people
- How to clarify expectations of others
- How to catch someone doing it right
- Dealing with undesired performance and behaviors
- Maximizing desired performance and behavior
TOPIC #9: Becoming a Master Communicator
This program examines the challenges and best-practices of business communications. Communication isn’t hard. According to a 2010 study, 80 percent of our work time involves communicating (sending, receiving, and interpreting). But the reality is, effective communication is tough! In this workshop, leaders will explore their biggest “pet peeves” or communication obstacles at work and learn 10 practical and immediately applicable tips that range from tactical to strategic communication.By the end of the session, participants will be able to understand and implement:
- The big 3 Is of why people communicate (Inform, Influence, Inspire)
- The dos and don’ts of email etiquette
- Maximizing verbal and cross-cultural communication
- Increasing the “stickiness” and audience retention of communication
TOPIC #10: Critical Conversations (half-day workshop)
Experienced managers understand that that some tough employee conversations are unavoidable. However, when effective leaders master having Critical Conversations, tough conversations become more rare. The Critical Conversations and the model that participants will learn allow leaders to recognize good performance, prevent poor performance, nip poor performance in the bud, and yank out continued poor performance by the roots! Do you know when to have these conversations? Do you have a model so you are treating performance issues the same way for every person? Do you know how to reduce the number of tough conversations you have each day and increase the positive, relationship-building ones that lead to improved performance results? The workshop lays out a simple model, case studies, exercises, and role plays as a way to learn and master having Critical Conversations in the workplace. As an added bonus, these tools work equally well outside of work, too!
By the end of the session, participants will understand and be able to have critical conversations around the following circumstances:
- Module 1: Why people do what they do–Minimizing risk and maximizing reward for others via the SCARF model;
- Module 2: Getting off on the right foot (onboarding);
- Module 3: Providing mild and moderate feedback to encourage improved performance;
- Module 4: Delivering strong corrective feedback;
- Module 5: The conversations to have with your superstar employees.
TOPIC #11: Go Positive: Lead to Engage (half or full day workshop)
Recent Gallup research reveals that a shocking 71% of U.S. employees are either “not on board” or “actively hostile” when it comes to delivering on the needs of the organization and its customers. Given the clear advantages of engagement and the costs of disengagement, how can managers maximize the attitudes—and ultimately, the performance —of their employees, even amidst very chaotic and uncertain times? Based on the most recent behavioral, and psychological research and Scott’s experience fostering a positive culture, Go Positive! Lead to Engage offers a concise, clear, easy-to-implement formula for engaging employees from the inside out that will create a difference in any workplace. The program by employee engagement speaker, Scott Carbonara, utilizes a positive—rather than punitive—approach to helping employees be internally motivated for success and ensures a deeper, more long-lasting level of engagement and loyalty in the workplace. Workshop participants will gain:
- A heightened awareness about what it takes to increase employee engagement;
- An amplified focus on the key priorities that must become aligned to achieve corporate goals;
- An increased activity level on the high-return behaviors that generate improved engagement and productivity.
TOPIC #12: Living & Leading Above the Line: If Nothing Changes, Nothing Changes
“The line”, Carbonara points out, “is drawn between average and excellence, between doing just enough to survive and doing everything in your power to thrive.” The challenge is that employees resist and resent change, right? Wrong. As American futurist Marilyn Ferguson points out, it’s not change that people fear as much as “that place in between…like being between trapezes. There’s nothing to hold on to.”
This workshop equips leaders and employees alike with something to hold onto, and it outfits them with tools to navigate the stressful emotions and uncertainty that change can unleash. Carbonara teaches people how to live first, and then he inspires them to lead. Additionally, it provides learners with actionable, practical tips to live and lead above average performance and into the high performance zone, even during times of change. Rooted in positive psychology and change management science, Carbonara offers unforgettable ideas that blend his background as a crisis counselor with his experiences as a corporate change agent and executive officer. Tony Robbins famously said, “If you do what you’ve always done, you’ll get what you’ve always gotten.” Break the cycle of average, and learn how to excel regardless of circumstances.
- Understand why the pinnacle of the Kubler-Ross Five Stages of Grief level of acceptance is inadequate in times of change.
- Learn how to use principles, gleaned from positive psychology, to process your emotions and accelerate appropriate actions in times of change.
- Discover how to supercharge your change leadership competencies when leading others through change and transition.
TOPIC #13: The Marathon Margin: Entrepreneurial Endurance One Mile at a Time
TOPIC #14: The Power of Story: Creating Messages that Stick
(employee engagement speaker, leadership speaker, employee engagement trainer, leadership trainer)