Simon Mainwaring

Simon Mainwaring
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Full Name
Published on
22 January 2021

Simon Mainwaring is the founder and CEO of We First, a strategic consultancy that accelerates growth and impact for purpose-driven brands.

His first book, We First, is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Amazon bestseller. It was named an Amazon Top Ten Business Book, 800CEORead Top Five Marketing Book, strategy+business named it the Best Business Marketing Book of the Year, and Sustainable Brands listed We First as one of their Top Sustainability Books of the decade. It has been translated into Russian, Chinese, Taiwanese, and Korean.

Simon’s new book, Lead With We, is a Wall Street Journal bestseller, AXIOM Gold Medal Winner, McKinsey Top Workplace Culture bestseller, Forbes #2 Best Business Book of the Year, Official Nominee for The Next Big Idea, International Business Book of the Year finalist, and American Book Fest Best Books of 2022 finalist.

Simon is a sought after international speaker with engagements including the Cannes International Advertising Festival, Royal Society of Arts, SXSW, TEDxSF, NAB, Promax International, Conscious Capitalism, Necker Island with Sir Richard Branson, World 50, Ivy, CECP, Sustainable Brands, SOCAP, 3BL, Social Good Summit, National Speakers Association, 1440 Multiversity, National Press Club, The Penn Club of New York, and the United Nations Foundation. He has delivered keynotes at Google, Coca-Cola, General Motors, VF, Samsung, VSP Global, Toyota, SAP, Gucci, JP Morgan Chase, Timberland, VW Group, the NHL, and Patagonia. He has presented at the Harvard Business School Association, Wharton Daily, UCLA, USC, University of Oregon, and University of Chicago.

Simon was named a Thinkers360 Top 50 Thought Leaders & Influencers for Climate Change, a Real Leaders ‘Top 50 Keynote Speakers in the World’, a Top 5 Marketing Speaker by for 5 years in a row, and appeared on the cover of the National Speaker’s Magazine. He has been featured in BBC World News, Bloomberg Beta, Cheddar TV, CNBC, NPR, The Guardian, Authority Magazine, Leader to Leader, Advertising Age, Apple News, Fortune, Inc., Management Today Magazine, Success, Entrepreneur, AMA, Forbes, and Fast Company. He hosts the influential business podcast, Lead With We (top 1% of podcasts globally) and is a prolific columnist for the CMO Network.

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Speech Topics & Descriptions

Lead With We: How Companies Thrive in Uncertain Times

You can grow your business even during an unprecedented time of uncertainty. In fact, your growth, relevance, and long-term prosperity can increase depending on how you frame your role in the world and execute against it. The starting point is to ‘Lead With We’ which transforms limiting mindsets and habits into new beliefs and behaviors that leverage the power of We to ensure all stakeholders build your business. It’s a new vision for leadership, culture, marketing, and impact that empowers your business to thrive in today’s market and course-correct our future. In this presentation, attendees will learn:

1. How to accelerate business growth while solving today’s most pressing challenges.
2. How to drive fresh relevance and resonance with employees and customers.
3. How to leverage rising market forces to compound your growth and impact.

How Purpose Becomes a Force Multiplier for Your Business

How do you define, integrate, and activate your purpose across your business to unlock the greatest business value? It’s this question that every company must answer as business is called on to not only compete but also solve connected and growing crises. What most companies don’t know, however, is how to position and leverage your purpose so that it drives a movement that becomes a force multiplier for your business. This requires new mindsets, strategies, and tactics that ensure you’ll capture the full value of being a purposeful company in terms of company reputation, culture, sales, and impact. In this presentation, attendees will learn:

1. How to define and activate your purpose in ways that propel business growth.
2. Strategies and tactics to launch, build and scale a purpose-led movement.
3. Critical movement-making mistakes to avoid and insights to leverage.

The Future of Work: How to Ignite an Irresistible Company Culture

If your company is to compete and lead, you need new ways of working especially given the complexity of company culture and employees' expectations today. Doing so requires a radically new approach to work that is fundamentally co-creative and fortified by beliefs and behaviors that effortlessly straddle and strengthen office and remote work. The goal is to create a culture that people actively want to be a part of because it improves their lives which then drives productivity, growth, and competitive advantage. In this presentation, attendees will learn:

1. How to frame, build, and strengthen a co-creative and productive culture.
2. The building blocks of office, hybrid, and remote cultures that outperform.
3. Strategies and tools to reset and enhance ways of working and the employee experience.

The ESG Advantage: Strategy & Storytelling That Delivers Business Value

New regulations and rising stakeholder expectations have put every company on notice for their ESG commitments. Yet complexity and competition leave many companies feeling confused, stalled, or paralyzed. The key is to build the right strategic architecture and leverage intentional storytelling that builds a competitive advantage that translates to business growth. So that ESG commitments, when planned and executed correctly, become sustained business drivers while creating critical impact. In this presentation, attendees will learn:

1. How to build a clear and actionable ESG strategy across enterprises, brands, and markets.
2. How to avoid pitfalls from greenwashing to green hushing.
3. How to tell ESG impact stories in ways that deliver business value.

How to Future-proof Your Company for A Climate-Challenged World

The climate crisis is transforming business and the role it plays in the world. How your company responds will determine its relevance to the future and how your stakeholders respond. The time to reimagine and reengineer the leadership, culture, and marketing of your company is now. For those embracing this challenge, the growth, innovation, and impact opportunities are unlimited especially as market forces will increasingly reward companies for doing so. It’s both the challenge and opportunity of our lifetimes and the standout imperative for your business. In this presentation, attendees will learn:

1. How to position and differentiate your company in the crowded climate dialogue.
2. Strategies and tactics to leverage to scale your impact and build your business.
3. Best practices to rally and retain stakeholder engagement around your climate efforts.

What people are saying

"Charity: water was honored to have Simon speak at our organization’s offsite. He was a breath of fresh air for our team, inspiring them to challenge ingrained ways of thinking in order to achieve excellence. His powerful message of Lead With We and his many real-world examples of brands making a true difference in the world resonated deeply. Simon took the time to get to know our organization’s unique challenges and opportunities, and tailored his presentation accordingly. It has had a lasting impact on our team.”

Scott Harrison | Founder & CEO

"Simon Mainwaring really delivered. He was able to craft a message for our members that resonated, delivered valuable content and real thought leadership. Leaving the audience with key principles, take away content and a focus on the future challenges of the sector. Working in the hybrid world of physical and virtual Simon’s delivery was exemplary. Thank you Simon.”

Samantha Blake | Director, Industry Affairs, Australian Food and Grocery Council

"Simon is an incredible public speaker and a master at his craft. He understands the intersection between purpose, people, and profit powered by years of experience working with some of the most purpose-driven brands. His urgency for driving positive change in this world is palpable.”

Staci Eyer | Director of Sales and CS Enablement, Glassdoor

"Simon is an incredible leader and educator who has been successfully guiding organizations to realize the business imperative around brand purpose and social impact. His vast knowledge in this arena is unparalleled. I had personally been following Simon for several years and was fortunate enough and honored to have him keynote HBS Association of Boston’s 2020 Nonprofit Summit. His stellar performance led him as a return guest speaker for our programs.”

Christina Thirkell | Director of Strategic Programs and Initiatives, HBS Association of Boston

"l want to thank you so much for speaking at Honest yesterday. No surprise, you were absolutely wonderful - so inspiring, empowering, and motivating. The staff was literally buzzing afterwards with excitement. I’ve heard nothing but enthusiasm and gratitude all day from our employees for offering them an experience like this.”

Laurel Angelica Meyers | Purpose & Impact Officer of The Honest Company

"The CEO Summit was awesome and Simon was brilliant! He was such an absolute pleasure to work with and get to know. Our attendees were inspired and still buzzing.”

Lisa Jukelevics | Learning Experience Specialist of Better Design

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