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Linda Rottenberg            

Co-Founder & CEO of Endeavor; Leader in the Global Entrepreneurship Movement

Named one of “America’s Best Leaders” by U.S. News and one of TIME’s 100 “Innovators for the 21st century,” Linda Rottenberg is considered among the most dynamic experts on entrepreneurship, corporate innovation, and leadership. A frequent keynote speaker at Fortune 500 companies, and subject of multiple Harvard and Stanford business school case studies, Rottenberg has won acclaim for her pioneering work. ABC and NPR declared her “the entrepreneur whisperer;” Tom Friedman dubbed her the world’s “mentor capitalist;” Business Insider named her “Ms. Davos;” and for years she was known as “La Chica Loca” (the crazy girl) for insisting that entrepreneurs existed outside of Silicon Valley, in emerging and growth markets.

As co-founder and CEO of Endeavor, Rottenberg has led the global entrepreneurship movement for two decades. Headquartered in New York, with 60 offices spanning the globe, Endeavor rigorously selects, mentors, and co-invests in innovators with the greatest potential to grow their businesses and move the needle of their economies. In 2013, Endeavor brought its proven entrepreneur scale-up model to several U.S. cities. Currently, the 1,400+ Endeavor Entrepreneurs, screened from over 50,000 candidates, provide 650,000 jobs and generate $10BN+ in annual revenues. Today, Rottenberg also leads Endeavor Catalyst LP Funds I and II, rules-based funds totaling over $100M that invest in Endeavor Entrepreneurs.

Rottenberg is also the author of the New York Times bestseller, "Crazy is A Compliment: The Power of Zigging When Everyone Else Zags," published in October 2014. In that book, she argues that entrepreneurship isn’t just for young techies in hoodies. Whether you work at a Fortune 500 company, a non-profit, a mom-and-pop, or a startup, everybody needs the mindset to think and act like a change-maker. We all need to be nimble, adaptive, daring, and maybe even a little crazy, or risk being left behind.

Rottenberg serves on the board of ZAYO Group, the world-leading bandwidth infrastructure company based in Boulder, and Olo, a premier online ordering platform based in New York City. Rottenberg is a member of Young Presidents Organization (YPO) and served on the entrepreneurship steering committee of the World Economic Forum.

Rottenberg has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, Forbes, The Economist, Financial Times, USA Today, Strategy + Business, People, Glamour, and MORE, and has appeared on GMA, Today Show, Morning Joe, Nightline, NPR, CNBC, CNN, Fox News, Fox Business, and Bloomberg News. Dell featured her in its “Take Your Own Path” ad campaign; Veuve Clicquot named her Businesswoman of the Year.

A graduate of Harvard University and Yale Law School, Rottenberg lives in Brooklyn with her husband, author and New York Times columnist Bruce Feiler, and their identical twin daughters.

Speech Topics

Crazy is a Compliment: The Rewards of Creating Your Own Path

Every entrepreneur at one point in time has had a “crazy moment”—a time when almost everyone bets against them. What separates successful entrepreneurs from the rest is the ability to face down naysayers, embrace and manage risk, harness chaos, tolerate failure, and muster the courage to be contrarian. The best entrepreneurs zig when everyone else zags. Linda Rottenberg has spent her career helping innovators think big and get over their own fears. Blending inspirational stories with practical tips, she will help you hone your entrepreneurial personality, take smart risks, and adapt the tenets of leadership 3.0. As Linda says, “If people aren’t calling you crazy, then you’re not thinking big enough.”

Think Like an Entrepreneur: Lessons from the World’s Most Successful Innovators

Twenty-five years ago “entrepreneurship” was a rarely used French term that applied to a handful of individuals that were mostly in tech, mostly in California, and mostly go it alone. Today, entrepreneurship is better viewed as a distinct set of skills and a way of approaching the world. Top corporations have taken note and are seeking ways to disrupt themselves before others beat them to it. For 18 years, Linda Rottenberg has guided 1,000 “high-impact” innovators around the world, helping them scale from promising startups to global multinationals. Now she shares cutting-edge strategies for success and compelling—and occasionally irreverent—business lessons. Managers will come away with practical tips for adopting an entrepreneurial mindset essential to success in the new global economy.

Leadership 3.0: Motivation and Innovation for the New Global Workforce

Named one of “America’s Best Leaders” by U.S. News & World Report, Linda Rottenberg has developed a playbook for leading effectively in the new global economy. Thanks to 20 years of experience working with 1,000 world-class entrepreneurs while simultaneously scaling her organization, Endeavor, in 20 countries, she has identified the “Goldilocks rules” of 21st century leadership: not so “hard” that they apply only to button-downed organizations; not so “soft” that they apply only to t-shirt startups. In this talk, Linda explains how to use chaos to your advantage; motivate employees with “psychic equity”; attract and manage millennials; infuse your business with purpose; and remain nimble in an age of disruption. Linda also shares tips for building a diverse global workforce and ensuring that all employees find meaning in their work.

De-Risking Risk: Survival Strategies for the 21st Century Economy

Stability is dead. Economic crises, technological disruption and nimbler competition mean that more than ever, individuals and corporations must adapt or perish. If you think risk-taking is risky, being risk-averse is often riskier. But how do you know which risks to take? This is Linda Rottenberg’s expertise. The backer of 1,000 top entrepreneurs and author of Crazy Is a Compliment: The Power of Zigging When Everyone Else Zags, Linda is a leading champion of challengers to the status quo. In this talk, she discusses strategies to stop planning and start doing, mitigate risk, embrace chaos, win backers (including your boss), and take your idea to market. Above all, she will help you realize that nowadays you need to be agile and daring, and maybe a little bit crazy, or risk being left behind. “If you’re not being called crazy,” says Rottenberg, “you’re probably not thinking big enough.”

Skunks in the Workplace: Intrapreneurship as the Edge to Success

Have you lost your edge? Job security and your secured position at the head of the pack are relics of the past. Caught between increased competition and economic fluctuations, corporations are struggling to stay dominant. Research shows that even top companies are losing their leadership position faster than ever. You must adapt from within, or you’ll be forced to adapt from without. In this context, survival depends on tapping into the creativity of your employees and giving them the freedom to pursue their ideas. Forget top-down corporate strategy—the key to success is intrapreneurship. Linda Rottenberg offers proven strategies to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit in your organization by encouraging risk-taking, embracing failure, dismantling silos, and creating a skunk work-like environment where ideas can percolate from the bottom up.

Go Big and Go Home: A CEO’s Approach to Work-life Balance

“My favorite expression used to be ‘go big OR go home.’ Then I realized I needed to do both,” says Linda Rottenberg, who in addition to being CEO of a major global organization, is also a full-time wife and mom of nine-year-old identical twin daughters. In the same way that entrepreneurs are redefining many of the traditional rules of the workplace, they’re also helping to break down one of the most stubborn boundaries of all—the one between work and life. In this talk, which Linda has delivered to top female executives of Fortune 500 companies, she relates moving personal stories, including her husband’s battle with (and ultimate triumph over) one of the deadliest forms of cancer. She also draws upon a pantheon of female pathbreakers, from Veuve Clicquot (the first international businesswoman) to Margaret Rudkin (the frustrated mother who turned her son’s illness into Pepperidge Farm). With an engaging style, Rottenberg motivates audiences to find ways to “go big AND go home.”


Olo Appoints Linda Rottenberg to Board of Directors | Business Wire

Olo, the leading digital ordering provider for over 160 restaurant brands across the U.S., today announced the appointment of Linda Rottenberg to its.

Babson Names President and CEO of UNICEF USA, Caryl M. Stern ...

Babson College 2018 Commencement speakers President and CEO of UNICEF USA, Caryl M. Stern, and Co-Founder and CEO of Endeavor, Linda Rottenberg.

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