The specifics of strong company cultures vary. What doesn't is the boost leadership speakers can lend to a solid culture.

Plainly, a lot of companies could use a culture revamp. A 2019 LinkedIn study with a sampling of 32 million users found just a 59% chance that the average employee would stay with a company for two years. Any longer than that, and the figure dips below half. 

In 2020, companies that want to hold onto workers need more than competitive salaries. To craft the sort of culture that keeps employees around, companies need new ideas. And for new ideas, they need leadership speakers who can share them.

Leadership Speakers Who Cover Culture

Whether you're looking for a star athlete to talk about perseverance or an empathy-minded culture expert, these speakers can help refresh your company culture:

1. Chris Dyer

"Don't work harder; work smarter" is the mantra of Chris Dyer, a leadership speaker who has been on the Inc. 5000 four times.

In his book, "The Power of Company Culture," Dyer identifies seven pillars of cultural success: transparency, positivity, measurement, acknowledgment, uniqueness, listening and mistakes. Through those, he claims, companies of any size can build a thriving culture.

A serial entrepreneur, Dyer regularly references those pillars on his podcast, "TalentTalk." There, Dyer interviews household-name executives to learn how they hire and promote talent. In his free time, Dyer judges entrepreneurial contests and hosts book clubs for HR leaders in Southern California. 

2. Rory Vaden

Rory Vaden, an expert on influence and the co-founder of Brand Builders Group, knows firsthand how important culture is to a company's customer relationships. 

Vaden's signature speech on creating culture and customer experience is called "Take the Stairs," which doubles as the title of his New York Times bestselling book. Other favorites include his viral TEDx talk "How to Multiply Time," a speech on performance and productivity, and "The Influential Personal Brand," a new keynote about tactical strategies to build a rock-solid reputation. 

One of the youngest people inducted into the Professional Speaking Hall of Fame, Vaden's speaking style is personable and lighthearted but professional. He's comfortable speaking to companies in a range of industries, including Northwestern Mutual, Pampered Chef and Merck.

3. Gene Hammett

What's the role of culture in company growth? Gene Hammett, a leadership speaker and executive coach, spends his keynote presentations answering that question.

To uncover the strategies that top-tier companies use to grow, Hammett interviewed more than 530 founders and CEOs. Leaders who create a culture of ownership, he found, are the single most important ingredient in that growth. 

In his speeches, as well as in his latest book, "The Trap of Success," Hammett helps listeners encourage entrepreneurial thinking. Leaders must overcome their own fears and find fulfillment before they can guide others, he explains. 

4. Chester Elton

Called "creative and refreshing" by The New York Times, Chester Elton emphasizes employee engagement in his speeches. Elton serves as a leadership speaker to more than 60 associations and executive groups every year. 

Elton's specialty? Inclusivity, particularly in the context of age. Elton often speaks about the challenges of building a multigenerational workforce. He's co-authored two books on the topic, "The Best Team Wins" and "All In."

5. Patty McCord

For 14 years, Patty McCord served as Netflix's chief talent officer. There, she helped to create the Netflix Culture Deck, which Facebook's Sheryl Sandberg said "may be the most important document ever to come out of Silicon Valley."

Since then, McCord's written "Powerful: Building a Culture of Freedom and Responsibility," which covers many of the topics she discusses as a leadership speaker. McCord's TED Talk, "8 Lessons on Building a Company People Enjoy Working for" has been translated into 25 languages.

Although McCord continues to advise a small group of startups, most of her work as a leadership speaker centers on talent and culture. Her topics of choice span female leadership, hiring and innovation. 

6. Chris Meroff

Chris Meroff admits that he once managed people "with this idea that their value and worth was in what they could produce." His approach resulted in failure after failure, eventually prompting him to re-examine his leadership style. 

Meroff now lives by the idea that leaders should be invested in who their employees are, rather than simply what their employees can do. Meroff's book, "Align," centers on four steps managers can take to fulfill employees and align their leadership style with their workers' interests. As a leadership speaker, he encourages listeners to see what employees do at work through the lens of their personal passions. 

7. Rene Carayol

An executive coach and the inventor of the SPIKE methodology -- an acronym that stands for "Strengths Positively Identified Kickstart Excellence" -- Rene Carayol believes everyone is great at something. Part of what makes him a great leadership speaker is his constant optimism.

Carayol's view isn't an academic theory; it stems from his experience as chief executive at Inspired Leaders Network. By focusing on team members' strengths, Carayol encourages leaders to bring out the best in their reports. His ideas have resonated at enterprises ranging from Visa to Google to AB InBev.

8. Greg Hawks

As a leadership speaker, Greg Hawks is known for his intimacy. His most popular keynote, "Unlocking an Ownership Culture," explores what leaders can do to help workers bring their passions and creativity to work with them.

Hawks is a great choice of speaker for nonprofit groups and governments, having presented to Feeding America and Chickasaw Nation. His "Thrive as a Volunteer Leader" breaks down the joys and the struggles associated with leading a group of volunteers. 

9. Molly Fletcher

A sports agent-turned-leadership speaker, Molly Fletcher knows how much culture matters to team dynamics. Fletcher has recruited and represented athletes ranging from PGA TOUR's John Smoltz to championship basketball coach Tom Izzo.

Fletcher's keynote lectures often show that sports DNA. Through athletes' stories, as well as those from her own life, Fletcher explores what it means to unleash workers' potential and be fearless at work.

The list of companies Fletcher has spoken to makes it clear that listeners don't need to be sports fans to appreciate her ideas. Hershey's, VMWare, Chase and DHL have all heard Fletcher's leadership ideas. 



10. Shawn Achor

Shawn Achor is a leadership speaker who does quadruple duty as a happiness researcher at Harvard University, the founder of GoodThinkInc and the chief experience officer at BetterUp.

Achor's latest book, "Big Potential," pushes back against the idea that success is zero-sum. He implores readers and listeners to pursue happiness and success together, not as individuals competing against one another.

Most, if not all, company cultures could use that message. As a leadership speaker, Achor has presented to Wendy's, the NFL, Google and Johnson & Johnson.

Anyone can claim to be a leadership speaker, but the presenters on this list have the experience to prove it. Pick someone who gets your team excited to find out just how rich your company's culture can be. 

The specifics of strong company cultures vary. What doesn't is the boost leadership speakers can lend to a solid culture.

Plainly, a lot of companies could use a culture revamp. A 2019 LinkedIn study with a sampling of 32 million users found just a 59% chance that the average employee would stay with a company for two years. Any longer than that, and the figure dips below half. 

In 2020, companies that want to hold onto workers need more than competitive salaries. To craft the sort of culture that keeps employees around, companies need new ideas. And for new ideas, they need leadership speakers who can share them.