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Dustin  Garis

Dustin Garis

Chief Troublemaker, Ericsson

Dustin Garis

Chief Troublemaker, Ericsson


Dustin Garis is a world-renowned brand innovator, consistently voted “the #1 event speaker.” Throughout his disruptive career at some of the world’s most respected companies, such The Coca-Cola Company and Procter & Gamble, Garis has become known as “Chief Troublemaker” for his innovative approach to brand-building, customer experience, and change leadership.

Garis was a leader of global innovation & marketing for P&G FutureWorks — an innovation epicenter responsible for accelerating discontinuous growth by incubating, launching, and scaling a billion-dollar portfolio of breakthrough ventures worldwide. This includes P&G’s momentous shift into services, with the Mr. Clean Car Wash and Tide Dry Cleaners. Garis also launched the P&G FutureWorks Global division in Singapore, deploying new business models and technologies across Asia, Africa, and Latin America.

Garis brings the same no-holds-barred approach to his keynotes that helped him blaze trails in the world’s largest companies and entrepreneurial startups. His deep insights and charismatic persona keep audiences captivated while helping organizations embark on the next frontier of innovation — whether he’s break-dancing on stage or blowing wide open the rise of the “experience economy” with anecdotes and visuals. With a particular focus on how brands can enrich lives, Garis offers examples of brands that are getting it right by “revolting against routine,” and creating memorable experiences to drive engagement among Millennial consumers and employees.

Garis earned the title of “Indiana Jones of Marketing” when he embarked on a 2-year global expedition to 50+ countries across 6 continents, to uncover the secret to building life-changing brands. As other testaments to his non-traditional approach to innovation, Garis has been known to begin meetings with opera singers, convert an elevator into his office, bucket bathe in rural India, eat blindfolded, travel the office by Segway, ride an 1,800-pound bull in a rodeo, and other experiments that keep HR awake at night.

Beyond his changemaker leadership roles in corporate innovation and billion-dollar brands, Garis now helps other organizations accelerate their innovation capabilities and company culture. He shares lessons from the world’s most innovative brands (Google, Zappos, Southwest Airlines, Airbnb, etc.), best practices in change leadership, as well as insight into the Millennial-led social movement LifeProfit, which is now fueling an experiential brand revolution across multinationals and entrepreneurial startups.

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Speech Topics

Be a Troublemaker

Changing the world begins with changing the way people experience the world, both customers and employees. But this isn’t easy — it takes change leadership. Those willing to be a troublemaker, a changemaker who can stretch the organizational comfort zone to try new things. In this talk, Dustin Garis shares the unexpected best practices of corporate troublemakers behind breakthrough market innovations (from Virgin to Southwest Airlines). Whether c-suite executives or frontline managers, they don’t just adapt to change, they lead the change that has been behind all great human advancement in history.

The Next Frontier of Innovation

Every organization must continuously transform itself to capitalize on the changing world around it. When faced with the challenge of disrupting the world's largest marketing company (P&G), Dustin Garis integrated lessons from his global expeditions that spanned 50 countries, thousands of consumers, and thought-leaders from the most innovative Fortune 500’s and entrepreneurial ventures. What he uncovered is a brand revolution that focuses on life-enriching experiences. Coined “LifeProfit,” this creates the single most desired brand engagements by consumers, and it’s the engine behind innovative work forces. He inspires audiences with a customizable talk that takes you on a fascinating journey, transforming the way you approach your brand… and your life.

Key Takeaways:

  • Energizing the organization around a transformative vision for the future.
  • Case studies from the world’s most innovative brands at the forefront of the experience revolution.
  • Practical strategies for enabling your consumers and employees to “live your brand.”
  • A blueprint for accelerating your brand's innovation for business breakthroughs and social impact.
  • The meaning of life, or at least the importance of humanizing your brand, from the inside out.

The Experience Revolution

As the Chinese proverb states, “Hearing something a thousand times is less impactful than experiencing it once.” Why then is our primary focus on brand messages instead of brand experiences? There’s a shift taking place -- leadership brands (from Coke to Mr. Clean) have stopped talking about their brand, to now focus on experiences that get people to live their brand. This is the single largest white-space opportunity for brands to grow: real life. Taking your brand off the shelf and out of media, to authentically enrich people’s life, generates the highest level of loyalty, advocacy, and sales (with a game-changing 95% lift).

Human Innovation

Considering that “over 95% of consumers and employees are human,” how could our approach to innovation be more human? From his years helping global megabrands act like entrepreneurial startups, brand humanist Dustin Garis proved that the greatest opportunity for brands is not just innovating on products and marketing, but rather innovating on the full human experience. In this talk, Dustin Garis shares mind-bending principles for reinventing the organization from the inside out, creating a culture of creativity/agility and unconventional approaches to human understanding, for breakthrough market impact.

The Future of Digital

Now that the world has gone digital, it’s time to get offline. In our blind rush to prove our tech savvy, we’ve lost sight of our true brand purpose. To fix this, we must look beyond the noise of shiny new gadgetry, to focus on key drivers of market disruption, which are rooted in fundamental human behaviors. We now have the clarity and capability to leverage digital media as a gateway (a means vs. an end) to true brand engagement and customer experience. Brands from The North Face to Zappos have discovered that in this age of authenticity, “virtual” will always be secondary to “reality.”

The Millennial Movement

“80% of Millennials prefer experiences over stuff.” This is the most powerful, yet untapped, human insight driving the marketplace. It can be seen in how the Millennial social movement is changing the traditional model of consumption, employment, and lifestyle. This experience-first generation presents a challenge to brands, with implications across all functions (marketing, product design, hiring, etc), but also an extraordinary opportunity to tap into it. In this talk, Dustin Garis teaches brands and retailers “how to fish” for hidden insights, and offers a futurist look at the trends (and countertrends) of Millennial-first brands like GoPro and AirBnb that are changing the world of business… and the world.