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Neal  Petersen

Neal Petersen

Adventurer, Author, World-Class Motivational Speaker


Transform your organization by turning set-backs and barriers into opportunities. How do you navigate forward, deal with constant wind shifts, sudden storms, conquer fear, isolation, while dealing with an ever present changing world?  Neal Petersen takes audiences on a captivating journey around the world, using his remarkable life-story and shows, by example, that you can achieve your goals by turning set-backs and barriers into opportunities ~ with the right attitude and ability to foster innovation, build stronger teams, adapt under pressure, and cultivate a mind-set that focuses on no barriers ~ only solutions!  Read More >

History-making extreme adventurer, Neal Petersen completed two amazing journeys in his life: a single-handed yacht race around the world, 27,000 miles, 9 months at sea, alone, around Cape Horn, and in the smallest, least funded, yacht he designed and built himself. And an even more arduous and eventful trip of overcoming racial prejudice during the harsh Apartheid era in South Africa, poverty, and a childhood physical disability, just to make it to the start line!  

Neal inspires organizations to foster innovation, build stronger teams, adapt under pressure, and cultivate a mind-set that focuses on solutions! 

Petersen brilliantly connects his remarkable story to audience’s unique challenges, a theme or vision with dramatic stories of adversity, sheer determination and triumph.  His presentations redefine courage and human potential. 

With high energy, passion and fully engaging presentation style, Neal’s audience’s are spellbound from the moment he walks onstage, until he departs -  leaving them with a fresh perspective on turning disadvantages into advantages.  

Neal carries a treasure chest on stage, and in it symbols of how he reached his dream by always turning barriers into opportunities, then into solutions.  

Using examples of how he overcame insurmountable barriers is compelling and highly entertaining. Neal demonstrates how success is realized—through innovation, balancing risk against return and being flexible enough to adapt to constant shifting winds. In these challenging times of uncertainly, fear and insecurity, many feel like solo sailors, adrift, grasping for survival. Neal lays out the importance of a clearly communicated vision, followed by detailed planning, preparation, passion and then execution.  

He has challenged global audiences to prevail against their own formidable barriers and setbacks while igniting passion and a mind-set to never give-up!  

This story of hope, resilience, and accomplishment is truly inspiring and reflects a powerful message that "in life there are no barriers, only solutions!" 

Neal projects stunning images during his keynote and a 1 ½ minute intro and a 4 minute powerful self-filmed video of Neal rounding Cape Horn solo – his dream! He has thunder built into his presentation - lightning and fog are easy options for larger productions, dramatically bringing his story to life. 

“Neal is one of the most inspiring, dynamic and thought-provoking speakers you will ever witness, he is mesmerizing.” Faced with huge challenges and rapid changes in today’s world, it’s easy to get bogged down in the negativity and uncharted waters. Striving for goals and success helps us to remain positive and to remember what’s really important. 

Faced with huge challenges and rapid changes in today’s world, it’s easy to get bogged down in the negativity and uncharted waters. Striving for goals and success helps us to remain positive and to remember what’s really important.

“Neal is so unique, he is so much more than a keynote, he is the ‘best of the best’. Neal not only delivers a unique, captivating and memorable life-story, filled with valuable content, but he masterfully weaves in his audiences challenges and he does it seamlessly because he is PREPARED! He digs deeper and goes out of his way – to gain an in-depth understanding of where they are as a group, where they want to be and what it will take to get them there. Neal is truly a leader and teaches genuine leadership, by example in all aspects of what he represents. He is so much more than just a keynote speaker.” Axis Capital Holding 

Quote: “Neal is one of the most inspiring, dynamic and thought provoking speakers you ever witness – he is mesmerizing.”  Read Less ^

Speaker Videos

Find The Dream

Keynote Demo

Neal Petersen NAHU

No Barriers Excerpt

Speech Topics

There Are No Barriers, Only Solutions!

Why Neal Petersen Read More >

  • Neal’s keynote is a powerful multi-sensory experience using a treasure chest with symbols of turning barriers into solutions and for larger productions thunder, lightning and fog.
  • US fees are inclusive of travel -clients know all costs upfront.
  • Always mindful of client budgets, Neal never invoices for add-on expenses
  • Neal’s impact continues off stage, he remains is engaged with audience members attending social activities, book-signing, one-on-one conversations, group activities adding value for investment.
  • Having visited over 100 countries and lived in 5, Neal appeals to diverse audiences.
  • Neal is sure to give your event the WOW it needs. His passion and uniquely delivered life-story are the perfect open or close. Audiences are quickly riveted and remain so until he exits. Neal can drive home any message seamlessly and will leave your audience refocused and reenergized.

In these challenging times of uncertainty, fear and insecurity rise, many feel like solo sailors, adrift, grasping for survival. Neal lays out the importance of a clearly communicated vision and direction, followed by detailed planning, preparation, passion and execution using his riveting personal story.

Neal's life-story addresses adversity, diversity, leadership, team work, motivation, crisis, innovation, change, planning & preparation - then execution and the courage to embrace fears.

Take away values:

*Neal carries a treasure chest on-stage and in it are examples of how he turned barriers into opportunities to achieve his dream and empowers others to turn their baggage into solutions.
*Innovate - how to capitalize on ever changing winds storms.
*Change - adapt to wind shifts and stormy seas by knowing when to alter course.
*Leverage economic challenges to your advantage - keep pumping, choose a winning course and navigate to your advantage.
*Attitude adjustment - refresh your vision and purpose.
*Elements of success include passion, determination, perseverance and hard work.
*With focus and planning, a dream can become a reality – everything is possible.
*Life is about choice and with choice are consequences ~ choose your course wisely. Read Less ^

Neal Petersen’s Shackleton Leadership Program

Based on the polar explorer, Ernest Shackleton, who led three British expeditions to the Antarctic and became a role model for leadership as one who, in extreme circumstances, kept his team together in a survival story described as "incredible”! Read More >

Neal challenges guests to ask themselves, “Why would someone follow you to the end of the world?”

This stimulating and thought-provoking leadership program will follow Neal Petersen’s “No Barriers, Only Solutions” keynote. The allotted time is customized to fit a client’s program, between 1- 6 hours and can be done as a two-day program as well.

Leadership Program Content

  • Today more than ever we are navigating change and we need to be able to adapt. Join together to learn, to share and to better understand how to navigate into the future.
  • The goal of the program is to identify what the group or individual is hoping to achieve.
  • Development of their vision using Ernest Shackleton as an example of great leadership.
  • How better to cope with the rate of rapid change and the anxiety that this brings.
  • Retaining the workforce, rewarding people, reduction of cost in human capital.

Leadership and Developing Relationships for Creating a Legacy Read Less ^

  • Define, interpret opportunities for transformation, not only for today – but, for the next generation.
  • How to turn success into significance and the importance of creating your legacy. What is your impact on others and how will you be remembered.
  • The importance of solid communication to create sustainable relationships
  • Relationships, work/personal – how to develop a solid foundation on which to build upon.
  • How to balance work, family and time to have fun!

The Power of Positive Attitude & How It Affects Performance

Neal has always defined himself by what he can imagine – rather than how others would define him and how he sustained his dream in the face of numerous barriers is compelling. Neal’s ability to apply his own attitudes, values and experiences to reflect on the values and mission of the guests will make this a powerful and meaningful experience for all.

The Importance of Realizing Goals: Perseverance & Determination

Overcoming fear and facing danger and the unknown has been central to how Neal approaches his goals and his life. Audiences will walk away understanding the validity for direct correlations between perseverance, determination, motivation, and dedication to achieve any goal.

With Choice There Is Consequence

Neal’s impact transcends age, gender, and race to promote the creation of leaders, life-long learners, and individuals who are mindful of the consequences their choices will have on personal, familial, community, and generational levels.

Change Is Constant: It's How You Play the Cards

Audiences will understand that you have to address the possibility of failure if one wants to achieve great things. His message will connect with audience members’ experience facing challenges – sales quotas for instance – that may seem formidable at first – until imagination, innovation and passion are applied.