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Dennis Brouwer, speaker

Dennis Brouwer

    • Deconstruction Artist
    • Proven Turnaround Leader and Certified Leadership Professional
    • Best-Selling Author of The Return on Leadership
    • Decorated Navy Veteran
Fee Range

Please inquire

Travels From

District of Columbia

Intro to 11 Essentials of Leadership

Intro to 11 Essentials of Leadership

2018 demo

2018 demo

Blindspots, Breakthroughs and Personal Growth in the Leader

Blindspots, Breakthroughs and Personal Growth in the Leader

Dennis Brouwer is passionate about taking things apart…but not in a destructive way. Over a three-decade career of achievement at the highest levels, Dennis has developed and leveraged a model of deconstruction to tackle the impossible.

At the height of the Cold War, Dennis used his model of deconstruction to enable a U.S. Navy aircraft carrier to locate an “un-findable” Russian submarine in the north Arabian Sea. As the leader of the $300 million Savvis Enterprise Cloud Network business unit, he leveraged deconstruction to out-maneuver significantly larger competitors and grow the business while others retrenched. Serving in executive roles in sales, product development, and operations, he has used his unorthodox approach to achieve what others could not.

Brouwer is the author of The Return on Leadership, in which he makes the case that a particular form of leadership – Creative Leadership - sparks business success by identifying and deconstructing the hidden barriers to growth in people, teams, and markets.

The Eleven Essentials of Leadership
Train Your Brain to Think Like an Elite Leader, Starting NOW

In a world where the playing field has been levelled - where every organization has access to the same capital, technology, people and resources, leadership is the last great point of leverage.

The problem with humans, however, is that as we struggle to keep pace with unprecedented levels of change, we’re doing battle with our own brains. Modern neuroscience tells us that the human mind is incredibly adept at reinterpreting the immediate past, present and future in ways that help us justify our inaction and silently undermine our capacity for change.

As we consider changes in everything from personal habits to strategic initiatives, our brains, which have evolved over tens of thousands of years to be risk-averse, filter the information around us to convince us that we’re fine, our judgments are solid, and we can stay the course, just as we’ve always done. But there is hope. In this captivating keynote, bestselling author, U.S. Navy veteran, and multi-decade business executive Dennis Brouwer shows us a surprising path forward by building on the fact that most learning takes place NOT under the watchful eye of a tutor or mentor, but in the daily crucible of events, where we try new things, fail quickly and move on. Leadership is no different.

The Takeaways:

1) Understand the neuroscience that limits our creativity, and how to routinely sidestep habits of thought that hold us back

2) Understand the mechanism by which "The Eleven Essentials" have the potential to change the way our brains work, starting today.

3) Apply a subset of the Eleven Essentials in real-time.

4) Develop an easy to understand, painless plan to implement new leader behaviors on day one.


Energizing Elite Teams in the Military and Beyond
With a Winning Blend of Optimism, Curiosity and Operational Discipline

As a carrier-based anti-submarine warfare tactician at the height of the Cold War, Dennis and his colleagues had one job – to protect USS Enterprise from potential attack by a bad guy. That bad buy was a Soviet cruise missile equipped nuclear submarine designed to do one thing and one thing only – to incinerate the aircraft carrier that they called home. Despite a lack of resources, a highly capable enemy and conventional wisdom that said what they were setting out to do was impossible, Dennis and his team led the effort that found a Soviet submarine in the one place it wasn’t supposed to be – two miles from USS Enterprise during flight operations in the north Arabian Sea.

It’s an exciting story that’s surprisingly relevant in our hyper-competitive world. In this talk, Dennis draws parallels between his team’s experience in the strategic cat and mouse game of submarine warfare and the daily challenges faced by sales, product, marketing and business executives in their chosen markets and territories. In every case, success is a team effort and the difference between success and failure – and sometimes between life and death – is razor thin. Finding that edge – that competitive wrinkle or newly relevant assumption – is what this talk is all about.

The takeaways:

1) Understand the constructive way to challenge assumptions and conventional wisdom as a path to growing sales, revenue and customer satisfaction.

2) Gain support for new “breakout” courses of action.

3) Apply creativity across daily business processes.

4) Identify opportunities for competitive advantage in assumptions and the behaviors they drive.

5) Understand the neuroscience that limits our creativity, and how to routinely sidestep habits of thought that hold us back.


Innovating Without Einstein
How the Company Next Door Creates Breakthrough Products and Services

The basic organizational unit of any elite organization is the team. Faced with accelerating rates of change, global competition and rapidly advancing technology, our best teams are challenged to deliver on a credible, sustainable vision for the future. As the market for products and services becomes more volatile and uncertain, it is more important than ever for high-performing teams to find new ways to get the job done.

In this thought-provoking keynote, bestselling author, professional innovator, and proven turnaround leader Dennis Brouwer delivers a remarkable perspective on high-performing teams – how they work, how they’re different, and how they seem to achieve the impossible. Brouwer shares his unorthodox, yet practical approach to team development by illuminating the biases that undermine our personal perspectives, exploring the neuroscience of visionary thinking, and sharing startling case studies of what’s possible in seemingly dead-end, mature industries and organizations.

The Takeaways:

1) Understand the inherent biases that undermine our willingness and ability to innovate.

2) Learn the key techniques used by highly effective leaders to build powerhouse teams.

3) Gain a new perspective on the importance of clarifying, communicating and creating a shared Vision of a new, desired future that’s worth fighting for.

4) Learn the product development processes used by organizations that routinely launch new products and services.

Speaking Topics:

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