Contact Drew For Booking

Drew Dudley

If we want things in our lives, we have to plan for them. So plan to be a leader.

Founder of Day One Leadership | Author of This Is Day One

Contact Drew For Booking
Drew Dudley | Founder of Day One Leadership | Author of This Is Day One
Lavin Exclusive Speaker

What if, says Drew Dudley, we believed that leadership wasn’t just for those in charge? What if we embraced our ability to lead, no matter our school grades or pay-grade? As he describes in his fortifying and action-oriented talks, individuals and organizations alike can create “cultures of everyday leadership.” But nothing happens by accident. We have to plan for leadership, and Dudley tells us how.  

“When Drew was selected to be our keynote speaker … I never expected to receive life-changing words, but I did—we all did … Drew is engaging, thought-provoking, and will change your life, too.”

— Major General Erika Steuterman, USAF (Retired)

Author of This Is Day One, which turns the inspiration of his talks into a practical, how-to guide for developing a leadership action plan, Drew Dudley is the former director of one of the largest university leadership development programs in Canada. Dudley nevertheless embraces the idea that “leadership cannot really be taught.  It can only be learned.” As he demonstrates in his wildly popular TED and TEDx Talks, we can all be students of leadership—so long as we design, and stick to, a strategy.


As Dudley says in The Wall Street Journal bestselling This Is Day One, “Leadership is accessible. In fact, most of the leadership on the planet is delivered by people who don’t see themselves as leaders.” This Is Day One contains years of research and stories to prove it, as well as the tools, guides, and step-by-step processes designed to reveal your core leadership values, embed them into your daily behavior, and drive improved performance, productivity, impact and happiness. As in his book, Dudley’s talks help us understand leadership in a more nuanced, practical, and hopeful way. He argues that we too often make leadership into something bigger than us, or beyond us. We make it about money, fame, titles and influence, and therefore something reserved for a select few. 

“Most great speakers have a schtick but Drew has soul. His talk brought many folks here to tears and uplifted us all. A year later, his message seems to have become an enduring part of our culture.”

— Glenn Kelman, CEO of Redfin
Instead, Dudley insists our organizations and communities are stronger when we embrace the idea that there is leadership we are all capable. If you don’t know where to begin, ask yourself “What would the person I want to be do in this situation?,” he says. Dudley’s keynotes blend world-class storytelling with practical insights on how to develop and recognize leadership—in ourselves, our families, our organizations, and our communities. 


In Dudley’s current role as the Founder and Chief Catalyst of Day One Leadership, he works with organizations around the world to empower people to increase their leadership capacity. His clients have included some of the world’s most dynamic companies and organizations, including McDonald’s, Dreamworks Animation, Proctor & Gamble, JP Morgan Chase, and over 75 colleges and universities.


He has spoken to over 250,000 people on 5 continents, been featured on The Huffington Post, Radio America,, and, where his TED talk was voted “one of the 15 most inspirational TED talks of all time” and has been viewed millions of times around the web. TIME recently named the talk one of their “seven speeches that will make you a better leader.” His work with some of Canada’s largest schools, corporations, and government agencies has led to him being called “one of the most motivating and inspiring speakers on leadership out there right now” (Dr. Brian Harrington, Oxford University).

“Every once in a while, a speaker comes along that challenges your mind and touches your heart. Someone who you are better off for having seen. Drew is that speaker."”

Doug Scholz, California Grocers Association

“Our franchisees loved Drew’s message. It had a perfect blend of aspiration, authenticity, humor, tenderness, and actionable takeaways. That’s what really set him apart—he provided something our audience could take away and implement in their business. Thanks to Drew, our owners are becoming better “Everyday Leaders”!”

Chuck Runyon, CEO, Anytime Fitness

“I’ve been in the Events Business for 15 years and Drew is one of my all-time favorite guest speakers. If you like seeing head-nods, laughter, tears, and the inevitable standing ovation from your group, then Drew is your guy! No speaker has been easier to work with or has cared more about the audience. A master storyteller, his content is powerful and super easy to implement into your personal and professional life.”

John Pouliot, Director – Global Events and Trade Shows, Monster

“The FJC clearly left the best for last! Mr. Dudley was mesmerizing. I learned more about leadership, what it means, and how to develop it in those 90 minutes than I’ve really ever learned before. His personal story, and confidence in telling it, was refreshing and added to his credential. A perfect end to a great conference.”

2016 National Conference for Court Unit Executives

“Thank you, Drew for your inspiring words. I truly believe that if we all asked ourselves the six value add questions every day, we will all be more fulfilled and enrich the lives of those around us. Numerous members of our group have let me know how your words yesterday have impacted them in such a positive and inspirational way. One of my colleagues has already taken the steps to repair a relationship with an old friend. You are an amazing individual and we are so lucky to have spent our Leadership Retreat morning with you.”

Providence Healthcare

“Drew's sessions spoke to the importance of personal leadership and accountability. He also incorporated Service BC values and helped our staff come up with concrete questions to help them support those values. I found both his sessions very engaging—he is an entertaining, thought-provoking speaker whose comments stay with you days and weeks after the fact. We conducted a survey of attendees and both of Drew’s session received the highest rating of all the components. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him.”

Service BC

“We have received such positive feedback and praise for your exceptional conference presentation. Your captivating session, professionalism, and enthusiasm in sharing your experiences was noted by many. We appreciated your preparedness and ease with which we worked to coordinate your session. Several delegates commented that they sourced relevant and applicable takeaways from the conference, specifically from your Celebrating Everyday Leadership session which was referenced numerous times throughout the remainder of the conference. Thank you for contributing your insights to positively shape our conference delegates’ experience.”

Coaching Association of Canada

“Ministry of Technology, Innovation and Citizens' Services”

Drew Dudley's presentation was the highlight of the three days for me—he was outstanding. He was an excellent speaker. He was thought-provoking and really helped to make a connection beyond theory to action. After attending his keynote, I was inspired to engage in the value activities he discussed. He was extremely inspiring personally as well as professionally. I learned useful tools that I can use everyday at work and at home.

“I don't normally do this, but we have never had a keynote speaker that everyone ranked so high in our evaluations! You received 5.30 out of 5.00 on the evaluations and the individual feedback was awesome too. I put some of the comments below: - Drew Dudley was an amazing speaker he has articulated the traits in a leader that I believe in! Great event! - There is not enough words to express the value in hearing Drew Dudley. A true wow moment in my lollipop moment! - Drew was awesome! - Drew Dudley's speech was extremely motivational. It taught me different ways to look a simple life accomplishments. His words gave me a sense of a different future for myself and how I may want to start living my life ("one interaction at a person at a time"). The good you do always comes back to you in one way or another. His words made me wonder if the things I am aiming for in life are actually worth. I also loved and felt motivated by everyone who stood in front of us and said a few words. - Drew Dudley is very inspirational! Judging by the captivating audience, he didn't just empower me but everyone so thank you for making my day. - Thank you for Drew! Truly inspiring and refreshing as usual HIEC has another great event!”

Halton Industry Education Council

“Beaming. That’s the only way I can describe the faces of the United Way staff team as Drew began to speak at our community celebration event. Drew took the time to learn about our organization and the goals of our event in advance, and the result was a seamless, poignant, and unbelievably relevant message that really hit home with our guests. Drew is relatable and inspiring, and he made each and every person in the room feel appreciated and valued (which was our top goal for the night.) Thank you, Drew—for your amazing effort, of course—but mostly for making our faces hurt from smiling so much.”

United Way

“Drew blew us away. We had 400+ people at the event and usually, by Saturday afternoon, we've lost a lot to distractions - hanging out with friends, gone off to do sponsor stuff, whatever. But on Saturday afternoon at 3:30, we still had most attendees eagerly awaiting the last session. We were scheduled to start right then, but we decided to push it back by 15 minutes - people were enjoying talking to the sponsors and each other, so I wanted them to not feel rushed. We started at 3:45 and I had asked Drew to keep it high energy, given that this was the end of a long tiring schedule. Within 5 minutes, Drew had the place in stitches. Within 10 minutes, he had the place in tears. He pulled out every story he had, I think. He worked with the audience and challenged them. He fed off their energy and they off his. He managed to take every lesson, every learning, everything we'd said over the last two days and bring it home. There was not a dry eye in the place. When he sat down, the audience stood up and would probably still be applauding if he hadn't said it was getting embarrassing. It was, beyond a doubt, the perfect ending to our conference. Drew is an absolute gem. We are finalizing our post conference survey and will share with you and Drew any feedback we receive once we send it out. I expect it will be a lot.”

BlissDom Canada

“Drew Dudley’s presentation was excellent and we were very pleased to have him speak. He was also great with our team and the conference attendees. Working with Lavin was easy to make the arrangements for his session. Overall it was very smooth and a positive experience!”

People Solutions

“Drew delivered a great balance between humour and content which kept the audience engaged for the entire presentation. There were many questions at the end which is also an indication of how well the audience received Drew’s message. From the survey we conducted Drew received a rating of “excellent” from 84% of attendees which is an amazing result. The other 14% gave his a good rating, we had nobody who indicted they felt this was not worthwhile to attend. Prior to the event Drew made himself available to ensure he understood our conference goals and the nature of our audience. His dedication to preparing the presentation to suit our needs is clearly indicated in the survey results. Drew was easy to work with and extremely professional. A number of our members indicated they want to hire Drew for their own events so we would have no hesitation in recommending him to another organization.”

Alberta Mortgage Brokers Association

Speech Topics

The Leadership Test Six Questions that Transform People and Organizations

How many of you are completely comfortable with calling yourself a leader?” 
Leadership author and educator Drew Dudley has asked that question to thousands of audiences around the world, and in fewer than 1% of those audiences were the majority of people willing to call themselves leaders.  That’s a problem, and this session will focus on how to solve it. 
In this engaging and empowering keynote, Drew aims to demonstrate that there is a form of leadership to which we should all aspire: one that is driven by a daily commitment to acting on six key leadership values: impact, courage, growth, empowerment, class and self-respect.  
Drew will provide six simple questions that comprise “The Leadership Test,” and while the questions may be simple, the behavioural changes they generate build better careers, stronger organizations, and more fulfilling lives. A commitment to passing “The Leadership Test” turns those six values into more than just words, and changes how you treat yourself and the people around you. 
This session will:  

• Highlight the source of participants’ hesitation to see themselves as leaders

• Reframe leadership as a daily choice rather than an acquisition of titles and accolades over time

• Outline the framework of “The Leadership Test”: an easy-to-apply approach to more consistently engage in positive leadership behaviours

• Strategies for more effectively embodying the values of impact, courage, growth, empowerment, class and self-respect

• Provide six specific strategies for developing self-respect personally and professionally 

This is Day One Defining the Things That Define You

In this practical and provocative keynote, leadership will be reframed as a daily choice rather than a set of titles or accolades over time. Drew shows that treating each day as if it is “Day One” of your leadership journey results in a stronger daily commitment to acting on your core personal and organizational values. Individuals who achieve clarity onand commit totheir personal values: 
• Rate 110% higher on overall leadership effectiveness than those who do not

• Are rated 140% higher by those they lead than those who do not

• Have teams with higher levels of commitment, pride, and productivity

• Rate 135% higher on measures of trust 
Drew will walk participants step-by-step through the discovery of their personal leadership values, demonstrate how those values can be translated into daily behaviours, and show how values-based decision-making leads to individual and organizational success. 
At each stage, Drew will draw on 15-years of personal leadership stories and insights to show how this process led him through battles with alcohol, obesity, and personal tragedy. Honest, engaging, and above all practical, this presentation will help you understand what your Day One needs to look like, remind you why you’re a leader, and make clear what you can do to be a better one, starting today…on Day One.  
This session will:   


• Demonstrate the importance of developing and communicating a personal leadership philosophy

• Provide participants with clarity on their personal leadership values

• Illustrate the link between personal value clarity and personal pride, engagement, productivity and happiness

• Introduce the concept of values-based decision making and its benefits

• Provide a step-by-step process to more effectively identify and “operationalize” key leadership values (both individual and organizational) 

Self-Respect The Foundation of Leadership

“There is no hole in your life that cannot be filled with self-respect.” 


It’s on that premise leadership speaker and author Drew Dudley has built this keynote, but he knows all to well that fostering that self-respect is a lot easier said than done.  
In 2010, Drew was fresh off delivering what would be voted one of the “15 most inspirational TED talks  of all time” and traveling the world delivering keynotes that led one Oxford University professor to proclaim him “the most motivating and inspiring speaker on leadership out there right now”. While his professional career was empowering others to embrace their leadership, Drew was struggling off the stage: battling alcohol addiction, undiagnosed bipolar disorder and a lifestyle that had ballooned him to over 300 pounds. 
In this keynote, Drew melds self-care insights from all over the world with his own story to present six strategies for embedding self-care and building self-respect into your personal leadership philosophy.  Over the past eight years these strategies helped him achieve and maintain sobriety, lose 100 pounds, manage his mental health, and most recently, process a profound personal tragedy. 
A presentation that acknowledges the dark parts of life and work with humour and compassion, this practical exploration of self-awareness, forgiveness, resilience and healing will remind you that we cannot lead others until we can lead ourselves, and show you how great leaders know how to put themselves first while still serving others. 


This session will:   


• Demonstrate how every personal and professional decision can be assessed for its impact on self-respect

• Offer six specific strategies for more strongly embedding self-care into your personal leadership

• Provide tips for more effectively preparing for—and dealing with—failure

• Outline daily habits that can provide boosts of energy on difficult days

• Discuss the importance of healing and forgiveness in leadership