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Francesca Gino

Want your company to thrive? Let your employees be themselves—and break the rules.

Author of Sidetracked and Rebel Talent | Behavioral Scientist | Harvard Business School Professor

Francesca Gino | Author of Sidetracked and Rebel Talent | Behavioral Scientist | Harvard Business School Professor
Lavin Exclusive Speaker

Small, simple, and seemingly irrelevant factors often have profound consequences on our behavior and ability to stick to our decisions. In her talks, Francesca Gino explains exactly why our decisions get derailed and what we can do to stick to the plan—at work, in our personal lives, and as organizations. Her latest book, Rebel Talent, is a groundbreaking analysis of rebels; rule breakers who, despite their bad rap, are often the happiest and most successful people in the world.

Francesca Gino is a professor of business administration in the Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit at Harvard Business School and the author of Sidetracked: Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan. She is also formally affiliated with the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School and with the Mind, Brain, Behavior Initiative at Harvard. Her shrewd and practical talks show why dissent isn’t unhealthy; in fact, introducing a little non-conformity might be exactly what your organization needs. Gino will show you how to keep your company smart, innovative, and—above all—happy.


“This engaging, beautifully written, and thought-provoking book is a must read for anyone who wants a deep understanding of how decisions get so easily derailed, and advice on how to stick to well-thought out plans.”

— Susan Cain, author of Quiet

Gino’s research focuses on judgment and decision-making, negotiation, ethics, motivation, productivity, and creativity. Her work has been published in many academic journals and has been featured in The Economist, The New York Times, Newsweek, Scientific American, Psychology Today, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and CBS Radio. She has received research awards from the National Science Foundation and the Academy of Management. In addition to teaching, she advises firms and not-for-profit organizations in the areas of negotiation, decision-making, and organizational behavior.   

Speech Topics

Corporate Culture
Fostering Rebel Talent Letting Your Employees Break the Rules and Be Themselves

At work, we’re often taught and expected to conform. Social pressures and rewards show us that it’s often easier, and more comfortable, to keep our heads down and go with the flow. But obeying the status quo comes with a heavy price, to ourselves and to our organizations, argues Francesca Gino. Drawing upon extensive research, fieldwork, and expert opinion, Gino has found that organizations can improve feelings of commitment, satisfaction, engagement, and authenticity in employees by encouraging what she calls ‘rebel talent.’


In this illuminating keynote, Gino offers six key strategies for those looking to instill constructive non-conformity. With Gino, you’ll learn how to: 

·  encourage feelings of authenticity, individualism, autonomy, and self-definition in your employees;
·  allow for your employees to demonstrate their signature strengths and talents;
·  foster a curious, questioning mindset at work that allows for healthy interrogations and shake-ups of the status quo;
·  eliminate boredom and routine by injecting novelty and new learning opportunities, while also introducing meaningful new challenges and responsibilities;
·  diversify approaches to problem solving to (re)consider obstacles from a wider variety of angles; and,
·  identify and reward constructive dissent and skepticism across your company.

Dissent isn’t unhealthy; in fact, introducing a little non-conformity might be exactly what your organization needs. Keep your company smart, innovative, and—above all—happy with one of the most exciting and insightful behavioral economists working today.

Consumer Behavior
Overcoming Biases at Work The Pitfalls and Fixes of Modern Corporate Thinking

We all make mistakes. After all, we’re only human. But what if our errors in judgment fell into concrete patterns? If we could identify the biases causing our mental lapses, we would make better decisions—especially in business. In this talk, Harvard business professor Francesca Gino outlines the four types of bias running rampant in today’s workplace. We’re biased toward our own success—locked into fixed mindsets and afraid to fail. We’re biased toward action, because it feels better to move than to stand still. We’re biased toward fitting in; we ignore our unique strengths for fear of judgment. And we’re biased toward expertise, overvaluing the clout of supposed authorities while deflating our own. These mindsets are easy, and, in fact, natural to fall into, but they’re hamstringing your organization’s ability to grow, evolve, and thrive. Join Gino as she guides your company through the pitfalls of bias and towards a healthier, more efficient office.

Consumer Behavior
Sidetracked Why Our Decisions Get Derailed, and How We Can Stick to the Plan
You may not realize it but simple, irrelevant factors can have profound consequences on your decisions and behavior, often diverting you from your original plans and desires. In this talk, Francesca Gino helps you identify and avoid these influences so the decisions you make do stick—and you finally reach your intended goals. She explores inconsistent decisions played out in a wide range of circumstances—from our roles as consumers and employees (what we buy, how we manage others) to the choices that we make more broadly as human beings (who we date, how we deal with friendships). What factors are likely to sway our decisions in directions we did not initially consider? And what can we do to correct for the subtle influences that derail our decisions? Gino helps you better understand the nuances of your decisions and how they get derailed—so you have more control over keeping them on track.