Whether you are organising an expo, franchise convention or a trade gathering, a commanding, informative speaker is essential. These 20 speakers are known for talking compellingly on franchising and allied topics.
Anthony Padulo, Chuck Carmen, Eric Chester, Farrah Rose, Jack Monson, Dr John P. Hayes, John Kersh, Jonathan Barnett, Justin Livingstone, Larry Kruguer, Meg Rose, Melanie Bergeron, Patrick Schwerdtfeger, Rocco Fiorentino, Shane Evans, Shep Hyken, Sheryl Connelly, Suzie McCafferty, Tim Ferriss, Walter Bond
Anthony 'Tony' Padulo is an experienced franchise development professional with an extensive background in assisting brands to expand domestically and internationally. He's now Executive Vice President of International and Domestic Franchise Development at BrightStar Care, but over the past 30 years, he has helped to expand well-known franchise systems across a number of industries, including Baskin Robbins, Dunkin’ Donuts, BP Oil, Goddard Systems, and Re/Max. For Padulo, franchise development is all about building relationships through transparency and trust: at BrightStar Care, he is “passionately helping this prestigious homecare franchise build a higher standard of in-home care on the global level.”
Chuck Carmen is a motivational and keynote speaker speaker who talks on corporate, franchise, entrepreneurial, non-profit association management and consulting. Carmen is a franchise expert who tailors his output to each client's individual requirements: "I don't just want to be a speaker for a client. I want to get to know them, their business needs and concerns. I want to learn their business, speak with their winners, the middle of the roaders, and the laggers before I even begin to build a custom presentation to take them to newer heights in their individual operations.” Chuck has worked with franchises in industries that vary from financial to food, and has experience as a successful franchise-builder himself.
A trusted source on employee engagement, workplace culture and the emerging generation, Eric Chester has been researching, studying, speaking and writing about these topics since 1986. A successful author, Eric became one of North America’s most in-demand conference keynote speakers, presenting at more than 60 meetings and conventions annually. As founder of The Center for Work Ethic Development, Eric created a work ethic training curriculum that is being taught in schools, colleges, workforce centers and organizations across the the world. Among companies who have offered repeat speaking invitations are Harley Davidson, McDonald’s, Sprint, Great Clips,and Wells Fargo.
Farrah Rose has unrivalled experience in international franchising and has been operating in this field since 1984. Initially working for major corporations, Farrah, who holds a French Baccalaureate in Science, and business and marketing degrees from Hull University, has been involved in international franchise management since 1984. She began advising businesses as a consultant in 1996 and has worked with over 300 brands, from family businesses to major names, helping them to expand their businesses into global markets. Fluent in two European and one Middle Eastern languages, Farrah is now recognised as one of the leading authorities on international franchising.
Jack Monson is director of digital strategy at Qiigo, which provides local marketing solutions for national brands. He has been helping global brands, enterprises, and franchise systems with digital marketing for nearly two decades. As well as public speaking, Jack's range of expertise includes content marketing, social media marketing, franchise marketing, social CRM, SMMS, SAAS, strategic planning, corporate communications, brand journalism, marketing & sales management, new business development, public relations, radio & broadcasting, podcasting and story telling. He blogs at Social Media Workbench and is the co-host of the weekly Social Geek radio program and podcast.
John Hayes has worked in the franchise community as a consultant, franchisee and franchisor since 1979. He has owned and operated franchises, served as CEO of a major American franchisor, and advised franchisors and franchisees. Dr. Hayes has been for many years an advisor to franchisors, franchisees and small business owners internationally. His areas of expertise include management development, marketing, customer service, training and strategic planning. He is the author or co-author of 18 non-fiction books including Franchising: The Inside Story, Start Small, Finish Big, You Can’t Teach A Kid To Ride A Bike At A Seminar, and Buy “Hot” Franchises Without Getting Burned.
John Kersh is chief development officer for Pure Barre, a world leader in the boutique fitness category with more than 425 locations in the USA and Canada. Before accepting his current role, Kersh was the vice president of international franchise development for Self-Esteem Brands, the franchisor of healthy lifestyle brands Waxing the City and Anytime Fitness, the world's largest chain of fitness clubs. Prior to joining Self-Esteem Brands in 2008, Kersh spent three years developing a start-up franchise in Brazil called Citrus Gym. Kersh is a member of the International Committee of the International Franchise Association.
Founder and president of Oxi Fresh Carpet Cleaning, Jonathan Barnett started up his eco-friendly carpet cleaning company with a single unit in Denver in 2006, but by 2010, had grown the concern to almost 200 units. Oxi Fresh now boasts franchise businesses across the US and into Canada. Barnett's drive to succeed may have its roots in previous ventures such as 'Johnny B’s Fireworks Stand' that he operated while studying for a BS in Business Administration. He soon expanded this to pay his way through school. His specialities are listed as franchise development, franchise sales, franchise negotiation, and branding & identity.
In 2014, Justin Livingston joined Coyote Ugly Saloon as Vice President of Global Development, with a remit to develop the international franchise program and support the chain's world-wide franchisees. Since then, Livingston has launched Coyote Ugly franchises around the globe. Prior to Coyote Ugly, he worked with Maui Wowi Hawaiian Coffees and Smoothies, perfecting their franchise program “and bringing on over 150 of their 200 franchisees, 107 personally and the rest by building a domestic sales team.” He also ran the international sales program and expanded the brand into six different countries. Livingston recently opened Coyote Ugly locations in Tokyo, Cardiff and Bishkek in Kyrgyzstan.
If you seek a speaker with solid, cross-range experience of franchising, Larry Kruguer would be a likely candidate. Currently President International at Wingstop Restaurants, Inc, Kruguer has been a key player in the successful international expansion of this Roark Capital-owned business. Charlie Morrison, Wingstop President and CEO has acknowledged Kruguer's “broad skill set, acute international knowledge and proven track record.” Kruguer had previously managed franchise acquisition and business development with Wendy's International, overseeing the chain's expansion to 400 units in 30 countries. Since joining Wingstop in 2015, Kruguer has played a leading role in the chain's growth to over 900 locations in the U.S. and overseas.
As Firehouse Subs’ vice president of field operations Meg Rose displays a flair for promotion – example, 'Field Goals for Firehouse', a tie-in with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Whenever a field goal surpassed 40 yards, participants received one of 90,000 free subs coupons. A pop-up restaurant created at The Players Championship, earned nearly $40,000 in seven days. Such lively ideas have helped sales increase by nearly 25 per cent, and restaurant openings by 18 per cent. For Rose, fast casual is a people business: “We provide great opportunities for people who don’t find that college is the right path for them.”
Melanie Bergeron officially joined the family business in 1989 when she was awarded the first Two Men and a Truck franchise in Atlanta, Ga. Initially, Bergeron also maintained a career in pharmaceutical sales while operating the franchise; all profits from the franchise were being reinvested into the family business. In 1994, Bergeron was named president of Two Men and a Truck. In 2002, she became chief operating officer and in January 2007, she took over as CEO. Bergeron believes that success is built upon a strong staff training program, strategic planning, a high level of integrity and giving something back to the community.
Patrick Schwerdtfeger speaks on a wide range of subjects, from geopolitical dynamics and demographic shifts to social media and trends in technology. In 2007 as the 'mortgage meltdown' was already unfolding, a number of media outlets including NPR and Associated Press contacted Schwerdtfeger for his comments regarding the crisis. His interviews were syndicated nationally, which generated more requests for him to speak at events, not only on the subject of the mortgage crisis but also on podcasting and the emerging field of social media. The founder of Trend Mastery, he has since spoken at hundreds of events around the world.
A frequent speaker at franchise gatherings, Rocco Fiorentino CFE is co-chairman of the IFA’s Membership Committee. He is also president of Swiss Farm Stores, based in Delaware County, PA. “America’s Drive-Thru Grocer,” was established in 1968 and started franchising in 2009. Fiorentino is a founding partner of Eagle Tax Services Group, LLC, franchisors of financial services and tax preparation services, with nearly 200 offices nationwide. The author of numerous articles within the franchise industry, Fiorentino is the founder and chairman of the Little Rock Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to serving children and young adults who are visually impaired and blind.
Shane Evans co-founded Massage Heights in San Antonio in 2004 with her husband Wayne and as President and COO, she is responsible for the company’s services, products and programs, and also helps develop strategic initiatives. Shane and her husband have built up a family-based business which has over 100 locations in the U.S and Canada and is now looking for a wider international roll-out. The ethos of Massage Heights, reads company literature, is to elevate “the lives of the people we touch by caring for the mind, body and spirit through our relationships with our guests, our team members and our franchise partners.”
Shep Hyken is the founder of Shepard Presentations. As a customer service expert and successful keynote speaker, Hyken works with companies who want to build loyal relationships with their customers and employees. The focus of his talks, which are all tailored to circumstance, is on delivering top level customer service, customer engagement, managing the customer experience and creating customer loyalty. He is a hall of fame speaker (National Speakers Association) and a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-selling author of a number of books which deal with the art of retaining customers.
Sheryl Connelly has served as Ford Motor Company’s futurist for more than a decade. As Manager, Global Consumer Trends and Futuring, she is responsible for identifying global trends, exploring potential implications and communicating these insights on design, product development and corporate strategy to organizations throughout the company. She is a member of the Global Advisory Council on transportation for the World Economic Forum. Connelly, who previously practised law, has been a featured speaker at TED Global, and has appeared on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose, CNBC’s Fast Money and NPR’s All Things Considered with Robert Siegel.
Scottish Chairperson of the British Franchise Association is Suzie McCafferty, QFP. Suzie is managing director of Platinum Wave, a franchise consultancy providing advice on franchising, international franchise business and franchisee recruitment. Suzie graduated from Edinburgh's Queen Margaret University with first class honours before starting up her own retail business, which she franchised to 70 franchisees in six countries, over a seven year period. Her experience of building, developing and managing successful UK and international franchise operations over the last 17 years has earned her widespread recognition, including finalist placings in the National Business Entrepreneur of the Year Awards.
Listed as one of Fast Company’s “Most Innovative Business People.” Tim Ferriss is an angel investor and start-up advisor (Facebook, Twitter, Uber, Nextdoor, Alibaba) and author of four #1 NYT/WSJ bestsellers, including The 4-Hour Workweek and Tools of Titans. He has invested or advised start ups such as Posterous, Evernote, DailyBurn, Shopify, Reputation.com, Trippy, and TaskRabbit. He is a pre-seed money advisor to Uber, a company co-founded by Garrett Camp, founder of StumbleUpon, which Ferriss also advises. The New York Times listed Ferris among their 'Notable Angel Investors' while CNN said he was "one of the planet's leading angel investors in technology."
An undoubted star of the speaker circuit is the former pro basketball player Walter Bond. His mastery in two different global industries has made him an authority on peak performance. Bond has delivered his entertaining and dynamic message to companies and associations throughout the United States, Canada, Mexico, the Caribbean and Europe. Clients include Accenture, Blue Cross/Blue Shield, The Dwyer Group, Allianz, Amway, GNC, Hilton, Medtronic, UPS Store, Radio Shack, Red Robin and many national associations. Whether it’s a new product launch, hitting sales goals or gelling as a team, Mr. Bond is passionate about sharing his 31 Truths to Boost Peak Performance.
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