Ryan Polly

Speech Topics

Greatness doesn’t come from power, position, or technique – true greatness comes from integrity, presence, and genuine authenticity. People who live and lead with authenticity build trusting relationships, inspire action, and transform vision into reality. In this talk you’ll learn how to filter through the noise and uncover your authentic voice. You’ll discover key benefits of authentic leadership and you’ll learn how to leverage your uniqueness to motivate and inspire people toward outstanding results.

Storytelling is a natural form of human existence. Every leader has their own unique stories about their leadership, team, and organization. These stories help us better understand motivation and intentions. But what happens when our stories get in the way? It is not uncommon for stories to prevent us from moving forward. We get stuck believing a story as fact and rarely examine our perceptions. The great news is, by learning to challenge and rewrite our stories we can begin to shift from being stuck to truly unlocking potential. In this talk you’ll learn to not only challenge and rewrite your story, but how to help others challenge their stories as well. Leaders who learn to rewrite their story begin to see problems as opportunities and foster an environment that empowers learning, innovation, and engagement.

70% of change initiatives fail, resulting in a decrease in trust and morale from the workforce. Though these statistics are dismal, companies often return to the drawing board only to repeat the same frustrating results. They don’t understand the simple truth that building a resilient workforce is what reduces resistance to change. The key is understanding that initiatives fail due to misguided focus. The focus needs to be on building a resilient organization, not on teaching people navigate a change model. This talk will bring the key steps in building a resilient workforce directly to you! By developing your organization’s readiness for change, you can improve productivity, innovation, and creativity. I’ll help your team break from the chains of failed change management and provide the tools to meet and embrace change head on!

It’s no secret that organizations are risk averse. Let’s face it — as leaders we are rarely awarded when we make a mistake. The problem is that when things are too easy we get stagnant. We need adversity and failure to learn, grow, and innovate. In this talk you’ll learn to encourage adversity and failure, and create the optimal environment for creativity and growth. You’ll begin to see adversity as a stepping stone for positive momentum and you’ll learn specific and concrete actions to move your team from resistance to a place of optimism, excitement, and success.


Dr. Ryan G. Polly is a recognized thought leader, presenter, researcher, and educator with over 20 years combined professional experience in organizational and leadership development, diversity and inclusion, and university-level teaching. Personal triumphs in the face of adversity have provided Ryan with unique insight into the complexity of the human experience. He is currently theManager of Talent Strategies for Leadership, Learning, and Diversity, University of Vermont Medical Center (formerly Fletcher Allen Health Care, Inc)

Ryan’s entertaining keynotes and workshops inspire people to move through challenges and achieve genuine transformation. Modeling vulnerability and perpetual growth, he connects with his audience by sharing stories of failure, resilience and victory. Ryan’s contagious passion for positive transformation leaves attendees feeling empowered to employ his tools and techniques in their personal and professional lives for lasting impact.

Ryan holds a Ph.D. in Transformative Studies, a Master’s Degree in Adult Education and a Bachelor of Health Sciences degree in Health Education. He has numerous certifications relating to leadership and organizational development. He has been recognized as a Champion in Workplace Learning & Organizational Development by the Vermont Association for Talent Development.

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