Speakers Wanted: Culturati Summit 2018

We are delighted to accept your submissions for Culturati Summit panels, workshops, and roundtables. None of us are as smart or as practiced as all of us.

Submissions will be accepted through September 15. We encourage you to start now, as our schedule is already filling up quickly.

Start your submission here.

Details, Details

While we welcome submissions on any topic, below are some of the areas we find particularly intriguing right now.

As you will see throughout the submission process this year we are prioritizing folks that are able and willing to get specific.

Self-serving ideas will be immediately discarded, and please know that we have a strong bias towards businesses over their consultants.

Our submission form prompts you to first express the kernel of an idea. Instead of a long-winded call-and-response process we want to optimize for dialogue between your team and ours. Let’s get the conversation started.

Submissions will be accepted through August 1. We encourage you to start now. Priority will be given to early submissions. The more time we have to converse about, explore, and refine ideas, the better the resulting content for our community.

If you are selected, please expect to invest time and effort in preparation for your panel or talk. Know thyself. If you are extraordinarily busy and will inevitably prepare for the Culturati Summit at the last minute despite your best intentions, please reconsider submitting. We have received feedback that Summit content varies in terms of clarity and preparedness. Fixing this is a priority for us.

To get you started, below are a few of the topics we’ve been obsessively reading and writing about.

Ready to submit? Click here.

Josh, Liz, Rebecca, Patti, Eugene, Steven, Michael and Autumn

To Get You Thinking…

Okay, here’s what we’re thinking about right now. Tell us what resonates and what’s missing.

In no particular order…

High-performing cultures.

We all give lip service to the claim that culture has a proportional relationship to performance. Yet too many of us still struggle to justify investments we know can transform the bottom line.

We are keenly interested in high-performing cultures. Can you evidence the relationship between the two?

Open your playbook.

We are looking for an intellectually honest look under the hood of both your successes and failures. We are willing to spend extra time with you documenting what worked so others in our community may benefit in a direct, repeatable way.

The term “case study” is too shallow for our aims here. We are especially keen to highlight at least one dramatic cultural turnaround.

Diversity now.

You have told us that diversity is a top agenda item. Diversity comes from many places: race and ethnicity, gender, socioeconomic status, religion, politics, physical ability, sexuality and more. We are currently reading a lot about neurodiversity too. Diversity of course, has been proven to positively affect business outcomes. Certainly diversity begets more diversity. How can we create radically diverse workforces?

We are looking for specific ways to improve. There is enough theory and plenty of frameworks out there already.

Automate this.

What are the cultural consequences of new efficiencies created by artificial intelligence and machine learning? Do we need to redouble our efforts in training to elevate our humans to stratified roles at which only they can excel? Will we indeed see the end of bad bosses, as Wired has argued? Ought we embrace these systems and prosthetics or wait and see?

We want to hear from folks who have and can defend an opinion on these matters, in the context of real-world experimentation.

Time is everything.

The highest performing cultures endure through time. Arguably the timeline against which your business predominately operates is the most important choice an executive team can make. We are interested in hearing from businesses with a unique relationship to time.

Are you multigenerational, and irrevocably in it for the long haul? Have you been in business for 25 years or more? On the other hand, how have you adapted your business to market demands? How do you keep up with the quickening pace of technological progress? How can we balance thinking both fast and slow?

Political action corporations.

Culturati member and speaker Matthew Dowd said something onstage this past January that still has us thinking. Matthew suggested that, like it or not, the corporation is now the most effective vehicle for societal and cultural impact in America today.

We want to know about cultures that have made it a priority to use the power of business to affect positive change.

Pervasive cultures.

We’re curious about cultures that extend beyond your walls. It has been argued that there is no longer any meaningful difference between internal and external communications.

Who can tell a provocative story about building real culture with customers, suppliers, partners, and even the public, in a way that transcends any one organization or group?

Industrial cross-pollination.

One of the best things about Culturati is the dialogue between industries as varied as sports, military, education, entertainment, real estate, medicine, manufacturing, media, government and technology. You have told us that some of the greatest benefits of Culturati have come from learnings presented by folks you never would have otherwise met.

If you have or know about an extraordinary culture driven by the unique needs of your industry, we’re interested. The less “translatable” you think your culture is, the better. We’re betting you can be more instructive to the rest of us than you can imagine.


Sometimes we worry more about what we don’t want our culture to become. If you have worked for company with a bad culture and have the courage to speak up with lessons for the rest of us, please reach out.

We’re willing to do whatever is necessary, Frosted Flakes commercial-style blackout curtains and FBI-grade voice anonymizers included. Really.

On the cheap.

Not everyone can afford a $50 billion circle-shaped campus in Cupertino. If all our budgets were slashed by 90% or more, how might we steward culture most effectively?

What hacks, shortcuts, or “damn I should have thought of that” strategies gave you a lot of bang for very little buck?

Remotely cultured.

From remote workers to remote locations, business increasingly takes place with little or no regard to latitude and longitude. Amazon recently announced that it is hiring 5,000 new at-home workers to start; the company expects that number to eventually reach 10,000.

How can culture make the distributed nature of its workforce a decided advantage? What makes and keeps culture cohesive despite national and international boundaries?

Freedom vs. Protection.

Some employers are using sensors to track employee behavior and using the data gathered to design the perfect office or figure out a benefits package. At your company, is there unlimited vacation, flexible schedules, or no timesheets? Or do you believe strict limits on work is the way to a healthy culture (forbidding work from home, mandatory lunch breaks, limits on the number of hours people can work, 4-day workweeks)?

To keep employees happy, healthy, and productive, do they need autonomy or do they need protection from our human tendency to burn ourselves out? Is your role in shaping culture to give people what they want, or what they need?

What strikes a nerve? What are we missing?

We want to hear from you. Start your submission now.

One clap, two clap, three clap, forty?

By clapping more or less, you can signal to us which stories really stand out.