Roger Blackwell gave his first paid speech at age 22, to State Farm Insurance agents while still a graduate student in Columbia, Missouri. Since then, he has given several thousand speeches, but never two the same. He works with basic themes and outlines, molding each presentation to the audience after consultation with the organizer to be sure his content fits the needs and interests of attendees. Roger draws on his diverse experience in diverse sectors to customize content, causing a typical response, “I am so glad to hear a speaker who knows our industry.” This approach has placed him in front of audiences in retailing, wholesaling, software and computer firms, banking and financial services, e-commerce organizations, educational institutions, agricultural and mining firms, and manufacturers of varied products. He has spoken to automobile dealers and manufacturers, high-tech firms such as IBM and Intel, funeral service firms, hospitals and health care firms, insurance companies, and government organizations at both the state and federal level. Clients range from small firms in YPO, EO and Vistage organizations to the world’s largest including AT&T, South African Breweries, and Walmart. He is equally at ease with audiences of elementary and secondary students, university students, religious and community organizations, CEOs, marketing experts and Ph.Ds.
Although his very-visual presentations are usually in English, his understanding of other languages allows him to choose vocabulary and phrases that translate easily. When speaking through interpreters, he likes to meet them ahead of the speech to be comfortable translating technical terms, idioms and humor. He has spoken in nations as diverse as Bangladesh and Japan, Brazil and Peru, Turkey and Saudi Arabia, Germany and Spain, Israel and South Africa, the U.S. and Canada and others on six continents. (He is still hoping for an invitation to speak in Antarctica!)
Every speech is developed after understanding the needs and interests of the client and the audience, but the following are representative topics frequently presented by Roger Blackwell:
- The Future of the Economy: What’s Really Going On?
- Three Principles that Help Entrepreneurs Grow Small Firms into Large Fortunes
- Building Brands that Rock
- High Performance Marketing
- Converting Supply Chains into Demand Chains
- Consumer Driven Health Care
- Values-Based Customer Service in a Digital Economy