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Sessions & Events

Sessions will be posted on an ongoing basis.

Wednesday, October 6


Unlock Innovation: How the world’s most innovative leaders think and act

Featuring: Josh Linkner

Having interviewed hundreds of top innovators, leaders and organizations around the world, New York Times bestselling author and tech entrepreneur Josh Linkner uncovered the five most powerful mindsets that are the building blocks for jaw-dropping innovation. In this high-energy keynote, you will learn to embrace these powerful approaches in order to conquer adversity and fuel growth.

  • How did an oddball idea save the cattle industry over $1 billion?
  • How did a large hotel chain create a new revenue stream and drive competitive differentiation without investing a penny?
  • How did the leaders of a small organization stave off a near-certain extinction, even when they were overwhelmingly outmatched by a powerful enemy?

Each of the five mindsets is reinforced through surprising, real-world examples, laugh out loud moments, and practical takeaways. The five mindsets are portable and can be applied immediately to any role, job function, or industry. This memorable session will leave your audience inspired, moved, and better equipped.

JOSH LINKNER is a Creative Troublemaker. He passionately believes that all human beings have incredible creative capacity, and he’s on a mission to unlock inventive thinking and creative problem solving to help leaders, individuals, and communities soar.

He has been the founder and CEO of five tech companies, which sold for a combined value of more than $200 million and is the author of four books including the New York Times Bestsellers, Disciplined Dreaming and The Road to Reinvention. He has invested in and/or mentored over 100 startups and is the Founding Partner of Detroit Venture Partners.

Today, Josh serves as Chairman and co-founder of Platypus Labs, an innovation research, training, and consulting firm. He has twice been named the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and is the recipient of the United States Presidential Champion of Change Award.

Josh is also a passionate Detroiter, the father of four, a professional-level jazz guitarist and has a slightly odd obsession for greasy pizza.


I started my first business in 1981 -- selling illegal fireworks to kids at my school. That didn't work out too well, although thankfully no fingers were lost. But since that thrilling moment of creating something out of nothing, I've been hooked.

I've been building and creating things ever since.

I've enjoyed some magnificent business wins, along with my share of crushing failures. Started and sold five companies. Hired nearly 10,000 people. Served on 83 corporate boards. Penned four books. Helped rebuild my hometown of Detroit (proudly born in the city, not the suburbs.)

I don't share this to be boastful; I have more flaws than I can count. (my wife Tia agrees, and is delivering a gigantic eye-roll of confirmation at this moment). The only reason I’ve had any success is by tapping into a superpower that we all share.

Human creativity.

Truth is, we’re all creative. That’s what makes us alive. And when cultivated, that powerful force can become a massive business advantage.

You can win big by tapping into your creativity. We all can. When we get creative, incredible things happen. Businesses grow. Families thrive. Communities flourish.

I hope we can team up to unleash creativity. Let's shatter conventional wisdom and defy traditions. Let's rethink what's possible.