Shayne Hughes, Learning as Leadership’s CEO and Culture Change Partner (see bio at bottom), is a sought-after leadership speaker. He has presented and consulted at dozens of conferences and company events. View recommendations for his talks at his LinkedIn profile.

Shayne offers three different keynotes that draw on his twenty plus years of experience transforming his own engrained behaviors, and consulting and coaching on leadership and organizational change.

Choose from the following keynotes:

“The Ultimate Obstacle to Leadership”

Our greatest potential in heightening our performance and effectiveness lies not in what we know we should do better, but in discovering why we are not already doing it. Identify and overcome the unconscious barriers that get in your way of rising to your full potential. This inspiring and interactive talk combines personal stories of insight with cognitive science and and real world experience.

“Eliminating Us vs. Them Dynamics”

Drawing from his work in the book, “Developing Talent for Organizational Results,” Shayne explores the most disruptive cultural tendency in large organizations today: the silos and in-fighting that undermine collaboration and contribute to workplace stress. The unique insight of LaL’s methodology reveals why employees in the public and private sector are chronically drawn into anti-collaborative behaviors despite their best intentions. Learn why Us vs. Them Dynamics happen and how to eliminate them. Yes, it is possible!

“When the Running Began”

Based on his 2015 memoir, Shayne shares how he fell into the abyss of drugs, alcohol and nihilistic recklessness — and the hard-won insights and life changes he gained through the work of Learning as Leadership.

Through humorous and poignant stories, he describes how the pains of our past become infused with the coping strategies of our ego, and what it takes to grow into the person we aspire to be.

If you would like Shayne to speak at your company or conference, or if you belong to associations where his talk might help, email us at or book a keynote with his speakers’ agency.

Inspiring Innovation and Creativity at NASA

Shayne presented to 200 engineers, scientists, and business support leaders across line and project management as well as institutional administrative functions at NASA. The goal of the workshop was to help them make a cultural shift to a more creative and innovative workforce as well as raise the bar on technical excellence.

Linking Behavior and Performance at CCHPO

Shayne Hughes was joined by LaL client Cindy Lee, Associate Director of NASA Langley Research Center, in presenting “The Ultimate Obstacle to Engaging at all Levels” at the Commonwealth Center for High Performance Organization’s (CCHPO) conference in Charlottesville, VA. CCHPO helps organizations in the public and private sectors dramatically improve their performance. The conference was co-sponsored by the Weldon Cooper Center for Service at the University of Virginia and the Federal Executive Institute’s Center for Organizational Performance.

Teaching Learning Goals to Sales Executives at EnPro

Shayne was invited by LaL Alum and Enpro Industries CEO Steve Macadam to speak at Enpro’s Annual Retreat in Tampa, FL. According to Mr. Macadam, Shayne gave an impressive speech and he “highly recommends Shayne as a talented keynote speaker.” Enpro Industries companies are leading providers of engineered industrial products for processing, general manufacturing and other industries worldwide.

Breaking Down Silos at Navair’s Avionics Conference

Shayne Hughes spoke at Navair’s Avionics Conference in New Bern, NC. The Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) is a United States Navy command, with military and civilian personnel stationed at eight principal continental United States sites and one site overseas. NAVAIR provides engineering, development, testing, evaluation, in-service support, and program management capabilities to deliver airborne weapons systems that are technologically superior and readily available.

Presenting at San Francisco’s Commonwealth Club

Shayne Hughes gave his “The Ultimate Obstacle to Leadership” speech at San Francisco’s prestigious Commonwealth Club, the nation’s oldest and largest public affairs forum.

During his 18 years with Learning as Leadership, Shayne Hughes has helped numerous companies create a culture of open communication and collaboration to overcome ingrained ways of thinking. This has lead to substantial improvements in organizational and personal performance for such clients as NASA, Sandia National Laboratories, Shell Oil, Encore Capital and NAVAIR.

Shayne has been a featured speaker at the San Francisco Commonwealth Club, NAVAIR’s annual Avionics Conference, and in-house company retreats for Fortune 500 companies. He has taught leadership at the University of Virginia’s Darden Graduate School of Business and the University of Michigan Executive MBA Program. In addition, his ongoing work as a board member of the Nuer Foundation extends the values of Learning as Leadership to help worthy community efforts, such as an on-site training for Mini 12 Step House, a woman’s substance abuse rehabilitation center in South Central Los Angeles.

Shayne recently co-authored “Ecosystem Leadership” to be published in Harvard University’s Spring 2009 DuBois Review: Social Science Research on Race, Institute for African and African American Research. Shayne was chosen in 2009 as one North Bay Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 most remarkable up-and-coming leaders in Northern California.

  • Performance Improvement
  • Teamwork/Teambuilding
  • Time Management/Self-Management
  • Inspirational
  • Organizational Development
  • Alcoholism/Drug Abuse

Shayne’s speech supported our vision for culture change around openness to learning. His talk elicited a very passionate response; some said it was at the most insightful, inspiring speech on leadership they’ve ever heard. It got people thinking about how their own ego and fears drive negative leadership behavior, and helped move our team to really probe, listen and learn from customer and each other.

— Steve Macadam
Chief Executive Officer
EnPro Industries