Lisa Bodell

Lisa Bodell is the founder and CEO of futurethink, an internationally recognized innovation research and training firm. Lisa founded her company on the principle that with the right knowledge and tools, everyone has the power to innovate. As a leading innovator and cognitive learning expert, she has devised training programs for hundreds of innovators at leading companies.

Lisa-Bodell_P1My Definition Of Success | To me, success means getting paid to do something that I love and that makes a difference in people’s lives.  It’s not enough to just get paid. Even if you make good money, if you hate what you’re doing in the process, how can you call that ‘success’?

I Am Driven By | The joy of teaching and the knowledge that I can quickly show people how to creatively solve their problems and think BIG about the possibilities for the future.

My Highlights | I have had to overcome much adversity in my life; a troubled home growing up, the sudden death of a sibling, extremely difficult and abusive work environments and bosses. And, despite a strong propensity to be introverted in my youth, circumstances have continually forced me to step up, lead and be vocal in unclear situations. These challenges shaped me and made me who I am; and have forced me to become more than I probably realized I could be. Career-wise, I am proud that I have continually faced personal challenges such as introversion to become a skilled public speaker who speaks to almost 100,000 people each year. In my personal life, marrying a man who is a tremendously good person, and with him having two beautiful children, are, and will always be, my proudest achievements. I know that without them, I would have far less joy in my life.

The Difference Between Good And Great |

  • Belief in yourself – this lets you shun critics who say you’re not good enough
  • Have Resilience and Perseverance– a conviction to never give up despite difficulties is very valuable in life
  • Have Drive and Passion – it is critical to feel that what you are working on has meaning and is important to people other than yourself.

A Key Talent | I’m often told that I have an ability to inspire people. I have a talent that, if I’m speaking about what I believe in, I can inspire people to take immediate action. I am able to give people practical advice on how to move forward in a way that they say to themselves, ‘hey, I can do this!’ That’s important, because to me, inspiration without action is meaningless.
Everyone can be an inspiration to someone else. You can do this by showing them how to do something they want to learn. You can do this by giving them tools or approaches to make the first step. Importantly, you can show them that actions to reach a goal speak louder than words.

Lessons I Have Learnt | No one is going to create your future but YOU. People spend too much time on excuses for why they can’t do something; to me, that’s wasted time. If you want something, use your energy to figure how you can get it. People are busy, and while they might like to help you, they have their own lives to attend to. If you want to create a different future, that’s up to you to make it happen.


My Future Dreams And Ambitions | I want to help children. I would like to expand my current ability to help adults and businesses think creatively, and apply the same thing to young children in schools. If the world continues to change and get more complex, we need people who can solve problems in environments like that. Currently, we are so focused on memorization and test results, that creative problem solving as a skill is woefully under-appreciated as part of the educational process.  Being able to think differently, creatively, and solve problems is a common life skill that we need to start teaching at an early age. I believe that my team can do that, and in the process, create a generation of children that can creatively solve the world’s biggest problems.

Lisa-Bodell_P3The Best Advice I’ve Received | Stop planning, and start doing. Of course planning is important, but your plans will never be perfect, and you don’t know how something will really work until you do it. So, stop using planning as an excuse to not get started on something. You’ll never be 100% ready. So, try something small. Take the first step. Just get the momentum going that you need to do bigger things.

Advice On Building Wealth | My first reaction is to say – Go For It!  It’s good to dream big and want more. But my second reaction is, why is just growing rich so important? Is it just money that fulfills you? I can tell you that as someone who has run a business for 17 years, and has achieved a level of relative wealth and success, working just for money becomes a joyless thing pretty quickly. If instead you focus on what you are good at, or what makes you happy, the success will come. If you insist on just wanting to be rich, then be careful what you wish for. You may get your wealth but be empty in all other areas of your life. I’ve seen it happen a million times.



The Legacy I Would Like To Leave | In my career, I want to be known as a visionary in teaching people how to simply and creatively solve problems, eliminate barriers, and improve their work and lives.  And that I did it in ways that were shockingly simple, motivating and positive.

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