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Stephen O'Keefe presenting to an audience

Inspire | Inform | Entertain



Stephen O’Keefe works with numerous organizations and professionals to develop a culture of inclusion, diversity, and accessibility.  It all starts with listening. 

His presentations include keynotes, interactive workshops, breakouts, or training seminars, and are for audiences ranging from small groups to filled auditoriums.  His programs are inspiring, entertaining, informative, and high impact.

All of the topics below are available in keynotes, workshops, breakouts, and training seminars.

How to Listen Better: Tips from a Deaf Person 

Listening is a critical component to creating a culture of diversity, inclusion, and accessibility.  When you have outstanding listening skills, you’re able to understand the other person’s perspective, connect with them, lead and influence them.


Ironically, although Stephen is deaf, he has a lot to share with you on how to be a world class listener.  The auditory input is only a tiny piece of the puzzle. This is based on an expanded version of his inspiring and humorous TEDx talk, which has been translated into twenty languages.


The audience will learn the following:


  • How to develop outstanding listening skills through my 3 step process

  • Ways to create a more inclusive, diverse, and accessible organization that will increase performance and attract and retain top talent.

  • Why heart centered leadership and empathy are the most important part of listening

  • How to increase influence, lead and connect with others.

  • Tools to optimize relationships with clients and colleagues

  • Improved negotiation skills

Inclusion Starts with Listening

Many resources are poured into diversity, but diversity without inclusion is ineffective.  Diversity is being invited to the party; inclusion is being asked to dance.  Inclusion is the route to increased profits, attracting and retaining top talent, creating a happier workplace, and understanding markets better.

The audience will leave with the following:


  • Understanding the competitive advantage to inclusion.

  • The power of inclusion as a leadership tool.

  • Barriers to inclusion such as biases and labelling, and how to resolve them.

  • How to become more inclusive in a 3 step process.

  • Why heart centered leadership and empathy are the most critical parts of leadership.

  • Tools for creating higher performing teams.

How to Listen for Biases and Labels

Biases and labelling cause conflict and create barriers to connecting with others. It also causes us to underestimate what others can do and inversely causes others to underestimate what we can do. In addition, it makes organizations less inclusive, which affects productivity and employee retention.  This program challenges the audience to self-assess their biases and how to work on them.

The audience will leave with the following:


  • An inspired perspective on how to combat biases and labelling.

  • Understanding of different types of biases and why it causes issues.

  • Neuroscience behind unconscious biases.

  • Actionable techniques to break biases focussed on listening skills.

  • Understanding how to take the other person's perspective.

  • Better decision making which promotes inclusion.

  • Tools to become stronger leaders.

  • And most importantly, why wearing Prada is better than speech therapy.

Decoding Intercultural Communication

Cultural misunderstandings cause many communication issues, which can be costly to businesses and lead to workplace conflicts and negotiation breakdowns. This is especially important when we have diverse workforces and numerous cross-border transactions.

Stephen’s humorous and informative presentation is based on his experiences managing an intercultural team of employees, travelling to over 50 countries and six continents, growing up with a hearing impairment, and practical insights.


The audience will leave with the following:

  • A stronger understanding of the nuances that culture plays in communication issues and how to embrace differences with more ease and confidence.

  • Tools to create a more inclusive culture, which increases productivity, sales, and employee morale.

  • The cost to organizations as a result of cultural misunderstandings.

  • Differences in non-verbal communications and the indirect versus direct approach.

  • Understanding the role body language plays in communication.

  • Improved negotiation skills.

The Sound of Change:
How to Turn Barriers into Opportunities

Change can be challenging, and finding resiliency to overcome obstacles is not always easy. When you’re stuck, it’s sometimes hard to find the way forward.


In Stephen’s humorous, inspiring, and informative presentation, he shares practical and applicable insights on how to put your challenges into perspective. In addition, he provides you with tools to turn barriers into opportunities.


The audience will leave with the following:


  • How the power of perception is a powerful tool for managing adversity.

  • A decisive shift in seeing barriers as opportunities.

  • Steps to create a growth mindset in the face of adversity.

  • Tools and techniques to reprogram your perspective.

  • How to develop laser focus on solving problems.

  • Ways to move forward in the face of adversity.

Customized Presentations

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Hey there!

Do you also need a particular issue addressed that you don't see above?

Stephen would love to listen to you.

Stephen O'Keefe leading a workshop
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