Meet Libby, Keynote Speaker + Facilitator
NICE TO MEET YOU
Hello! I’m Libby Spears. For over 20 years, I’ve had the good fortune of building a successful career centered around my two favorite things: Communication and leadership. Not only do I educate and speak for a living, I have a blast doing it! That’s because if there’s one thing I know, it’s how to connect with an audience in a way that’s informational and entertaining at the same time.
So, how did I get here? Like a lot of kids with a mile-wide precocious streak, I struggled in school to keep my mouth shut and was a near constant challenge to my teachers. Needless to say, I spent a lot of time in my principal's office. In high school, I joined the speech and debate team and found that place in the world where I belonged (and met my husband!) I attended Texas Tech University and finished my degree in communication studies. I loved college and being a student, so I moved to Denton, TX where I earned a master's degree in communication studies. I taught college for ten years and after an unexpected consulting contract fell in my lap, I took a chance and started Bravo Communication and Consulting, or Bravo cc for short. I had no idea what it took to start a business so I got to Google'ing. Today I work with professionals across a number of industries and backgrounds, teaching them to be game changers in the marketplace by taking their communication skills seriously.
Looking back I can see how I ended up as a professional speaker. When I was a kid, my parents took the family on a trip to California. We attended an in-studio taping of a game show and the comedian that was sent out to warm up the audience offered the chance for someone in the audience to come up and tell a joke. My hand shot up, "Pick me!" I yelled. Pick me he did. I don't remember the joke, but I do remember the moment he reached into his pocket and out came a ten dollar bill. I got paid for telling a joke to room full of strangers! I had found my calling. I was on top of the world.
Founding Bravo Communication and Consulting was a way for me to fulfill what I do best. By blending my humor and strong storytelling style with a background in teaching others to communicate well, add a dash of (dare I say it?) rebel-with-a-cause, I am living out the full expression of my Plan Be: Be an Educator, Be a Liberator, Be an entertainer.
I love what I do and pinch myself daily that I get to work with people who are driven to succeed.
SEVEN THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW BEFORE WE WORK TOGETHER:
1. I have an addiction to Coffee--Grande Vanilla Latte from Starbucks to be exact. When I wake up in the morning I think, "Yeah! It is time to have coffee again!"
2. I know every word to the 80s rap classic "Bust A Move" and I take a lot of pride in this fact.
3. I AM GEN X. I believe the 80s were the best decade and our movies, TV, music and fashion prove it. Bangs and blue mascara? Yes please.
4. I love to read. When I go into Barnes and Noble I have the following experience: First, excitement over all the books that are there waiting to be read. Next, I wander around and mentally check off all the books I have read like it is a contest and I will get a prize. Then panic sets in, what if I die before I get to read all these books? A sense of urgency emerges and "MUST BUY ALL THE BOOKS" starts to echo in my ears. Finally, I start to calm down, grab three books, check out and then go add to my home collection.
5. I was born in 1973. My favorite numbers are 7 and 3. I love 10 too because 7 + 3 = 10. I like 21 because 7 x 3 = 21. But I don't care anything about 4. Yes, 7 - 3 = 4 but for someone reason it doesn't do anything for me.
6. Back to books: My favorite book is The Poisonwood Bible and my favorite writer is David Sedaris.
7. In another life I fully intend to be a writer for Saturday Night Live.
SEVEN THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT MY PHILOSOPHY OF SUCCESS:
When you hire someone to work with you, train your team, speak at your event or coach you to find and live your success story, you need to know who you are working with and if they are guided by a strong philosophy.
This is the philosophy that guides me:
1. You have a gift. You are obligated to use that gift. That means you must put in the work to understand how to best activate it in ways that are meaningful.
2. People who ask for what they want are more successful than those who just cross their fingers and hope it all works out.
3. Success is an ITERATIVE PROCESS. You try, you fail, you learn, you try again. There are no easy shortcuts to get there. You must be willing to invest the time, money, effort and resources.
4. Evolve or die. You cannot get too comfortable in this marketplace. It is not a matter of if things are going to change but when. People who are HIGHLY FLEXIBLE and ADAPT quickly are the ones who win in the end.
5. Your passion is so much more interesting than your perfection. Stop trying to get to perfection. People want authenticity and transparency. They want to know your story and why you care about the work you do. That is how they connect to you.
6. You will never reach the mountaintop. Sorry to bum you out but the truth is that when you think you have arrived you become comfortable and complacent. Think about your success as an ongoing journey. The destination is not important anymore because once you "arrive" you find out the rules have changed and it is time to get to moving on.
7. Work can be fun, work should be fun. Period.
SEVEN THINGS YOU WILL HEAR ME SAY, A LOT
1. "Oh my stars and stripes"
2. "Bless your heart"
3. "Tell me more"
4. "I don't know, what do you think?"
5. "Grande Vanilla Latte, please"
7. "What is the way forward?"