Liz Bohannon

  • Founder & CEO of Socially Conscious Brand Sseko Designs
  • Forbes Top 20 Speaker
  • Author of Beginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose & Impact Now
  • Teaching Organizations How A Beginner’s Mind Breeds Success

How can a beginner’s mind influence the successful outcome of any goal? The answer might very well inspire you to create a new roadmap for your next challenge. Liz Bohannon, Founder and CEO of successful fashion brand Sseko Designs, shares the lessons learned from her 10-year journey growing her business from three women under a mango tree, into a successful international fashion brand that provides employment, educational opportunities, and entrepreneurial training to thousands of women across the globe. Her story is filled with lessons for success that are grounded in the principle of having a beginner’s mind. Liz sums up those lessons in her new book, Beginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose and Impact Now. In it, as in her speeches, she shares uncommon ideas toward success like, Own Your Average, Stop Trying to Find Your Passion…Create It, and Dream Small. Liz continues to channel her inner beginner as she manages 100s of employees across multiple continents, and this mindset sets her apart as a more courageous, creative and effective leader. Audiences find humor and heart in Liz’s storytelling, as well as refreshing strategies that are a realistic roadmap to reaching goals.

 

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Rave Reviews About Liz Bohannon
Liz Bohannon is an amazing storyteller, communicates with passion, and shares wisdom that is applicable. Her talk was among the highest rated from our entire event and one of the most requested by our global community. You would be hard-pressed to find anyone more inspiring!

A Sample of the Groups That Have Hosted Liz Bohannon
  • Catalyst
  • Forbes
  • Plywood People
  • The John Maxwell Team
  • The Athena Conference
  • Fair Trade Federation
  • Global Leadership Summit
  • Alt Summit
  • Ace Hardware
Promo - Liz Bohannon Speaker Highlights Reel [6:24] - Get Sharable Link
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Beginner's Pluck: Build your life of purpose & impact

How often do we dismiss someone’s success by calling it “Beginner’s Luck?” What if the very fact that they were a beginner is just what gave them the advantage to succeed? What if there is a method to a beginner’s mind that creates success? What a beginner may lack in experience, track record, know- ...

How often do we dismiss someone’s success by calling it “Beginner’s Luck?” What if the very fact that they were a beginner is just what gave them the advantage to succeed? What if there is a method to a beginner’s mind that creates success? What a beginner may lack in experience, track record, know-how, and connections, they make up in nerve, curiosity, spirit, courage, and a willingness to acknowledge they don’t have it all figured out, which ultimately leads to an iterative approach to achieving success. In this speech, based on her new book, Beginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose and Impact Now, Liz takes her 10 years of experience building her company, and shares uncommon ideas toward success that come from a beginner’s mind like -- Own Your Average, Stop Trying to Find Passion, Dream Small, and Be Good with Good Enough. This goes against the grain of all that we are taught as kids (aren’t we all supposed to dream big and think we are special?), but Liz explains that once you can let go of the “…visions of grandeur of what it will look like when you finally strike gold and find your passion, only then can you get down to the business of learning how to build it.” Liz will guide your audience to a new roadmap for success that focuses on the acts of doing instead of dreaming and ultimately attaining even the most challenging goals.

 Speech Takeaways

  • Use the principles of a beginner’s mind to achieve any goal.
  • Shake yourself out of analysis paralysis.
  • Get inspired to go beyond dreaming and start doing.
  • Focus on creating your passion rather than waiting for it to find you.

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Featured News
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<p><em><strong>Fortune</strong></em>: Why this Company Isn’t Worried It Left Shark Tank Empty-Handed</p>

Fortune: Why this Company Isn’t Worried It Left Shark Tank Empty-Handed

When Liz Bohannon and her husband brought the idea of Sseko to Shark Tank, the sharks wondered whether Sseko was “hyper-focused” enough on profits or too loyal to a social mission, arguing that the more successful model of helping people is to become rich through business and then donate the money through philanthropy. But Liz realized early in her journey that creating a business that was a sustainable marketplace solution for women in East Africa rather than starting another charity, was the long-term solution. Her thoughts about the Sharks: “The Sharks believe in the classic philanthropy model, which is that if you’re going to do something good, you have to get rich first,” Bohannon said. “They don’t believe in baking in social impact from Day One.” Read the Fortune Article Here...

<p><strong><em>B</em></strong><strong><em>eginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose & Impact Now</em></strong></p>

Beginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose & Impact Now

Like most people, Liz Bohannon started out as a big dreamer, but it wasn’t until she decided to make that dream really small that she was able to lift the analysis paralysis and actually make an impact. In her new book, Beginner’s Pluck, Liz shares how and why she started Sseko designs as well as 14 principles she uses with her teams to continue to grow their business and honor their purpose of helping women in East Africa earn money toward education and an opportunity to become leaders in their communities. Watch a video clip about Liz’s Ah-Ha Moment to Dream Small…

<p>Liz Bohannon and the Sseko story featured in Forbes, O, Vogue, Redbook, Inc., Fortune and more!</p>

Liz Bohannon and the Sseko story featured in Forbes, O, Vogue, Redbook, Inc., Fortune and more!

The Sseko story, and Founder Liz Bohannon, have been featured in dozens of publications, including Vogue Magazine, Redbook Magazine, O Magazine, Inc, Fortune and others. Sseko has appeared on national broadcasts, including, ABC's Shark Tank and Good Morning America. Among other notable honors, Liz was named a Top Three Transformation Leader by John Maxwell, Forbes listed her as a top 20 public speaker in the U.S. and Bloomberg Businessweek named Sseko as a top social enterprise to watch. Read Forbes Article HERE…

<p>Liz Bohannon inspires global audience Global Leadership Summit</p>

Liz Bohannon inspires global audience Global Leadership Summit

Liz Bohannon, Founder and CEO of International Fashion Brand Sseko Designs, spoke at the Global Leadership Summit in August 2019, to a live audience of 10,000 and virtual audience of 405,000+ leaders across 500+ U.S. Premier Host Sites in 135 countries. Liz’s message was so inspiring that within two hours of her speaking, an extra 12,000 copies of her book, Beginner’s Pluck, were sold. And the Executive Producer of the Summit, Lori Hermann shared this feedback: “Liz is an amazing storyteller, communicates with passion, and shares wisdom that is applicable. Her talk was among the highest rated from our entire event and one of the most requested by our global community. You would be hard-pressed to find anyone more inspiring!” Watch an outtake video clip from the Leadership Summit where Liz shares the idea of Dreaming Small…

Books by Liz Bohannon
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Biography

In 2009, Liz Bohannon set out on a mission. Armed with a master’s degree in journalism, and a curious mind, she traveled to Uganda to better understand the social and economic challenges for women. She discovered that women did not want charity, but a more sustainable solution that would provide them with an education and respectable jobs. As Liz dug deeper into this problem, with an open mind and fresh perspective, she found a way to create a business that would provide a marketplace solution.

Ten years later, she is sharing the story of how her company, Sseko Designs, grew from three women making sandals together under a mango tree, into an international fashion brand that provides employment, educational opportunities, and entrepreneurial training to hundreds of women in Uganda and across the globe. By providing employment and educational opportunities, Sseko enables women in East Africa to continue their education and become leaders in their country and our world, as well as providing hundreds of women in the U.S. to build their own Sseko business and make an impact.

Liz’s story is filled with lessons for success that are grounded in the principle of having a beginner’s mind, which she sums up in her new book, Beginner’s Pluck: Build Your Life of Purpose and Impact Now. In it she shares uncommon ideas toward success like, Own Your Average, Stop Trying to Find Your Passion…Create It, Dream Small, Be Good with Good Enough and 10 other guiding principles that she uses with her own employees and Sseko Fellows to help them build their own successful careers.

Liz continues to channel her inner beginner as she manages employees across multiple continents, and it is because she is leading with this beginner’s mind that she is able to be a more courageous, creative and effective leader.

Using her unlikely story of a journalist-gone-shoe-maker, Liz shares her passion for social enterprise, conscious consumerism, social justice, creative leadership and gender-equality, all seen through the lens of a beginner’s mind, wrapped in a decade’s worth of experience.

The Sseko story has been featured in dozens of publications including, Vogue Magazine, Redbook Magazine, O Magazine, Inc., Fortune and others. Sseko has appeared on national broadcasts including ABC's Shark Tank and Good Morning America.

Among other notable honors, Liz was recently named a Top Three Transformation Leader by John Maxwell, Forbes listed her as a top 20 public speaker in the U.S. and Bloomberg Businessweek named Sseko as a top social enterprise to watch.

Liz now splits her time between Uganda and Portland, Oregon, where she and her husband Ben run Sseko Designs and raise their two young sons.