A speakers bureau that represents the best original thinkers,
writers, and doers for speaking engagements.
Don’t sacrifice your passions in favor of success, says positive psychologist Dan Lerner. In fact, when you take hold of your passions, you unlock success—at work and in life. Drawing from his “Science of Happiness” course (the most popular elective at New York University) and his cutting-edge research into high-performance professionals, this charismatic and electric speaker sparks real change in how you see the world. By helping you lean into your passions and your ultimate goals, he empowers you to reach your full potential and achieve not only success, but fulfillment.
A psychology professor, strengths-based performance coach, and expert on all things positivity, Dan Lerner studies the ways happiness and passion influence our success. His two decades as a talent agent, working at some of the world’s top firms, prepared Dan for his current vocation as a sought-after coach. Today, he works with everyone from Fortune 500 executives to Metropolitan Opera Singers, helping them manage stress, rediscover their strengths, and realize their individual potential. With true joy, charisma, and wit, Dan shares just how important a healthy psychological state is for increasing performance and fulfilling your goals. His talks build on his impressive body of work to reveal best-practices on thriving under pressure, avoiding burn-out, and reaching peak levels of success without sacrificing well-being. Audiences leave his talk energetic, excited, and most importantly, passionate.
Dan co-authored the book U Thrive: How to Succeed in College (and Life) alongside his teaching partner Dr. Alan Schlechter, a leading child and adolescent psychologist. A comprehensive guide through the often unforeseen demands of college life, U Thrive is filled with fascinating research and real-life anecdotes to help students build life-long positive habits that will endure past graduation. Angela Duckworth, the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Grit, praises the book for its insights and practical tips, saying, “It’s a user’s guide to the mind and body, written for young adults on the cusp of mastering both!”
Dan consults for companies like Deutsche Bank, Oppenheimer Funds, UBS Switzerland, and Jet.com, where he works with staff ranging from new hires to high potentials to senior executives, optimizing opportunities for them as individuals and for the firm as a whole. Following a decade at International Creative Management and at 21C Media Group, where he was a co-founder and the director of artist development, Dan studied closely with renowned sports psychologist Dr. Nathaniel Zinsser—a Director of The Center for Enhanced Performance at the United States Military Academy at West Point—focusing on coaching and performance enhancement techniques employed by professional and Olympic athletes. He holds a Masters from, and is on the teaching staff for, the graduate program in Applied Positive Psychology, at the University of Pennsylvania.
Dan is electric! When he speaks, people tune in like the world is on pause. In the 10 years that I have known Dan he has done speaking engagements for my wealth management practice, to clients and referral sources, and for my alumni association (University of Maryland). The responses that I receive after each and every event are beyond positive … they are uniquely exceptional.Oppenheimer Funds
We had students fill out an evaluation on the conference, and I think two quotations that overall summed up the group were: ‘Loved Dan Lerner!!! Absolutely astounding, intriguing and very approachable; will continue conversation [with him] after this!’ and ‘Bring Dan Lerner back!’ Mr. Lerner was a joy to have on campus. We appreciated the effort he put in the conference to call us and tailor his expertise to our needs, which extended to his arrival when he immediately took interest in our students. It was clear that Dan finds true joy and passion in helping students and many benefited from that this past weekend.Purdue University
Everything was fantastic. Dan brought a phenomenal, personalized keynote presentation to our event. He was present throughout the weekend, integrated with our unit members and connected wonderfully with our retreat and the rescue mission, overall. Mr. Lerner is a delightful human and a true expert in his field.US Military Rescue Squadron
Outstanding. Wonderful. One of my former board members was in tears, came up to me, took my hands, and said, ‘Les, he changed my life.’ACC New Jersey
Dan's talk was right on the mark for what we wanted people to hear and it was the perfect ending to 2 ½ days of presentations. I received a lot of great feedback on the event, and particularly on bringing Dan to speak. Amazing to see all the positive feedback and chatter from our attendees.BC Wildfire Service
Last year I attended the Good Life Project Immersion Program run by Jonathan Fields, and Dan was a member of his faculty. We connected not only because we both love sports but also how we both are interested in helping people discover what lights them up and to live from that place. He has a rich background on so many topics, but what I love about Dan is how he delivers his sessions. They are full of real life scenarios, current research and funny stories. I am not surprised his class at NYU, ‘The Science of Happiness’ is one of the most popular on campus! When you see Dan teach, you immediately sense his intelligence, intellectually AND emotionally. He has worked with corporate executives, elite musicians, and athletes on how to enhance their performance and use positive psychology to build and sustain success. Dan knows how to help people move toward excellence.True North Sports
When I was connected to Daniel Lerner through a professor in the UPenn Master of Applied Psychology Program, I didn’t realize how lucky I was. I had been looking for a speaker for a Penn mindful leadership retreat, and Daniel ticked all the boxes for relevant topics: excellence, positive psychology, and goal-setting. Daniel takes the stage with an optimism and passion that is evident in both his subject area and personality. His presentation was ranked the highest by far from our participants, and the rave reviews I received afterwards about him were endless. By not only explaining the psychology, but also posing thought-provoking questions, Daniel made sure the speech was interactive and reflective rather than simply passive. We have asked Daniel to come back to our next retreat as a featured speaker, and I hope we can continue to welcome him there!University of Pennsylvania/Wharton School
Why does it seem harder than ever to craft a job that is truly fulfilling? With shifting labor practices, constant stress, and more choices than ever, finding a job that’s satisfactory is hard enough—and finding one that’s fulfilling can seem near impossible. In this fun, engaging talk, NYU clinical instructor Dan Lerner presents a complex journey in simple, tangible, and enjoyable terms.
Integrating the psychologies of happiness and performance to help audiences move beyond clichés and take action, Dan shows that loving our work and working at what we love is achievable. Weaving together science and stories drawn from his coaching clients—high-level athletes, musicians, and corporate executives—to people who have already realized everyday excellence, Dan gives audiences the tools required to define success, create a strategy towards meaningful work, and make the most of the opportunities to be our very best (and most fulfilled) in the workplace and beyond.
Cutting edge science now shows that when we pursue our passions in the correct way, we can realize the highest levels of personal and professional success.
In this talk, Daniel Lerner defines two types of passion: harmonious, and obsessive. When you’re harmoniously passionate, you not only love what you do, but you are more focused, energetic, and productive, and live a far more fulfilling life. Conversely, obsessive passions are marked by a compulsive, dogged pursuit of achievement, leading to guilt, shame, pessimism, unhappiness, and, far too often, early burnout.
Drawing on a diverse cast of iconic cultural figures—from Richard Branson to Ellen DeGeneres, Nelson Mandela to Whitney Houston—Dan illuminates the difference between healthy and dangerous passions, how and why to ignite, explore, and stoke your healthy ones, and even how to find passion in work that you may have given up as passionless long ago. And if you’ve fallen into patterns of blind obsession, Dan helps you transition out. Ultimately, this keynote is a fiery, fun, and practical primer on how to live a successfully passionate (and passionately successful!) life.
The peak moments in your life are not when you’re on vacation, when you’re kicking back and things are easy, or when your stress levels drop to zero. They occur when you’re pushing your physical and mental limits. When you’re striving to tackle a challenge that’s tough but truly meaningful. The moments when you feel most alive are the moments when you are fully engaged.
In this fascinating, eye-opening talk, positive psychologist Dan Lerner demystifies the experience, achievement, and massive advantages that are the state of engagement. Often referred to as “flow” or being in the “zone,” engagement is a term that we often hear in the workplace, relationships, and life in general. But what does it really mean to be fully engaged? What are the tangible outcomes? Perhaps most importantly, how can we all achieve this state on a regular basis in our daily lives?
Drawing on a wide array of stories, ranging from everyday folks to iconic cultural figures—from Kobe Bryant to Gandhi, comic book superheroes to the three remarkable female mathematicians made famous in the Oscar-winning film Hidden Figures—Dan brings the benefits of engagement to life. He shows how finding and using your unique strengths can lead to heightened levels of performance, greater energy and focus, an increased likelihood of goal achievement, a leap towards finding a passion, stronger bonds, longer lives, and a far greater sense of happiness and well-being. And this can all be realized with just a few tweaks to how we bring ourselves to anything that we do. Sometimes being our best means better understanding ourselves. Delivered with Dan’s trademark energy and excitement, this keynote is a primer on how to make that happen for every listener in the room.
For many students, the college experience has shifted from four years of thriving to a harrowing journey merely to survive. Rates of depression and anxiety among students are skyrocketing, expectations and competition are more intense than ever, and with online distractions and social media providing entirely new obstacles, today’s campus is markedly different from that of yesterday.
Featuring highlights from Daniel Lerner’s popular NYU class “The Science of Happiness” (the largest non-101 at the university), this talk will help students make the best of these crucial four years, both inside and outside of the classroom (and offers parents key tips to helping this happen, as well). Fast-paced, engaging, interactive, and immediately applicable, Dan shares with audiences how to cultivate greater optimism, resilience, willpower, and better relationships. He also reveals the science behind why positive thinking can lead to better grades, a more satisfying social experience, better levels of performance on the stage, field, and in the classroom, and even higher post-grad salaries.
Touching on key aspects of the post-secondary experience—roommates, dating, diet, work, exercise, sleep, study habits, grit, and passion—this talk will help students and parents understand the habits that can get today’s co-eds out of the mode of merely ‘surviving,’ and into that of ‘thriving’—in both college and beyond. This is the talk graduates wish they could have heard while still in school. With the science of positivity, Dan is changing the way students see school for good.