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Naomi Bagdonas

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EXCLUSIVELY AVAILABLE THROUGH WSB

Naomi Bagdonas

Lecturer in Management at the Stanford Graduate School of Business; Bestselling Author; Executive Advisor 

Empowering leaders to build more innovative, collaborative, and joyful work cultures (and lives).

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Naomi is an executive advisor, Lecturer at the Stanford Graduate School of Business, and leading expert in the intersection of humor and business. She facilitates interactive sessions for the boards and leadership teams of Fortune 100 companies and nonprofits. Versed in behavioral science and human perceptions, she advises executives and celebrities on topics ranging from leadership presence, to media appearances on Saturday Night Live and The Today Show, to political campaign strategies, to creative marketing assets.

Naomi’s work on the power of humor has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fast CompanyForbes, and Good Morning America. Her media coaching was featured in Sports Illustrated. Her pioneering research on team chemistry was the cover story of the Harvard Business Review and led to Naomi co-writing and producing a music video on the topic (in which she cameos as Janitor #2). 

She is the national bestselling co-author of Humor, Seriously, which was named one of 5 Business Books That are Surprisingly Fun to Read by Adam Grant, Susan Cain, Malcolm Gladwell, and Dan Pink. It’s been called “eye opening and utterly enjoyable” by Arianna Huffington, and “a smart and funny book on how to be smart about being funny” by comedian Sarah Cooper — who added “and I’m not just saying that because they say I am smart and funny in it.”

Naomi earned her MBA from Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, her BA in Economics and Psychology from Claremont McKenna College, and is formally trained in improv and sketch comedy at The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in Los Angeles. In her spare time, she teaches improv in San Francisco’s county jail, backpacks in the Sierras, and fosters a revolving door of rescue dogs whom she adores and who systematically destroy everything she owns.

Featured Videos

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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas & Jennifer Aaker on Using Humor to Upgrade Work, Health, & Life
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas and Jennifer Aaker on the Impact of Humor
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas on Humor’s Impact on Our Wellbeing
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas and Jennifer Aaker on Navigating Life on the Precipice of a Smile
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas and Jennifer Aaker on Their Journey Into Humor
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Naomi Bagdonas
McKinsey Author Talks: Naomi Bagdonas and Jennifer Aaker on Humor, Seriously
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas on Not Taking Yourself Too Seriously
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Naomi Bagdonas
Naomi Bagdonas – Remotely Humorous

Naomi Bagdonas’s Speech Topics

  • Humor, Seriously: Why Humor is a Secret Weapon in Business (and Life)

    There exists a mistaken belief in today’s corporate world: that we need to be serious all the time to be taken seriously. But the research tells a different story. Building on their nationally bestselling book, Humor, Seriously, the authors delve into the behavioral science of humor, and why it fuels creativity, fosters resilience, and strengthens bonds on your team and with customers. They share techniques from professional comedians to unlock a sense of levity at work and concrete tools for having more joy in your life. 

  • A New Type of Leader: Harnessing Humanity and Humor to Lead

    It used to be that leaders needed to be revered; now they need to be understood. In A New Type of Leader, Jennifer Aaker and Naomi Bagdonas explore why traditional models of leadership have shifted and how we can embody a new type of leadership: one defined by humanity and humor. They share stories from inspiring leaders and tactics that can be deployed to bridge the trust gap, cultivate cultures of levity, and unlock agility in the face of change.

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