Dennis Brouwer brings a completely unique perspective to the challenge of thriving in a chaotic world. In his most recent corporate executive role, he led a team of 135 business development professionals with P&L responsibility for over $3b in global revenue. Across multiple businesses, he has launched or revamped over 100 global products and services and personally led the turnaround of a failing $300m global IT services business.
Early in his career, he served in the inherently hazardous world of naval aviation as a carrier-based naval flight officer and mission commander, and accumulated nearly 1,000 hours of flight time and 200 carrier landings. During that time he also served as a special weapons loading officer on the flight deck and in the squadron Safety Department as an in-flight evaluator, safety and operations trainer and award-winning tactics instructor. He is a graduate of the Navy’s specialized survival programs for open-water and jungle environments, as well as SERE (Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape), the capstone “prisoner of war experience” course for all combat aviators.
After leaving the Navy, he led product management organizations tasked with anticipating the future and funding, quantifying and completing the development efforts, both technical and business, to make it real. As a result, Dennis possesses a deep understanding of the importance of overall preparedness, the psychology of risk and the very real dangers of complacency. He has honed this knowledge in industries as diverse as internet/cloud services, aviation, financial services, manufacturing and cybersecurity, and in start-ups, mid-size businesses and as a senior executive in a Fortune 200 company.
Dennis is a graduate of Georgetown University’s Leadership coaching program and the author “The Return on Leadership, a book that defines and quantifies the impact of the leader on growth in people, teams and markets.
The Challenge: Preparing for the Unthinkable
The world’s gone crazy and uncertainty is the new normal. But that doesn’t change the fact that you need to pick your way through the daily risk of doing business while preparing for “black swan” events like cyber attacks, threats to public safety and dramatic shifts in the political or competitive landscape. It’s time to learn from organizations that routinely work in high-intensity environments where risk is high and the consequences of failure are immediate and irreversible.
1) Learn the Six Core Mindsets of Teams in Danger and be better prepared for the risks of accidents and disasters.
2) Learn to recognize and break through entrenched “Either/Or” thinking that undermines safety, preparedness and organizational readiness.
3) Discover the Three Building Blocks of highly prepared and adaptive organizations.
4) Master the three questions that highly prepared teams routinely ask.
Improve efficiency and agility through preparedness planning and investment.
– Qualified as Naval Flight Officer, Mission Commander in Navy combat aircraft, and nuclear weapons loading officer with nearly 200 carrier landings and 1,000 hours of flight time.
– Qualified as in-flight Evaluator of Mission Readiness and Safety Best Practices while serving in squadron safety department.
– Ran product development teams that successfully evaluated operational, financial, and reputation risk for over 100 complex IT services in markets around the globe.
– Product owner for complete suite of networking, cloud, and cybersecurity services used by leading financial services companies.
The Challenge: Building a Team that Thrives in an Uncertain World
Everywhere you look, the rate of change is accelerating, and most of that change – the web, smartphones, and the Internet of Things – is driven by software. So how do software development teams do it? It turns out they’ve got a system that’s designed to deal with exactly the kind of complex problems that are driving the rest of us crazy…and it might be just what you and your team need to get ahead and stay ahead in your chose market.
1) Learn the Five Core Values of the world’s most productive development teams.
2) Discover fresh approaches to solving complex, ingrained problems.
3) Develop a deeper understanding of your value in the market and in the minds of your customers and prospects.
4) Identify when it’s time to challenge conventional wisdom about your business model and market.
5) Build a culture that values spontaneity, agility and value creation.
– Served as head of Global Product Marketing and Development organizations for over 20 years in organizations ranging from start-up to Fortune 500.
– Created and chaired cross-functional product launch teams with members from sales, marketing, operations, customer service and finance.
– Led commercial launch and life cycle management for over 100 managed IT services around the world.
– Student of Scrum Framework, Agile Methodologies and learning, adaptive organizations.
– Consultant and advisor on agile development and servant leadership.
The Challenge: Building Servant Leaders and Agile, Resilient Organizations
In a world where the playing field has been leveled and everyone has access to the same technology, skills and markets, how do you compete? Agile leadership, focused on helping our teams deliver sustainable value to our customers is the answer. That means letting go of the traditional levers of power and embracing transparency, openness and adaptation and a sense of curiosity about what’s possible.
1) Embrace the Six Key Challenges to the Servant Leader
2) Learn to Develop Trust and Act Decisively in Service to a Shared Vision
3) Develop the Courage to Delegate, Commit and Master Accountability
4) Reward and Invest in Creativity and Responsible Risk-taking
5) Build a Learning Organization Designed to Thrive in Uncertainty
– Over 30 years of experience as a front-line leader in naval aviation, start-up, mid-size, and Fortune 500 environments.
– Personally led turnaround of global, $300m IT services division of a billion dollar cloud company
– Graduate of leadership and business strategy programs at Navy Aviation Officer Candidate School, IBM, the Center for Creative Leadership, The Wharton School and Georgetown University.
– Author of “The Return on Leadership”, a study of the business impact of servant leadership.
“The most important things I look for in an executive are leadership, judgment, ego-maturity and self-awareness. Dennis brings those factors to life and makes clear what’s possible with the combination of Creative leadership, a winning business model and a dynamic, resilient culture.”
“An important new concept in the leadership world…amazing stories and some clear thinking about what it takes to lead today…a winner. Brouwer’s been in the leadership hot seat, made the difficult decisions, and learned from his mistakes.”
“A fresh perspective on Leadership that brings home all the concepts of Vision, Execution, and Engagement. As an HR Leader in a competitive world of FinTech, this is now my “go-to” approach when it comes to company strategy and its leadership, as we continue to reinvent ourselves and attract and retain the best talent.”
“Clear, concise, and articulate… Brouwer offers an energetic, lively and rational narrative sculpted to realign your way of thinking while providing rich examples from his own life as reinforcement.”
“If you have ever wondered how military leadership principles translate into the civilian workplace, here is your answer. The stories are just flippin’ cool!”
“Brouwer identifies the three behaviors most commonly associated with leaders of successful organizations, highlights the combination of executive characteristics common to successful leaders, and provides an actionable plan to improve their leadership – and it works. I was lucky enough to be part of the submarine stalking story that is central to his book, and it’s all true.”
“Informative, engaging, masterful speaker with a flair for storytelling. Excellent professional business presentation.”
“Dennis Brouwer was the ideal speaker…awe-inspiring and educational. I use these principles to help me every day.”
“Everyone found Dennis to be interesting and engaging. His message and delivery style hit a home run our audience!”
“In an inspiring and engaging manner, Dennis masterfully puts teeth to the “soft skills” of leadership and deftly defines their value. With a colorful, story-telling flair, he brings these concept to life and makes them relatable.”