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Global strategist on inter-generational leadership.

We can’t afford not to be changing. Disruption presents a choice between opportunity and obsolescence.

Holly Ransom is the CEO of Emergent, a company specialising in disruptive strategy and building the capacity of leaders to execute change. Emergent, has worked with the likes of Microsoft, Virgin, INPEX, Europcar, KPMG, & the AIS, as well as local, state and federal government departments globally.

Current work

A very popular keynote speaker on the future of international geopolitics, Holly is in high demand at numerous conferences and industry-specific events. She has briefed for many major military and government organizations and is frequently invited to speak internationally.

Holly appears regularly as an expert on international affairs and intelligence on major television and radio networks and is frequently quoted in leading American and international news publications.

Previous experience

Education: Prior to Emergent, Holly’s corporate career has involved working as Chief of Staff to NAB Wealth Chief Executive and for Rio Tinto CEO Sam Walsh. Holly holds a Law degree and BA (Economics). In 2012, she was the youngest person to be named in Australia’s ‘100 Most Influential Women’, and also became the world’s youngest-ever Rotary President. Her work with Rotary has played a key role in the global efforts to lift youth participation in the organization.

Boards: Holly is an experienced non-executive director across the private, government and non-profit sectors. In 2016, Holly was appointed to Co-Chair the United Nations Coalition of Young Women Entrepreneurs and in 2014, the Australian Prime Minister appointed Holly to Chair the G20 Youth Summit, resulting in the first summit to secure its policy demands from G20 leaders. Holly is the youngest ever woman appointed to the board of an AFL football club (with her appointment as a Director of Port Adelaide) and is also on the advisory Board for the launch of the AFL Women’s League.

Speaker: An accomplished global keynote speaker, Holly has presented across 6 continents, including delivering a Peace Charter to the Dalai Lama. She has featured on ABC’s ‘Q&A’, Channel 7 News & Channel 10’s ‘The Project’, and is renowned for her commentary on intergenerational economic and social issues. A top-ten age group finisher in her most recent Ironman Endurance Triathlon, in 2016 Holly was listed by Sir Richard Branson as one of his dream dinner guests, and in 2017 was Sir Richard’s nominee for Wired Magazine’s ‘Smart List’ of future game changers to watch. In 2018, she was personally requested by Barack Obama to moderate an hour-long conversation with during his only engagement in Australia.

Talking Points

The New Trust Landscape

Trust is the social glue that holds our institutions, businesses, media and societies together but it’s under an unprecedented attack- with trust hitting an all-time low. But this isn't the age of distrust - far from it. A new world order is emerging; who and how we trust is shifting, dramatically and quickly, and we’re moving to an age of distributed trust where reputation has never mattered more. It’s critical for leaders for understand how to remain effective in this new landscape and to be aware of trusts role in human relationships, innovation and society. This presentation will examine the change in the ‘trust landscape’ and the adaptions businesses need to make to position for a competitive advantage. This talk will unpack three core components of any trust equation: how has it broken; what can we do to build it; and what can we do to rebuild it when it’s dented? Examining companies and organizations who’ve successfully adapted to the new trust landscape, and examining the role of technology, robots and algorithms in our evolving trust conversation.

Influence for Impact

We live in a communication age, and the we’ve got to be able to engage effectively in that environment t; record short attention spans, a saturated and noisy landscape and an increasingly sophisticated audience. However, According to an HBR study, 91% of employees say their leaders’ communication style limits the effectiveness of their leadership, and the Independent Directors Council research says miscommunication costs business $62 million annually. This presentation is centred on building the communication toolkit of the leaders in the room through storytelling, psychology and engagement theory. We’ll unpack the techniques of some of the world’s leading communicators, get our heads around effective change theory and empower the leaders in the room to position messages in a way that builds cultural momentum around their ideas.

Change is Inevitable But Growth is Intentional: Turning Innovative Ideas into Action

Research has shown, persistently for two decades, that 90% of companies fail to execute their strategy due to poor execution, and McKinsey data tells us that 70 percent of organisational change efforts fall short of desired results. Against the backdrop of a world and business landscape that is changing at a greater velocity than ever before, we need to continually evolve the way that we work and lead so we can continue to achieve excellence. This talk will explore best practice on leading change and executing ideas. Specifically, this presentation will focus on empowering leaders to be able to build their own change roadmap- from framing the messaging and building cultural momentum around ideas, to approaches to ensure ideas get executed.

Leadership is an Inside Job

We spend around $14 billion annually on leadership development programs and yet, as a Boston Consulting Group report highlighted, because these programs aren’t building competencies that are linked to core, relevant business outcomes, a lot of that investment is wasted. Additionally, while we might have ditched roadmaps for Google maps, but when it comes to work and leadership, we’re still teaching, and relying on, a 20th century handbook- that’s proving ineffectual in the face of present day challenges. This talk is all about evolving leadership thinking and development for the present day reality. Over the course of this presentation we’ll examine the core development fundamentals necessary to be a leader of impact, unpacking the three core areas of mindset, method and mastery. Topics explored include ‘dilemma flipping’, ‘extreme listening’, ‘habit hacking’, ‘readiness discipline’ and ‘getting comfortable being uncomfortable’, and the audience will be exposed to case studies from how these techniques and approaches are being employed by leading-edge individuals and organisations.

The Pillars of Peak Performance (and how to drive them in your organisation)

At the present rate of change 75% of the SAP 500 incumbents will disappear by 2027- with the rate of change and volume of new market entrants, it’s never been harder to remain at the top for an extended period. We have extensive data points (from workforce engagement falling, to skill relevancy declining and trust bottoming out) but we’ll still relying on leadership approaches that ‘are the way we’ve always done it’. We need a new approach to mindset, method and mastery that’s geared for the reality of the 21st century organisations and all their challenges. A great talk to be paired with ‘Leadership is an Inside Job’, this presentation builds on those individual leadership traits to focus on the building blocks of high performance and the role of leaders seeking to inspire, interact and execute in a way that delivers high-performing and sustainable outcomes. This presentation will cover off topics such as ‘leading for effectiveness, not efficiency’, ‘constructive depolarisation’, ‘rapid prototyping’, ‘smart mob organising and ‘informing for influence’, and we’ll delve in to the way leading organisations are applying these techniques to achieve extraordinary outcomes.

E-Sports, Gaming & Social Media: How they’re changing connection, commerce and our neurology

Esports is one of the fastest growing entertainment markets, expected to rise to $1.5 billion market by 2020 with 303 million annual viewers; Gamers devote a collective 156 billion hours a week gaming and spend $23.5 billion for the privilege of doing so; and 2.85 billion people are using social media, with $31 billion currently being spent every year to try and grab their attention on the social platforms. These three phenomena are profoundly shaping psychology, communication and commerce, and leaders who want to understand the future of consumer expectations, fan experience, commercial partnerships and customer interaction need to open their minds to the next frontier that leaders across these three industries are pushing for. Additionally, for community leaders, teachers and employers this talk will examine the inextricable link between these three phenomena and mental health, connection and community.

The Inter-generational Shift

Millennials comprise 37% of the Australian workforce but will occupy near 75% of it by 2025, yet currently 6 out of 10 are disengaged, costing about $20 billion annually. From a consumer standpoint, millennials have a current spending power of US $10 trillion and will control 28% of the world’s financial assets by 2030 as more than $59 trillion worth of wealth transfers between generations. This talk will examine the driving forces behind this emerging generation: what motivates and engages them, and what leads them to make a purchase, become a brand advocate and develop brand or employer loyalty. Importantly, this talk will deal with key intergenerational differences and tensions: feedback, expectations, communication and key decision-making factors; allowing leaders to understand the subtle but significant changes they can make to drive greater employee and customer outcomes.


  • Mastering Leadership
  • CEO & Company Directors
  • Change Management
  • Entrepreneurship & Entrepreneurs
  • Trust & Ethics
  • Future of Work


  • Futurists


  • Inspiring Stories
  • Entrepreneurship

Politics & Advocacy

  • Leadership
  • Intergenerational Leadership
Watch this space! Holly is a 'mover and shaker' and she has already well and truly commenced a fascinating journey. I will follow her achievements and can only wonder where she will be, in say, ten years' time. Holly was invited to speak to the KPMG Audit team in Perth. Her key messages were valuable both from a professional and personal development perspective and she inspired many. Holly is passionate and she is the real deal. Her energy is infectious. KPMG
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