Paul Deegan
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Thank you for the wonderful presentation you gave. Based on our meeting evaluation forms, your talk was one of the most enjoyable sessions. Thank you for all of the preparation that you did to make sure your talk hit on the key meeting themes that we were interested in. This was my first opportunity to work with an external speaker and you have set a high bar!
Global Marketing Director, Large Pharmaceutical Company
Paul Deegan was great to work with. He was very well received by the audience, and went above and beyond to interact with our attendees throughout the duration of the meeting. I was extremely impressed with the time he took to prep for the visit, really trying to do everything he could to tailor his general message and incorporate some themes we had in mind. I’ve worked with a number of speakers and musicians in the past, and stack Paul up as one of the easiest to work with.
Scottrade Financial Services
Paul Deegan was totally delightful. He was charming to speak to and interacted with our staff and attendees after his presentation. The meeting room was packed, the images and video he used were wonderful, and there was lots of Q&A after he finished speaking. Overall, Paul was a great choice and his message really hit home with our attendees.
Cervical Spine Research Society

Paul Deegan

Motivational and Leadership Expert, Everest Mountaineer and Award-Winning Author

Using his experience as a mountaineer, thirst for adventure, expertise as a leader and team member on numerous expeditions and self-deprecating sense of humor, Paul Deegan takes his audiences on a journey that will inspire, educate and make them laugh.

 
Into The Unknown: Leading Your Team in an Uncertain World

At the turn of this century, most people thought there was nowhere left on Earth to discover. Then Paul Deegan organized an expedition to an unexplored range of mountains. Members of his team made ascents of previously unclimbed peaks, saw snow leopards and camels and encountered nomadic communities who had never met people from outside the former Soviet Union. To prepare for this groundbreaking enterprise, Deegan drew on his experiences as a leader and team member on expeditions to Alaska, the European Alps and the Himalayas. In this presentation, Deegan explains why he ensures that every member of his team is more talented than he is, illustrates his philosophy of invisible leadership and describes why there can be no room for passengers on any team.

Overcoming Disaster: Drivers of Individual Determination on the Roof of the World

The 1996 Into Thin Air storm claimed the lives of 11 climbers and was the worst catastrophe in the history of Everest. Paul Deegan, who was on the mountain when the storm struck, vowed never to return. Yet eight years later, Deegan broke his promise and made a final attempt to reach the top of the world. Why did Deegan go back? How did he overcome extreme self-doubt about his chance of survival? And after such a long hiatus, would he be able to fulfill his lifetime ambition? During this presentation, Deegan reveals a trick of the mind to reduce the fear of failure, how a rocking chair can help you make your next big decision and why the best way to achieve an ambition is to forget about it.

Meet Paul Deegan

Using his experience as a mountaineer, thirst for adventure, expertise as a leader and team member on numerous expeditions and self-deprecating sense of humor, Paul Deegan takes his audiences on a journey that will inspire, educate and make them laugh.  

With his personal stories and experience, Paul Deegan shares the lessons he’s learned about leading your team in an uncertain world and what are the drivers of determination. Audiences learn the importance of ensuring that every member of your team is more talented than the leader, the philosophy for invisible leadership, why there can be no room for passengers on any team and how to overcome self-doubt and reduce fear of failure. After proposing and co-leading the original Everest cleanup expedition when he was just 18 years old, Deegan turned his back on a promising career in refuse collection and instead made two unsuccessful attempts to climb the world’s highest mountain. One of these expeditions took place during the worst disaster in Everest’s history—the 1996 Into Thin Air storm. Rocked by the deaths of 11 climbers, Deegan vowed never to go back to the mountain. But several years later, a chance encounter with a legendary mountaineer, Anatoli Boukreev, impelled Deegan to break his promise and he returned to Everest a few months before his nuptials in a final attempt to reach the top of the world. Deegan’s multifarious adventures include a journey along an iced-over Himalayan river in a gorge deeper than the Grand Canyon, a voyage to the rarely visited Nicobar Islands and a stint at a scientific research station on the frozen Arctic Ocean. On the eve of the 21st century, Deegan led an expedition to what the BBC described as “one of the world’s last unexplored ranges”—the Eastern Pamirs on the borders of Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and China. More people have stood on the moon than on the mountains that Paul’s team scaled. Dozens of publications ranging from The Times of London to Geographical (the magazine of the Royal Geographical Society) have published hundreds of Deegan’s expedition, travel and environmental stories. His first book, The Mountain Traveller’s Handbook, received an award at the U.S. National Outdoor Book Awards.

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