Innovation expert Warren Berger believes questions are more important than answers.
He is the author of many books, including most recently the 2014 book A More Beautiful Question: The Power of Inquiry to Spark Breakthrough Ideas (Bloomsbury), and the creator of the website amorebeautifulquestion.com with the same focus.
An expert on design thinking and innovation, Warren has studied hundreds of the world’s leading innovators, designers, red-hot start-ups, and creative thinkers to analyze how they ask game-changing questions, solve problems, and create new possibilities. Warren believes that questioning leads to innovation, can help you be more successful in your career, and can spark change in our businesses and lives.
Warren’s previous book was the international bestseller Glimmer: How Design Can Transform Business and Your Life (Penguin Press; 2009), published in several editions worldwide. Business Week named Glimmer one of the “Best Innovation & Design Books of the Year.”
Warren currently writes for Fast Company, Harvard Business Review, and was a longtime contributor at Wired magazine and the New York Times.
He has appeared on NBC’s Today Show, ABC World News, CNN, and as an expert on NPR’s All Things Considered. As a speaker, Warren has keynoted at the CUSP Conference, the Fuse Conference, the Design Thinkers Conference, the International Women’s Forum in Rome, and TEDx Portland. He has also spoken at in-house conferences hosted by General Electric, MassMutual, Citrix, and Microsoft, among others.Download Bio
A More Beautiful QuestionThe Power of Inquiry to Spark Breakthrough Ideas
By showing how to approach questioning with an open, curious mind and a willingness to work through a series of “Why,” “What if,” and “How” queries, Berger offers an inspiring framework of how we can all arrive at better solutions, fresh possibilities, and greater success in business and life.
How ‘Beautiful Questions’ Lead to Game-Changing Innovation In this presentation, Warren shares inspiring stories that reveal how some of today’s hottest startups and biggest product breakthroughs began with people asking bold, powerful, ‘beautiful’ questions. What can the rest of us learn from these surprising stories? Warren shares critical insights and lessons from these examples, and distills it all down to a set of practical tips and takeaways on the art of Innovative Questioning. This talk will provide the tools to enable any business leader, manager or entrepreneur to formulate the kinds of questions that can spark ideas, identify new opportunities, or help improve existing methods and processes.
“Leading with Questions”: How true leaders inquire as a means to inspire What do today’s most creative, successful business leaders have in common? According to research shared in this presentation, today’s top leaders are invariably great questioners. By asking the right questions, they are able to help their organizations anticipate change and move in new directions. But it isn’t easy for leaders to embrace questioning (traditionally, leaders have been expected to “have the answers”). In this presentation, geared specifically to those in leadership or mid-to-senior management roles, Warren talks about the evolution of the new “questioning leader” in these times of greater complexity and uncertainty. He shows how great leaders are able to find the best questions to ask—and how they can inspire those around them to question more and better.
Questioning as an Engine of Transformation Is your organization on the cusp of a major transformation? Are you implementing a new initiative or trying to bring about organizational change—perhaps in response to sweeping changes in your industry? In this talk, Warren shows how an organization can help its people at all levels to become more agile and adaptable by arming them with better questioning skills.
Why Aren’t We Nurturing Kids’ Natural Ability to Question—and What Can Parents and Schools Do About That? Children are natural questioners, asking hundreds of questions a day between the ages of 2 and 5. But then kids go to school and questioning falls off a cliff, displaced by rote memorization and standardized tests. As Warren shows in this presentation, we are doing a great disservice to our young people if we allow their “questioning muscles” to atrophy—because questioning is key to learning, and people who are comfortable raising and tackling difficult questions are more likely to flourish in the innovation-driven world of tomorrow.In this talk, Warren shares practical ideas and strategies for encouraging more questioning in today’s classrooms, including insights and tips from The Right Question Institute (a renowned nonprofit education reform group that has pioneered new question-teaching methods). This presentation includes fun question-formulation exercises, and is ideal for audiences of teachers, parents, students, education conferences, school district summits, university events, or any gathering where there is a strong interest in learning, curiosity, and the future of education.
— Katherine Yursky, Leadership Engagement Team Lead, Boeing
“Feedback regarding your presentation has been fantastic. I’ve received a number of notes that your speech connected perfectly with both the conference theme and an organizational opportunity. Folks are already sharing your 7 takeaways across the business areas. I really appreciate what you provided to us. It has created the energy we’d hoped the event could provide. Based on the results last week, we’re already planning to do the conference again next year.”
— Trey Whitaker, MassMutual
“Many, many thanks for being such a wonderful collaborator and engaging speaker for our event! We couldn’t have asked for a better partner to plan the keynote with. I know the attendees were also just pleased as punch to receive signed copies of your book. There were happy murmurings in the hallways.”
— Jessica Pettus, Oracle
“Just wanted to share with you the excellent feedback we had after yesterday’s session. People seemed genuinely inspired by your presentation and it dovetailed so perfectly into the broader leadership message. Thank you for being such a great partner.”
— Elizabeth Mankin, ChanelUSA
“Warren Berger offers a cure for a disease in large enterprises. He provides a framework to help leaders ask the most important questions—which is one of the most fundamental characteristics of a great leader—while sharing inspiring stories to show the incredible power of this concept.”
— Jim Stengel, former Global Marketing Officer at Procter & Gamble
“As an organization, we’ve decided to put the theories and exercises experienced in your session into the DNA of LexMar Global. This will be the backbone of who we are. We intend to place “How might we…?” plaques on the walls around the office and will likely add our internal “mission question” to the walls as well. We will also be using your methodology to explore a number of other avenues that we’ve yet to share with the group. Thanks.”
— Stephen Garrow, CEO, LexMar Global
“I saw Warren deliver a keynote at the 2010 FUSE Conference in Chicago and invited him to speak at one of GE’s global design summits. His talk was fun and inspiring—challenging us to look at creativity and innovation in a fresh way.”
— Ivan Cayabyab, Global Brand Manager, GE
“We brought Warren to Venice to speak to our top Pernod Ricard brand CEOs from around the world about creativity, design, innovation, and the art of asking great questions. His presentation was chock-full of inspirational moments and fresh ideas.”
— Pascal Minella, creative consultant, Pernod Ricard
“Feedback from our attendees pointed to Warren’s session as one of the conference’s most thought-provoking, and his insightful thinking on questioning and how it can fuel innovation and new opportunities added significantly to the conference dialogue.”
— Chad Fleming, Conference Organizer, International Women’s Forum (IWF)
“Warren is a frequent guest speaker at the University of Colorado, and he also served as the “professional-in-residence” at our “Innovators” series—where he interviews (in front of a large live audience as well as a live-streamed TV audience) top creative leaders and business executives from around the world. He’s not only a great speaker, he’s an excellent host and moderator—he can lead just about any type of discussion on creativity and innovation.”
— Melinda Kiger Cheval, co-creator of “Innovators” lecture series, University of Colorado