Adam Markel, otherwise known as ‘The Resilience Guy’ reinvented his own life and has spent the last decade helping others do the same thing. Aside from being a Bestselling Author, Global Keynote Speaker and workplace expert, Adam is a well-known resilience researcher. Adam’s books, Pivot and Change Proof have received numerous bestseller accolades from the likes of WSJ, USA Today, LA Times and Publisher’s Weekly.
When he’s not fulfilling his role as CEO at WorkWell, speaking or writing, you can find Adam enjoying family time – a huge part of his motivation to create a more resilient world – or – somewhere on a surfboard. In fact, Adam credits much of his success to the principles he learned during his 7-years as a Jones Beach lifeguard in Long Island, New York.
Adam Markel, World renown Speaker, Author & Wellness Brand CEO
Looking ahead, what are your big goals for WorkWell Lab?
I’m on this Change Proof journey with the goal of expanding it to reach as many organizations and teams as possible. For those who don’t know, Change Proof means you can leverage the power of uncertainty as a catalyst to build long-term growth. We now have a deep understanding that resilient companies outperform their competitors because they are more innovative and agile. It is our company’s goal to normalize the cultivation of Change Proof cultures and people.
What inspires you to be the best you can be?
The work that I do is fulfilling because I’m in the stories. I get to see and hear on a very consistent basis how these concepts are being applied and how they are growing people and organizations on a large scale. There’s a constant flow of positive outcomes and that really drives me to keep pushing and to go big. It doesn’t get much more inspirational than that.
What is your work inspired by?
Change. Life is really defined by change, in every aspect. When I think back, my most pivotal and bounce-forward moments happened on the heels of big changes in my life. So, how do we really lean into change and become more resilient and Change Proof? That’s what inspires me.
Tell us about your greatest career achievement so far.
Bestselling Author, with two books out there thriving is high up on that list – but you know, really making it as a global keynote speaker is not an easy feat and something I’ve worked hard for.
If you could change one thing about your industry, what would it be and why?
It’s the case in many industries, including training and development, that people are doing too much and are too depleted to truly focus on quality work. I see that show up in a variety of ways including lack of attention to detail, mistakes and less than total commitment to impeccability. I think it’s possible to get a lot more out of doing a bit less, developing greater client centricity and obsessing about quality work. By the way, I am not talking about perfectionism at all. Perfection is a subjective assessment that is almost never attained. Caring about the quality of what we and our organizations create and share with the world drives clear focus and results that reflect the love that went into creating them.
Tell us about a pivotal moment in your life that brought you to where you are today.
I was a successful lawyer for 18 years of my professional life and I grew a very successful practice – but it was killing me. On a Sunday with my family, my stress had peaked to the point where I believed I was having a heart attack. With the support of my family, I leaned into those uncomfortable moments like I talk about in Change Proof, and made a huge career change. I walked away from success to rebuild – and I gotta tell you, it has been one of the most fulfilling but also enlightening moments in my life.
What is one thing people can do right now, today, to start becoming more (as you call it) Change Proof?
The one thing everyone can do today to become “Change Proof” is to embrace the certainty of our own adaptability and resilience. Darwin’s famous statement about survival is usually misquoted. He actually said: “the species that survives is the one that is best able to adapt and adjust to the changing environment in which it finds itself.” To accomplish this we must develop our own resilience, mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually. It’s actually the only thing we can be truly certain of.