The Crisis That Made The Eurozone

03-03-2014Most economists have been too pessimistic about the Eurozone crisis. The famous names who forecast a Eurozone breakup – Martin Wolf, Niall Ferguson – were generally guilty of confusing “broken” with “cannot be fixed”.

There were good reasons for this confusion. Politicians in European countries engaged in repeated games of brinkmanship in an effort to obtain more attractive bailout packages. The winning strategy in brinkmanship is, of course, to convince the other side that one is willing to go over the brink, while disregarding the increasingly extreme threats from one’s negotiating partner.

To this end, politicians in bailout recipient countries make a lot of threats that they did not, in fact, intend to carry out – e.g., “we will leave the Eurozone if you do not offer a better bailout package”. AAA-rated countries made equally empty threats – e.g., “if you do not undertake reforms, we will not give you a bailout”. Economists tended to take these negotiating-strategy pronouncements at face value.

Moreover, a necessary measure of bargaining power in these games of brinkmanship was the impact on financial markets. German bank stocks would plummet when the Greeks threatened to leave. Interest rates on Greek debt would soar when the AAA-rated countries threatened to throw the Greeks out.

Economists are accustomed to interpreting market distress as a sign of economic distress. In this case, these market movements meant that both Northern Europe and Southern Europe had leverage, and the bailout packages were relatively equitable.

The last such attempt at brinkmanship (so far) was Cyprus, whose disingenuous claims to be on the verge of leaving the Eurozone produced almost no market reaction in Northern Europe. The bailout package that Cyprus received was therefore almost punitive in its terms.

And yet Cyprus did not leave the Eurozone. This development is perhaps almost as important as the promise of ECB support – Draghi’s “whatever it takes” promise – in giving us confidence that the acute phase of the Eurozone crisis is at an end. When Cyprus did not get the deal it wanted, and stayed in the Eurozone regardless, it demonstrated that the threats of deliberate Eurozone breakup were, in the end, empty threats, no more than a negotiating tactic. This will (thankfully) make it very hard for Eurozone politicians to make credible threats in future.

Economists also failed to grasp that the bitter political disagreements dividing Eurozone countries were disagreements not about whether the Eurozone should continue to exist, but about who should pay to fix it (Southern Europeans through austerity or Northern Europeans through bailouts). The answer, of course, is both. But the question of where one draws the line is a question worth billions of Euros, so it was, unfortunately, worth fighting over.

As an economist myself, it is difficult to be very optimistic about the near-term future of the Eurozone. While the US has already worked its way through much of the debt overhang that built up during the pre-crisis years, in most Eurozone economies, deleveraging has hardly begun. As citizens and companies squirrel away funds to pay debts, Europe will have difficulty returning to pre-crisis growth rates for years to come.

And at the same time, I wonder if economists might not once again be showing undue pessimism about Europe. In recent years the euro has failed to fulfil its potential largely because European Union institutional arrangements were poor. As is now well known, Europe had monetary union without fiscal union. It was difficult to have confidence in a currency that mixed competitive Northern economies with uncompetitive Southern economies.

As result of the Eurozone crisis, a banking union, fiscal union, and possibly even a unified debt are very much on the table. Far from breaking the euro, the crisis could enable the euro to at last realise its potential as a global reserve currency alongside the dollar. This would be tremendous boost in the long term. Having a currency used to denominate world trade will be a major advantage for a continent that is already, according to Oxford Economics forecasts, set to account for the largest share of global trade growth to 2020. For ageing and indebted European countries, the ability to borrow internationally in their own currency will be even more welcome.

One could even imagine the structural reforms now being put in place under duress in Southern Europe producing an entire continent with competitiveness to rival Germany and the US. Spain has already experienced a stunningly positive “competitiveness shock” (again, contradicting the predictions of most economists). Of course, with France and Italy too large to push to the brink, this may be a dream too far, even for an optimist such as myself. But it is worth remembering that up to now many economists have erred on the side of pessimism regarding Europe – and been proved wrong.

Source: The Outlook Blog from Sam Wilkin,

Sam Wilkin offers economic and political insight with humor, drama and an eye for ironic details, in the words of Belgium’s Trends magazine. Sam is also one of those rare economists able to deliver a positive, inspiring message – indeed, when most pundits were predicting disaster in the Eurozone, Sam was arguing, accurately, that the currency bloc would hold together. Backed by the unmatched resources of Oxford Economics (which produces forecasts for more than 190 countries, 100 industries and 2,600 cities globally), Sam delivers not stump speeches but messages matching the interests and concerns of the attendees of your event.

Sam is Head of Business Research at Oxford Economics, one of the world’s foremost global forecasting and research consultancies. Founded in 1981 as a joint venture with Oxford University’s Templeton College, Oxford Economics now has more than 70 economists on staff and provides forecasts for 190 countries, 100 industries, and 2,600 cities and regions globally.

For more information on Sam Wilkin, please visit:

Conflict Strategies for Nice People, from Team and Leadership Psychologist, Liane Davey

02-24-2014Do you value friendly relations with your colleagues? Are you proud of being a nice person who would never pick a fight? Unfortunately, you might be just as responsible for group dysfunction as your more combative team members. That’s because it’s a problem when you shy away from open, healthy conflict about the issues. If you think you’re “taking one for the team” by not rocking the boat, you’re deluding yourself.

Teams need conflict to function effectively. Conflict allows the team to come to terms with difficult situations, to synthesize diverse perspectives, and to make sure solutions are well thought-out. Conflict is uncomfortable, but it is the source of true innovation and also a critical process in identifying and mitigating risks.

Still, I meet people every day who admit that they aren’t comfortable with conflict. They worry that disagreeing might hurt someone’s feelings or disrupt harmonious team dynamics. They fret that their perspective isn’t as valid as someone else’s, so they hold back.

Sure, pulling your punches might help you maintain your self-image as a nice person, but you do so at the cost of getting your alternative perspective on the table; at the cost of challenging faulty assumptions; and at the cost of highlighting hidden risks. That’s a high cost to pay for nice.

To overcome these problems, we need a new definition of nice. In this version of nice, you surface your differences of opinion, you discuss the uncomfortable issues, and you put things on the table where they can help your team move forward.

The secret of having healthy conflict and maintaining your self-image as a nice person is all in the mindset and the delivery.

To start shifting your mindset, think about your value to the team not in how often you agree, but in how often you add unique value. If all you’re doing is agreeing with your teammates, you’re redundant. So start by telling yourself “it’s my obligation to bring a different perspective than what others are bringing.” Grade yourself on how much value you bring on a topic.

Here are a few tips on improving your delivery:

1. Use “and,” not “but.” When you need to disagree with someone, express your contrary opinion as an “and.” It’s not necessary for someone else to be wrong for you to be right. When you are surprised to hear something a teammate has said, don’t try to trump it, just add your reality. “You think we need to leave room in the budget for a customer event and I’m concerned that we need that money for employee training. What are our options?” This will engage your teammates in problem solving, which is inherently collaborative instead of combative.

2. Use hypotheticals. When someone disagrees with you, don’t take them head on—being contradicted doesn’t feel very good. Instead, a useful tactic is to ask about hypothetical situations and to get them imagining. (Imagining is the opposite of defending, so it gets the brain out of a rut.) If you are meeting resistance to your ideas, try asking your teammates to imagine a different scenario. “I hear your concern about getting the right sales people to pull off this campaign. If we could get the right people…what could the campaign look like?

3. Ask about the impact. Directing open-ended questions at your teammate is also useful. If you are concerned about a proposed course of action, ask your teammates to think through the impact of implementing their plan. “Ok, we’re contemplating launching this product to only our U.S. customers. How is that going to land with our two big customers in Latin America?” This approach feels much less aggressive than saying “Our Latin American customers will be angry.” Anytime you can demonstrate that you’re open to ideas and curious about the right approach, it will open up the discussion (and you’ll preserve your reputation as a nice person).

4. Discuss the underlying issue. Many conflicts on a team spiral out of control because the parties involved aren’t on the same page. If you disagree with a proposed course of action, instead of complaining about the solution, start by trying to understand what’s behind the suggestion. If you understand the reasoning, you might be able to find another way to accomplish the same goal. “I’m surprised you suggested we release the sales figures to the whole team. What is your goal in doing that?” Often conflict arises when one person tries to solve a problem without giving sufficient thought to the options or the impact of those actions. If you agree that the problem they are trying to solve is important, you will have common ground from which to start sleuthing toward answers.

5. Ask for help. Another tactic for “nice conflict” is to be mildly self-deprecating and to own the misunderstanding. If something is really surprising to you (e.g., you can’t believe anyone would propose anything so crazy), say so. “I’m missing something here. Tell me how this will address our sales gap for Q1.” If the person’s idea really doesn’t hold water, a series of genuine, open questions that come from a position of helping you understand will likely provide other teammates with the chance to help steer the plan in a different direction.

Conflict — presenting a different point of view even when it is uncomfortable — is critical to team effectiveness. Diversity of thinking on a team is the source of innovation and growth. It is also the path to identifying and mitigating risks. If you find yourself shying away from conflict, use one of these techniques to make it a little easier.

The alternative is withholding your concerns, taking them up outside of the team, and slowly eroding trust and credibility. That’s not nice at all.

Source: The Harvard Business Review,

Liane Davey, Ph.D. is the New York Times & USA Today bestselling author of YOU FIRST: Inspire Your Team to Grow Up, Get Along, and Get Stuff Done. Liane combines her expertise in strategy with her deep insight into group dynamics to create powerful change in top teams.

Early on, Liane found industrial assembly lines fascinating. When she settled on psychology as a field of study, it was with the realization that human teams are the assembly lines of the modern business organization. Get the processes and connections right and you will have highly productive teams.

Get teams wrong and things bog down. Toxic teams are bad for organizations and result in lost productivity and nasty dynamics. The solution isn’t more team building. Liane’s Vital Teams™ and Team Inoculation™ programs help team members take personal accountability to change their team for the better.

A dynamic keynote speaker, Liane shares her practical yet profound ideas at conferences and management retreats. She works with executives of some of North America’s leading financial services, consumer goods, high tech, and healthcare organizations. In addition, she writes an ongoing blog on Team Effectiveness at and is a regular contributor to and

For more information on Liane Davey, please visit:

Realizing Your Olympic Dreams

02-17-2014Believe it or not, you are only six inches away from experiencing huge successes and breakthroughs in your life. Six inches? Sure! That’s the distance between your ears.

What I’m saying is you were created with all the resources needed to make your fondest dreams come true. You only need to learn how to program your brain properly. Ninety percent of the input we get in the world is negative. And ninety percent of the things we tell ourselves are negative.

So it is critical to learn techniques to replace the negative with positive.

In life you don’t get what you want. You get what you are. The best way to improve yourself is to change what goes into your mind. We are a product of what goes into our minds. What you think determines what you do. What you do determines what you accomplish.

Olympic Athletes understand this. We know that what we put in our mind will ultimately determine how well we do in our competition. Think of each thought as a computer ‘bit,’ the smallest unit of information possible. Many thoughts add up to become beliefs. What we believe determines how high we will go. The good news is there are ways to raise
your belief level.

Beliefs are extremely important. For example, in April 1954, the belief in the world was that no one could run the mile in less than four minutes. Then along came Roger Bannister.

Bannister did what nobody in the history of the world had ever done. He broke the four-minute mile barrier. The phenomenal thing is that later the same month, several other athletes did it too. And since then, over 20,000 people have run the mile in under four minutes. What changed? The BELIEF changed.

All of a sudden athletes knew ‘If Roger can do it so can I.

‘Most people never attempt to do something they don’t believe they can do.

Ever since I was in the third grade I wanted to be an Olympic Athlete. I respected the Olympians because they were an example of what I believed in – they are willing to commit to a goal, willing to risk adversity in the pursuit of it, willing to fail and at the same time keep trying until they succeeded. But it was not until I was in college and saw Scott Hamilton compete in the Sarajevo games that I made a decision to train for the Olympics.

How did I raise my self-belief level between third grade and college? Two ways – through what I read and through the people I associated with.

I read countless biographies of great people. Before long, I realized that the common denominator in the success of those great people was the fact they had a dream they were passionate about and they never gave up. Perseverance is the best trait you can have. But how do you keep yourself going when the going gets tough? It comes back to your beliefs.

The other thing I did to raise my self-esteem was to regularly associate with people I respected. When you hang around people that think big, you start to think big. And when people you have respect for believe in you, you start to believe in yourself.

Four years after making a decision to begin training for the Olympics, I had the honor of competing in the 1988 Calgary Winter Olympics in the luge. I went on to compete in the 1992 Albertville Olympics, the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, and when I competed in the 2010 Vancouver Olympics at the age of 47, I became the first person to ever compete in four Winter Olympics EACH in a different decade.

How does someone who did not even take up the sport of luge until he was 21 become a Four-Time Olympian? As I tell thousands of people in my speeches, I’m not a big shot. I’m just a little shot that keeps on shooting. I’m proof that ordinary people can accomplish extraordinary things if they will just put the right things into their minds.

Olympic Athletes consistently and persistently use specialized techniques to program their minds to achieve peak performance. The following simple techniques performed consistently over a period of time will change your outlook in life and ultimately your outcomes.

Write your Goals Down.

Magic happens when you put your goals down on paper. Your subconscious mind starts trying to figure out ways to make your goals become a reality.

Researchers have found that people who create a balanced goal program earn twice as much as those who don’t. But that’s not all. They were also happier, healthier, and had better relationships with their family members. The bottom line is that people who take the time to develop balanced goal plans for their lives enjoy their lives much more than the people who leave their lives to chance.

Goals give your life direction and help you have more control of your life and more peace of mind. So what are you waiting for? Take a little time and put together a goals program for your life! It’s not that hard.

A good start would be to answer the following questions…

  1. What, specifically would you like to achieve?
  2. What would achieving your goal mean for you?
  3. Can you get emotional about achieving your goal?
  4. Do you have a burning desire?
  5. What do you need to overcome to achieve your goal?
  6. What resources do you need? Who can help you along the way?
  7. What new skills do you need to develop? What is your plan for making it happen?
  8. When do you want to reach your goal?

Decide to create a goals program and watch your life change!

When Tiger Woods was a young boy, he wrote down on a 3×5 card that he intended to break all of Jack Nicklaus’ records. Jack Nicklaus agrees that Woods can do it if he stays on the track he’s on.

The most effective way to write your goals down is to take a 3×5 card and on one side write:

‘I intend to ………. by (date).’

On the other side of your card write why.

‘I intend to accomplish this because…’

Then write at least three reasons why you will do it. The reasons increase your belief.

Read your card first thing in the morning EVERY DAY to stay focused on the objective. Then read your card EVERY NIGHT before turning out the lights so your subconscious can work all night on ways to make it happen.

Vividly Imagine Your Desired Outcome

Several times a day close your eyes and for a couple of minutes vividly imagine what it’s going to feel like when you achieve your goal. Really get into it. Feel it as if it were really happening. Get excited! Your subconscious does not know the difference between imagining it and it really happening. By doing this, you become passionate about your desire, your belief becomes unshakeable and you become unstoppable.

The luge team is taught to visualize their sled runs every day. Especially right before practice. We ‘run the mental tape’ in our minds of each twist, turn and body movement so when we’re hurling down the track at 80+ MPH, we instinctively know what to do in all situations.

I constantly visualized what it was going to be like when I walked into the Olympic Stadium at the Opening Ceremonies. I could see the crowds waving at me. I could see the flags and the balloons. I could hear the roar of the crowd, the fireworks, the Olympic Hymn. I could feel the cold wind blowing snow onto my cheeks. I could feel the tears of joy streaming down my face. I could feel the goose bumps running up my back and over my shoulders. I thought about it all the time, even while jogging, while lifting weights, in the shower, etc. It was my dream! And when I finally entered the Olympic arena, it was just the same only 100 times better.

Find a Mentor or a Coach

The ‘Why?’ is always more important than the ‘How?’ Don’t worry how you will make your dream come true. The dream gives you the energy. Find someone who has already been successful in doing what you want to do, not just someone who talks the talk. Ask them to be your mentor and teach you how to be successful as they are. If you are serious and committed to achieving your dream, they will see the passion in your eyes and will be honored to be asked.

As soon as I decided to take up the luge and train for the Calgary Olympics, I contacted the U.S. Luge Association in Lake Placid, NY.

I asked the USLA if they would teach me how to luge and prepare me for the Olympics four years away.

They said they had a plan in place and that if I would follow the plan and not quit, I would have a good chance of making it. Without knowing what the plan was, I humbled myself to my new mentors and let them know I would do whatever they said I needed to do.

That is the ideal mentor-mentee relationship. A hungry, driven, eager to learn, yet humble mentee together with a giving, knowledgeable, successful mentor.

There’s nothing that will accelerate your success as much as having a personal coach.

Setting goals, visualizing the desired outcome, and finding a mentor are basic yet critical steps to succeeding in life. Every Olympic athlete I’ve ever met does all three consistently. It’s just a decision. By consistently and persistently following these steps, you will reach your goals and dreams faster than 95% of the people in the world.

Chase your Dreams, Go for the Gold, and Never, Ever Give Up!

Source: Ruben Gonzalez | Motivation Olympic Blog

Ruben Gonzalez is an award-winning keynote speaker and business author. Ruben’s story of overcoming incredible challenges on the road to competing in four Olympic Games over the span of four decades goes right into the core of his audiences members’ psyche, filling them with the inspiration they need to achieve their goals. Ruben is proof that ordinary people can achieve extraordinary things if they will follow a few simple steps. From the insights of Four-time Olympian and peak-performance expert Ruben Gonzalez, comes a motivational keynote about taking control of your business and your life.

Ruben wasn’t a gifted athlete. He didn’t take up the sport of luge until he was 21. Against all odds, four years later he was competing in the Winter Olympics. At the age of 47 he was racing against 20-year-olds in the Vancouver Winter Olympics.

For more information on Ruben Gonzalez, please visit:

Look for Purposeful Tangents

02-10-2014According to a recent Huffington Post/YouGov poll 28% of Americans did not read a book last year. As an author, I find this both disappointing and yet not surprising.

Fortunately most people read.

But is what you are reading enhancing your creativity, or just furthering your intellect?

Most people who read for business purposes focus on deepening their expertise. They read books, business magazines, and trade journals about their topic. For example, if you are finance expert, you most likely read primarily about money. The training classes you take are also most likely financially focused. And professionally, you probably hang out with other people in your industry.

Of course this is valuable. Deepening one’s skills is critical.

However, if you want to be even more successful, try broadening your horizons.

I am a professional speaker on the topic of innovation. However, less than 50% of my personal development time is focused on speaking or innovation.

Learning from fellow speakers and innovators can only take me so far. There are countless studies that show that true breakthroughs rarely, if ever, come from the domain experts. In others words, if I want to be the same as other innovators, learning from them is fine. But if I want to be different/better than other innovators, I can’t learn from them.

I recently signed up for a 6 day magic master class. I’m partly interested in it for the performance aspect; it will improve my speaking skills. Most good magicians do an amazing job at holding the attention of an audience. I am also interested in magic from the “brain science” perspective. Magic exploits various quirks of the brain, and I believe that understanding these helps me be a better innovator. Magic is about making the impossible possible. Let’s face it, most innovation programs have difficulty making the possible possible.

Although I read Harvard Business Review, I spend even more time reading magazines about the brain/neuroscience (e.g., “Scientific American Mind” magazine), psychology, and sports performance. I learn from entrepreneurs who are not involved in either speaking or innovation. And for pleasure, I read mysteries as they seem to strengthen my problem solving abilities.

None of these topics were chosen at random.

In addition to being topics I enjoy, they are what I call “purposeful tangents.” They are related to my areas of expertise, but they not the same.

Do you work in the gas pipeline industry? Learning from others in that field can of course be valuable. But you may gain breakthrough level insights from cardiovascular experts as they too deal with the movement of fluids through a vessel. In fact, there is a group in Houston called Pumps & Pipes; cardiologists and gas pipeline experts who share insights from their respective fields. These are purposeful tangents. They are related.

What are your purposeful tangents? What could you read/study that is similar to your area of expertise, but different?

Of course there are valuable lessons to be learned anywhere. But looking for insights in random places may lead to random value. It is less predictable and may dissipate your energies.

But again, focusing too much on your area of expertise only leads to incremental improvements.

Purposeful tangents can lead to breakthrough learning with a high level of predictability.


Stephen Shapiro is one of the foremost authorities on innovation culture, collaboration, and open innovation.

During the past twenty years, his message to hundreds of thousands of people in over 40 countries around the world has focused on how to enable innovation by bringing together divergent points of view in an efficient manner.

Over the years, Stephen Shapiro has shared his innovative philosophy in books such as 24/7 Innovation, The Little Book of BIG Innovation Ideas and Goal-Free Living. He led a 20,000 person process and innovation practice during his 15 year tenure with Accenture. And his Personality Poker® system has been used by more than 50,000 people around the world to create high-performing innovation teams.

His latest book, Best Practices Are Stupid: 40 Ways to Out Innovate the Competition (Portfolio Penguin), has been featured on ABC News, CBS Interactive’s BNET, Southwest Airline’s Spirit Magazine, Investor’s Business Daily, and more. It was selected as the best innovation and creativity book of 2011 by 800-CEO-READ. And it is an international #1 best selling business book.

For more information on Stephen Shapiro, please visit:

Lessons In Teamwork from NYT Best-Selling Author, Robyn Benincasa

02-03-2014I’ve learned about building world class teams the hard way: by winning the world’s toughest adventure races. From the leech-infested jungles of Borneo to the towering peaks of Tibet, my teams have run, paddled, mountain biked, climbed, and whitewater rafted for up to ten non-stop days and nights, with no shelter, no warm food, and no reprieve from the competitors nipping at our blister-covered heels. If just one racer from our 4-person team quits, we are all disqualified. By necessity, the journey to the unimaginably distant finish line becomes less about athletic skill
than about great leadership and our ability to inspire our tattered teammates.

So how do we as leaders keep a team moving forward toward those audacious goals with one heart and one mind? Here are a few essential lessons that I’ve learned from the toughest teams on Earth:

Be Ruled by the Hope of Success Versus the Fear of Failure

Are you consistently doing what it takes to “win” versus simply “not lose”? Fortune favors the bold. Great leaders are shattering the norm, changing the game, and doing things that have never
been done. They are courageous, not only in terms of innovation, but in terms of perseverance: taking step after step, day after day, relentlessly pursuing excellence. We won many a race not only by “slowing down less” than the other teams, but by coming up with some game-changing solutions. In the Borneo Eco-Challenge, we took the lead by turning a proposed ‘hiking leg’ of the race into a swimming leg by jumping into the whitewater rapids and swimming for several hours downriver (just yards from the hiking trail). Much of it in the dark. It was extremely risky, but also cutting-edge cunning. We never looked back, and lead the race all the way from there to the finish line.

Offer a Tow Line, But Most Importantly, Take One

Leave your ego (but not your confidence!) at the starting line. You happily offer your strength to your teammates when they need it, but do you also offer your weaknesses? On our team, every racer has ‘tow lines’, made from thin bungee cords, hanging from the back of our packs. If we are feeling strong, we offer it to a struggling teammate. If we are having a low moment, we grab a tow line from someone stronger and get lightly pulled along until we recover. The goal? To “suffer equally,” as my favorite team captain so eloquently put it. You’ll get farther, faster, if you do. I believe that you have not used all of your strength as a leader until you have accepted help from your teammates. Let’s face it – it’s tough to do sometimes. But people are thrilled when they have a chance to help you, and you create a connection and a bond every time you allow them to!

Always Act Like a Team – It’s Far More Important than Feeling Like One

We’re not always going to feel warm and mushy toward one another. We’re human! But no matter how we feel, we’re never allowed a day off from being the leader or teammate that people need us to be. So fake it until the good feelings come back. During the World Championships in Ecuador, my team had a major disagreement about our navigation. In fact, we didn’t speak for hours. But as we approached the media crews on our exit from that hiking leg, our team captain said something that changed the game for us….. “If you want to become the World Champions, you need to act like World Champions.” And I’m telling you, we could have won an Academy Award for that performance–congratulating one another on a job well done, getting food for one another, high fives and hugs all around. It was all for the cameras, of course, but guess what happened? By the time we got new gear and moved on, we were all genuinely happy together as a team. The argument never resurfaced. We were too busy winning.


Robyn Benincasa – NYT Best-Selling Author of How Winning Works: 8 Essential Leadership Lessons from the Toughest Teams on Earth and World Champion Adventure Racer – accepts full blame for inspiring people to do insane things like climb Mount Kilimanjaro, run their first triathlon, start their own adventure racing teams, or start their own businesses. This is, after all, who she is and what she does: Robyn Benincasa inspires people to do amazing things. Her unforgettable presentations have taught countless high-performance leaders all over the world about Building World Class Teams and the followership skills necessary for dynamic role shifting and true teamwork.

Benincasa has made an art form of extreme performance by competing and winning at the highest levels of sport and business. Revered as one of California’s Fittest Women, she spent her youth competing at the state and national level in gymnastics, diving, cross country, and judo, in which she became a national champion. Soon after earning a Marketing degree from Arizona State University, Robyn started at the top in a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical company where she earned the prestigious Rookie of the Year award.

For more information on Robyn Benincasa, please visit: