Mike Allen

Co-founder and Executive Editor of Axios, Former POLITICO Chief White House Correspondent
  • Called “the man the White House wakes up to” by The New York Times
  • Former Washington Post reporter and one of the “founding fathers” of POLITICO
  • Non-partisan and incredibly behind-the-scenes analysis of what’s going on in Washington

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Mike Allen is one of Washington’s most influential and well-connected journalists. He is the co-founder and executive editor of Axios, a disruptive media company delivering news and insights on politics, business, media, and tech. The company, whose name means “worthy” in Greek, specializes in high-quality news and analysis easily shared among the country’s influential readers and across social platforms. Axios has been recognized for its forward-thinking approach to the way people consume news in the 21st century. The approach is chronicled in Allen’s book Smart Brevity: Saying More with Less, which he co-authored alongside Axios co-founder, Jim VandeHei. In the book, Allen and VandeHei share transformative communications methods for punching through the noise to get people to pay attention to what matters most. Their Smart Brevity approach was pivotal to Axios becoming a powerhouse media property in just five years, leading to a $525 million acquisition by Cox Enterprises. Allen was also the co-creator and executive producer of Axios on HBO, a documentary news series that ran for four seasons, profiling the world’s top leaders and covering the most consequential topics of the day. The series fused the Smart Brevity of Axios’ digital reporting with cinematic, documentary storytelling.

In addition to starting Axios, Allen was a co-founder at POLITICO, the digital media company that upended and revolutionized political and policy journalism in Washington, New York, and Europe. He not only reported on but also drove the day’s conversations in and around the Beltway. His sharp journalistic experience and coveted insider status make him an ideal choice to discuss the latest political happenings. In presentations, he offers his nonpartisan, energetic and up-to-the-minute insider perspective on the political issues of the day, the current administration, Congress, and building a business in an unsteady economy. Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, he has been praised for his dedication, passion, and unmatched ability to give a political story dimension and context.

Building a Political Powerhouse. In 2006, Allen joined POLITICO and sought to carve out a niche in the marketplace by focusing on giving readers one solid take-away from select stories. He served as the chief White House correspondent and was the founding father of the successful daily email tip-sheet Playbook. It quickly became the early morning must-read source for movers and shakers in politics and media. The New York Times called Allen “The Man the White House Wakes Up To,” and Vanity Fair said, “Reading Playbook is as close as you can come on a Washington morning to knowing everything.”

Award-Winning Political Coverage. TIME named Allen one of its top 140 Twitter feeds, calling him “the Virgil of the beltway, leading the rest of us hapless Dantes through the inferno of America’s political universe.” In 2017, Vanity Fair named Allen to its “New Establishment List,” an annual compilation of industry titans. The magazine previously named him to its 2011 (#39) and 2012 (#19) “Top 50 New Establishment and Powers That Be” lists, and Allen also won the White House Correspondents’ Association’s Merriman Smith Memorial Award for “Outstanding presidential coverage on deadline” in 2004.

Allen is also the creator of the daily newsletter, Morning Money, which gives readers insight into the intersection of Washington and Wall Street. He is the co-author of two e-books focusing on the 2012 presidential campaign — POLITICO Playbook 2012: The Right Fights Back and Inside the Circus: Romney, Santorum and the GOP Race.


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Speaker Video

POLITICO’s Mike Allen: Must-Watch Political Rundown

Allen & Vandehei on Getting Trump

Axios Briefings on Today’s Issues. Connect with your members, customers, or board in real-time and interact with some of today’s foremost experts. If you're looking to relay the most up-to-date information to an audience, Axios co-founders Jim VandeHei and Mike Allen deliver compelling briefings on the current political climate and the ever-evolving world of work. Choose one of the following sessions:

  • Political Briefing with Jim and Mike: A behind-the-scenes analysis of what's going on in Washington and the important issues shaping our world.
  • "War for Attention" Briefing with Jim and Mike: Strategies to communicate your culture, mission, and other key messages — internally and externally — in the social, mobile, disruptive age.

Smart Brevity: The Power of Saying More with Less. One of the key components to Axios quickly becoming a powerhouse media company is “Smart Brevity,” the transformative approach for punching through the noise to get people to pay attention to what matters most in your message. In this talk, Axios co-founder Mike Allen shares powerful communications lessons from his decades of experience in media, business, and communications, while providing the essential outline for how Smart Brevity can be implemented into any message in a concise and visual format to elevate its impact.

Hear it First: Political Issues of the Day. With an eye on the latest breaking news, Mike Allen shares fascinating, non-partisan, behind-the-scenes analysis of what’s going on in Washington. What issues will confront both parties as a result of the most recent election? What impact has the current administration had on the business community, and how will it continue to influence markets and organizations? How well does the President navigate the daily changing landscape — around the world and at home? With high-energy, candor, and humorous anecdotes, Allen evaluates the current political landscape with his signature style for those who need to be ‘in-the-know’ about politics.

Winning the War for Attention. In an age of communications chaos, Mike Allen — co-founder first of POLITICO, and now Axios — has tales and tips from their success in creating and scaling two disruptive businesses in this hyper-competitive environment.

  • Fascinating insider stories from interviewing President Trump, Elon Musk, Tim Cook, and many more.
  • Real-world ideas for engaging millennials, building modern business cultures, and cutting through the social media noise.
  • Unpack the keys to developing and articulating an organization's higher purpose, and show how crystal-clear one-to-many communication can improve recruiting, retention, morale — and the bottom line.

Fake News, Social Media Madness, and the Mobile Revolution. How people consume and disseminate information is changing at an unfathomably quick pace — disrupting business, politics, the economy and culture. Understanding these trends is essential to navigating life, growth, and innovation. Mike Allen and Jim VandeHei, two media entrepreneurs, bring frontline expertise in understanding and mastering the new media ecosystem. Vanity Fair called them two of the most powerful thinkers in the Information Age, after creating POLITICO and now starting Axios, a media company specializing in political, business and tech trends. They provide vital insights into traditional, digital, and social media and offer invaluable lessons for rethinking how you communicate and win in the new media world.

Building a Business in an Uncertain Environment. When POLITICO was formed in 2006, it focused on creating a new and better way for readers to digest their daily news. While many saw publishing as a risky, dying industry, Allen saw opportunity. Aiming to “drive the conversation” (rather than simply reporting the news), he disrupted the industry with a little bit of innovation and a fresh idea. He combined his unique perspective with a smart use of technology to reach the nation’s top decision-makers and political influencers, and as a result grew the publication into the powerhouse it is today and became a staple in the Washington political scene. Allen then did this once again when launching disruptive media company Axios — specializing in high-quality news easily shared among the country’s influential readers across social platforms. In presentations, he blends his signature Playbook and Axios “smart brevity” reporting style with his high energy and humor to share what leaders need to know about building a business in a challenging market and economy.


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