Scott Mann

High-Impact Leadership Expert & Retired Green Beret
  • A riveting storyteller and New York Times bestselling author who shares his expertise for building pivotal relationships in high-stakes, competitive environments
  • Alongside fellow Green Beret veterans, led Operation Pineapple Express, the daring mission to save 1,000 Afghan allies during America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan
  • Connects game-changing strategies from combat to demonstrate how business leaders surround their organizations with purpose and build high-trust cultures
  • Leaves audiences energized and with the tools to turn their vulnerabilities into opportunities, chase their dreams, overcome their struggles, and play a bigger game

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Described as the “Warrior Storyteller,” retired Lieutenant Colonel Scott Mann is a human connection expert and coach who works alongside organizations to unite their teams around a shared vision and arm them with the tools and resources to make an impact and achieve mission success. A former U.S. Army Green Beret who specialized in unconventional, high-impact special operations in do-or-die conflict zones all over the globe, Mann applies his hard-won lessons from the battlefield to business as he shares the relationship-building techniques that drove so many of his successful combat operations. Through Rooftop Leadership, the professional training and coaching program that he founded, Mann advises servant leaders across industries — from Fortune 100 corporations (including Capital One, Walmart, Raymond James, and Fannie Mae) to local small businesses — on how to mobilize their teams, forge deeper connections with their people, and gain a more complete understanding of the opportunities that exist to create high-trust, high-performance cultures.

Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, Mann draws from his heart-pounding, fast-moving Army career to bring Green Beret principles of leadership and rapport-building to organizations. Having mastered the art of problem solving in places where trust was absent, conflict was rampant, and he had to rely on his head and heart to create connections in war-torn communities, he provides an outline for how today’s leaders can make better human connections in high-stakes, low-trust environments. In his keynotes, workshops, and retreats, he relates his experiences to the challenges organizations face today and taps into his dynamic storytelling ability to captivate audiences with valuable lessons from leading and succeeding in critical combat missions. He brings an innovative approach to problem solving — one that has empowered people from all walks of life to get surrounded on purpose to achieve something much greater than themselves.

In a distinguished 23-year military career, Mann operated at the highest levels of the Special Operations Community and has been widely recognized for his successful leadership of teams in complex situations. He grabbed global headlines when, alongside fellow Green Beret veterans and other volunteers, he led “Operation Pineapple Express” — a grassroots leadership campaign using Rooftop Human Connection Skills to honor a promise and save more than 1,000 Afghans from a life-threatening situation amid the chaos of America’s withdrawal from Afghanistan.

Mann is the author of Leading Through Chaos and the New York Times bestseller Operation Pineapple Express, which details the story of the dangerous rescue mission of several hundred of our allies in Afghanistan. He is also the founder of Task Force Pineapple, a nonprofit organization that provides safe passage of our Afghan allies away from unstable environments and supports them in relocating and resettling to the U.S. In a similar vein, he is the founder of The Heroes Journey, a nonprofit which provides warriors, first responders, and their families an outlet to share their stories as a way to heal and transition home from service.

Mann has advocated on behalf of our troops and Afghan allies in front of Congress and on national media outlets, including CNN, Fox, and ABC. In addition to his speaking, Mann channels his captivating storytelling as a playwright and actor in Last Out, his recent play-brought-to-film illustrating the unforeseen costs of war on our veterans — available on Amazon Prime.


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Speaker Video

Scott Mann: Storytellers Own the Room

Scott Mann: Nobody Is Coming to Save You - The Guide to Getting Big Things Done

Leadership Principles from the Battlefield to the Boardroom

Using Rooftop Leadership in Operation Pineapple Express

Rooftop Leadership | TEDxSantaBarbara

The Generosity of Scars| TEDxSantaBarbara

Surrounded on Purpose | TEDxCincinnati

Nobody Is Coming to Save You: A Green Beret’s Guide to Leadership and Getting Big Sh*t Done. During these times when distraction, division, and mistrust are all around us, the paramount skill in life and business is to connect deeply with others. It’s a skill leadership expert and retired Green Beret Scott Mann mastered on the rooftops of Afghanistan as he worked to rally Afghan villagers to overcome a common enemy. But human connection among corporate leaders is degrading while isolation continues to increase, leaving vast amounts of value on the table.

In this keynote, Mann explores the secrets for how leaders can bridge seemingly insurmountable trust gaps and emotionally charged conversations to foster genuine rapport with their people in order to win support, build consensus, and mobilize them to action for strategic outcomes. Sharing candid and compelling reflections from a career in special ops and subsequent experiences in civilian life, such as leading the headline-grabbing Operation Pineapple Express rescue mission, Mann emphasizes that these strategies transcend the do-or-die contexts of the battlefield. They resonate with anyone answering the call to shoulder the responsibility of getting big sh*t done when nobody else is coming to save you. Armed with the unique knowledge of the human operating system and the interpersonal tools from his own experiences in low-trust, high-stakes environments, leaders will be inspired to build their teams on unbreakable foundations of trust, connection, and authenticity — because what works in life and death, works even better in life and business.

Narrative Competence: Meeting your Goals with Purposeful Storytelling in Real Time. Narrative competence is among the tools in retired Green Beret Scott Mann’s arsenal that have been most transferrable from one endeavor to the next. These endeavors include saving 1,000 Afghan allies during Operation Pineapple Express, giving three TED Talks, writing and acting in an award-winning play produced by Gary Sinise, coaching Fortune 500 CEOs to share their scars with their associates, writing a New York Times bestseller, and even helping his young son cope with online bullying. Narrative competence is at the heart of it all. It’s the ability to utilize storytelling in real time to achieve significant goals — whether within organizations, or in another context.

Mann is expertly versed in narrative competence and the neuroscience behind it, and, in this session, explains the nuances that make it a more impactful tool compared to more basic means of storytelling. As he explores the art and science of tapping into our struggles and crafting powerful narratives to transcend boundaries and foster empathy, understanding, and action, he pays special attention to the importance of emotional intelligence; Those who possess the special ability to use narrative to bring the emotional temperature down in the room and capture the attention of the listener when everything is on the line are the ones who maximize their influence. Mann’s insights offer clear and actionable strategies to help anyone use narrative competence as a tool to enhance leadership and communication, lead your family, and spark positive change in any setting.

From Crisis to Order: Leading Through Change, Complexity, and Chaos. From pandemics to elections to wars to bad economies, the next crisis is just around the corner. It affects the fiscal health of our organizations and the mental and physical health of our people. But how do you lead through these events? Throughout his career, Scott Mann has navigated his teams through volatility, uncertainty, change, and ambiguity. Mann draws from his experience leading in these high-stakes environments, including Operation Pineapple Express, the grassroots mission to rescue our Afghan allies amid the chaos of the U.S.’s withdrawal from Afghanistan, and shares that when the next crisis strikes, the first step in getting back to a sense of order is to be comfortable being uncomfortable. Only then can you move yourself and your teams from a place of merely surviving to truly thriving.

There is a certain rhythm in chaos that leaders must appreciate. In this talk, Mann examines navigating change, complexity, and chaos from a new perspective — shedding the transactional mindset and focusing first on the intricacies of our ancient human operating system and how it individually responds to change. He then pivots into an eye-opening conversation on the potential internal bleed out caused by our primal, fear-based responses to crises within organizations. He helps leaders understand the need to pay close attention to timeless challenges such as resource scarcity and status behavior during market shifts, mergers, and other stressful events — and why they must be addressed up front if change is to be implemented successfully, and order restored. Mann offers hard-won wisdom for how transformative leaders can get beyond PowerPoint slides and adapt to the winds of change around them, gain buy-in from the people they serve, and turn chaos into opportunity. Mann concludes with an honest conversation on self-leadership and self-care. He candidly shares his own post-military journey from mental health struggles to resilience. This keynote equips leaders with the tools to lead others through the storm, while also caring for themselves, so they emerge healthier, stronger, and more than capable of handling the complexities all around them.

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