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Ian Elliot


Advertising - After Dinner - Authors - Boards - Branding - Business - CEO/Chairman - Change Management - Charity - Coaching - Communications - Competitive Advantage - Corporate Culture - Corporate Governance - Cosmetics - Creativity - Entrepreneurs - Goal Setting - Inspiration - Inspirational - International Speakers - Keynote Speakers - Leadership - Life Planning - Management - Marketing - Military - Motivation - Personal Development - Presentation Skills - Sales - Small Business - Strategy - Talent Retention - Teamwork - Training - Workshops

‘Pitching’ ‘Branding’ 'Staff Engagement' 'Presentation Skills'

Over 30 years in the highly competitive advertising industry, Ian Elliot rose from mail boy to CEO and Chairman of Australia’s biggest agency, George Patterson. He’s a master strategist in brand building and new business acquisition. He was the architect of the Optus Brand, creating the hugely successful “YES” campaign.

Ian draws experience from some of the world’s major companies, his own entrepreneurial endeavors and his learning’s from the Harvard Business School AMP where he was class valedictorian.

Ian is recognized as the advertising industries most successful new business winner. Ian has authored “Stop Bitching, Start Pitching” published by Murdoch Books. It’s the definitive guide to winning big accounts

At just 48 he retired from the advertising industry to focus on his public and private company board responsibilities. He’s been on the boards of several ASX top 200 companies as well as the National Australia Day Council.

Ian is an internationally acclaimed professional keynote speaker and consults to major firms including KPMG, Hills Industries, Village Roadshow and Prime Media.

He also runs 2 day Master Classes in ‘Presentation Skills” and ‘Pitching Skills’

Presentation Topics Include

  • Advertising
  • Business strategy
  • Brand building
  • New business acquisition
  • Entrepreneurship


‘This was a presentation that made our team think deeply about who they were and what they could achieve with the rest of their lives.
Moray McDonald – Head of Mortgages CITIBANK

"As the leader of Sydney’s successful 2000 Olympic Bid Committee, I employed every strategy I could, to craft the winning pitch. But when it comes to pitching, Ian Elliot is ‘The Maestro” His experience in creating winning business pitches is legendary. He understands the science and the art form, to do what it takes to win. He’s the master persuader".
Rod McGeoch CEO Sydney 2000 Olympic Bid Committee

‘Ian’s speech at the Augusta National Country Club during the Us Masters Golf had the Fortune 500 CEO’s and executives on the edge of their seats. A brilliant speech that did Australia proud” 
Woody Merry- Chairman Organising  Committee Red Carpet Club Georgia Chamber of Commerce for US Masters Golf at Augusta Georgia USA

" Our group is still talking about how valuable your presentation was ... fantastic!"
International Speakers Association Las Vegas

“The feedback from the leadership team was fantastic! The information and ideas you shared with us on cultural change and staff engagement were constantly referred to for the remainder of the off-site. Your style and presentation worked well and the humour you injected was warmly received. You listened to the brief and absolutely delivered to the expectations. You certainly provided food for thought for how we can take the function forward and provided inspiration. You left a lasting impression with the leadership team.” 

“Speakers at our last 2 annual events have been H. Ross Perrot and General Norman Schwarzkopf. Ian’s performance eclipsed them all. Ian delivered an uplifting, funny, poignant and motivating presentation.”
Colonel Edwin Anderson –Chief of Staff John F Kennedy Special Warfare Centre. Fort Bragg North Carolina

"Ian is a master strategist when it comes to winning new business. Our senior management team learnt so much from a full day with him."
Ogilvy & Mather - Shanghai CHINA

'Ian spoke with great enthusiasm and passion to a group of international business leaders. The subject of how to ‘Pitch and win Business’ is close to every business leaders heart. Ian was able to not only speak with authority on the subject, given his track record at Patterson’s, but also able to clearly identify the key areas each of us needs to focus on in order to achieve success in our businesses".
World Presidents Organisation

"Your preparation for our Asian regional conference in Bangkok and attention to the services and needs of our industry excelled. You provided compelling, innovative education to our diverse group, your session accomplished everything! Now we would like to invite you to repeat that performance in Rome for our European Conference."
Prism International

"Ian's talk was both stimulating and thought provoking - any company pitching for large scale projects and creative assignments should listen to him and at the very least read his book!"
Israeli Chamber of Commerce

Warm engaging style, listened to the brief and absolutely delivered to expectations. Great use of 'stories' to bring things to life - left a lasting impression with the leadership team.

"The information you shared was outstanding and you are a fantastic presenter. Your stories were powerful, touching, and the messages very meaningful. Every person that attended said it was one of our most valuable presentations of the year"
President National Speakers Association of America

"Your presentation was energising, insightful and inspiring - we had fantastic feedback"
Dibbs Abbott Stillman / Lawyers

"Thank you for a terrific presentation!"
HLB Mann Judd

"Provided a great way to put together an impromptu speech. Great insight into lifting presentations to a whole new level."
Hills Branded Products , Marketing Manager

" It was fantastic! - Entertaining - educational. I was pushed out of my comfort zone and learnt a raft of new skill sets. I recommend this highly to anyone whose job involves presenting in one form or another".
Hills Industries Business Manager

"This program is must for any person that is engaged in professional services."
Lawlers Accountants , Director.

“It is always a great indication of the impact of the speaker when great bursts of laughter are heard outside the main Plenary room….Ian’s absolute charm is his capacity to draw his audience in with his

stories which enabled people to take valuable learning from the examples given.  Many I spoke with found his information really vibrated with them and they had lots of light bulb moments.   Ian’s natural raconteur style generated genuine emotion, personal reflection and great laughter….a treasure!  Thank you Ian
NESA National Conference


Ian’s career has so far spanned 45 years, broadly divided into 4 segments.

  1. Advertising
    The first 30 years were spent in the advertising agency business, all with what was then Australia’s largest and pre-eminent agency, George Patterson, where he rose from Mail Boy to Chairman and Chief Executive.

    Client Responsibilities included Optus (created ‘Yes’ campaign), Sydney Olympics Communications Strategist, CUB, Nissan, Hyundai, Energizer.

    When he retired from the business at age 48, ‘Patts’ had billings in excess of $1Billion and 1100 staff
  1. Board Directorships
    Following his decision to retire from management roles, he was offered numerous board positions on ASX listed companies. Over the last 15 years he has been Chairman or non-exec director of 7 listed entities with tenures spanning 2 years to 13 years. He has also sat on 4 Advisory boards of private companies, 2 government boards and one national sporting body (NRL Commissioner).
  1. Not for Profits
    Throughout his career Ian has leveraged his skills and relationships for community good. He has a strong social conscience and has sat on numerous charity boards and committees.
  1. Training
    His book ‘Stop Bitching, Start Pitching’ was a best-seller for his publisher Murdoch Books. This led to numerous requests as key note speaker at hundreds of Australian and dozens of international conferences and workshops.


  • Graduate of the AIDC Company Director’s course MAIDC.
  • Graduate of Harvard Business School, Advanced Management Program


ASX Listed

Current Boards

Impelus Ltd – Nov.2017 - current
Non-Executive Chairman. Mobile Embrace Ltd is ASX Listed. It is a technology led Digital Performance Marketing company utilising proprietary technology, tools and data assets globally, to seamlessly target and connect consumers to products they value, generating high quality customer acquisitions for businesses at scale, via online and mobile devices.

McMillan Shakespeare Ltd – 2014 - current
Non-Executive Director. MMS is market leader in the fields of Salary Packaging and Novated Leasing.

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