Scott Burrows is a top Inspirational Resilience Speaker who teaches the concepts of Vision, Mindset and Grit worldwide using his life-changing story as the backdrop for organizational success. Three simple, yet powerful words that when put into action can help you and your organization stand up to any challenge, push the limits of what is possible and set goals that stretch the mind—even during times of change, uncertainty and fear.
By the age of 19, Scott was a star athlete and fierce competitor. He excelled in golf and track, was a college wide receiver at Florida State University for legendary coach Bobby Bowden, and a top-ranked kick-boxing Black Belt champion whose last fight was broadcast by ESPN.
During the height of his collegiate career, his life changed dramatically. On November 3rd, 1984, he survived a catastrophic automobile accident as a passenger in a friend’s car and broke two vertebrae in his neck that left him paralyzed from the chest down and diagnosed a quadriplegic. Told he would be confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life, Scott realized his split-second decision to not wear a seat belt altered his course forever.
Despite his grim diagnosis, Scott astounded his doctors and refused to be sidelined. After six months of intense physical therapy at Craig Hospital in Denver, Colorado, he fought to stay alive while battling numerous life-threatening complications, including a pulmonary embolism. With the support of his family, friends and his Christian faith, Scott turned an impossible goal into a reality. He returned to college and graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance and had some fun along the way—competing again, this time, in a completely different sport. They call it full-contact wheelchair rugby, otherwise known as Murderball, a Paralympic sport that allowed him to compete with the best physically challenged athletes from around the world. Working as one, these people came together to expand their Vision and prevent their Mindset from becoming their biggest handicap.
After graduating from college, Scott’s served as a Financial Advisor in the Insurance and Financial Industry for Northwestern Mutual. He specialized in life and disability insurance planning as well as retirement, estate and wealth planning. In his 5th year, he hit a huge goal and qualified for the prestigious Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), the Premiere Association of Financial Professionals, which is a 100% commission-driven sales production award that fewer than 8% of his peers qualify for annually from more than 500 companies in 70 countries around the world.
At the pinnacle of his career, Scott experienced yet another setback, a second automobile accident. Although he was buckled in this time, new injuries forced him to RE-evaluate, RE-invent and once again RE-ignite his life by practicing and executing what he preaches.
During his nine-month recovery, Scott reminisced about the overcoming adversity speakers he heard at sales and leadership conferences. Their life-changing stories inspire others to chase their dreams regardless of obstacles or barriers. That’s when Scott decided he would make the tough decision to leave an industry he had so much passion and success in to pursue a speaking career that has taken him around the world.
Scott also took advantage of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to help expand his brother’s golf course fertilizer, chemical and equipment company into Southeast Asia by disrupting an industry and doing what the competition was unwilling to do — offer custom-blended fertilizers designed specifically to meet the needs of golf course fairways and greens based on individual soil tests. This expansion brought in an excess of 1.6 million the first year.
In Scott’s book Vision Mindset Grit!, his father defined those three empowering words in the foreword: Vision refers to your goals and aspirations, the endpoint you are seeking; Mindset is the continual mental preparation and adjustment needed to meet oncoming challenges; Grit is the day-to-day determination to persevere when you are too tired, too sore or too beleaguered to continue on.
Scott has inspired audience throughout the United States as well as Australia, Spain, Bahamas, India, Thailand, Bermuda, Costa Rica, Mexico, the Czech Republic and Canada, as well as to our soldiers at the Minot Air Force Base.
Presentation Description & Topics
Success Strategies to Help You Stand Up to Workplace Safety
Nothing delivers the importance of safety better than a personal story! Neuroscience studies confirm storytelling illuminates parts of the brain that are only active when a listener actually experiences something – triggering their imagination, engaging them with a deep emotional response and sealing it into memory. Motivational Safety Speaker Scott Burrows details his unforgettable, lifechanging story of turning a paralyzing setback, caused by a poor decision, into a powerful comeback that will inspire your team to develop a true safety MINDSET. Scott details how easy it is to become desensitized to common safety routines, and how ‘just this once’ can tragically impact the rest of their lives.
Told while using own physical paralysis as a visual metaphor and blending eloquent storytelling with humor and crowd interaction, Scott leaves audiences captivated, inspired and ready to take action. His VISION, MINDSET AND GRIT SAFETY PRESENTATION will Impact your team by encouraging better day-to-day safety decisions in the workplace and changing the way your employees view and approach their jobs. Listeners will walk away embracing workplace safety protocols as opposed to resisting or ignoring them. Scott grew up learning firsthand about safety procedures working for his dad, a golf course superintendent at Turtle Creek Country Club. Scott operated heavy equipment, including dangerous fairway mowers, and handled hazardous chemicals and fertilizers. It was the ideal place to learn about and keep up with safety measures not just at work, but in everyday life. Unfortunately, Scott still made a poor decision that made the difference between his friend walking away from the accident with only minor injuries while he lay in a hospital bed unable to move. Accepting the grim responsibility for his decisions, Scott understood he couldn’t change the past while instead putting into action an unforgettable vision and mindset for his future—one that includes his passionate commitment as a spokesperson for workplace safety.
Hear what others have to say
“Words cannot express my appreciation to you for the presentations you gave to our associates over the course of two days. I heard nothing but positive comments. One person told me, “I don’t know what you paid Scott for our workforce safety meeting, but he was worth every penny!” I would say the standing ovations conveyed how strongly our associates felt about your presentation. And they were loud ovations, not just a ho-hum response. And don’t forget that one of those ovations was after the end of a shift!! You connected with people. And from my perspective, you certainly helped us attain our goal of “challenging and inspiring our associates to be the best they could be every day and to make workforce safety a number one priority!” Let me sum it up this way. If I ever have the opportunity to listen again for the sixth (6th) time, I will be in the front row!!” – Phillips-Van Heusen Corporation
“I wanted to send you a quick note and thank you for your Safety Leadership presentation at our annual meeting. Many of the attendees told me that was one of the best safety programs they had attended. I think your message and story are very impactful. Your mantra of Vision-Mindset-Grit resonated with our managers. We have found that when managers show employees that they care about each employee’s personal health and safety, then the entire organization becomes a safer one. Your presentation drove home several of our primary safety tenants, but obviously only someone with your life experiences can achieve such an emotional and uplifting response in doing so. Thanks for sharing your story and message.” – Basic Energy Services
“Scott’s exceptional professionalism resulted in not only a heartfelt standing ovation from all in attendance, but successfully underscored the highly important theme of how individuals can overcome obstacles even in the most extreme or unanticipated circumstances. Moreover, Scott was able to link the role of an individual in helping a forward-thinking team to become more the sum of its parts. We were all very pleased to the extent to which Scott worked in advance, to understand the themes of the event which revolved around workforce safety as well as the nature of the company’s business. His preparation thoroughly integrated our objectives into his core message. We warmly recommend the motivational, dramatic and effective presentation of Scott Burrows.” – RobRoy Industries
“As one of the world’s leading transporters of oil and petroleum products, we recognize that our current and future success is attributed to our skilled and motivated workforce. Every year we look for ways to inspire our employees to reach their goals. We engaged Scott and he quickly connected to our employees and spouses and shared his personal story in a way that made us all rethink our choices and attitudes in life. Scott exceeded our expectations in both his messages and impact.” – Enbridge Pipelines
“What an inspiration Scott Burrows was to myself and our employees. He reminded us that hard work and determination can overcome even the greatest challenges. His safety message resonated throughout our audience and reminded us that every decision we could make could have huge consequences. If you haven’t heard his story, you need to book him now for your event. – CW Matthews Contracting Co., Inc.
“Your testimony was truly inspiring. It is a story that shows how every decision we make, whether at home or on the job will determine our destiny. It also shows that making safe decisions daily and keeping your safety and the safety of others a priority is so important. We are still talking about your story, and I am sure we will continue to talk about it for years to come. Your entire message was one that points out the reality of how one decision can change your life and how you overcame some very tough obstacles. Obstacles that I am not sure that I personally could overcome. DFS has been working very hard to build a strong safety culture. A strong safety culture is based on beliefs, attitude, behaviors and habits. These four ingredients are solely produced by people. We must believe that safety is our number one objective. Once belief is established, we must have the right attitude and approach with this belief. Once the correct attitude is formed, we must teach and train safe behaviors. Behaviors are formed by teaching safe habits. Thank you for sharing your story. Your overall presentation was very impactful to our organization. A testimony of truth, reality, inspiration and hope. Thank you!” – Michael Renforth, VP of Safety, Health and Environmental, Dickinson Fleet Services
“The presentation was absolutely amazing – I watched it three times! I have received so many comments on how impactful Scott’s message has been. Here are some comments from attendees:
“It was electrifying . . . What an incredible story and role model! The other important lesson is the hidden aspects about other folks. Guilt, heartache, etc.”
“The presentation was absolutely amazing . . . I received so many comments on how impactful Scott’s message has been.”
“These safety stories are all great. This one was the best and covered so many aspects and truly the mindset is so important.”
“I’d like to say thank you for sharing your story with me. I am an avid reading (sic) of true stories. I read a lot of stories about what how people have survived unbelievable stories. It always gives me hope and strength to keep on keeping on.”
“This presentation was incredibly impactful; great speaker, great message and great delivery. Thank you!”
– Carole Stinson, The Salt River Project