We often get asked: “Who inspires you?” To be honest, the list is long, longer than the 50 people we decided to showcase in this article.
They are our fellows, our mentors, our facilitators, or just people we bump into on socials or live events. All of them bring us new perspectives, new ideas, new inspiration.
However, the people below consistently share their thoughts and experiences publicly. We love following them and we bet every other L&D out there will love it too.
Why did we decide to build this list?
For two reasons.
First of all, we know the internet can be a very wild place. Having a curated LinkedIn wall, and following high-quality peers can be extremely useful in our learning journeys.
Secondly, we want to celebrate these people’s work. Sharing your thoughts publicly can sometimes be scary, but they still choose to do so. We’ve learned so much from them, and we want to support them however we can.
How to read this list?
To make this list easier to follow, we chose to categorize people based on their most commonly approached topics. It doesn’t mean they only talk about that category, but rather we perceive them as thought leaders for it. Go to those topics of interest for you and focus on following those people who can bring you value.
We wrote a short description for each of them, so that you know what you’re in for, and we also shared some links where you can find them.
Give them a follow, a shootout, and learn from and with them! ✌🏻
Exploring Career Development
Helen is the co-founder of Amazing If, a space that explores non-linear, squiggly careers. She often talks about learning and career development on LinkedIn, and together with her partner in crime, Sarah Ellis, hosts an incredible podcast called Squiggly Careers.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - 3 ideas to inspire a more squiggly world of work
Exploring Leadership Development
Al explores lots of things, most of them geared toward the future of work, but he more often than not talks about leadership development on LinkedIn, his newsletter The Edge of Work, as well as his podcast, named the same.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - takeaways from the Culture Amp’s State of The Manager Report
It was hard to choose a category where JooBee would fit best. She’s a wealth of knowledge when it comes to People Practices. But if you work in a start-up or scale-up and you’re looking to support your people managers, you should follow her on LinkedIn and subscribe to her newsletter.
💜 A recent post of her that we love - Manager of your team vs. management team: what's the difference?
Kenny is currently part of Netflix’s team Leadership Culture and Talent Innovation. He writes & speaks about the intersection of Leadership, Business, and Creative Organisations. His LinkedIn posts are clear and to the point.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - The problem with 'psychological safety’
If you want consistent, practical, in-depth advice for people managers, Claire is your person. She runs Know Your Team, a platform dedicated to management development but has tons of free resources you can explore, often shared on LinkedIn.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - The 4 critical questions to ask remote employees
Exploring Technology & AI in L&D
Egle is a Learning Strategist and Director at Nodes and she’s one of the most consistent people in talking about technology in L&D. You have to follow her on LinkedIn if you want to understand both the bigger picture and tactical ways of using AI in L&D.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - What's going on with AI in L&D?
Someone else extremely consistent in talking about AI in L&D, and L&D in general? Ross. He runs Steal These Thoughts - has a newsletter and posts daily on LinkedIn his lessons learned from various experiments.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - analysis of 20 future skills reports
We’ve been following Christopher for years. His work exploring L&D technology & tools makes him the go-to person for this topic. His full-time job is as Chief Learning Officer at ChenMed, but on the side, he runs Learning Tech Talks to demystify the landscape of learning tech through unbiased conversations with technologies from around the world, and a newsletter at the intersection of business, technology, and human experience.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - Change is a process, not an event.
Exploring Learning Science
Scott is well-known for his crazy learning challenges. Just by exploring those, you will be extremely inspired. But you don’t need to stop there, because he posts weekly on his blog various in-depth thoughts on learning sciences and beyond.
💜 A recent blog post of his that we love - The 15 People Who Most Influenced My Thinking About Learning
Lauren was one of us before moving to study neuroscience and becoming the go-to person when it comes to learning science. You can find her on LinkedIn spilling the truth about neuromyths and educating us about our brains.
💜 A recent interview of hers comes from us - Bridging the Gap: Integrating Neuroscience into Learning Design
We’ve been following Alis for years now, ever since she was a famous coach in Romania, known for her high-quality work. Now she runs the Vertical Development Institute and explores adult development in her research, on LinkedIn, her podcast, and her newsletter.
💜 A recent podcast episode of hers that I love - Neuroscience and Vertical Development.
Exploring General Learning & Development
Looking for a new role in L&D? There’s literally no better person to follow than Sarah. She’s very active on LinkedIn supporting L&Ds with content on getting hired, but also runs a podcast with awesome guests.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - something to remember when you’re in a career transition
David runs one of the most popular L&D podcasts out there, The Learning & Development Podcast. If you’re looking to hear from peers all around the world, there’s no better way than to listen to this podcast.
💜 A recent episode of his that we love - Performance-Oriented Soft Skills Development with Guy Wallace
Aki is a close friend of ours, we’ve been brainstorming and learning together for years now. But moreover his a thoughtful writer about the small things you might be missing in your daily life. His LinkedIn posts hit the nail on the head every time.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - Feeling insecure about challenges
Jess talks candidly about L&D, where traditional practices fail, and tactical tips to move toward being a more impactful L&D Pro. She often posts short forms on LinkedIn, but also writes some awesome, in-depth articles on the same platform.
💜 A recent article of hers that we love - ****The Real Reason We Measure
Sam was one of the first peers who opened our eyes to Performance Consulting. Although not as active these days on LinkedIn, when he posts something, you know you’re going to get a treat!
💜 A recent post of his that we love - simplifying L&D for stakeholders
Honest and consistent, Heidi often reflects on LinkedIn about the present and future of L&D. She also runs a podcast called The BLOC (Building Learning and Organizational Culture) Podcast where she invites lots of awesome peers.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - working with SMEs
💜 A recent post of his that we love - 42 Challenges.
Ann Ann is a Senior Director Talent Development at LinkedIn. She explored trends in talent development & learning, leveraging employee feedback and leadership experiences on her LinkedIn Profile.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - 📚 Valuable Quick Read on "Mastering the Art of Managing Up"
Exploring Learning Experience Design
Srishti’s passion for creative and impactful learning experience design is extremely impactful. She runs a project-focused community at LxD Lab working on lovely projects, runs an amazing newsletter, and consistently posts on LinkedIn.
💜 A recent article of hers that we love - Recipe of a Ritual
If you’re passionate about self-directed learning, you’re in for a treat. Although Alex posts mostly in Brazilian on his LinkedIn profile and his Medium Blog, he’s more than worth clicking on that translation button that’s so closely available to us.
💜 Work of his we think you should check - the A3 map
Andy is currently Program Manager Experience Design Professional Training at Kaospilot, one of the coolest learning experience design labs ever! He posts on LinkedIn from time to time, but his Medium Blog is the gem.
💜 Our favorite blog post of his - Designing experiences that enable behavior change
We have two words for Amanda - color & creativity - her LinkedIn profile is full of both. She currently freelances as a Learning Experience Designer and in the past worked for companies such as Canva & Shopify.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - 7 illustration libraries for your next project
Jamie is a English teacher, school leader and educational information designer, and designs the coolest posters around learning off all kinds! His blog is filled of them, as well as his LinkedIn profile.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - High Leverage Mentoring Strategies
Exploring Learning Measurement
You might know him as The L&D Detective, because he looks beyond vanity metrics to uncover impact, and focuses on performance consulting to be able to do so. Kevin’s website is full of gems you should explore.
💜 Work of his we think you should check - L&D Detective Kit
Exploring Social Learning
Well, we all know her. We all love her. Anamaria is the go-to person for everything related to community building & management. Her LinkedIn profile is consistently full of nuggets of wisdom about running internal communities of practice, so you have to follow her.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - "Communities are cool, but what's the impact they have?”
No one looks as in-depth at learning more than Julian (in our network). We chose to put him under Social Learning because he explores a lot of it, but leadership development and learning science are also his areas of expertise. His LinkedIn profile is full of his thoughts, as well as his newsletter.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - Social Learning: Divergent Stories
Exploring Culture Development
It just made sense to list both Natalie & Alicia here. They are co-founders at The Future Kind Collective at often talk about culture building, learning experience design, and facilitation on LinkedIn. Check Natalie’s LinkedIn Profile here, and Alicia’s LinkedIn Profile here.
💜 A recent post of Natalie that we love - Does your company need an alignment check? 👀
If you want to learn about psychological safety, building a feedback culture, and culture development in general, there’s no one better to follow than Gustavo. He’s quite active on LinkedIn, but his newsletter, Fearless Culture, is the real gem!
💜 A recent issue of his that we love - Humor at Work: The Superpower of Successful Teams
Andrew is the founder of curious lion. He explores Sales Enablement, Organizational Learning, Collaborative Learning, Change Management, and Leadership Development. He runs a blog, a newsletter, and often posts on LinkedIn his thoughts.
💜 A recent post of his that we love - 5 practical ways to accelerate learning in your team
Exploring Marketing for L&D
Your go to person for marketing. Oh, wait, no, marketing for L&D, a skill we all need! Ashley runs the Marketing For Learning Podcast, and often posts on LinkedIn her thoughts about how L&D Professionals can use marketing tactics to make their work more visible.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - curated list of tools, websites, podcasts to learn marketing
If you’re passionate about coaching, Ally has your back. She’s now the Co-Founder of Coachable, and often talks about the intersection of coaching, learning design, and facilitation on her LinkedIn profile.
💜 A recent post of hers that we love - 15 self-coaching questions to support your growth as a Coachable leader 🖤