• Presentation at Tata Steel

  • Commencement address at Erasmus University

  • Keynote address at National CFO Day

  • Moderating a debate at the St. Gallen Symposium

A leading expert in persuasive communication, Lars Duursma has built a solid reputation as a keynote speaker and moderator at events and conferences throughout Europe. As an award-winning entrepreneur and former world debating champion, he knows how to truly engage and inspire people. Lars has coached hundreds of CEO’s, political leaders and TED speakers in preparation for career-defining moments.

For over a decade, Lars has helped leaders across the globe to close big deals, launch successful initiatives and inspire their people to act with conviction. As an international keynote speaker, he knows how to ‘wow’ his audiences with his trademark mix of education, inspiration and entertainment, teaching people how to be at their most persuasive when it truly matters.

As a volunteer for the Barack Obama presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012, Lars gained valuable insights which have helped him to translate the secrets behind the American president’s success into a set of skills that anyone can master.


  • Executive coach of hundreds of CEO’s and political leaders throughout Europe, helping them prepare for crucial speeches, presentations and (election) debates.
  • Extensive international and multicultural experience, providing training to many international organizations (European Commission, European Parliament, NATO), setting up an international franchise in Istanbul, providing master classes to a new generation of Egyptian political leaders in 2011 and giving debate training in China to students of over 80 different universities.
  • Presentation coach of 30+ TED(x) speakers, helping experts with great ideas to deliver engaging and inspiring presentations.
  • Guest lecturer at RSM Erasmus University and Radboud University, providing courses on argumentation and presentation skills.
  • Volunteer for the Barack Obama presidential campaigns in 2008 and 2012, recruiting volunteers and organizing events across several swing states.
  • Author of Dutch bestseller Ik krijg altijd gelijk (Always persuasive) and 100+ articles in national newspapers.
  • Regular television appearances in the Netherlands as a debate and presentation expert, as well as interviews on ZDF (in German) and CNN Türk.

Achievements & awards

  • Winner of the World Universities Debating Championships ESL (2006) and European Universities Debating Championship ESL (2003, 2005). Winner of the Dutch national debating championship (2003, 2004, 2006, 2011).
  • Selected by BusinessWeek magazine among Europe’s three most promising young entrepreneurs (2006).
  • Recipient of the De Civiltate award, the highest award for students for exceptional extra-curricular performance and excellent representation of the university.
  • Proclaimed as a ‘Leader of Tomorrow’ by the St. Gallen Symposium.
  • Chosen among the Netherlands’ 50 most talented people by Elsevier Magazine.
  • Interviewed as one of 64 successful entrepreneurs for “Growth in a difficult decade” (1 million copies), among with Howard Schultz (Starbucks), Daniel Ek (Spotify), Dame Mary Perkins (Specsavers) and Donald Trump.