Gavin Oattes Managing Director and Keynote Speaker

Gavin Oattes


Gavin is the creator of BELLYFIRE, a bi-weekly motivational newsletter. Use the link below to sign up.


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Gavin Oattes is an international speaker and bestselling author who combines his practical and academic background within education and stand-up comedy, to help organisations and their people to “do it better than they have to”.

He is the author of six bestselling books, including Life Will See You Now, SHINE, A Head Full of Everything (for the teens) and Diary of a Brilliant Kid: Top Secret Guide to Awesomeness (for the little kids). His books are sold the world over and Gavin has just been snapped up by Capstone Publishing to write book number seven, due to hit the shops late 2025!

Gavin is Managing Director and owner of Tree of Knowledge, one of the UK’s most exciting people development organisations and is a former winner of Young Entrepreneur of the Year.

Working with some of the largest organisations in the world, Gavin is now regarded as one the most talented and sought after speakers, regularly delivering keynote speeches at conferences and exhibitions around the world.

An award winning comedian, creator of BELLYFIRE, his inspiration all comes from where he began his career….Primary School Teaching.

He’ll make you laugh, he’ll make you cry and he’ll remind you of the joy and wonder of being five years old as you rediscover your wee piece of magic!

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“I’m not sure they’ve invented words big or brilliant enough to describe Gavin Oattes and his ability to smash a keynote. He is, quite simply, world class. He manages to balance the perfect amount of confidence with the perfect amount of humility (no easy feat), and it makes him inspirational and likeable in equal measure. Oh, and he’s got funny bones. Really, reeeeeeally funny bones. He’s everything you’d want in a speaker… and then some. I’ve booked him twice now… and I can’t quite wait till next time.”
Deb Webster, Head of Internal Communications, Openreach
“It was a pleasure working with Gavin when he delivered a brilliant set members of the Openreach senior leadership team. His unique take on resilience, wellbeing and the value of a positive mind-set was engaging, thought-provoking and above all fun. His content is highly relevant for leadership teams and professional communities alike. Thank you Gavin for inspiring us all to ‘be the milk!’.”
Suzie Lavington, Interim Comms & Engagement Lead, Lumon
“Tree of Knowledge were helpful, supportive and professional Emma and Gavin listened to the areas we wished the conference to focus on and created a presentation around these topics. Gavin was outstanding kicking off our conference with enthusiasm, energy and humour. Engaging those in attendance virtually was no easy task and yet he delivered. Gavin was thought provoking and created hope and optimism around topics which can be emotionally difficult, leaving folks in attendance with areas to think about and hold as the day progressed. Feedback from those in attendance was hugely positive and we hope to work with Tree of Knowledge in the future”.
Maureen Gillies, Practice Manager, Barnardos Fostering
"Out of the box thinking, self-reflection and a bag full of energy! Gavin's passion resonated with our team both personally and professionally. Great way to kick start 2022"
Sam Kemp - Market Development Lead UK - Zettle by PayPal
Motivational, funny, warm and ‘real’ are the first words that spring to mind. The things he said have really stayed with me since he spoke at our staff session a week or so ago. We are a business undergoing a ‘from the floorboards up’ transformation, with new leadership and a new vision, so Gavin’s messages about mental attitude, being helped by others when you’re struggling (“be more goose”), working as a team and finding the delight and joy in small things really resonated with me. Apparently my face was a picture when my pendulum (ring) started moving from north to south hahaha! His stories from his days in the infants’ classroom were very powerful, especially the part when we were asked to look back at the people who have stood out in our lives and made a difference to us: he’s right, it was the people who really SAW us, who gave us a sense of belief that we could do and achieve anything that we remember. The people who scatter light around them, who radiate energy and positivity – I want to be like that! Finally, I have never – and never wish to – run a marathon… but the image of “free honks” will stay with me always. Nice work, Gavin – thank you!”
Jo Cox, Group CEO, Islands Energy Group Limited
“During the first few weeks of the pandemic, the corporate head office team here at Keller Group plc in London, were looking for a wee bit of inspiration and support in helping us navigate through the complexities and uncertainties of lockdown. I reached out to Gavin and Tree of Knowledge to put together a mini-programme of online motivation and mind-lifting events for our team of 25. The impact of these regular one-hour events has been simply FANTASTIC! Gavin’s ability to bring a perspective of fun and the reminder that we are all free to choose our own outlook on life couldn’t have been more timely or relevant. The sessions provide regular boosts of energy to an already half-decent team which is helping us re-find the curiosity within our mindsets. No matter what you’ve done before to invest and support your team - the engagement contract has changed. Rip-up your rule book and take your team on a journey with Gavin. You’ll rediscover within yourselves a way to look at lock-down life with wonder.”
Graeme Cook, Chief HR Officer, Keller Group plc
“I invited Gavin down to London to talk to our leadership team and share his experiences us. The 60mins went by in a flash. Funny, enigmatic, intelligent and heartfelt. From the moment he said his first “wee” he had senior members of my team thinking genuinely about how they could put his words of advice into practice the second they stepped out the auditorium. Even today, a few months since his visit, his quotes are still shared and points he made brought up in meetings. This guy is on a mission to bring people together and in doing so make them better. Not better in the sense of more productive or organised, better in the sense of more considerate, balanced and above all happy.”
Jamie McCall, Senior Marketing Director, NIKE.

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