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Scott “The Onion Guy” Dikkers

In the time of big disruptions, like AI (Artificial Intelligence), Scott Dikkers is a proven creative catalyst (also seriously funny) who provides insight on innovation and believing in your team.

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Fee Range: 10000-19999
  • Founder of “The Onion”
  • #1 New York Times bestselling Author
  • Business and Marketing Authority
  • Comedy Performer

*Fee ranges are presented as a guideline only. Speaker fees are subject to change without notice. For an exact quote, please contact your Speaker Exchange Agency representative.

Scott Dikkers is a #1 New York Times bestselling author, comedy writer, and comedian widely regarded as one of the most influential pioneers in comedy history. His visionary leadership at The Onion, his groundbreaking comic strip Jim’s Journal, plus his multiple top-10 comedy podcasts have garnered him tens of millions of fans all over the world. Rolling Stone named him one of its top 10 favorite writers. Entertainment Weekly designated him “the funniest person in America” and placed him on the “It List” of the hottest celebrities in show business. He graced the cover of Time magazine as one the top 50 movers and shakers online. He’s the winner of the Thurber Prize for American Humor, a Peabody, and more Webby awards than any other individual or organization. Considered a one-of-a-kind comedy legend throughout the entertainment industry, he literally wrote the book on comedy, the bestselling How to Write Funny, which spawned a training center at the famed Second City in Chicago where he mentors young creators who have gone on to win Emmys, Grammys, and Oscars.

An accomplished stage presenter who performs stand-up and has appeared on national TV shows like Late Night with Conan O’Brien and Saturday Night Live, Scott shares how he escaped a tough childhood through his love of comedy. A small, shy kid, Scott endured an upbringing marked by poverty, divorce, bullying, and even a suicide attempt at the age of eight. He found solace and inspiration from Mad magazine, which fed his passion and inspired him to create The Onion.

Scott outlines his journey in his bestselling book “Outrageous Marketing: The Story of The Onion and How To Build a Powerful Brand with No Marketing Budget”. With The Onion, Scott broke the mold for branding and marketing, and he spells out his unlikely success with hilarious stories that will bring audiences to tears with laugher. More about substance than hype, Scott makes clear how the creative process needs to be open, challenging, and engaging for teams and individuals to achieve their dreams.

Scott Dikkers' Disruptive Guide to Being Creative

In the age of AI, how can we still be creative?

It’s true, AI is on everyone’s mind — teams in every industry wonder if they are safe from job extinction, while leaders explore how AI will generate and save money. In the midst of programming, automation, and data points, the art of human creativity (using brains and emotions) is still the key to innovation.

Scott’s talk ISN’T about AI expertise, it IS using a proven creativity method (with other humans or in conjunction with AI) that he used to make The Onion a multi-million dollar company. Scott is a creative catalyst who used a process that leads to constant innovation, improvisation, and adaptability.

While The Onion may be all humor, it is a serious business that has traveled through highways of disruption (from the fall of print media to the rise of the internet, and more). The future of work has always been here. Everything is changing around us — so many disruptive forces and so much change in the way we work, interact, and accomplish anything.

Creativity is how The Onion survived and thrived amid a market crash, digital transition, a hybrid office, and increased stealth competition. Scott’s talk provides attendees a clear method that teams and leaders can use while reminding them of their vital role in innovation.

Decoding Satire and Misinformation in a Modern Media Age

Have you ever seen a story in your news feed from The Onion and thought it was real?

Nowadays, it’s hard to tell satire from real news. Scott Dikkers can help, He is the founding and longest serving editor of the onion the original fake newspaper.

Audiences at colleges universities and other educational organizations have a great time when he comes to speak on their campus. He brings plenty of laughs, of course, and outrageous stories about the crazy characters, wild mix-ups, and legal troubles you might expect to hear about — from the onions storied history, all the way up to the present day. Scott shares an important message that’s uniquely relevant with three big takeaways:

  1. Read critically:
    How are we supposed to separate knowledge from conspiracy truth, from lies? It’s not easy anymore. We live in a world where far too many people believe the Earth is flat, or that we didn’t land on the moon, or that Nanobots are going to turn us all into flesh-eating zombies. Scott will make a big impact with attendees, stressing the importance of approaching everything we read with questions and curiosity instead of blind acceptance.
  1. Check your sources:
    Since the day The Onion was founded, Scott has been compelling people to think about where they’re getting their information. Today, a lot of people are understandably confused about how to navigate this strange media landscape we find ourselves in. We have news feeds now instead of newspapers, and we all need to be more Discerning media consumers. This gets to the core of what education is all about.
  1. Spread the truth you know:
    We’re all in the media now, whether we like it or not. We distribute information to our friends, family, and to our broader followers, so we all need to be responsible journalists. We didn’t sign up for this, but that’s the price of living in the modern digital world.

Scott engages with students and community members who love asking him questions and getting into lively discussions about media literacy and other topics, from creative writing to entrepreneurship and marketing.

Attendees will walk away from his talk entertained for sure, but also clear-eyed about the importance of being an informed and just maybe, they’ll think twice next time they see something a little too crazy to be true in their news feed.

The Onion Way: Live Your Mission, Love Your People, and Have Fun Doing It

Scott Dikkers is the hilarious founder of, number #1 New York Times bestselling author, and award-winning speaker. He takes audiences through “The Onion Way”, three foundational principles he developed to grow a small college newspaper run out of a dorm room into a multi-million dollar brand recognized the world over with tens of millions of loyal social media followers.

Principle 1:

Live your mission. Scott walks you through finding your North Star, pursuing it with passion, and inspiring your team to do the same. This simple framework spurred The Onion to take bold risks, and it compels audiences to innovate in their own companies, which we need to confront the challenges we all face in business today: The future of work, AI, supply chain problems, the war for talent, and so many others.

Principle 2:

Love your people. In what Scott calls the “Love Economy,” companies that succeed big today are the ones people fall in love with. Understanding this paradigm not only attracts and keeps customers, it frees teams to do their best work, be more creative, and form a culture that can weather any storm and continues to innovate.

Principle 3:

(The most important thing of all is to) Have fun doing it. And at Scott’s talks, everyone has fun, walking away with not just actionable takeaways but tears of laughter.

Peeling the Onion: The inside story on Marketing & Branding the Original Fake News

How did The Onion, a small college newspaper from Madison, Wisconsin, compete in the cutthroat world of entertainment marketing to become one of the most recognizable and successful comedy brands in the world? You may be surprised to learn it was done without spending a penny on marketing. Scott Dikkers, The Onion’s longest-serving editor-in-chief who founded, helped found the print publication that preceded it, and led the company’s effort to build the brand in its formative decades, tells the unlikely and outrageous tale of exactly how The Onion—now a multi-million-dollar company with tens of millions of monthly views online—thrived against all odds to achieve heightened brand awareness and a fiercely loyal fan base. He leaves corporate audiences inspired to do the same for their own companies.

The Funny Story Behind The Funny Stories

Scott Dikkers tells the tale of his beginnings in comedy and getting The Onion started, and shares funny stories about how he struggled in the early years, and then achieved great success. As a farm boy with no education, he’ll paint the picture of a starry-eyed kid who loved reading Mad Magazine and dreamt of one day getting his work published to improbably founding the world’s first humor website and heading up America’s longest-surviving humor publication. Dikkers connects his experience to the college audience’s lives by pointing out how much more opportunity they have to start something new like The Onion today, explaining that this is a magical time in their lives when they can make just about anything happen for themselves.

Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
Yesterday was fantastic! Scott was great with our students throughout the day and kept his answers dynamic and different from session to session. We've received great reviews from our community. I have been a part of this series for a long time, and I have never seen the crowd so engaged and laughing the way they did last night. It was a great way to kick off our fall series
I just wanted to say thank you so much for hosting our Leaders Connect program. It was great working with you throughout the process and the energy you brought to the event really kept everyone engaged and upbeat. The overall customer feedback we received on the event was incredible! We have already started thinking about what to do for next year and now there are talks about our leadership wanting to do another in just 6 months!
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