In the corporate business world, he achieved success as a member of scientific staff at Nortel Networks R&D labs. For ten years, he was a researcher, marketing guru, and CEO speechwriter. He won design awards, did breakthrough consumer/user research, and masterminded creative production for many of Nortel’s largest product launches.
In the entrepreneurial business world, he achieved success after starting The St. John Group, an innovative marketing communications company that has been at the forefront of evolving technology for over three decades. He won top business marketing awards, including best corporate video and script in the world, and an IABC Gold Quill, the highest award in business communications. He did what he loved and became a millionaire.
On the personal side, he has a black belt in judo. He spent a year on a ten-speed bike cycling halfway around the world. He has run over 50 marathons (26 miles) on all seven continents (fastest time: 2 hours, 43 minutes). He and his wife Baiba have climbed two of the world’s seven summits, Kilimanjaro in Africa, and Aconcagua in South America. They have been together for over 35 years, a success in itself these days.
He spent ten years doing over 500 face-to-face interviews with many of the world’s most successful people, including Bill Gates, Martha Stewart, Richard Branson, the Google founders, Rupert Murdoch, and the list goes on. He analyzed every word they said, sorted, organized and correlated every comment, and created one of the world’s largest and most organized databases on success. From that he discovered the critical factors for achievement in any field.
He wrote a bestselling book The 8 Traits Successful People Have in Common: 8 To Be Great. Bill Gates personally asked for a copy. Others who applaud the book include Jeff Skoll, billionaire co-founder of eBay, and James Cameron, creator of the top two highest-grossing films of all time, Avatar and Titanic.
St. John has given talks around the world and is consistently rated “Most Inspirational Speaker” at conferences. The largest bank in Norway chose Richard Branson and Richard St. John as the only two business speakers at a private VIP event for top CEOs and highest-level government ministers. He has also shared the stage with Bill Gates and General David Petraeus, U.S Chief Commander and one of “The Most Powerful People in the World.” (Newsweek).
On the prestigious TED.com website, his talk “Secrets of Success in 8 Words, 3 Minutes” is consistently in the top 20 “Most Viewed” out of 700 amazing talks by great speakers. It has also ranked at the top in many TED categories: “All Time Favorites,” “Most Inspirational,” "Funniest," “Most Emailed,” and “Most Translated into other Languages."
College and university students like his down-to-earth, fun approach to a high-level, serious subject, and many say, “It’s the best talk I’ve ever seen.” Schools where he has spoken include University of Toronto’s Rotman School of Management and York University’s Schulich School of Business. At Erasmus University in the Netherlands, he was the closing keynote speaker at the largest and most prestigious student-organized conference in Europe.
In his talks and books, St. John shares an incredible wealth of wisdom from the world's most successful people, knowledge that everyone can apply to their own success, and the success of the company or organization they represent.