the future is now!

Do you need more customers-NOW?
Do you want to retain current clients-NOW?

Do you desire to hold on to key talent-NOW?

Do you require competitive reconnaissance-NOW?

Do you struggle to monetize your ROI [Return on Ideas]-NOW?

Learn MoreContact

We live in a time where the term SHIFT HAPPENS is an understatement. It’s time for INNOVATION at the speed of OPPORTUNITY. James’ approach is UNCOMMON common sense.

James shares insights gleaned from decades of working with every size and type of organization while building his own sales promotion agency.

Today success is predicated on the ability to create Meaningful Memories for your customers with a team that thinks like owners.

His guiding principles can be applied to almost any situation. Attendees laugh, learn, and hear their own AHAs as he explains what they can leverage for their own shift.  They leave with actionable, implementable insights that can impact their lives NOW.

James listens to your needs and creates a completely customized unforgettable experience. His clients started calling him The Bright Idea Guy because he is THE NOWIST.

So how did this guy become one of the most sought after problem solvers?  A little history? 

Transformational Keynote Speaker James Feldman, CSP started his first entrepreneur venture in high school where he became the photographer for the local newspapers. He found a market for his photography skills by making 35mm slide presentations.

Learning from other speakers he crafted his presentation skills when he started to make formal presentations about how to distinguish between rewards and recognition. Soon Jim provided his recognition rewards and presentation skills to McDonald’s, General Tire, Aston-Tate, Microsoft, Neutrogena, Marriott, Mary Kay Cosmetics, Hyatt, Redkin Vidal Sassoon, Disney, and others.

By the mid-’80s, his company James Feldman Associates, Inc. serviced Toyota, Wrigley, Greyhound, Knudsen, Nissan, Ford, Frito-Lay, McDonald’s, California Lottery, Vidal Sassoon, Volkswagen, Red Lobster, and consolidations such as Beatrice, Hewlett-Packard, AT&T, etc.

He was a pioneer in the creation of loyalty programs that offered more experiential elements so that redemption choices included individual incentive travel as well as branded merchandise. Individual travel became a half-billion-dollar distribution channel. Jim is considered the advisor and creator of individual incentive travel certificates for Hyatt, Marriott, Sheraton, United, American, and more.

Jim realized that ‘speaking’ to the needs and aspirations of his clients’ customers and employees required education. His message of ‘One Size Does Not Fit All’ has become a classic phrase that represents the needs for better-designed programs and more targeted rewards. To create a buzz Jim started to make formal presentations to trade shows and clients.

He was then approached by a local hotel to help with AV, become the keynote speaker and MC. Jim seized this opportunity and started a meeting planning/event business. His clients included Tupperware, MaryKay, Creative Memories, Toyota, DK Family Learning,  Redkin, Apple.

Today Jim is a sought after transformational speaker that identifies what can be done NOW to impact future trends. He helps guide his clients on the Journey To Bright Ideas™.

His presentations are about how to think not what to think.

The velocity of business change has increased to the point that Jim recognized that most organizations must be able to constantly shift your thinking and emphasis to address issues and opportunities as they arise. Management practices that may have worked yesterday may not work today. Your employees’ development and your customer retention must change.

You must shift your thinking & start to manage change. He has worked with diverse clients from the United States Department of Defense to the Cremation Association of North America, McDonald’s to Wynn Las Vegas, Toyota to Apple, Neutrogena to AT&T, Hyatt to American Dental Association.

He provides plain talk to smart people. Jim focuses on the results and challenges your audiences…“don’t let what you think you know prevent you from learning what you need to know.”  

Here’s some relevant information you might want to know about Jim:

  • Jim offers your organization an infusion of ideas that deliver new ways of looking at opportunities using your existing resources and combining with others to create or increase revenue streams.
  • He teaches transformational techniques and skills that anyone can learn.
  • The presentations are customized to your audience.
  • The content is targeted to your industry.
  • Jim learns your language and asks ‘what’s working?’ ‘what’s not working?’ ‘what’s missing?’ and ‘what’s next? ‘what’s possible’, and ‘why not?’
  • He helps organizations learn what they don’t know so they can create their own ‘shifts.’
  • It’s a demonstration with audience interaction and participation that helps make them aware of that which they have not realized.
  • He has discussions with your audience, not lecture to them.
  • 100% of his clients have offered to be referrals.
  • Jim’s deliverable is to encourage how to think ‘inside the box’ to ensure Shift Happens.

If you want to make Shift Happen consider a no-obligation discussion of what Jim can provide to your next meeting, event, conference, or retreat. Jim offers transformational insights into business challenges that can shift the trajectory of any business.

If you seek a presenter that is enlightening, relevant, controversial, entertaining, and applicable to your industry consider Jim as your next keynote or workshop speaker.

csp logo


Clients Jim has been keynote or breakout speaker



Jim has worked with Fortune 500 companies including McDonald’s, Toyota, Marriott, Apple, Microsoft, Xerox, Kodak, Hewlett Packard, Hyatt, Ritz Carlton, American Airlines, Carnival, and Helene Curtis as a change facilitator. Jim helped introduced new products, refined target audiences, and delivered measurable results.

Toyota engaged Jim for over 150 projects ranging from new car promotions to parts and service performance improvements introducing tangible techniques that made everyone part of the solution to capitalize on change.

Working with Hewlett Packard he motivated channel partners to increase their support of HP products in the marketplace while displacing many of HP competitors.

Aria Resort and Casino engaged Jim to work with their sales, marketing, and operations departments to create an Idea Exchange which produced over 700 new ideas in less than 45 minutes. Imagine what Jim can do for your organization?

He concentrates on overcoming entrenched cultures and habits, introducing innovative thinking and risk-taking to develop solutions that have to help his clients’ springboard to success. Are you ready to make Shift Happen?

Through experiences in his career, Jim has honed techniques to embrace change, to create a culture of innovation, great customer service, and to creatively solve business problems. He shares this knowledge with your audience to create an entertaining, informative presentation that your attendees will be talking about for weeks and months afterward.

Special Designations:

  • 1 of only 6 individuals in the world to earn the Master Incentive Professional (MIP) certification
  • 1 of only 50 to earn Certified Incentive Travel Executive (CITE) certification
  • 1 of only 40 to earn Certified Professional of Incentive Marketing (CPIM) certification
  • 1 of just a few hundred worldwide to earn Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) certification
  • 1 of less than 12% of all speakers, worldwide to earn Certified Speaker Professional (CSP) certification
  • 1 of less than 500 to earn Certified Photographic Counselor (CPC)
  • 1 of less than 250 Certified Facilitators
  • 1 of less than 150 Certified Innovation Trainers
  • 1 of less than 150 Certified Dream Managers®
  • Only person in the world to have earned all of his industries’ certifications


  • Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) National Speakers Association
  • Certified Virtual Presenterespeakers
  • Master Incentive Professional (MIP) – Association of Incentive Marketers
  • Certified Innovation Trainer-SolutionPeople
  • Certified Dream Manager-Matthew Kelly
  • Certified Facilitator-Destiny Seminars
  • Certified Incentive Travel Executive (CITE) – Society of Incentive & Travel Executives
  • Certified Professional of Incentive Marketing (CPIM) – Incentive Marketing Association
  • Certified Performance Technologist (CPT) – International Society for Performance Improvement in affiliation with the American Society for Training and Development
  • Certified Photographic Counselor (CPC) – Photographic Marketing Association
  • Managing Real Estate Broker State of Illinois
  • Realtor®
  • Expert Witness: U.S. Federal Courts
  • Expert Witness: IRS Hearings
  • Expert Witness: Colorado Federal Courts
  • Underwater Photography Instructor-PADI
  • Underwater Wreck Diver-NAUI
  • Underwater Rescue Diver-PADI
  • Certified Food Service Handling Manager-State of Illinois



  • In June 2005, Incentive Magazine named the top motivators in the last 100 years. In the Innovators category, Jim Feldman was one of just six people honored.
  • The International Platform Association awarded the 1997 IPA Engraved Silver Bowl to Jim Feldman. The award is presented by the IPA Board of Governors to a speaker who represents the “Magic of Communication.” Previous recipients include Art Linkletter, Bill Cosby, David Frost, Harry Blackstone, and Henry Kissinger.
  • AIM Presidents Award-2001- for outstanding accomplishments and education
  • SITE Crystal Award-2002- for Individual Incentive Travel program for Compaq-now Hewlett Packard
  • SITE Crystal Award-2003- for Hewlett Packard


  • BA, English & Economics, Kansas State University
  • MBA, Marketing, University of Illinois
  • Washburn Univ. Law School
  • IIT Kent Law School
  • University of Notre Dame, Executive Development Seminars
  • Adjunct Professor Roosevelt University Innovation and Hospitality
  • Visiting Professor Northern Illinois University Innovation and Entrepreneurship

Other Links

James Feldman Associates, Inc. 

This is the holding company for all of his diversified divisions. Click on the link above to learn more about incentive travel certificates, artisan chocolates, unique gifts, hired education for vets, gold marketing, and more. Jim is not someone that talks about business but has been in the trenches learning from his own experiences and those of his clients. You want someone that understands the challenges you face? Jim could be your go-to presenters, educators or advisor.

Synectics Open Solutions, LLC.

Synectics Open Solutions, LLC. (or SOS) has assembled a team of business experts from Motorola, Toyota, Hewlett-Packard, Apple, Coach, as well as media, advertising and promotion entrepreneurs that have ‘bottom-line, results-oriented’ experience to help solve your business problems. Whether it’s acquisitions or divestments, cash flows or financial survival, creating high-performance teams to employee retention, we will assemble a team of experts to collectively address your individual opportunities. is a selection of unusual products at amazing prices. Including travel items, incentive travel certificates, 10 lb Guittard chocolate, wine accessories, watch winders, and much more.


Jim is a proud member of SpeakerMatch. SpeakerMatch is the only service of its kind when it comes to matching speakers and speaking opportunities. SpeakerMatch reaches emerging professional speakers, business leaders, technical gurus, educators, and other subject-matter experts who want to communicate what they know.


espeakers is an online directory of accomplished speakers, trainers, and presenters.

PAWS Chicago

PAWS Chicago is Chicago’s largest no-kill animal shelter. Pets are worth saving. Jim is a board member and he’d like you to know about this incredible charity. Please don’t forget about the pets the next time you donate to a charity.

IRF – Incentive Research Foundation

Jim was a 7 year trustee member of IRF, which funds and promotes research to advance the science, enhance the awareness and appropriate application of motivation and incentives in business and industry globally. The goal is to increase the understanding, effective use, and resultant benefits of incentives to businesses that currently use incentives and others interested in improved performance.

Latest Book

Lorman Distinguished Faculty Member

Follow Us

Linked In Twitter Facebook Shift Happens Google Plus Logo YouTube Pinterest RSS


The Innovative Practitioner who speaks with creative insights, practical experience, and big picture thinking.
Contact Jim



8 + 11 =


505 N. Lake Shore Drive 

Suite 6601

Chicago, IL 60611

312 • 527 • 9111