Nataly Kogan Profile

  • Kogan is the founder of the digital wellness company, Happier, which has been called "the Facebook of the happiness movement."

  • Drawing from scientific research and her own experience in the corporate and start-up worlds, Kogan delivers tactics for raising happiness that modern-day professionals can realistically fit into their busy lives.

  • Kogan has helped thousands hone their abilities to practice gratitude and mindfulness, enabling them to get out of ruts, improve their performance, and find greater fulfillment in the life they already have.
  • Nataly Kogan is the founder of Happier, an app and a digital wellness company that has been called “the Facebook of the happiness movement.” An entrepreneur, former digital media executive, and analyst with McKinsey & Co and Microsoft, Kogan decided to dedicate herself to helping others live fuller lives now, after her own 20-year pursuit of happiness led her to some startling realizations.

    On the surface, Kogan’s life seemed to be exemplary of the American Dream. After her family immigrated from Soviet Russia when she was a teenager, she’d worked hard, overcome several obstacles, risen to leadership positions in successful companies, started her own prosperous ventures, and had a beautiful family. Yet despite her impressive resume of achievements, Kogan wasn’t happy. She began to immerse herself in various fields of science, all of which indicated that happiness comes from a daily practice of gratitude, identifying meaningful positive moments in the here and now, and sharing those experiences with others.

    Since 2012, her company, Happier, has helped others do just that. Kogan’s combined understanding of corporate cultures, leadership, performance improvement, and cultivating happiness has made her an asset for organizations looking to raise their productivity and employee engagement. She has received standing ovations from audiences at Million Dollar Roundtable, Fortune’s Tech Brainstorm, BlogHer, SXSW, the 92nd St. Y, Harvard Women’s Leadership Conference, Gillette, and TEDx Boston.

    • View Extended/Alternate Bio

      A successful entrepreneur and venture capitalist, Nataly found that after reaching the highest levels of corporate America, she still wasn’t happy. Nataly came to the United States as a refugee from Russia when she was 13 and overcame significant obstacles on her way to achieving career success. But while her achievements left her proud, she was unfulfilled, so she became inspired to figure out how to live a truly meaningful and happier life. In the process, she found the answers each person and organization needs to unlock their maximum potential, making them not just more productive and innovative, but helping them to find more joy in everyday moments and get through challenging ones with resilience.

      The CEO and Founder of Happier—an award-winning global technology and learning platform—Nataly is a leading expert on how people and organizations can transform their individual and team culture so that they can thrive.  Having helped more than a million people and employees dramatically improve their emotional health and resilience by cultivating her Five Core Happier Skills, Nataly demonstrates that happiness is not just a feeling, but a skill that can be learned and improved through practice, and that in turn boosts creativity, productivity and profits.

      Nataly’s received standing ovations from groups such as Million Dollar Roundtable, Fortune’s Tech Brainstorm, SXSW, Harvard Women’s Leadership Conference, Gillette, TEDx Boston, and many more, thanks to her instantly implementable takeaways that transform the way people work and live. Her work has been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Fortune, New York Magazine, Time Magazine and more, and her book Happier Now: How to Stop Striving for Perfection and Embrace Everyday Moments (Even the Difficult Ones) provides a roadmap for how to cultivate genuine, lasting happiness in every facet of our lives.

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    Nataly Kogan's Speech Descriptions

    With about a dozen careers spanning the corporate and start-up world, Nataly Kogan brings an authentic understanding of the challenges today’s busy professionals face. With depression and stress on the rise, she notes that there is no “silver bullet” to finding happiness; however, there are several simple habits that can significantly boost our well-being, creativity, and productivity. Drawing from a growing body of scientific research and her own experience turning her life around, she presents simple, concrete things you can do that will help you feel more positive at work – and they don’t require huge changes. You will discover how to exercise your innate ability to be happy and start a ripple effect that will send waves of change through your organization’s culture and productivity.

    Happier Now: How to stop Chasing Perfection and Embrace Every Day Moments (Even the Difficult Ones)
    Why is the pursuit of happiness so stressful and unfulfilling? Nataly’s own journey from Russian refugee to successful executive and founder and CEO of Happier taught her an important lesson: You can’t wait for everything to be perfect to feel good – you have to learn how to find joy in small everyday moments and to boost your emotional immune system so you can get through tough times with compassion and resilience.

    In this illuminating and compelling talk, Nataly shares the game-changing strategies and insights from her book and research. She explores how the science behind happiness can be used to improve all aspects of our lives, showing audiences why we should stop saying "I'll be happy when..." and start saying "I'm happy now because..." In a speech that is as informative as it is inspiring, Nataly teaches her audiences that becoming happier is a skill and just like other skills, we can improve it through practice. She shares the Five Core Practices and the science behind them to help audience members build their happier skills and come away with a personal set of daily anchors—small steps they can take every day to experience more joy and greater resilience.

    Women at Work: Fire Up the Awesome and Unlock Your True Potential
    In this powerful and honest talk, Nataly encourages women to cultivate their true purpose, learn how to deal with fear, and connect to their best self to move from a position of strength to achieve significant growth and fulfillment in their careers, regardless of the obstacles. In the wake of #MeToo and #TimesUp, Nataly sheds light on what it takes to build equitable, inclusive work environments where every voice is heard and every person empowered to succeed. Having spent her career in male-dominated industries of venture capital, finance, and technology, Nataly acknowledges the significant challenges women face and the frustrations of trying to meet extremely high personal expectations. In offering frank stories and paradigm shifts in thinking, she reveals practical strategies to help women cultivate a personal sense of well-being and insights into transforming workplace culture. Nataly shows that by connecting to their best self, leaning into fear, and dealing with bias, women can unlock more of their potential to thrive in today’s workplace.

    Happier Work: Unlocking the Strategies for a Workplace that Thrives
    80% of American employees report being stressed at work and more than 50% say they are close to burnout. Beyond the human costs, this results in more than $400 billion of losses in productivity, missed work, and healthcare costs. But there is room for optimism: Research has shown that empowering employees with simple scientifically-based skills to improve their emotional health and resilience and cultivating a culture of gratitude, kindness, and trust, has a dramatic impact not just on employee well-being but organizations as a whole.

    In this captivating and practical talk, Nataly shares techniques to help employees improve their emotional health, increase resilience, and fuel positive energy and the sense of meaning they find through their work. Highlighting the data-driven research that reveals how employee well-being contributes to an organization’s bottom-line, Nataly illuminates how happier employees make for more innovative, productive and profitable workplaces, and how organizations can put into place practices that allow employees and teams to thrive.

    Moving Through Fear: How to Connect to Your Bigger Why So You Can Boost Creativity
    Nataly is no stranger to fear and the paralyzing effect it can have. From handling the challenge of being a woman in male-dominated fields, to holding jobs that she was too young and inexperienced for, to starting companies, raising money, failing and succeeding, Nataly has become a black belt in battling fear. In this refreshingly candid and insightful talk, she shares her own inspiring stories of moving through fear as well as specific and science-based strategies for how her audience members can do the same. Nataly reveals that while there is no magic pill for not feeling fear, there are ways to move from fear to love, and to find a “bigger why” as a bridge of resilience to get through fear. Nataly empowers her audience to stop trying to be fearless, but rather learn how to remove fear as an obstacle and to find a sense of meaning and purpose, unleashing their creativity in the process. Delivering both actionable advice and eye-opening motivation, Nataly leaves audiences emboldened and prepared to tackle any challenge.

    What People are Saying about Seeing Nataly Speak

    Rating Entries

    “Nataly’s background and experience on what really drives a happier existence at work & home was very well received. She brings a lot of credibility to the topic as she is very honest about her own experiences. It was refreshing to hear. I can’t recommend enough adding an element of Happier to a company event.”
    – Gillette

    “Nataly has an amazing personal story, and has created an impressive brand based on her believe in making each moment in life matter. Her passion for and belief in the power of happiness is palpable and allows her to connect with her audience in a unique way that provokes them to in turn reflect on how they can bring more happiness into their own lives. The power of Nataly’s words continued to resonate within our walls long after she had left the building!”
    – Mullen

    “As the keynote speaker at our biggest event of the year, Nataly immediately captivated our audience of entrepreneurial young professionals. Her witty sense of humor, genuine passion for her work, and real world stories gave us inspiration (and many head nods and laughs!). Her positive energy is infectious, and our audience left feeling ready to take their careers to the next level thanks to her unique advice and words of wisdom. I’d highly recommend her as a speaker at any event.”
    – Young Women in Digital

    “Nataly’s accessible and personal approach made it easy for a diverse audience to connect with her message. She dared us to be happier and we are excited for the challenge!”
    – Wentworth Institute of Technology

    “Her message is simple, powerful and thought provoking. We have seen lasting impressions of her message all over campus; stickers she handed out are on our student’s backpacks, “you rock” cards are being passed about, and most impressive, a student created “what makes you happy” board now resides in one of our dorms. She had a great effect on our community.”
    – Tabor Academy

    “Nataly’s message of gratitude and mindfulness complimented our integrative wellness philosophy and her workshop activities were extremely well received by our discerning guests.”
    – Canyon Ranch

    “We brought Nataly in for our North America Sales Conference in 2016 when morale was at an all-time low. While a departure from our usual guest speakers — sales experts — Nataly was a breath of fresh air. Her passion is truly inspiring! Nataly taught us the practice of gratitude and how to bring happiness into the workplace. She gave us easy tools that enable you to drive your own happiness, regardless of the situation around you. It was a very uplifting afternoon and it was exciting to see the team so energized. To quote one of our employees from that day…”this made me feel like MediaMath cares about us as humans.” After that, Nataly’s work lived on. We started a weekly ritual sharing post-its of what (or who) we were grateful for that week. It became a special tradition for our team every Friday afternoon and was always a positive experience. I would absolutely recommend Nataly. We first met Nataly almost a year ago and have actively implemented practices she taught us to bring more happiness into the workplace. My team calls her their ‘hero.’”
    – Media Math

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    Books by Nataly Kogan:

    Happier now: How to Stop Chasing Perfection and Embrace Everyday Moments

    This isn’t a book about positive thinking, silver linings, or always being happy. This is a book about living fully in good times and bad, and enjoying life more because of it.

    In her debut book Happier Now, nationally recognized happiness expert Nataly Kogan teaches readers how to stop searching for some elusive “big happy” in the future and start finding more joy in everyday moments. Drawing from science, Eastern traditions, her experience as a refugee, and her own failing search to find lasting happiness through career success, Nataly shares simple practices to help readers live happier and have greater resilience when times get tough. Readers will learn how to experience more joy and meaning, boost their “emotional immune system,” and embrace difficult times with compassion and stability.

    It’s time to stop saying, “I’ll be happy when…” and start saying, “I’m happy now because…”

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