Martin Brooker

Keynote Speaker, Strategic Advisor & Facilitator

Commodore Martin Brooker (Retired) is a highly awarded veteran of 37 years' service as an officer in the Royal Australian Navy. A skilled navigator of complex matters and a true team builder, he has an instinctive ability to identify where complexity, incongruence and ambiguity are impacting leadership capability and capacity - and cut the way through.

An experienced speaker and strategic advisor, Martin Brooker's powerful keynotes draw on his lived experience leading men and women in harm's way; the mistakes made and the critical lessons learned. With a commanding presence on stage, he speaks about how to lead teams and operational forces through ever-changing, high-performance situations which unfold in a state of constant ambiguity to deliver on mission critical imperatives.

More about Martin Brooker:

Throughout a 37 year career as an officer in the Royal Australian Navy, Martin Brooker's operational service included command of an amphibious ship in the Middle East and the Pacific and the Navy's elite clearance divers. He was Deputy Commander of Australia's Joint Forces in the Middle East and Afghanistan, he led teams implementing cultural change programs in Defence and was appointed Program Director for the Navy's biggest change program, New Generation Navy.

Martin's fascination with the narrative of leadership, the rise of the accidental leader, and the impacts of both, at a broad economic through to an individual level, has driven a post military career focussed on strengthening leadership capability.

His insights, considered perspectives, and ability to breathe life into universally applicable lessons and laws of leadership shift the perspective of any audience. The simple strategies and fabulous mantras he shares with your audience will be taken away, reflected on, and drawn upon for future strategies.

Martin Brooker speaks about:

The Illusion of Choice - In a powerful exploration of the challenges ever-present in command-at-sea and international operational roles against the Naval backdrop, Martin challenges the current illusion of choice that exists in leadership - that we can always choose who we take with us and who we leave behind. Skilled in lifting diverse conscripted teams to high performance levels, Martin daws on insights and lessons from lived experience, the development of his own conscious commitment to the human-to-human connection to create strength in leadership, and just why the leadership narrative must change for the betterment of our future boardrooms.

The Power Within - A deeply personal look into the way we have been conditioned to work and lead. Martin explores the questions he has unpacked in his own career when the steps taken have unveiled deeper challenges and issues to navigate. Introspective and compelling, Martin describes the moments that shifted his perspective forever, from masculine-dominated leadership to creating truly high performing teams. This powerful keynote will leave your audience with the confidence to step in and embrace the principles of diversity and inclusion.

LIS - The Leadership Imposter Syndrome - Martin takes a provocative look into what is destroying leadership in the corporate sense, in the process uncovering just why leadership development programs are responsible for a real-time, observable regression in leadership capacity. This presentation is deliberately crafted to help accidental leaders understand first why they chose - or had to - lead. It leaves audiences committed to being deliberate in considering their own personal leadership legacy, and with powerful insights into just how they can shift their approach.

Client testimonials

Your presentation “Leadership under Fire” hit the mark beautifully and we were able to build upon the themes you introduced to the group later in the day. The success of your presentation was reflected in the lively question and answer session that you generated and a number of my staff privately expressed their thanks and approval. Once again thank you for taking the time to share your valuable insights and its application to private enterprise leadership.

Jacobs Australia

Martin is clearly a skilful presenter whose messages appeal equally to both men and women. As a woman in the audience I was able to easily relate to his stories, enjoyed them and felt that he had a great deal of respect for people in general. Gender was not introduced to the conversation, which unfortunately has not been my experience with some others. I found Martin to be someone that brings great value to leaders and potential leaders within our community.


Your speech was both entertaining and thoughtful, with many insights into volunteering and giving to the community. Your personal experiences and those of your family touched a chord with many of our volunteers, staff and Board members. I would not hesitate to recommend your services.

Palliative Care ACT

Martin's highly engaged style and entertaining presentation provided a great springboard for us to talk about working together and getting the most out of our TEAMs. The energy and enthusiasm was evident and his personal anecdotes lent further credence to his message...a great way to start our conference.

Australian Department of Defence

Understanding that there is a balance between person and task is a game changer to learning leadership. Thank you for the reminder.


Wrapped in true tales of life leadership at sea and at war, Martin speaks on the choices a leader makes and the role of these choices in driving high performance leaders. Engaging, warm, relatable, funny and wickedly on point.

The Bold Effect