August 31, 2018
[28:17] In this episode we speak on a more serious note – the topic of Mental Health. Our guest is Mona Cooley, family support advocate and founder of Cool Family Solutions, Calgary, Canada. She is also a Distinguished Toastmaster, Past District 42 Governor and regular guest on Toastcaster.
Mona has taken leadership in her community with respect to Mental Health. Not only is she a subject matter expert, her family has also struggled with it. Mental Health is everywhere and it affects people young and old and from all walks of life. All you have to do is turn on the news – people are stricken with anxiety, depression and death by suicide has gone out of control. Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain, Rick Genest (Zombie Boy) are just a few who have taken their lives.
Mona says families are struggling and don’t know what to do adding that things can and are being done – and one way is through having honest conversations. In this podcast, Mona talks about this serious subject, shares some of her stories including one that saved a life and offers some thoughts on what people can do.
Our conversation with Mona is timely. According to a recent article in the Guardian (U.K.) Lady Gaga, had cast her friend Genest in her Born This Way video and wrote on Twitter. ”The suicide…is beyond devastating. We have to work harder to change the culture, bring mental health to the forefront and erase the stigma that we can’t talk about it. If you are suffering, call a friend or family today. We must save each other.”
You can reach Mona at Cool Family Solutions.com. There you can also find a great resource page.
August 14, 2018
[28:46] In the 100th episode of Toastcaster, we have a look back to our humble beginnings; some discoveries and lessons learned over 100 episodes. We also invite back Mona Cooley, Founder, Cool Family Solutions, Past Toastmasters District 42 Governor from Calgary, AB and first guest for the inaugural episode 1 recorded back in 2006 when podcasting was in its infancy and its technology still crude.
We hear how the podcast started as a High Performance Leadership Project (HPL) for Toastmasters. And with 100 episodes, over 220,000 downloads and 2,000,000 feed hits later, the podcast now serves as a resource not only for the Toastmasters Community, but for anyone who wants to build their confidence and improve both their communication and leadership skills.
We also hear how both Toastcaster Host Greg Gazin and Mona were excited yet nervous about taking on the project; some of the things they’ve learned about podcasting, the interview process and things they learned about themselves. You’ll hear why the audio format is good and get an insight on Greg’s vision for the podcast and what you can forward to in the future as the podcast evolves.
As you listen, you’ll pick up a few tips and tricks about preparing and conducting interviews, especially the importance of asking the right questions, finding focus and preparing for nervous guests.
And finally, thanks to you, all our listeners for tuning in for every episode and to all the suggestions and feedback you’ve given us. We hope you continue to enjoy the Toastcaster Podcast.
July 31, 2018
[31:08] In this episode we see a little switch as host Greg Gazin takes the other side of the mic and interviewed by guest host Ryan Levesque co-host of the Toastmasters Podcast. Motivated by reading the book, Ryan takes the host chair and gets Greg to come clean to finally speak in detail about his 1st book, Corey OutSMARTs the Butterflies.
Greg shares with Ryan a little about what his book is about and how he stumbled upon the idea and what and who inspired him to take on the project which lead him to find a new passion - writing for a young readers. Ryan gets Greg to pull back the the curtain to talk about his shy humble beginnings (long before he joined Toastmasters) but also what he learned about his journey, the writing process, the illustrations and what he’d do differently the next time. You’ll also here how it’s changed him and what people of all ages can learn or take away from reading the book including a glimpse into the book’s SMART model (not the one you’re thinking about).
Ryan also give his take on the book and how he feels it can help his young daughter.
There’s also a book give-away, but you’ll have to listen to the podcast to find out more.
Categories: Public Speaking, Confidence, Youth Leadership, ESL
July 21, 2018
[23:41] In this episode Greg speaks with Natalie Torres-Haddad who has become a voice for Latino millennials. She first found her niche in her community and is now expanding her reach around the world advocating for financial literacy and to uplift those feeling overwhelmed by debt.
Natalie, a.k.a The Financially Savvy Latina, shares a little of her journey, offering tips on taking on leadership within your community. She also gives us an insight on her unexpected TEDx talk experience entitled The Foreign Language of Financial Literacy and more.
Greg previously spoke with Natalie on the Toastmasters Podcast and Natalie also co-hosted with Greg a bilingual (English and Spanish) Toastmasters Podcast in 2017.
Natalie was raised in Inglewood (a southwest Los Angeles county). She’s also, an International Award Winning Author with her book, Financially Savvy in 20 mins (and a new podcast of the same name in both English in Spanish), a workshop facilitator, Real Estate investor and Toastmaster.
Natalie can reached via her website, Twitter @finsavvylatina and other social media platforms.
June 30, 2018
[25:07] We're so busy and bombarded with information that it's sometimes so hard to remember even the simplest things let alone details. In this episode, Greg speaks with Toastcaster regular Kevin Achtzener, DTM, a self-proclaimed Future Memory Expert who shares techniques for better recall.
Kevin’s obsession for remembering things and these techniques have helped him not only memorize a shuffled deck of cards in five minutes but also creative methods to recall large numbers – like part numbers and serial numbers to names and words. What might surprise you is some of his techniques involve using pictures, humor and even cartoon characters.
Kevin is from Edmonton, Canada and known as a Visual Productivity expert. Kevin can be reached at visualproductivity.net.
June 9, 2018
[25:44] Being part of a Mastermind Group can be a great way to develop skills, learn new things or simply be a great place for like-minded people to get together and share ideas.
In this episode, Greg speaks with Dave Rodwell. Dave shares his experience in creating and being a part of two Mastermind groups; what he learned from the process and how it helped him speed up the development of his business and speaking career. He also offers some tips on creating a successful group, what to look out for and what benefits one can derive from such a group.
Rodwell hails from Edmonton Alberta Canada. He’s a former long-time investigator with the RCMP (Royal Canadian Mounted Police), Private Investigator and Security Consultant. His business has evolved to include the areas of training on security matters and professional speaking on corporate security issues. Dave has also been a Toastmaster for over 20 years.
Dave can be reached at DaveRodwell.com.
May 1, 2018
[30:59] Presentations and speeches way to long? Too short? In this episode Greg speaks with Freddi Dogterom DTM, AS from Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada who offers up some serious lessons on crafting your speech or presentation. She also shares insights and practical takeaways on the perils, pain and passion of editing, in particular when timing is of the essence - one way, building your speech like LEGO.
Freddi is a Distinguished Toastmaster, Accredited Speaker (AS) and professional speaker for more than 20 years delivering keynotes, workshops, professional development and train the trainer sessions. She also has over 30 years experience helping people build their lives, careers and retirement futures.
March 14, 2018
[28:08] In this episode Greg Gazin speaks with communications expert Matt Abrahams who shares six of his many techniques to calm presentation jitters and a whole lot more.
Matt is an educator and coach who teaches Strategic Communication for Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business and Presentation Skills for Stanford’s Continuing Studies Program. He’s also co-founder of coaching consulting practice Bold Echo Communication Solutions where he helps presenters at all levels of an organization to become more confident and compelling speakers.
He’s also the author of the Speaking Up without Freaking Out, now in its 3rd edition.
You can also catch Matt on the Toastmasters Podcast, Episode 111, with Greg Gazin and Ryan Levesque where he spoke on how to Be Confident When Caught Off Guard.
Matt’s Six techniques are also available as an infographic for quick reference.
Matt can be reached at NoFreakingSpeaking.com.
February 28, 2018
[23:13] In this episode Greg speaks with Garfield Hiscock from Edmonton, Canada who shares his insights and motivations and how he’s clocked in over 100 visits to service organizations like Chambers of Commerce and Toastmasters clubs outside his hometown.
It seems for years Hiscock found himself “out-of-town” for both work and play. His time away from home led him to search for, as he called them, “pseudo families” wherever he went; his solution was to seek out various service organizations. In fact often, he would often base his travel schedule around meeting times and locations.
Hiscock is a Technical Trainer and currently working for a utility company, training drivers. He has a BA in Economics and a Masters of Information Technology Education. He’s also a Distinguished Toastmaster and member for over 27 years.
February 19, 2018
[30:20] What are “enlightened super achievers?” What are these influential leaders’ timeless secrets? If you want to know more tune in to our latest episode. Greg speaks with Corey Poirier, a multiple-time TEDx, highly sought-after speaker and featured in numerous media outlets. Corey is also the host of the top-rated radio show “Conversations with Passion,” where he’s interviewed over 4,000 top leaders and great minds, the likes of Robin Sharma Robin, Jack Canfield, Zig Ziglar, Dr. John Gray, John Maxwell, Stephen MR Covey, Arlene Dickinson and more.
Corey who’s been successful on both sides of the mic, also shares some insights on how he reached his personal success and offer tips from his signature presentations. We'll also hear about his brand-new book, The Book of Why (And How) – Discover the Timeless Secrets to Meaning, Success and Abundance. Corey can be reached at ThatSpeakerGuy.com.
December 31, 2017
[29:58] At this time of the year we reflect back on the year but look forward to the New Year. In this episode, we look back 10 years ago this week to a Toastcaster Podcast interview with Craig Valentine, 1999 Toastmasters World Champion of Public Speaking that still resonates with Greg today.
In the podcast interview Craig shared a number of insights and personal stories. He talked about things like the importance of having a vision, the dash between the dates, crabs in a barrel, leading a proactive versus a reactive life and more - relevant to Creating Your Future and perfect for this time of the year.
What's really interesting is that with our 24/7 connected world and lives busier than ever, what you'll hear seems even more relevant today as it was a decade ago. So have a listen and enjoy our podcast replay.
Craig Valentine WCPS is a motivational speaker, speech coach and best-selling author. He can be reached at CraigValentine.com.
September 18, 2017
[20:46] In this episode, Greg speaks with Dr. Bo Bennett. Bo is a successful entrepreneur, author, podcaster, instructor and Doctor of Philosophy. Many of you may already know Bo as the creator of FreeToastHost, founder of e-bookIt and founding co-host of the Toastmasters Podcast.
Bo and Greg talk about on-line courses, but not just about taking them, but creating them and getting them up on-line. Bo talks about the skills needed to create them and how these skills, like Toastmasters are a great way to practise and learn to become a more engaging speaker and presenter in a live, on-line and in a multi-medium environment.
Bo also breifly introduces us to VirversitY, an on-line learning platform he created where you can learn to create and produce you own on-line courses. This platform cannot only help you with your skills improvement, it also opens the doors for many business opportunities. For example, you can create on-line courses without limiting yourself geographically or turn books or existing content into courses as Bo has done.
Bo can be reached at BoBennett.com.
July 29, 2017
[20:38] Julia Ewing joins Greg to share some communication nuggets with the audience focussing on delivering your message - whether it be good news, bad news or just information. Julia hails from Saskatoon, Canada where's she's both a community developement professional and business educator, holding an undergraduate degree in human ecology, with a masters in business.
Julia attended Greg's educational on Podcasting and Podcast Interviews at a recent District 99 Toastmasters Convention in Edmonton. Her name was selected from over 60 people who were willing to offer Greg feedback on his session in exchange for the possibility of an exclusive one-on-one opportunty to be either a guest or a co-host on an upcoming show. This is Julia's podcast debut.
June 30, 2017
[19:01] Using a Juice Box as metaphor for Toastmasters Club Officers is the brainchild of Rebecca Cuthbertson Hulst, ACS, ALB. Rebecca has been a Toastmaster since Jan 2014 and just finishing her year as Area Director for District 99, D29 in Edmonton, Canada
Rebecca is also a Registered Collaborative Family Lawyer, a Mediator, and a lawyer for children.
When I stumbled across her speech "Juice Box," delivered in a form of a toast, there was no doubt that she would have to share this and tell her story behind it on our podcast. You’ll have to listen in to find out more.
May 31, 2017
[18:41] Sometimes employers do not know or are unaware of the value of Toastmasters or any other Leadership and Communications training for their employees. Other times they may stress the need without really explaining their full value.
In this episode Greg speaks with Marc Haine
, DTM, a former District 42 PRM, keynote speaker, corporate trainer and business consultant specializing in the Hospitality industry.
Marc developed resource materials that can be shared with employers to help them understand using real-world tie-ins what’s in it for everyone and why their teams should embrace training - more specifically, Toastmasters.
May 19, 2017
[31:07] When Toastmasters Districts experience tremendous growth, approaching 300 clubs, they get a little too big to manage, often resulting in reduced quality of service to the members, so around that time, Toastmasters International encourages Districts to consider Reformation, i.e. splitting into two or more Districts.
In this episode we speak with Toastmasters Past International Director Ken Tanner, DTM from Edmonton, Canada, a Toastmasters since 1975, who chaired the D42 Reformation committee and oversaw the reformation of D42 into D42 and D99 starting with the idea phase in 2014 to completion July 2016 and beyond.
Ken shares with us how the process of this huge undertaking works and why it’s necessary. He illustrates the benefits to members, enlightening us with many of the tasks that need to be done, who is involved, what they need to do and how everyone is affected by them.
Of course, as a Toastmaster Ken also shares some of the skills necessary to complete the project, but also what communication and leadership skills can be gained and what he learned from participating and leading this high performance project. Ken can be reached at Ken.Tanner@d99tm.org
April 30, 2017
[27:22] Mike Raffety, DTM, PID is very active on both the Official Toastmasters Facebook page and LinkedIn group answering many Toastmasters related questions. So we reached out to Mike in Chicago and asked him to give us his take on the Toastmasters Club Myths in the Toastmasters International April 2017 Leader Letter as well as a few other club, contest and speech myths he covered in a 2015 blog post at MikeRaffety.com. Even experienced Toastmasters may be surprised about some things many thought to be true, are simply not.
March 19, 2017
[29:15] In this episode we speak with Naomi Takeuchi, DTM, PDG, President and CEO 1000 Cranes, LLC. Naomi shares with us some of her Toastmaster travel adventures, visiting and speaking at clubs around the world and offering some insight, tips and encouragement to check out clubs, conferences or even have lunch and connect with other Toastmasters at their travel destinations.
Naomi is a consultant to non-profits and leadership development trainer who recently moved from Charlotte, North Carolina to Santa Rosa, California. She travels extensively for both personal travel and business and over the years visiting places like Australia, Canada, China, India, UK, Qatar and also New Zealand, where she is now also a dual member, creating an international network of colleagues and friends through Toastmasters. In fact, the title of this episode is inspired by her contribution, “Your International Network Awaits!” in the book Heart of a Toastmaster (page 51), an anthology of stories curated by Sheryl Roush.
December 4, 2016
[27:41] In this episode we speak with Glenda Sheard, DTM, Social Media Manager for District 99. While not an official Toastmasters position, her role is a critical component in attracting new members and engaging existing ones as this medium has gained widespread use. Glenda, a newly minted DTM enthusiastically shares how Social Media impacts districts and clubs and all Toastmasters, enlightening us on the importance of her role and how it works; how Districts can benefit from having a Social Media Manager and using Social Media along with some tips, tricks and examples how D99 uses these resources and how others can use them too.
Glenda Sheard DTM is a speaker, facilitator, presenter and fundraiser and lives in Sherwood Park, Alberta.
October 31, 2016
[26:51] We accumulate all kinds of digital stuff but Visual Productivity expert and regular guest Kevin Achtzener tells us once and awhile we need to do a content audit. Even though content is King as some say and drive space is cheap these days, we need to review our digital clutter. Perhaps it's outdated, no longer relevant or represents who we are. And as Toastmasters as we progress, some of the old content no longer reflects our skill level. Kevin shares his experience and gives us tips and tricks as to what you can do with your content for yourself and your Toastmasters Club. You may be amazed that sometimes you can re-purpose it rather than delete it.
September 29, 2016
[19:15] In this episode we speak to Toastmasters International Immediate Past President Jim Kokocki, DTM, from New Brunswick, Canada. We learn a little about his Toastmasters journey including his year as President, an insight on leadership and maybe a sneak peek at his Keynote and Plenary session he'll be presenting at the inaugural Fall Conference for the newly created District 99 to be held in Sherwood Park, Alberta, Canada. Oct 21-22, 2016. If you are interested in attending, check out the D99tm.org Fall 2016 Conference Page.
September 16, 2016
[31:05] Robert Lavigne, The Digital Grapevine, Digital Strategist and Podcaster moved from Toronto, Ontario Canada 99 km to Brantford, birthplace of the telephone and legendary #99 Wayne Gretzky.
What started as an exercise in brand building and a series of individual topics in Robert’s new hometown became a humbling learning experience of 100 podcasts, 100 conversations over 2 years that weaved together stories that transformed him and helped bring their community closer together. Robert shares his experience and also how the series concluded with an interview with a man who represents community - Walter Gretzky, affectionately known as "Canada's Hockey Dad," father of #99 and Lord Mayor of Brantford. The City of Brantford recently recognized Robert for all his efforts.
August 30, 2016
[30:05] Privacy is something we may not think about as a concern when it comes to Toastmasters. Our guest is Jean Eaton of Information Managers a practical privacy coach and expert in many disciplines including Privacy Management and Legislation. As a former Toastmaster Jean explains what privacy means and offers up some best practices,valuable tips and shares what Clubs and club leaders can do to prevent a breach. Listeners can also download her 10 Key Steps to Prevent a Privacy Breach.
August 19, 2016
[42:40] This episode we learn about the Art of Competing with Russ Dantu, 6x District Speech Contest winner & 2015 WCPS Finalist and Lance Miller, 9x District winner and 2005 World Champion of Public Speaking. Lance coached Russ for last year's event. You'll hear them share that experience, competing tips and give us a glimpse of The Art of Competing, their new and already popular CD, which can be found at LanceMillerSpeaks.com or RussDantu.com.
July 9, 2016
[22:26] Rick Lauber is the Best Selling Author of Caregiver's Guide for Canadians, The Successful Caregiver’s Guide (USA) and a contributor in two Chicken Soup for the Soul books. A former Toastmaster with New Entrepreneurs in Edmonton Canada, Rick shares why he joined Toastmasters, how it helped him and how it can help budding authors. He also offers a few tips on using your Toastmaster skills to help promote your book. Rick can be reached at RickLauber.com.