[28:50] When the current pandemic became a global reality, suddenly Bob Hooey found his speaking business more or less obliterated.
In this episode, Bob expresses to Greg how he felt and how he dealt with the situation while perhaps realizing his and and maybe our biggest fears.
After overcoming the initial shock, Bob realised, "I can't travel, but my message can." Pulling from years of experience, he decided instead of spiralling downward, he could pivot. So even at age 71, he found his new learning curve and embraced his new playing field. "I'm still learning," he says.
What Bob did, many of us can do too as he discovered new technologies and used the power of partnering, creativity and the often forgotten value of simply asking for help to move forward. Additionally Bob also shares the wisdom of some of his past experiences, much of which can apply to all of us and our businesses today in his own entertaining way.
As a gift to our listeners, Bob is offering, free to all readers a copy of his latest book,
Bob Hooey is the Canadian "Ideaman." He's an accomplished speaker, prolific author of over 30 books on leadership and career success and travels the world (when its open) sharing his innovative Ideas At Work. He's also a long-time Distinguished Toastmaster, Past District Governor and Accredited Speaker.
Toastcaster 138: Welcoming change & embracing technology a bloodline for tomorrow’s restaurants and retail – Brittain Brown
[27:41] Looking at how a pandemic has changed the way we dine and how restaurants operate and literally ravaged the industry. As some cities begin to re-open, you can’t help but wonder what the new normal is or might be or what future looks like moving forward.
In this episode, our guest Brittain Brown offers us a little insight into that arena. From his experience, he’ll share some of his observations what’s going on in the minds of restaurant owners and operators, staff and patrons. You’ll hear about some of the changes in store beyond merely servers in face masks, constant cleaning and reassuring customers as factors whether restaurants can successfully reopen and stay in business.
He addresses some of the challenges today’s leaders are facing, but also some of the opportunities that this represents including some food for thought on how leaders need to rethink and evolve their business models and adopt new technologies which are already driving the new normal and what might happen if they don’t.
What you’ll hear will be of interest and value to you regardless as to whether you’re a restauranteur, a patron or a leader in any other industry. Brown’s insights can apply to anyone.
Brittain Brown, B.A. is from Toronto, Canada. He’s the President of Givex, a global company that provides the restaurant, retail, and other industries with the latest tech solutions and analytics that help clients drive sales and make better business decisions. He can be reached at Givex.com.
[29:33] Sometimes the best way to be a better leader and communicator is to learn from others’ stories. In this episode we hear from Paul Finkelstein who created OMGTalk, the small business owners podcast which he publishes on 5 different platforms.
Paul tells us why he created it; how he interviews small business owners and its value to them and other small business owners. Paul also shares his own takeaways and what he has learned from the process.
I invited Paul to Toastcaster because when he asked me to be on his show OMGTalk, the four simple questions he indicated he was going to ask I found quite reflective. It forced me to think back and dig deep - which I found quite inspiring. Please have a listen to to our interview on Paul's show.
Paul Finkelstein is from Delray Beach, Florida, USA. He’s involved in the Medicare insurance industry and loves running and fundraising. He’s a Distinguished Toastmaster and is the producer of the OMGTalk Podcast. Paul can be reached on all the major platforms and at OMGTalk.com.
[11:39] For a dedicated athlete or fit individual, walking a minimum of 10k steps a day for almost three years might seem like nothing. For me, a few decades older with ancient injuries walking roughly seven to eight kilometres a day that seems more like a pipe dream.
Amazingly, I did it. I never thought I could. In this episode, I share a little about my journey and how beyond the usual benefits of exercise the experience was transformational; I learned new things - many about myself.
The text version of this podcast is entitled “What I learned from a Journey of over 11 million steps.” There’s also an earlier related article, “One step at a time: a simple solution to a better life.” The companion podcast is Toastcaster Episode: 90.
Articles can be found at Troy Media.com
Note: The photo shows me as I reached the 1000-day milestone. As I recorded this podcast 70 days later I had reached 12.3 million steps. Sadly as I publish this podcast my journey has come to an end as a time slot has come up for my long awaited and overdue hernia operation. But I will start again and learn many new things.
[22:06] Many businesses are finding themselves in an emergency state and are desperately looking to ensure smooth continuity.
In this episode, Greg speaks with Chandrashekar LSP, Head Evangelist for the Zoho Corporation in Canada.
Chandrashekar shares his observations on this new unprecedented business landscape and gives us an insight on what people and businesses can do and tools they can use to shift from typical office environments to the new reality without recreating the wheel
Working from home for over 15 years, he also offers his personal take on this subject as he currently has three kids under five years of age at home 24/7 and with his teams in India, and clients, partners, analysts and media in North America and around the world.
You’ll hear about Zoho’s Cloud-based business services for all departments in an organization including their new Remotely bundle consisting of 11 of their 45 applications in four categories, including: Internal/External Communications, Project Management, Remote Assistance and a collaborative Office Suite, which Zoho is offering at no charge for a limited time through their Small Business Emergency Assistance Subscription Program to help businesses get through the pandemic. (zoho.com/remotely)
Chandrashekar LSP is based in Montreal and has been with Zoho Corporation, a 24-year old privately held company for almost two decades. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
[22:28] In this episode, Greg speaks with Dr. Shawna Pandya whose three page bio and credentials list includes: physician, scientist-astronaut candidate, teacher and martial artist with degrees in medicine, neuroscience, space studies and more.
Dr. Pandya shares with us a little about her journey and about her self-proclaimed Batman/ Bruce Wayne persona while opening up on how she’s been able to live out her childhood dreams.
She also shares about how her training prep for space travel has helped her prepare not only to deal with life in a COVID-19 world but also gives us lessons in leadership, communication, teamwork and critical decision-making in a high-risk, high-reward situation that can be applied to anyone, anywhere in our world.
This includes her very timely insight on how isolation in space can help us better learn about isolation we’re currently experiencing on Earth.
[24:28] It’s amazing what a difference one man can make in the world. In this episode Greg speaks with Dan Johnstone, a.k.a Can Man Dan. Dan shares with us a little about his humble journey about how growing up in a less fortunate environment motivated him at a young age to begin a lifelong journey of helping others in need and make a difference in their lives.
He shares some of the tasks, activity and projects he’s taken on, including camping out in a truck for 4-5 days at a time 24/7 in sub-zero, -30 degree Celsius weather to collect much needed food of the Edmonton Food Bank. Dan shares an encouraging message that anyone in the world no matter the age or economic status can also do the same if they take a first step. His actions and leadership in this area are living proof of that.
Dan Johnstone is an award-winning activist, philanthropist, community organizer, and motivational speaker. Alongside his newly created non-profit organization, the Can Man Dan Foundation, Dan works hands-on to alleviate poverty, assist vulnerable populations, and strengthen communities in Alberta, Canada. At 32, Dan has already raised millions in resources for people in need while bringing awareness to today’s most relevant issues.
Can Man Dan at Safeway - Southgate Centre
[20:39] In a rare live interview opportunity, host Greg Gazin speaks with Daniel Rex, CEO, Toastmasters International during a Fall visit to District 99, Edmonton, Canada. In this episode, Dan talks about why he visited our fair city from Denver, CO and a special connection Dan has to our own Peter Kossowan, a.k.a. Mr. Toastmaster.
We also learn a little more about Dan, what he likes to do, interesting things you may not know about him, how he discovered Toastmasters and how he’s evolved since joining the organization over 25 years ago.
As the CEO to one of the world’s largest not-for-profit communication and leadership organizations with 358K+ members worldwide, Dan shares some of his valuable leadership wisdom we can learn from. These include his thoughts on change, being a catalyst for change as well as his take on authentic leadership, and more.
Please enjoy this informative yet fun interview with Dan as a perfect close for this year and this decade.
[19:56] When we think of caregiving, leadership is not usually the first word to come to mind. But when you research what this often unexpected responsibility requires, you’ll see how it extends beyond a typical leadership role; often done over and beyond one’s day job and usually has emotions attached to it.
In this episode Greg speaks with Rick Lauber, Author and former co-caregiver for both his aging parents. Rick shares a little of his journey and offers an honest insight as to what’s involved in really being a caregiver, what skills are needed and how it parallels with that of an organizational leader.
Rick shares about how this decade long experience had impacted him as well as some of what he learnt about leadership and about himself as well as what strengths he never knew he had and those skills he needed to learn along the way.
The experience lead Rick to publish two best-selling guide books – Caregiver’s Guide for Canadians and The Successful Caregiver’s Guide which we also hear a little about. Rick is from Edmonton, Canada and can be reached at RickLauber.com.
Rick also appears in Toastcaster episode #69 and is a former Toastmaster.
[29:57] In this episode, Greg speaks with Diana Peterson-More about her new book: Consequential Communication in Turbulent Times: A Practical Guide to Leadership. Peterson-More draws from her experience as a labor lawyer, HR executive and organizational development consultant to show individuals and business leaders the way to clear, concise, and intentional communication--vital to successful human interaction in today’s fast-paced, volatile (and #MeToo) world.
A short read, this book has a unique format, for example, incorporating step-by-step how-to lists for each chapter, a number of case studies, analyzing what went wrong and food for thought through “What-if“ scenarios, often circling back to previous case studies as new concepts are learned.
The book is based on real stories and practical advice, some of which Diana shares with us during our conversation including using “I” statements and the Platinum Rule and more.
Diana Peterson-More is from Pasadena, California and can be reached through her website or at email@example.com.
[28:55] Great leaders are passionate. Amongst other things, they’re also motivating, inspiring, innovative and committed to what they do. Our guests today have these attributes and more but you won’t find them in big towers, behind oak desks, but rather find them listed in the Guinness World Records 2020 book or associated with the organization.
In this episode, you’ll hear stories of true leadership. You’ll hear about the unusual way the idea for a Guinness Record came about and how these talented individuals faced with a challenge, persevered and overcame adversity while describing how they accomplished their incredible feats. You’ll also learn what motivates them; what they learned about themselves and how it can apply to all of us. You’ll also find out what it’s like to be a Guinness adjudicator, the skills it requires and a few tips on vying for a Guinness World Record.
Reverend Kevin Fast from Cobourg, Ontario, Canada is best described as a modern day Popeye. He holds an impressive 31 Guinness World Records including the Heaviest aircraft pulled and most people supported on the shoulders. (Left)
Brittany Walsh, a.k.a AcroBritt from Portland, Oregon, U.S.A is a dancer, a gymnast, former circus performer and world record holder in acrobatic archery. She’s featured in the latest edition for the Farthest arrow shot using feet. She’s been on The Late Show with David Letterman and has her own wax statue at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! (top right)
Spencer Cammarano, from New York, U.S.A has not broken any records, but has the most challenging (yet enjoyable) task of being an Official Guinness Adjudicator. Without her, official records cannot be recorded. (Centre)
The theme for this year’s 65th Edition, is Power Your Curiosity. You can find out more and get your copy at GuinnessWorldRecords.com. There’s also a Guinness World Records Gamer’s Edition 2020 as well.
[28:19] It’s no secret we have a rapidly aging population. Many seniors today were never properly prepared for their golden years; We don’t know how to age properly and kids today have no idea what it’s like to be a senior. Those are the strong opinions of Angela Ostafichuk, our guest on today’s episode.
Angela is an educator, consultant, curriculum developer, writer, photographer, world traveler and Toastmaster. Based in Edmonton, Canada, she’s spear-heading and working in tandem on two projects: Future Seniors and Smart Strong Seniors. Together they are designed to not only inform and educate those who are already seniors to live better, but also to help society, regardless as to what generation they belong to embrace pro aging.
Today Angela will share some of her insights on the topic. This include highlights of her Pecha Kucha presentation Future Seniors, where she shares what we can do to take ownership for ourselves and others in an aging society. She’ll talk about getting Involved, Resources, Equality, Asking (the right questions) and Design, summed up by her acronym iREAD.
Angela Ostafichuk can be reached at SmartStrongSenior@gmail.com or TheFutureSenior@gmail.com. You can also check out her Pecha Kucha Edmonton presentation.
[31:57] We’ve all heard the term Authentic Leadership, but what is it really all about? In this episode we demystify the topic as Greg speaks with entrepreneur, TEDx speaker and author and Jeff Davis. Davis, who is passionate about Authentic Leadership, shares his personal experiences and offers an insight on why it’s important and practical strategies on how we can all become authentic leaders.
We learn that the road to Authentic Leadership begins way before we become a leader or even get our first job. We will realize that things you have been afraid or embarrassed to share before can help you and others. In fact, Jeff demonstrates the value is of being vulnerable wearing his heart on his sleeve about how he was bullied in school, how that followed him into college and how he had to deal with it. We also learn about some of the challenges of becoming an authentic leader especially in an environment or culture that doesn’t value it.
We also hear a little about his books with big titles, The Power of Authentic Leadership: Activating the 13 Keys to Achieving Prosperity Through Authenticity and Reach Your Mountaintop: 10 Keys to Finding the Hidden Opportunity in Your Setbacks, Flipping What You’ve Heard on Its Head, and Achieving Legendary Goals.
Jeff Davis, originally from Newtown, Connecticut, USA now lives in Rotterdam, Netherlands. He can be reached at JeffDSpeaks.com
[39:45] There are the usual things you need to know when launching a new product, service or business - and you can easily Google those but the one factor, which can mean the difference between success and failure, is discovering what you don’t know and actually preparing for it.
In this episode, Greg speaks with our guest, Lance Miller. From Glendale, California, Lance is a world renowned, keynote speaker, trainer, coach & author. Most of us know him as the Toastmasters' 2005 World Champion of Public Speaking but he’s also a successful businessman - having launched five successful new business start-ups and over two dozen new product/service launches. But admittedly, he’s also had a dozen or so failures.
So today, Lance, a regular on Toastcaster, shares some of what he knows and how he discovered what he didn’t know on his journey and how we can learn from what he experienced. This includes his brand new start-up venture - The World Champion Online Speakers Summit where people have an opportunity to watch and hear in depth over 24 World Champs about their journeys, lessons learned and even his or her winning speech.
[27:58] At every step of your life, our guest Mohammed Murad believes that we need to ask ourselves, the thought provoking question, “Is leadership for me?”
In this episode Murad gives context to this question and explains what this means. He also impresses upon us how Leadership is different for everyone. He also shares his vast leadership journey and gives us his 4 H’s of Leadership and what motivated him to take voluntary early retirement from the police force after 20 years of service to pursue his entrepreneurial journey.
Mohammed Murad is from Dubai, UAE. He is an entrepreneur and managing director of three companies. He has extensive experience in global marketing and branding emergency medical services management, human resource development and strategic planning for organizations. He is a Distinguished Toastmaster and Past Toastmasters International President 2014-15. (Orginal Interview 06/2017)
Murad delivered his keynote, “Is Leadership for Me?” as an educational at the recent 2018 Toastmasters International Convention in Chicago. You can subscribe to the recording at ToastmastersOnDemand.com.
[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.”
[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.