July 31, 2021
[31:31] Conversations are fundamental to everyday life – at work or at home, yet little emphasis is ever put on improving it as a skill, particularly in getting one started and keeping them a succinct as possible.
In this episode, Greg speaks with Chris Fenning - subject matter expert and author of the new book, The 1st Minute: How to Start Conversations that gets Results. Chris will share his expertise and insight with lessons taken for the book that you can apply in many communications situations, like job interviews, conversations with the boss, presentations and even written communications.
You’ll discover some of the most common mistakes made in that first minute and some of the misconceptions that surround it. You also learn about when that first minute really starts.
You’ll takeaway two methods you can out to use right away:
1) Framing, a simple 3-part process that in 15 seconds helps you provides context, clarifies your intentions, and makes your message clear: and
2) Structured Summary: How everything we do can be described in the form of a GPS – no, not your car’s GPS but rather Goal, Problem & Solution.
You’ll also learn why you should never ask someone, “Do you have a minute,” and more…
Chris Fenning, in addition to author is also a husband, father and communications instructor. He lives in Amsterdam in The Netherlands and can be reached at ChrisFenning.com.
July 5, 2021
[32:53] Imagine the hardest speech you'll ever have to give.
In this episode you'll hear about that speech, the process that went into creating it and the speech itself and how on that day, I felt a rollercoaster of emotions the likes of which I’d never experienced in my life.
That day I was surrounded by loving friends and family as I said a final farewell to Elaine Baram, my best friend, my love, my wife, the sunshine of my life who I will miss forever . It will also explain why there were no episodes over the past months.
May 15, 2021
[27:39] This episode, Part 2 is the final part of our conversation with Noel Bentley on how to host a TEDx event where he continues to share his expertise on being the best host you can be.
Noel also talks about getting help by borrowing - not copying but rather be inspired by others and other TED or TEDx events but at the same time being you own person and letting your own personality shine through.
Noel also shares additional best practices along with a few do’s and don’ts and how you can prepare yourself even for impromptu situations and the unexpected.
You’ll also learn about some of the differences between live and virtual presentations and what you can do to make the latter seem more natural. He also shares some of the special considerations they had to make given the current global climate and environment which they knew could change without notice. He used real examples from TEDx BearCreekPark 2021 that took place just one month ago.
Noel Bentley is a speaker, humorist, storytelling coach, emcee and Toastmaster. He started project called Power of 3 Speaking, a new way of doing keynote speaking. He can be reached at https://powerof3speaking.com or coming soon at NoelBentley.ca
You can also watch the latest TEDx BearCreekPark 2021 at https://tedxbearcreekpark.ca
If you missed part 1, you can find it (Toastcaster 148) at: http://bit.ly/toastcaster148
November 17, 2020
[39:00] Flying in a Grumman F14 Tomcat, a supersonic fighter aircraft at over 1500 mph (almost 2500 kph) in the middle of a conflict can certainly put one's communication and leadership skills to the ultimate test. A split second action, reaction or decision can mean the difference between life and death. It also makes for a great movie and we all know and love as Top Gun staring a very young Tom Cruise (a.k.a Maverick).
In this exciting and lighthearted episode Greg speaks with Dave "Bio" Baranek
, former TopGun Flight Instructor, F-14 RIO (Radar Intercept Officer), TopGun Instructor and Squadron Commander. Bio shares his insights, stories, lessons and experiences, many taken from his new book, TomCAT Rio: A Topgun Instructor on the F-14 Tomcat and the Heroic Naval Aviators Who Flew It.
He also contrasts it from his two previous books, Top Gun Days
& Before Top Gun Days
Top Gun fans will not be disappointed. You'll hear a little about the movie where as a young TopGun instructor, Bio and his colleagues acted as consultants on the film and actually flew in the planes. He'll contrast what really happened to Goose (Anthony Edwards) in the movie; how it was written for Hollywood and how it can happen and be avoided in the real world.
Bio tells great stories that offer up a number of life and leadership lessons that can apply to anyone. He also opens up about some of his challenges, sharing how he handled the real life "Danger Zone," mistakes he and others made and how had to learn to deal with what he referred to as his "Deadly Foe," called complacency...and more.
Dave “Bio” Baranek retired from the United States Navy in 1999 after successful and satisfying twenty-year career. He's now a defence contractor and author living in Satellite Beach, Florida. To get his bio and more about Bio, see more pictures or read more flying stories, visit www.TopgunBio.com
is published by Skyhorse Publishing (208 pages including: large pictures and a 10-page glossary).
It's available as a hard cover or Kindle
e-book. You can find it along with Baranek's other books on Amazon and at Barnes & Noble.
PS. If you end up having Kenny Loggins' Danger Zone spinning in your head as you listen to the interview, don't fret, it's happened to all of us.
Headshot photo credit: Nicki Hovanec
September 30, 2020
[22:05] The Internet is full of experts doling out advice at what not to do during a virtual presentation or interview - job or otherwise.
In the episode, Greg speaks with John Bowe about his recent CNBC article, "4 Mistakes to Avoid in Your Next Virtual Job Interview -- Advice From Zoom's Head Recruiter," where he had a unique opportunity to interview Zoom's Phil Hayes - a guy who, of course, would really know.
John tells us about how the article came about and shares some of the wisdom he learned from Hayes including practical do's and don't tips for virtual job interviews. It's quite timely as many more interactions than ever are being done virtually and over Zoom. He also shares some of his own thoughts on this topic of which he is well versed.
The beauty of these tips and techniques is that they can also apply everywhere - like to businesses and for those for example who may be pitching product or services or even interviewing suppliers.
Have you wondered if virtual interviews better than live ones? Are companies getting better candidates, a better picture of the situation or is the lack of being there, creating more of a challenge? Listen carefully to find out - and more!
You just may be surprised at what you hear particularly at some of the reactions recruiters have and what they are actually thinking especially when during the interview, the unexpected happens.
September 16, 2020
[27:37] Words are very powerful and this episode, Greg speaks with Paul Ross about Subtle Words that Sell. This is not only the title of his new book, but also a revolutionary concept he's used for the past 30 years to teach tens of thousands of people around the world the power of language not just to sell, but to persuade, influence and also heal.
Paul insists that sales is not about selling but rather about shaping and structuring states on consciousness. He shares some of his wisdom and also lessons from his book which was in part inspired by his competitive nature and his past experience as a dating coach.
In this lighthearted and entertaining episode, you'll learn from the man who's in love with language about categories of words to use and about techniques on how to reframe objections.
You'll also learn about pattern interrupt and the better understand the difference between persuasion or influence and manipulation and how focussing on selling decisions and good feelings rather than selling products and services are the key to success in business and life and much more.
Paul Ross is an author, international speaker, and sales trainer, Master Hypnotist and Master Practitioner and Trainer of Neuro-Linguistic Programming. Paul Ross has been featured globally - on BBC, Fox, CNN, NBC, The Huffington Post, Rolling Stone, and now Toastcaster.
Visit his site SubtleWordsThatSell.com to find out more about his book, Subtle Words that Sell: How to Get Your Prospects to Convince Themselves to Buy and Add Top Dollars to Your Bottom Line and how you can also get two FREE BONUS
courses on Destroying Objections and Building a Monster Mindset by using a special link.
October 19, 2019
[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.
May 31, 2019
[31:42] In this Episode, Greg speaks with Lisa Wentz about her new book, Grace Under Pressure - A Masterclass in Public Speaking from LID Publishing. It’s part of Lisa speaking and coaching program she’s releasing to the public for the first time. It’s cleverly broken into 3 sections: What’s holding us back, Vocal Training and Delivery and contains many topics you won’t see in most books on Public Speaking including 35 in-depth exercises.
Lisa will offer some valuable advice including dealing with your inner critic before, during and after your speech as well as a few stories from her book and how some of the exercises work.
Lisa Wentz has an extensive background in psychology, professional acting training and live performance. She has a Master’s Degree in Voice and Speech studies from the UK and is the founder of the San Francisco Voice Centre and has since coached public speaking clients from 37 countries. She can be reached at LisaWentz.com. You can find her book on Amazon.
May 17, 2019
[25:00] In this episode Greg speaks with regular guest Kevin Achtzener in his 7th appearance on ToastCaster, as a follow up to Episode #97, “Memory Techniques to Remember Just About Anything.”
Today Kevin talks about how his techniques have evolved and shares with us a new concept he’s learned about memory and how he’s been able to not only memorize key facts for his University Classes, but also how he processes and synthesizes the information he’s learning.
Kevin reminds us that memory is not just about remembering or encoding, but also about being able to recall the information. He shares examples how he remembers things by visualization, creating images of phrases in his mind like avatars, placing then recalling them using the memories of his childhood home as a backdrop or storage grid.
Kevin also introduces the audience to the six levels of Bloom’s Taxonomy, a process that helps people learn and how this model fit into the big picture. Ideas and methods you’ll hear in the podcast not only apply to courses, but also for preparing and delivering speeches, presentations reports and anything you really need to learn.
Kevin Achtzener specializes in Mind Mapping, memory techniques, productivity and learning. He can be reached at VisualProductivity.net.
March 31, 2019
[11:34] Simple crutch and filler words are sabotaging your speeches and crippling your communications and you may not even realize it’s happening.
In this episode, Greg takes a look at a number of these unwanted words and why we so often use them. He identifies some famous people who are also afflicted with this habit and offers tips and techniques as to how to rid them from your vocabulary as well as where to find help to do so. This is an updated version and reboot of Toastcaster Episode 42 and an article which can be found at GadgetGreg.com. (Please Note: The Ummo App mentioned in the episode is now no longer being supported by the developer)
March 24, 2019
[15:22] The right stage presence can make or break a performance regardless of whatever words that may be coming out of your mouth. But what about an off-stage presence, that virtual presence, those times when you’re giving a presentation on-line, a webinar, doing an interview or recording a podcast anytime you’re in front of a computer screen?
In this episode, Greg, a.k.a The Gadget Guy offers an extended look at three pro tips and one bonus tip and things to consider when you’re presenting in a virtual world, things that may differ from when you are presenting on a traditional stage. This can help you take your next delivery from good to great.
Photo Courtesy Zoom.
December 31, 2018
[25:34] In this our final episode for 2018 Greg speaks with Terry Kozlyk, an engineer and budding entrepreneur from Calgary who a few years back discovered the power of the spoken word through Toastmasters that lead him to start his own podcast, TDK Talks, which later morphed into including video which he felt was was ideal for capturing a story. New to video he quickly found himself on a charity mission to Vietnam for a special cause where he created and produced a 30-minute documentary which was aired on Shaw TV.
Moving towards entrepreneurship Terry believes that every business person should be able to perfect his or her pitch. And what better way to do it than by using video. So in this episode Terry will share a bit about his mission, enlighten you with a few tips on creating videos for yourself and your website and share with us a bit about his new venture “Perfect Your Pitch Live” based in Calgary, Alberta Canada he co-partnered to help people do just that - perfect their pitch.
Terry is also a Toastmaster and currently the PRM for District 42 (Southern Alberta / Southern Saskatchewan). He can be reached at TDKTalks.
You can find Perfect Your Pitch Live on Facebook.
November 30, 2018
[36:32] In this episode Greg speaks with Communications expert and Author Stephanie Scotti about her new book Talk on Water: Attaining the Mindset for Powerhouse Presentations.
In this fun conversation Stephanie shares with us a little about her journey, which started in her 10th grade public speaking class and includes working with key policy makers, including the President’s Cabinet, preparing them to speak on energy policy by the age of twenty-two.
Stephanie also enlightens us with a number of valuable lessons from her book including, about the need to not only connect with your audience when you present; you also need to connect with your message as well as yourself; You’ll also take away a number of tips and tricks for effective presentations and learn about her C.O.D.E., and how your topic differs from your core message and a whole lot more.
Stephanie Scotti is from Chapel Hill N.C. and is the founder and director of Professionally Speaking Consulting LLC a communications consulting agency focused on executive communication success.
Stephanie can be reached at ProfessionallySpeaking.net
You can also find Stephanie’s book Talk on Water at your favourite bookstores as well as on Amazon. (The Kindle version is also sharable with your friends)
October 20, 2018
[27:04] It’s not often we get a school teacher or principal on the show but there are things we might have learned back in the day perhaps we’ve forgotten or can still learn and add our skills repertoire.
Our guest, Jock D. Mackenzie
has those credentials and more with 30 years in the field mostly teaching Language Arts to Middle School and Upper Elementary, now semi-retired, he takes those skills on the road. Jock is a published author having written the book, Essay Writing: Teaching the Basics from the Ground Up
(2007). He’s also a Toastmaster with the Sunrise Club in Red Deer, Alberta Canada.
In this episode Jock answers the question, “What makes a good story?” by illustrating his 3I-Racer plot structure of a short story, a mnemonic method that he still uses today for personal, social, business or work situations. He’ll share some writing techniques, elaborating on “picture a story,” that can also be used effectively to improve both our speaking and presenting skills.
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
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.
November 30, 2017
[22:32] Impromptu speaking is a great skill to have and you never know where it can be useful. In Toastmasters the practice of this type of speaking is called Table Topics. In this episode we speak with Blaine Zuk, ACG, ALB , who took home top honours at the District 99 Table Topics Contest held recently in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan, Canada.
Zuk, a nine-year member of Dawnbreakers Toastmasters in Edmonton, has MBA and PMP designations and is a Project Manager and Change Manager in the healthcare informatics field. He grew up and currently lives on a farm, bringing stories of his work and life experience into his speeches
He shares with us his experience competing in the contest, talks about the Table Topics competition question and his thought process on how he went about answering it. He also gives us some insight on impromptu speaking and tips on how you can do better at Table Topics at your club, work or in any social situation.
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.