Toastcaster Communication Leadership Learning Lab
Toastcaster 151: Starting Effective Conversations that Yield Results – Chris Fenning

Toastcaster 151: Starting Effective Conversations that Yield Results – Chris Fenning

July 31, 2021

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[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.

Toastcaster 149: How to Host a Live or Virtual TEDx Event  Part 2 – Noel Bentley

Toastcaster 149: How to Host a Live or Virtual TEDx Event Part 2 – Noel Bentley

May 15, 2021

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[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

Toastcaster 148: How to Host a Live or Virtual TEDx Event  Part I – Noel Bentley

Toastcaster 148: How to Host a Live or Virtual TEDx Event Part I – Noel Bentley

May 1, 2021

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[27:28] There’s a plethora of resources spotlighting do a TED Talk or speaking on the TEDx stage, but few realize that a great host or emcee can make or break that event. In this episode Greg speaks with Noel Bentley, a three-time TEDx host who’s hosted both live and virtual events at TEDx Bear Creek Park in Surrey BC, Canada.

In Part 1 of this 2 part series, Noel inspires us with his own story, what it means to be a TEDx host, what the role entails and the excitement and opportunities it presents for speakers and individuals. You’ll as be introduced to TEDx BearCreekPark and a glimpse as to what goes on behind the scenes of a TEDx. 

Noel enlightens us with his experience in his role as a TEDx host - how he got there, what he learned, how he (over) prepares mentally and physically and about the help he got along the way. You’ll also learn about other key players like the curator, speaker coach, program coordinator and of course the speakers and how the host interacts with them. You’ll also find out what speakers have to go through to be on that stage.  

Noel will also share some of his best practices and things to avoid, touching on the topics of introduction, bridging between speakers, scripting and humour.

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 lives in Surrey, BC, Canada and can be reached at https://powerof3speaking.com or coming soon at NoelBentley.ca.

 

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You can also watch the latest TEDx BearCreekPark 2021 at https://tedxbearcreekpark.ca

Watch for Part 2 (Toastcaster 149) coming up.

Toastcaster 147: Nurturing Young Minds Through Podcasting – Kevin Achtzener

Toastcaster 147: Nurturing Young Minds Through Podcasting – Kevin Achtzener

January 1, 2021

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[22:13] Kevin Achtzener, DTM is in the process of doing his practicum at a Spanish bilingual school to earn an after degree in Education. He had the idea to teach his students new material as part of a Spanish Language Arts curriculum by getting them to create their own podcasts.

In this episode, Kevin, a regular on ToastCaster, shared his experience as to why he chose podcasting as a teaching medium, what he was trying to accomplish, how the class took to it and how the podcasts turned out. He talks a little about the methods he used, the subjects he selected as well as what both he and his students learned from the process.

He also tells how he got our Podcast Host Greg Gazin involved by interviewing him as both a sample podcast  and as a way to share his knowledge with the students through a podcast which was to be played in the classroom.

Kevin Achtzener is from Edmonton, Canada and can be reached at VisualProductivity.net.

 

Toastcaster 145: Podcasting 101: Hosting & Interview Techniques - 2018 Live Educational [Toastmasters ]

Toastcaster 145: Podcasting 101: Hosting & Interview Techniques - 2018 Live Educational [Toastmasters ]

November 30, 2020

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[43:52] When I first started podcasting 15 years ago, the most frequently asked question was, ‘What’s a Podcast?” Five years ago, It was, “Why are you doing podcasts? It’s going the way of the radio, video is where it’s at. Today I’m often asked, “What are the benefits of podcasting?” And “How can I get involved? How do I get started?”

In April 2020 Apple Podcasts had over 1M podcast and over 35 million episodes. With the lockdown I’ve heard estimates ion 1.5 million and many many more episode. So Podcasting is not going away any time soon.

People do want to know more. In fact I’m questioned about podcasts and podcasting everyday.

As luck would have it, I recently came across a 2018, recording of a Podcast educational session I delivered - in a last minute request, to a group of Toastmasters which covers many of those questions and more. And while podcasting certainly continues to evolve, the information presented is still relevant today

This episode is not only for Toastmasters but for any communicator or leader who may be curious or interested in this topic.

  • We’ll look at what a podcast is, what it can do for you; the benefits of podcasts from a listeners, guests and a creator’s perspective.
  • You’ll hear stories along with tips and tricks in preparing, creating, hosting and moderating a podcast. 
  • You’ll discover how to preparing effective questions and interviewing Techniques.
  • We’ll also make reference to a number of resources, other podcasts,
  • and more.

You can also download a PDF of the slides used in the presentation. http://bit.ly/gregtli2018

You may also want to check out The Toastmasters Podcast: Creating Interesting Podcast Content  (Part 1) episode #157 and (Part 2) episode #158, featuring yours truly and co-host Ryan Levesque.

I also encourage you to read, "Is there a Podcast in Your Future," feature cover story in the  Jan 2021 issue of Toastmaster Magazine. 

Look for other upcoming podcast themed episodes here at ToastCaster and the Toastmasters Podcast. 

Toastcaster 141: How to Use Subtle Words that Sell - Paul Ross

Toastcaster 141: How to Use Subtle Words that Sell - Paul Ross

September 16, 2020

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[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.

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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.
 
 
 
Toastcaster 140: Grantasms: Making Communication Fun and Great Again – Grant Crowell

Toastcaster 140: Grantasms: Making Communication Fun and Great Again – Grant Crowell

August 31, 2020

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[29:21] Just when we thought the world had enough jargon, acronyms and other confusing verbiage, Grant Crowell, a self-professed social wordsmith comes along and creates his own words or “Grantasms.” His motives are sincere – his intention, to make communication fun again while helping people build confidence, better relationships and increase their productivity.

In this light hearted yet informative episode you’ll learn why he wrote this book, what you can take away from it and how he himself uses his own Grantasms for laughs, socio-emotional wellness, and his own ADHD management.  Listen for new terms like spousish, GERK, fillerflabber, messy-tasking, acronumb, playful mindfulness and more.

Grant Crowell is a learning facilitator for Dell Technologies Digital Events team and is the author of GRANTASMS: Twisted Creative words for cool people! He lives in Durham, North Carolina USA. Grant and can be found on LinkedIn and get his book on Amazon.

 

Toastcaster 139: Finding Your New Learning Curve - Bob Hooey

Toastcaster 139: Finding Your New Learning Curve - Bob Hooey

August 22, 2020

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[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.

FREE BOOK

As a gift to our listeners, Bob is offering, free to all readers a copy of his latest book, 

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Succeed! Idea-rich strategies to succeed in business despite global disruptions

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.

Bob lives in Egremont Alberta Canada and can be reached at Ideaman.net or SuccessPublications.ca.

Toastcaster 137: Discover the Future of the Future AGAIN! (FREE Summit) – Angelo Tirhas

Toastcaster 137: Discover the Future of the Future AGAIN! (FREE Summit) – Angelo Tirhas

July 8, 2020

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[30:30] For Angelo Tirhas, like many around the world, everything more or less came to a dead halt when the current global crisis hit, leaving him stuck with literally nothing to do. 

Instead of wallowing in defeat asking the same questions on everyone’s mind, his professional mind kicked in realizing that he had to define the problem and find solutions.  He asked himself: “What’s the biggest problem in the world today, what are people what most scared of and can we help them?”

Of course he realized people were already overloaded with data they couldn’t make sense of and he himself didn’t have all the answers. He had an epiphany. “Let’s get all these people into one place and share what the future possibilities are and figure out what to do to survive the future. Get people asking questions in touch with those who have answers and let them have a chat with each other.

And thus Future Summits Online series was born.

In this entertaining and informative episode we learn more about Angelo’s journey, what he saw, what he heard, stories and insights and why he vetted and handpicked from over 150 speakers. You’ll also learn about his F.A.I.T.H framework (Fundamentals Awareness Implementation, Transformation and Humanity) and how it’s being incorporated into the summit – and more.

Angelo Tirhas is keynote speaker, corporate trainer and coach specializing in transformation, business and personal development, founder and host of "Future Summits Online”, the first ever Global Future Focused Online Summit Series. Angelo can  be reached on LinkedIn or via e-mail.

 

About the Future of the Future Summit (On-Line)

Date: NEW!!!  SEPTEMBER 17-22, 2020. 

Cost: FREE. Low cost VIP packages with added benefits also available.

Takeaway: Actionable information, skills, strategies and insights from 25 leading global experts, futurists, innovative thinkers and thought leaders to help you prepare, be future ready and future proof. (4 speakers/ day)

Tickets: Visit now to get more information on the Summit or to get FREE Tickets

This episode: bit.ly/toastcaster137

 

*** PLEASE NOTE: The SUMMIT has now ENDED. HOWEVER, Angelo shares some TIMELESS VALUABLE WISDOM. So please have a LISTEN. ***

 

Toastcaster 136: Why Listen to Small Business Owner’s Stories - Paul Finkelstein DTM OMGTalk

Toastcaster 136: Why Listen to Small Business Owner’s Stories - Paul Finkelstein DTM OMGTalk

June 30, 2020

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[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.

Toastcaster 135: A Quest to Learn Arabic while Abroad during Lockdown – Kevin Achtzener

Toastcaster 135: A Quest to Learn Arabic while Abroad during Lockdown – Kevin Achtzener

May 31, 2020

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[26:06] Learning a new language while abroad particularly during these unprecedented times can be a challenge yet rewarding.  But our eight-time guest, Kevin Achtzener, who is currently overseas with his family in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), was certainly up for the quest.

In this light-hearted episode, Kevin humbly shares how he was first inspired to learn Spanish the traditional way many years ago and some of the things he learned what not to do as he set upon a quest to learn Arabic – a much more challenging task.

Kevin also shares a number of techniques he’s been using like a language exchange as well as some of his valuable resources including: Anki– a Flashcard app, 50Languages– 100 Free Audio lessons; LingQ– which helps you learn a language from content you love and his go to book: Arabic Script Hacking by Judith Meyer, which helped him to learn to read signs.

Editors Note: Once you have a good working knowledge of a language, there are also many bilingual Toastmasters clubs around the world one can also check out.

Toastcaster 134: Lessons Learned from a Journey of Over 12 Million Steps - Greg Gazin

Toastcaster 134: Lessons Learned from a Journey of Over 12 Million Steps - Greg Gazin

May 19, 2020

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[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.

  

Toastcaster 131: Keeping Mentally & Physically Stimulated During Quarantine – Lisa Wentz

Toastcaster 131: Keeping Mentally & Physically Stimulated During Quarantine – Lisa Wentz

March 28, 2020

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[29:31] Keeping the COVID-19 pandemic from spreading has just about put the entire planet into lockdown mode. In this episode, Greg speaks with Lisa Wentz about her short article on LinkedIn about keeping mentally and physically stimulated and engaged and not feeling frozen during this unprecedented quarantine. 

Lisa shares with us her recent journey of self-isolation.  She explains how news overload and too much of the wrong kind of mental stimulation can affect people physically and how we can combat that and ensure we continue to pursue things that are relevant and important to us. Wentz explains how mental stimulation means different things to different people and how we need to find the time to reach out to others, not just those we know. You’ll also discover why getting through these times is not just about balance but about choices we make. You’ll even hear her interesting observations about changes in people like celebrity Stephen Colbert, who was forced to self-isolate, and more.

Lisa Wentz is from San Francisco, California and has an extensive background in psychology, professional acting training and live performance. Wentz is also featured in Episode 118 - Grace Under Pressure - A Masterclass in Public Speaking.

She can be reached at LisaWentz.com. 

Toastcaster 124: Consequential Communication in Turbulent Times –  Diana Peterson-More

Toastcaster 124: Consequential Communication in Turbulent Times – Diana Peterson-More

October 19, 2019

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[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 diana@dianapetersonmore.com. 

Toastcaster 117 – Memory & Visualization Techniques for Better Recall & Learning – Kevin Achtzener

Toastcaster 117 – Memory & Visualization Techniques for Better Recall & Learning – Kevin Achtzener

May 17, 2019

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[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.

Toastcaster 111 How to Avoid an Onstage Meltdown - Hollywood Style

Toastcaster 111 How to Avoid an Onstage Meltdown - Hollywood Style

January 31, 2019

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[08:55] When speaking, presenting or even just talking to someone, when something goes awry, a meltdown can occur. And while it seems just another headline when it comes to celebrities like Elton John and Kanye West, when it happens to mere mortals and high-profile people too, it can have some serious ramifications if not dealt with effectively.

In this episode Greg offers four valuable tips on taking leadership in this situation on how to avoid a meltdown and what to do should things go awry. He recalls, as an example, an incident, which he wrote about that happened a few years back at the International CES (Consumer Electronics Show). It involves Hollywood Director and Producer Michael Bay (Armageddon, The Rock and the Transformers movie series) who was hired by Samsung to promote the new ultra high-definition 4K TV, but when an issue came up with the teleprompter, as he recounted to TMZ, “he cracked under pressure,” and bolted off the stage.

 The updated article (text version of this podcast) can be found at Troy Media and Greg’s Blog, GadgetGuy.ca.

Toastcaster 108 How to Photoshop Your Career & Your Life - Joe MacKay

Toastcaster 108 How to Photoshop Your Career & Your Life - Joe MacKay

December 19, 2018

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[28:23] It sounds almost funny that we could think one could Photoshop their life and career, but our guest Joe MacKay seems to have figured out a way to do so. Joe says Photoshop is a design tool where you build your project in layers - same as with your career (and your life). 
 
In this episode and perfect for this time of year and based on his article, Joe goes through six Photoshop tools as the basis for analogies, explaining how all of us can set up our own canvas to design our careers and our lives - of course, without a computer. 
Joe insists that we are all artists of our own imagination and we each need to become the Leonardo da Vinci of our own life.
 
If you listen to the end, Joe adds a 7th bonus tool. You'll have to tune in to find out what it is.
 
Joe is an award-winning videographer in both the public & private sector having work in a number of creative disciplines over the past 20 years. His current inspiration is creativity and this soon to be author is working on his 1st book on inspiration to be released later in 2019. Joe is also a former Toastmaster and has been a regular guest on the podcast starting on Episode #3 way back in 2007.
 
Joe lives in St. Albert, Alberta Canada.He can be reached at ImaginationSuperstation.com.
 
 
Toastcaster 96 Developing Yourself Through Mastermind Groups – Dave Rodwell, DTM

Toastcaster 96 Developing Yourself Through Mastermind Groups – Dave Rodwell, DTM

June 9, 2018

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[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.

 

 

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