176 episodes

Communication & Leadership Learning Lab helps you become better communicators, public speakers & leaders

Toastcaster Communication Leadership Learning Lab Greg Gazin

    • Education
    • 4.6 • 9 Ratings

Communication & Leadership Learning Lab helps you become better communicators, public speakers & leaders

    TC179: How Video Bios Supercharge your Personal Brand & CV – Heather Flanagan

    TC179: How Video Bios Supercharge your Personal Brand & CV – Heather Flanagan

    [21:02] Video Bios are a great way to supplement your CV or Resume and an effective way to help show people who you are and what you do.In this episode we speak with Heather Flanagan who recently created her first Video Bio. Heather is one of those individuals that unless you are familiar with her industry, you may not truly understand what she does - but her Video Bio helps demystify that.
    Heather shares with us how she came out of her comfort zone and why she decided to create a Video Bio; what she learned about the process and about herself along the way.
    She also gives us tips and advice on creating a Video Bio and even how she used ChatGPT as part of her process.
    We also review her first video - with a Toastmasters style evaluation and go over what she really did well and how perhaps she can add more value and more punch to improve her next one
    Heather Flanagan is the Principal and Owner of Spherical Cow Consulting, a firm that helps organizations build a trusted and collaborative Internet. She is also the founder of The Writer's Comfort Zone, a community for people passionate about supporting each other as writers. 
    Heather's passions and expertise lie within: Digital Identity, Identity Standards Development and Multi-Stakeholder Collaborations.
     I had the honour of of being a guest along with Heather on Oscar Santolalla on Time to Shine #196 where we had a wonderful fireside chat on How to Give a Tech Talk successfully.
    Heather lives near Seattle, WA and can be reached via LinkedIn or her blog, Spherical Cow Consulting.
    TC179: How Video Bios Supercharge your Personal Brand & CV – Heather Flanagan 

    • 21 min
    TC178: Journey to My 1st Novel - Dealing with Dymans – Jock Mackenzie

    TC178: Journey to My 1st Novel - Dealing with Dymans – Jock Mackenzie

    [36:11] In this fun and entertaining episode, Greg speaks with first-time novelist Jock Mackenzie who shares some of his adventures and misadventures in creating, writing, publishing and then promoting his newly published crime-novel, Dealing with Dymans.
    Jock shares stories and offers some insights on how the novel came to be, including the creating and naming his characters. We hear how he leveraged resources with writing groups, experiences with editors, looking for publishers and how he went about finding places to promote and sell his book beyond places like Amazon.
    And of course, as a former teacher Jock wares his heart on his sleeve with some of what he had gone through and deals out tips and advice for those who might be thinking of writing a novel, but may have this fear of starting or plagued with writer's block.
    Jock also introduces us to the Scattergram (see below), a pencil  and paper picture outline method he uses to organize his thoughts and prepared himself for this interview.
    Jock Mackenzie is a former teacher and administrator with the Red Deer Public School Board in Alberta Canada for 31 years.  A long-time Toastmaster, Jock has enjoyed speaking at teacher conferences across Canada as well as emceeing a variety of events. 
    He's also the author of a teacher reference book on essays, Essay Writing: Teaching the Basics from the Ground Up (2007), numerous magazine articles. 
    More recently, Jock has self-published a crime drama, Dealing with Dymans, about a shyster jeweler who switches out real gems for fake ones. Ex-RCMP officer, Jack Schmidt, finds out and the fun begins. And you don’t know Jack Schmidt until you’ve read it. You can get it directly from Jock and find it on Amazon.
    Jock also appears on  Episode 104 - 3I-Racer Technique for More Engaging Storytelling.
    Jock Mackenzie can be reached by e-mail  mackenzie.jock AT gmail.com and on his blog, Teacher Man, Teacher Ms.



    • 36 min
    TC177: YOGA – Helps Anyone Take Leadership of their Mind, Body & Soul - Sharon McMullan-Baron

    TC177: YOGA – Helps Anyone Take Leadership of their Mind, Body & Soul - Sharon McMullan-Baron

    [26:57] Yoga is something in the past this podcast host (Greg Gazin) would have never considered. The way it’s portrayed, it conjures up images of slim fit women who contort themselves into pretzels. But now I truly think different. I realize that Yoga is really for everybody. In fact I now practice it weekly and it’s been transformational in terms of my well being.
    In today's episode we speak with Sharon McMullan-Baron, a yoga instructor but also a cancer survivor who I met through Wellspring Alberta.  
    Sharon's motto is: Remember to Live Simply, Speak Kindly, Care Deeply and Love Generously - and in this light-hearted episode, Sharon generously shares a little about her inspiring journey, how she discovered Yoga, what it has done for her and what it can do for you so you can take leadership of your mind, body and soul - regardless of age, gender or physical condition.
    Sharon dispels some of the myths about Yoga - how easy it is for anyone to do and how it's more than just a series of body movements.
    We learn about Wellspring - a no-cost, donor-funded, registered charity, community-based non-medical centre of support for cancer. Wellspring Alberta in Edmonton is where Sharon delivers her classes and has been instrumental in bringing her Yoga Thrive for cancer patients program to help them and their caregivers through challenging times.
    You'll also hear about how you can get started practising Yoga. Sharon shares resources - books, videos, names of people she admires in the Yoga world so you can check them out. .
    We also get a little hands-on Yoga practise you can do in real time while you are listening to the episode.
    Resources mentioned:
    Wellspring Alberta and Wellspring (National)
    Book: Meditations from the Mat - Daily reflections on the Path of Yoga - Rolfgates and Katrina Kenison.
    Companion book : Meditations on Intention and Being - daily reflectionson the path of Yoga, Mindfulness and Compassion by Rolf Gates Yoga teachers:Peggy Cappy - PBS programs for USA listeners, videos and booksSusi Hately - Co-creator of Yoga Thrive - the hatha and restorative yogaprogram for those touched by cancer. Her website Functional Synergy hasmany resources.
    Yoga sutras by Patanjali.
    About Sharon
    Sharon McMullan-Baron has been teaching Yoga since 2009 focussing in the areas of Restorative Yoga and Hatha Yoga. Her certifications include Hatha Yoga, Yoga for the Low Back, Yoga Thrive for Cancer Patients, Healthy Breast, Tru North (a prostate cancer programme) Relax and Renew and more. 
    A cancer survivor herself, diagnosed in 2006, Sharon was instrumental in bringing, Yoga Thrive for cancer patients to the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton in 2010 and to Wellspring Edmonton when it opened its doors 
    Sharon strives to keep a balanced approach to every day. 
    When she’s not on her mat, her survivorship includes a dedication to family and friends, extensive volunteer work, athletic, artistic and creative pursuits which may include wordsmithing poems and stories or playing with fabrics, creating quilts and other textile treasures. You can catch her on the bicycle or XC  ski trails, or out with her dog, if you can!
    Sharon lives in Edmonton, Alberta Canada and can be reached via email or via LinkedIn.

    • 26 min
    TC176: Think Faster, Talk Smarter—A Deeper Dive – Matt Abrahams

    TC176: Think Faster, Talk Smarter—A Deeper Dive – Matt Abrahams

    [35:25] In this episode speak with Matt Abrahams—a return guest and a name synonymous with spontaneous speaking - about mastering the art of speaking on the fly.
    This is a special cross-over companion podcast to The Toastmasters Podcast with Greg Gazin & Ryan Levesque #235: Think Faster, Talk Smarter in the Moment with guest Matt Abrahams.
    We're also thrilled to have Ryan Levesque also co-hosting today's episode.
    Today's episode
    Today we dive a little deeper into the concepts in Matt's book. He starts off by sharing what it's about and how you can use it.
    Matt explains why there’s no right or wrong way to communicate–only better and worse ways. He demystifies a cognitive psychology concept of heuristics and explains their importance. 
    Matt suggests a helpful reframing of speaking opportunities as “Conversations, Not Performances.”
    He touches upon how improv has shaped his approach to communication and introduces us to the playfully-named “F-Word of Public Speaking.” 
    Matt offers additional examples of structures you can use to master your Q&A session, gives an easy-to-use format for apologizing successfully, and more. Sorry about that! :)
    Matt Abrahams is a Lecturer at Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business. He’s the author of two books, Speaking Up Without Freaking Out, and his brand new book, Think Faster, Talk Smarter: How to Speak Successfully When You’re Put on the Spot, and the host of Think Fast, Talk Smart: The Podcast. 
    You can reach Matt and get his book at MattAbrahams.com. You can also find him on LinkedIn.
    Resources from Matt Abrahams at FasterSmarter.io.
    TC176: Think Faster, Talk Smarter—A Deeper Dive – Matt Abrahams

    • 35 min
    TC175: A Conversation with The Buddhist CEO – Thane Lawrie

    TC175: A Conversation with The Buddhist CEO – Thane Lawrie

    [41:08] Being a Buddhist and a CEO may seem like two extremes – one symbolizes Zen and calmness and the other the epitome of corporate chaos. But Thane Lawrie - a.k.a The Buddhist CEO is both, and successfully so and has seemed to have found just the the right balance. 
    In this episode we speak with Thane about his journey but also about his new book - appropriately titled The Buddhist CEO. It's classified as a fictional biography but as we find out in out chat, it's loosely based on his life.
    Thane shares his thoughts on Buddhism and how some of its principles from his perspective that resonate with him can really apply to anyone of any faith for betterment of one's personal and especially in one's corporate life.
    He also shares some leadership tips by enlightening us with stories and explanations of some of the stories from the book - and more.
    We also hear how he created a  Fellowship of CEOs - where CEOs of different companies can share and help one another when they they find themselves alone at the top.

    Thane Lawrie is an award-winning CEO in his home country of Scotland. A graduate of the University of Aberdeen and University of Glasgow, Thane has had a diverse career, culminating in leading and transforming a once struggling social enterprise and going on to win numerous prestigious business awards both locally and nationally, including being placed in the Sunday Times top 100 companies to work for in the UK. Thane is married with two sons and has been a practicing Buddhist for over twenty years.  
    You can reach Thane Lawrie at ThaneLawrie.com where you can also find ways to purchase his book in addition to Amazon & Barnes & Noble. On his site he also has a blog where he discusses leadership topics in his own way, progress on the book also some of his poetry.

    • 41 min
    TC 174: Tips on Becoming a World Class Host & Emcee – Nathan Cassar

    TC 174: Tips on Becoming a World Class Host & Emcee – Nathan Cassar

    [39:37] Wonder what it takes to be a great Emcee and Host? It takes more than just being able to be a good talker with an ability to wing it off the mic. Our special guest today Nathan Cassar is an award-winning professional and one of Australia's Premier Wedding & Corporate Emcees and known as the go-to guy for making any event unforgettable.
    Nathan Cassar has over a decade of experience and a strong reputation in the entertainment industry, this includes being a former Entertainment Host for prestigious Princess Cruise Line for several years. Nathan has also had the privilege of performing for thousands of happy guests spanning 40+ nationalities across the globe.
    Nathan shares with us a little about his journey starting with his humbled origins as a young bullied introvert who overcame adversity to today where he has become a world-class host and Master of Ceremonies.
    Nathan also shares many tips and best practices on what makes a great emcee for those who may want to entertain that career path.
    You’ll also hear many do's and don'ts and learn how to create your own improv treasure chest that can be used both onstage and offstage and in many other impromptu speaking environments.  In addition to many entertaining stories full of his invaluable wisdom, Nathan also shares tips on what to look for if you are searching for an emcee for your event and more.
    Nathan Cassar lives in Sydney, Australia an can be reached via his website NathanCassar.com.au as well as on his various social media platforms below.
    YouTube: TC 174: Tips on Becoming a World Class Host & Emcee  – Nathan Cassar

    • 39 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
9 Ratings

9 Ratings

ArlieLP ,

Let’s talk!

Greg is the best! I can literally feel his sincerity in everything he says, and I can tell the guests he brings on are people he is genuinely excited to share with his listeners. There is truly an episode that will benefit everyone - don’t miss it!

grantast ,

Make communication fun again!

Listening to this show is like talking with a good friend you enjoy learning effortlessly from.

The host, Greg, has a warm and friendly personality who is very easy to follow. He is genuinely interested and engaged with each one of his guests— so much that is flows like a conversation than an interview.

Even non-Toastmaster members will find this series valuable for real-life applications of improving your communication skills to better yourself professionally and personally. Highly recommended — subscribe today!

Small Business Podcast omgtalk ,


Greg Gazin And Toastcaster Are Rockstar Podcasters! Amazing Honor Being Featured On Toastcaster! Thanks Greg! Wow!!

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