What do the words "Hell Yes", the DMV, and an 18-pound orange cat named Mango have in common? They're all part of Norman's story.
When I was in high school, I ran for a student council position with the campaign slogan: "Hell Yes! Vote for Norm!" After a week of campaigning, we had an assembly where each candidate gave a speech. I decided to put on a slide show and tell a humorous story about how I’d been a down-and-out underdog who’d cleaned himself up to come on down and run for a student council position.
Things were going well until the third slide came in upside down...and then the next slide...and the next slide. At that point, I could have melted into the ground. But I didn’t. See, that day, I discovered that storytelling and speaking were two of my big Hell Yeses. I was in the flow, and kept going.
At the end of my speech, I told the crowd, “Okay, if you want to vote for me, on the count of three, say Hell Yes!...1, 2, 3…” The whole place erupted: "HELL YES!!!!" Later that day, I found out that, through using the power of storytelling and public speaking, I had won the election by a landslide.
Over 25 years later, I’m a communications expert who has helped Fortune 500 companies, major nonprofits and small business entrepreneurs tell their authentic story in a way that engages their audiences and helps them connect with their ideal clients.
I’ve worked with companies like Microsoft, Hewlett Packard and AT&T. I’ve been a speaker coach for social entrepreneurs and large nonprofits, including Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. As a speaker, I’ve won several first-place awards in speech competitions.
In addition to public speaking, I’m also an experienced actor, writer and director. On stage, I have acted in several plays and written and performed several short solo shows, including one about my tumultuous relationship with our 18-pound, orange, curmudgeon of a cat, Mango. I also wrote, co-produced and starred in the popular full-length show, “SUBPRIME!” which was based on my experience working for a year at one of the first mortgage companies to implode during the 2008 mortgage meltdown.
My big moment in film came playing opposite Academy Award-winner Christian Bale in the psychological thriller "The Machinist." Look for me about two thirds of the way through the film playing the DMV guy. That's me to the right, in the midst of giving Mr. Bale my favorite line: “Sir, this is the DMV, not a dating service.”
In 2017, I ventured into the world of podcasting and launched the Hell Yes Entrepreneur podcast, which features inspiring stories from purpose-driven entrepreneurs, adventurers, authors and speakers. Previous guests on the show include millionaire podcaster John Lee Dumas, Mount Everest climber Cathy O'Dowd, rock star Chris Ballew, and four-time Olympian Ruben Gonzalez. Since its launch, the podcast has been downloaded thousands of times by listeners in 70+ countries.
Now, I've returned to two of my original Hell Yeses – storytelling and public speaking. I want to take all the experience I mentioned above to help purpose-driven entrepreneurs and leaders like you share your story, nail your message, serve as many people as possible, and change the world. That’s a mission that makes me want to say: "HELL YES!!!"
Need help with your storytelling, speaking or communications?
Send me a message via the contact form so we can discuss your needs and challenges, and how I might be able to help.