Hanging On and Moving Forward

Hanging On and Moving Forward

I’ve always believed that somehow my life would be void of dramatic, historic events. After all, history is something you see on TV or YouTube, right? Or something we might read in books (back when we read books). Maybe you’re as surprised as I am to realize that drama and history are here and now. If you’ve been thinking it’s time to start making really good decisions, you are right!

In the middle of our COVID experience, it’s important to understand we have to run our businesses in a way that matches the reality in front of us. Statistically, training new employees costs much more money than keeping the ones you have, and dropping too much of your marketing and sales efforts to save money usually ends up being the wrong move in the long term. Additionally, finding ways to make sure our virtual events deliver the same impact as our in-person meetings requires “non-boring” presenters who can connect with your audience quickly and hold their attention. We have to survive and make the best decisions we can under the circumstances we find ourselves in right now. Hanging on to your most valuable people and your willingness to move forward are your greatest assets, according to research on how successful businesses survive or even thrive in tough times.

As we set our sights for a new normal (which is never really that new or normal), keep in mind that historically we go through tough times and come out better than we went in. And that’s not just a cliché of positive thinking; it has been the experience of the human race. This the 20th pandemic in the last 500 years, and a comparatively mild one at that. It’s easy to be negative when we’re wearing masks — or protesting for our right not to wear masks — and watching news coverage that seems more like a ’90s movie starring Dennis Quaid and Morgan Freeman! But the reality is before long, as we come across pictures of ourselves sheltering in place and looking like some kind of strange, long-haired surgeons in underwear, we might look back on this time period with fond memories. So keep the faith as you plan to maneuver through the obstacles.

“Sometimes we seek change and sometimes change seems to seek us. But every 100 years or so, change becomes inevitable and just kind of slaps us in the face! We are forced to do what we, the human race, ultimately do rather well: become much better because life got worse.” – Garrison Wynn

Garrison’s Website Virtual Presentations Event Speaker


As an experienced virtual presenter, Garrison can deliver any of his keynotes or breakout sessions in multiple formats, depending on your specific needs. Both the session’s relevance and Garrison’s energy come across strong onscreen, as reflected in this testimonial from an event Garrison delivered last week.“Great speaker, excellent virtual presentation! We really like what Garrison said and appreciate how pertinent the subject was to what we are living every day.” – IPSEN Pharmaceuticals

Change is Mandatory… Stress is Optional!

Change is something we all have to deal with, but the stress that accompanies change is more of a choice. In this heavily researched session, Garrison applies his signature humor to a very serious topic.

This fun, comprehensive program offers tools and tips for getting through a big change with very little stress. More importantly, it creates an emotional shift for attendees as they see how much control they have over how change affects them. This session also shows attendees how stress is more about what we believe than it is about what is actually happening. From embracing big transitions post-quarantine to dealing with technology, growth and downsizing, this presentation helps leaders, employees and customers implement necessary changes with minimal resistance.

Easily customized segments can include:

  • How to get buy-in on change quickly
  • Why change if things are going well?
  • Transitional awareness: How will your actions now affect you post-COVID-19?
  • Avoiding anxiety-driven decisions and actions
  •  #1 cause of stress: Knowing exactly what to do…but doing something else
  • How your belief system creates your experience
  • The technology struggle: Similarities first and differences second
  • Avoiding blame distribution: Working better together
  • How to be right without making people wrong
  • Creating your own resistance: Solving problems that solve problems
Making the Most of Difficult Situations
Changing Markets, Changing Times

This funny, insightful keynote combines relationship building with no-fluff motivation and change to deliver real solutions in uncertain times. Garrison examines the challenges we face (from COVID-19 to tough economic circumstances) and shows how we can laugh at our problems while using them as catalysts for success. This research-based session covers a lot of ground and provides no-cost, easily implemented, proven solutions that your people can use right away.

Easily customized segments can include:

  • New people, new products and new approach
  • COVID-19 (safety vs. economics)
  • Dealing with new leadership direction
  • Getting good results from difficult people
  • Working from home with no distractions
  • Embracing mergers and acquisitions
  • Dealing with the resistance to change
  • Technology changes and procedural shifts
  • Change makes us better?
  • Action and adaptability create opportunity
Value-Based Leadership
Making Employee Engagement Actually Happen

We hear the term “employee engagement” a lot these days; we also hear how recognition, goal alignment and a clear path to success can create it. But how can an individual positively influence the opinions his or her employees and coworkers have about their job during and after the COVID-19 experience? This highly entertaining session backed by Evolve Performance Group/Pew research across 46 countries (and combined with over 70 years of Gallup survey data) shows that the thing people value most is feeling valuable! The session presents specific communication tools that anyone can use to dramatically reduce resistance to change, difficult behavior and employee turnover. The impact of this program reaches far beyond the session itself, creating an emotional shift that fuels immediate implementation.

Easily customized segments can include:

  • Curing disengagement: Improving strengths that reduce weaknesses
  • How employee opinions create productivity
  • Communication breakdown: Overcoming silo-ism
  • Managing a remote workforce: Cohesion and motivation
  • Separating the data from the drama: Research vs. personal experience
  • Managing people for who they are (not who you wish they were)
  • COVID-19 leadership: Balancing safety, expectations and leniency
  • The truth about employee turnover: The why and the how of retention
  • Making sure people see their input in your solutions
  • Nobody wants to be a “senior beginner”
  • What the most influential managers do differently
Influencing Safety
Creating a Culture of Buy-in

Whether you are trying to reduce your number of recordables, comply with COVIDSafe or prevent a good safety record from creating complacency, this entertaining, customized session is more than just a safe bet. It will get your people laughing, learning and motivated to create a culture of safety while maintaining productivity.

This program focuses on more than just following the rules; it is about developing the personal influence to make things stick, whether you’re helping leaders move change through their locations or getting workers to look out for each other on the job site. Garrison is authentic — a guy who’s been there. He’s a chemical plant explosion survivor who has developed environmental safety products still in use worldwide. He expertly fuses his experiences and industry research into key takeaways such as how to build the trust and relationships that make consistent safety a reality. He delivers those takeaways using a humorous approach that will have a serious impact on your event.

Easily customized segments can include:

  • What the organizations with the best safety records have in common
  • The truth about PPE and what is working now: COVIDSafe and beyond
  • Social distancing does not mean reduced communication: Apart together
  • Engaged/valued employees are 43% safer and look out for each other
  • Safety vs. economics: The link between protection and productivity
  • The truth about trust: We are our brothers’ and sisters’ keeper
  • Situational awareness: Being present in the moment
  • Making sure veterans are supportive of Gen Y and young employees respect experience
  • Making change work: Dealing with resistance
  • Staying motivated by motivating others to be safe
  • Getting people to believe (especially foremen/frontline supervisors) and changing behaviors


Garrison was everything we asked for and more. Not only did he engage and energize the crowd; he got a standing ovation and connected with them on their level. He delivered a laughter-filled keynote address with a powerful message. I loved the way he spoke to every meaningful objective and brought new material that was relevant to the event. Fantastic! Couldn’t be happier. – AMERICAN EXPRESS

Your session was the highest rated session of the conference! You delivered a great keynote and really hit on the messages that we focused our remaining time and sessions. Your passion and energy got the event off to a great start! Thanks again Garrison. – SHERWIN-WILLIAMS

Garrison recently spoke at our MassMutual Academy for almost 800 Financial Advisors in Phoenix, AZ. Garrison’s energy, passion, endurance and connection with the audience was beyond impressive. His message was relatable and his humor kept the audience’s attention for the entire presentation. He was the perfect choice for a closing speaker after a 4 day learning conference for our group. From the moment he came into the room to the moment he left the conference his focus was on our attendees and his professionalism did not go unnoticed. Our attendees left his presentation energized and excited about his message and his performance. We have already received a tremendous amount of positive feedback on Garrison’s presentation and many General Agents want to hire him for agency presentations. Garrison hit it out of the park! – MASS MUTUAL

We invited Garrison to join our sales team at the end of a long second day of training. He did his homework to understand his audience and had them from the start. To win over a cynical “seen it all” group such as this and hold their attention, spark interaction and elicit genuine laughter – all while making excellent points about relationships and the value of self-perception – was amazing to watch. When the final speaker of the day said, “As Garrison told us …” I knew we’d made a great choice and a lasting impact. Post-event surveys said it was the best sales meeting we’d ever had. – SPECTRANETICS

I just wanted to say how AWESOME Garrison’s keynote speech was at the Carrier meeting in Portland Oregon!!! It’s the best delivery & message we have ever seen BAR NONE! We were enthralled every moment! I stopped him after the speech & had a great talk with him! He is a great person & very informative & funny!!!!!! I highly recommend him!!! – CARRIER CORPORATION

I just wanted to take a quick moment to share how wonderful it was to meet and work with Garrison. He was a true professional from the beginning to the end. If I were asked to pick a handful of words to describe him I immediately think of: flexible, accommodating, friendly, professional, quick-witted, intuitive, and hilarious. He was extremely thorough in asking questions and very in tune to the topic of the meeting. He tailored a message that was spot on in the material, highly engaging and humorous in his delivery. He held the audience’s attention captive the entire time he was on stage! After working with Garrison I would strongly recommend him for any future event, either inside or outside of our company. – WALMART

Garrison Wynn rocked the house at our annual Americas meeting! He’s extremely entertaining, insightful, educational and engaging. Our team of over 500 professionals didn’t want the guy to leave the stage. He’s simply that good. We’ve had many talented and impressive speakers at our meetings over the years, but Garrison ended up being at the top of our list. Do yourself a favor — get Garrison Wynn for your next meeting. You can thank me later. – UNITED AIRLINES

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