What David Offers…

David Irvine offers a wide range of products and services, from best-selling books, to life-changing personal and organizational coaching, to acclaimed keynotes presentations, workshops, and retreats.

When you work with David you get results. See how others have benefited from working with David: Client List and Testimonials.

David’s presentations and workshops provide inspiring, engaging, and results-based learning experiences. The topics listed below can be adapted to a keynote address, a three-hour seminar, a one-day session, or a three to five day retreat.

Every event is uniquely tailored to the specific audience he is addressing. Just as no two audiences are the same, no two of David’s presentations are the same.

David’s flexibility means together you build a customized life-changing development experience that goes beyond traditional “leadership training” so the event is relevant, meaningful, practical, and entertaining.

Send David’s team an email on his contact page and we will work with you to explore how he can assist you. This will include a complimentary half-hour chat with David.

David’s seven most popular topics include:

  • Building a High Performance Culture: The Power of Alignment
  • Authentic Leadership: It’s About PRESENCE, Not Position
  • Accountability: Getting A Grip On Sustainable Results
  • Accountability In An Age Of Entitlement
  • Embracing Change: The Power Of Possibility
  • Building Bridges Of Trust: The Power Of Interpersonal Excellence
  • The Other Everest Retreat – A 3 Day Retreat/ Open Workshop >Read More

Additional topics also well-liked by David’s clients:

  • The Art Of Caring Leadership
  • The Other Everest: Secrets to Navigate the Journey to Authentic Leadership
  • Organizational Recovery: Keeping The Survivors Engaged Amidst The Layoffs
  • Building Bridges of Trust: The Foundation of Leadership
  • Succeeding As A Family Business: Working With The Ones You Love
  • Service Leadership: Coaching And Development Skills
  • Leadership and Board Governance
  • Raising Accountable Young People


David’s seven most popular topics include:


The Power of Alignment

If you are committed to attract and retain the best talent, provide the best possible service to customers, get a grip on results that matter, remain profitable, and reach your fullest potential as an organization, then culture will be your most critical competitive advantage. This is because organizational culture trumps everything else in business.

  1. Discover the power of alignment and why building a high performance culture is the key to success.
  2. Execute a practical, meaningful process for getting your organization’s value statements off the wall and into people’s hearts and actions.
  3. Leave with a practical method for building a cohesive, engaged, high performance organization – that engenders trust, loyalty, safety, and ownership.

Note: This process can be adapted to any culture, whether an entire organization, a division, a team, or even a family. If you are a CEO, senior executive, director, middle manager, supervisor, team lead, or parent, you will find value in the process for building an aligned, engaged, healthy culture within your sphere of influence.


“David Irvine is an inspiring teacher and a dynamic speaker. With insights grounded in personal experience, David’s messages about authenticity, accountability and balance are both practical and profound. David is one of very few speakers who connect emotionally with their audiences. His stories are real and leave a lasting impression on those lucky enough to hear him. In today’s world, where change is the norm and leaders are needed at every level of organizations, David’s messages are powerful.”  – Greg Stewart, Board of Directors of the Bank of Canada

 “As the President and CEO of the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission, I was seeking a high level Strategic Thinker and Innovator to lead AGLC through a significant change management process. David worked with our senior teams and the Board of Directors to create a focused and professional way forward for the corporation. His contribution was significant and recognized as excellent by our Executive Team and Board of Directors.” – W.(Bill) Robinson, Former President and Chief Executive Officer, AGLC

 “David Irvine has been a session presenter at our CEO Summit program which we use to develop the leadership competencies or our management team. David takes us through a day-long interactive leadership journey that engages the participants in discussions from leadership principles to being an accountable leader. David’s presentation is practical and his leadership stories are inspiring.” – Brian Vaasjo, CEO Capital Power Corporation



It’s About PRESENCE, Not Position

Great leadership cannot be reduced to technique, position or power. Great leadership comes from the strength of one’s authentic presence – the identity and integrity of the leader.

While you might get promoted to be a boss, you don’t get promoted to be a leader. Leadership isn’t something that you get from your title. Leadership – your capacity to inspire and influence others – is something you earn by the decisions you make and the actions you take. Leadership is about building trust, inspiring the people around you with a compelling vision, engaging yourself and others, and achieving results through those you serve. Leadership is about accomplishing this with presence, not position.

Step back and gain a new perspective on leadership from one of Canada’s most respected voices on leadership and organizational culture. Based on David Irvine’s best-selling book, The Authentic Leader, you will be inspired by a new view of who you are as a leader and a fresh vision of leadership in today’s changing, demanding world.

  1. Learn the difference between a transactional boss and a transformational leader, and the true source of leadership power: your authentic, accountable presence.
  2. Discover how a strong leadership presence can inspire trust, engender loyalty, engage people, dispel entitlement, and get a grip on results.
  3. Be inspired to be a leader, with or without a title.


 “David Irvine is an exceptional speaker, writer, educator, and human being. His work in assisting businesses, owners, families, and employees to live a life passion, clarity and certainty is inspiring and adds tremendous value to the culture your organizations. My family has personally benefited from David’s caring, and thoughtful advice and my business has excelled as a result of his thought leadership.” – Dean Koeller, President, Calvert Home Mortgage Investment Corporation

“David speaks to business, but you get the feeling that he is really speaking to society – we need more accountability and authenticity. It is easy to see his personal commitment to these two principles. His message is very simple, almost intuitive, but so valuable in today’s world where we often look to somebody else to solve our problems for us. Many of us think of accountability and think of blame, of the negative side. David helps us see that it is something to get enthusiastic about. Our work with David has helped shape our leaders and impact our culture.”  – Ed Rodenburg, Former President & CEO, Lilydale Inc.

“David’s works have meant a tremendous amount to me, both professionally and personally, as I manage my way through life as a father, husband, and leader in one of the most incredible and diverse industries imaginable. I recommend David highly to anyone who believes they are a student of life and career.” – Sean Durfy, Former President and CEO, WestJet

“The feedback on your presentation was second to none… your presentation was the best part of the meetings… it was exceptional once again. I am proud and humbled to be associated with you. You really blew everybody away. The Commissioner… and others referred to many of your comments and quotes throughout the balance of our meetings. I believe it was some great philosopher that said the height of praise is to be quoted or copied. You certainly have the praise of the Senior Management Team of the RCMP.” – R. (Rod) Knecht, Edmonton Chief of Police



Getting A Grip On Sustainable Results

Get to the deep meaning and application of accountability – so it isn’t just a hammer to blame or punish people, or just another organizational buzzword.

  1. Leave this session with a renewed and positive perspective on accountability, tools to build an ownership attitude in your organization, and a practical process for holding people accountable.
  2. Build a proven and practical approach to accountability that will build trust, respect, and integrity while banishing blame and fear, transforming entitlement into ownership.
  3. Close the gap between intention and success and get a grip on sustainable results.
  4. Leave with a simple and practical process that will inspire your high performers, deal effectively and respectfully with your “non-performers,” and renew your organization.
  5. Leave with a new outlook on the responsibility and opportunity of every employee to build an engaged, energized, and renewed culture.


 “If I could score David Irvine a 11 out of a scale of 10, I would. I think David Irvine is a truly remarkable speaker and person. His material is relevant and the delivery is just at the right pace. David’s adaptability as a speaker is what took this conference to a whole new level…  It was truly my honour to have met and selected David Irvine and to be able to learn so much from him.“  – Matthew Ng, P.Eng., MBA, FEC, PMP, Manager, Chapters, Professional Engineers Ontario

 “As a result of working with David Irvine, I am less stressed, have a great work/life balance, enjoy my career more and contribute to the organization more effectively and with more energy. The company is growing faster, profitability is up, and my mind is focused, as is my management team.”  – Dale Palmer C.A. CFO, La-Z-Boy Furniture Galleries and Kincaid Home Furnishings



The Power Of Agreement

With everyone talking about the need for more accountability in the work place, why is it that accountability is so likely to turn people off? Why is it that unearned entitlement remains so prevalent, both in the workplace and in society? You have to get to the deep meaning and application of accountability. If you don’t, it becomes a hammer to blame and punish people, or at best, just another organizational buzzword.

David Irvine’s proven and practical philosophy and approach to accountability helps leaders build trust, respect, and integrity. It reveals how to banish blame and fear, transform entitlement into ownership, close the gap between intention and success, and get a grip on results.

Leave this session with a renewed and positive perspective on accountability. Based on David’s inspiring best-selling book, Bridges of Trust, this session will illustrate how accountability is not a “program” to be “installed” throughout an organization or a “flavour of the month” management fad. Accountability is an inspiring leadership philosophy that lies at the foundation of both labour and life.

Accountability promises five vital results: 1) Clarity – about your role, direction, and promises; 2) Communication – at a new depth, with the right focus; 3) Alignment – of values, purpose, passion, and agreements; 4) Energy – to build sustained engagement and commitment; and 5) Trust – the one thing that changes everything.Inspire people around you by being accountable.

  • Inspire people around you by being accountable.
  • Inspire your employees to think like owners and foster an accountable attitude at every level of your organization.
  • Transform blame, entitlement, and fear into courage, personal responsibility, and commitment – through the power of agreement.


 “I have benefited first hand from David’s remarkable insights into not only how to be accountable, but why. He and his organization embody what it means to be accountable and they have been fantastic to work with. Take the first step towards refocusing your own accountability – hear his message, then implement his strategies. You and those you care about will be better off for it.”  – Ray Adamson, National Director, Practice Development, Great-West Life

“David did an extraordinarily great job linking culture excellence and leadership engagement. David’s genuine approach and passionate presentation gave the team food for thought in strengthening our culture and accountability. A motivational strategy that can be applied both in our personal and work life.”  François Laurin, Executive Vice President – Information Technology, Sobeys Inc.



The Power Of Possibility

“In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.”  – Eric Hoffer, philosopher

To survive – and thrive – you have to adapt and embrace change. When you have made a decision to be a leader, you become an agent of change. But where is your road map? Where are your tools? There are eight stages of change. The first is chaos; the eighth is possibility. Once you lead yourself and others to embrace possibility, transforming chaos into confidence, resistance into wisdom, and fear into possibility, you have done your job. Once you’ve mastered the art of embracing change, you will not only build a strong, vital organization, you will build a strong, vital life.

Leave this session with a new view of embracing and leading change from one of Canada’s most respected voices on leadership and organizational culture. You will leave this inspiring session with renewed clarity, confidence, and compassion to lead those you serve through the stages of change.

  1. Make change inspiring, productive, and creative – through the power of possibility.
  2. Turn fear and resistance into confidence and commitment – through the power of connection.
  3. Recognize and lead people through the stages of change in a way that supports both people and change.


“David made an immediate impression with all our district leaders and it was evident that he had spent time researching and doing his homework on our organization. Never have we had such positive feedback about a keynote speaker; David’s message was current and was what the team needed. Right place, right time = great results.”  – Richard Svoboda, Superintendent, Human Resources, Calgary Catholic School District

 “David is a skilled presenter who holds an audience throughout his presentation. His topics are current, well thought out, and very enlightening for the people he is presenting to. You will find that his desire to give the best, most relevant information to his audience will shine through as he prepares and as he speaks. David is a true professional who will bring tremendous value to your company, organization, and your event.”  – S/Sgt William G Laidlaw; Training Branch Manager; ‘K’ Division RCMP

“… Many of us have been able to witness David first-hand in helping organizations navigate through turbulent and difficult transitions and change. His calming yet direct approach, complemented by his practical wisdom, helps management and staff recognize that change, growth and transformation begins with “them”; that it begins “within”. Notwithstanding all the above, what has impressed me the most in the twenty years that I have known David, is his ability to think from his heart with openness, authenticity and consistency, and to conduct his work and live his life in alignment with his values. His caring nature, his willingness to be of service to others and his humility are genuine and deep-rooted. Our society greatly needs gifted transformation leaders like David Irvine if we are to move towards creating a society and organizations that foster Cultures of Compassion and Peace.” – Gerry Labossiere, Chair, AIS Inc.



The Power Of Interpersonal Excellence

Building and restoring trust is mission-critical in organizations today. At the core of effective and productive organizations and teams lies an abundance of mutual trust and respect based upon authentic and accountable connections. Regardless of what you do in your organization and your life, to be successful you must be able to connect with people in a way that builds trust.

With a background in family therapy, David Irvine offers an in-depth approach to interpersonal relationships that you won’t find in mainstream leadership training programs. Leave this engaging, and practical session with the interpersonal skills necessary to build bridges of trust with those who depend on you, and those upon whom you depend.

  1. Understand how the actions of every employee either builds or destroys the culture where you work.
  2. Inspire deep trust in your organization through the power of interpersonal excellence.
  3. Embrace conflict in a way that builds trust, respect, and focus.


“David’s attention to detail ensures that he can facilitate a positive and realistic outcome when working with people – it has been the key to his credibility.”  – Sanford Riley, Former President and CEO, Investors Group

“David’s presentation challenged everyone to look at things differently and focus on our values. His presentation stimulated a lot of thinking among our staff of how we can do things differently to achieve a better balance.”  – Peter Kruselnicki, Former Deputy Provincial Treasurer, Province of Alberta


THE OTHER EVEREST RETREAT – A 3 Day Retreat/ Open Workshop

Navigating the Pathway to Authentic Leadership
December 4-7, 2018 & May 7 -10, 2019




Additional topics also well-liked by David’s clients:


Too often we discover at the end of a day that if we aren’t careful, our lives are reduced to looking down at our devices and accomplishing whatever’s on our to-do lists. In the process, we lose our connection with the deeper human need to be present to what surrounds us. Caring connects us with each other, making us the best of who we are and what we can be. Caring is a decision to engage with the world around us.

Caring enriches all facets of our lives. It makes workplaces worth working in, schools worth learning in, our relationships worth being in, and the world worth living in. Caring is everything.

This session, applicable to leaders at any level and in all walks of life, gets to the heart of creating a workplace and a life that matters. Based on David’s book, Caring Is Everything, you will leave with an inspiring and thought-provoking message about the vital role that caring serves in every aspect of our lives.

  1. Learn how caring impacts everything you do: it fosters trust, engages employees, builds loyalty, creates meaning in our lives, and leads to business success.
  2. Understand the true meaning of service leadership and how to build a more fully human organization.
  3. Leave with practical strategies to amplify your impact on everyone you serve – through a stronger authentic and caring presence.
  4. Remember that self-care is an ethical responsibility. In order to take good care of others you must take good care of yourself.


“Your session wowed our conference attendees, who rated it an incredible 4.96 out of 5… What a privilege for us to have you on our stage!  Thank you for your amazing contribution to our success. You truly made a difference!”  – Pat Goodberry, HealthCare Service Excellence Conference Chair

“Love, love, love this session! He is so compassionate and raw! Tears in my eyes during his closing words.”  – Heather Goslee, Chippewa County Montevideo Hospital

“I was so touched by your talk. I’ve walked through the valley of losing my mom this year. I was running away from caring. Thanks for getting me back on track.”  – Arlene Harms, Rio Grande Hospital

“David is an articulate and engaging presenter. His delivery style, coupled with relevant and intelligent content, makes him a great choice for conference and development programs. He has a wonderful ability to make his comments relevant to the issues and challenges which confront leaders in their daily lives.” – Geoffrey Crampton, Vice President, People & Organization Development, Fraser Health Authority



Secrets to Navigate the Journey to Authentic Leadership (Presentation or Workshop adapted from David’s 3 Day Retreat)

In today’s fast-paced, rapidly evolving business and professional environment, a high value is placed on looking outward and upward, continuously striving for the next summit, the next Everest. As successful people, we tend to look upward to the achievements we hope to realize.

But success isn’t just about height. It’s also about depth.

The journey down…the journey within…the journey to The Other Everest… is equally valid.

True – authentic – leadership is fueled by a voyage that takes us inward toward the hardest realities of our lives. The best leadership comes from people who have penetrated their inner darkness, men and women who can lead the rest of us to a place of authenticity away from what the world sees, who have been there and know the way, and in so doing, know the why.

  1. Connect into your vision, purpose and your deepest core values to unlock your true leadership potential and amplify your impact and influence in all areas of your life.
  2. Create a space to reflect, think strategically, and get a new perspective on ways to influence others – while bringing renewed value to those you lead.
  3. Take the time to reset your internal compass – Discover the path to an undivided life – a life with greater balance, inner peace, and well-being in the midst of relentless demands.


David’s work has always resonated with me, particularly his insights into authentic leadership. Leadership starts with knowing deeply who we are; our beliefs, strengths, and talents, as well as our weaknesses and shortcomings.  It’s only through deep self-awareness that we can begin the journey to true leadership, and be the kind of leader that people are willing to follow.  David has impacted my life through his work and through his friendship.” – Tim O’Connor, CEO, Results Canada

I really have no words to completely describe my experience. […I cannot] fully describe the life-changing event that [David] set the stage for and made happen. Truly, truly amazing. I look forward to continuing to grow with all that I absorbed and to nourishing all the new relationships. – Launa Aspeslet, CEO, TRIO (Translational Research in Oncology)

What a workshop! Thank you for allowing me to find my authentic self. It was a profound, life altering experience for me. To be immersed in a space of complete trust, kindness and support, was awe inspiring.  – Stu Keen, Deckham Enterprises

I had the pleasure of attending “The Other Everest” retreat facilitated by David. This was the best decision I have made in a while.  I found it changed the way I view life situations and my reactions to them.  Everyone owes it to themselves to invest their time, energy and money for this worthwhile retreat.  Remember to take the time to be in the moment………  – Dana Overton, RCMP Victim Services, “K” Division



Keeping The Survivors Engaged Amidst The Layoffs

The challenging economy in the resource sector during the past few of years has placed leaders in a whirlwind of change. Downsizing, reorganizing, and redesigning the organizations where we work is now the norm. Surviving the change has become today’s “business as usual”. Whether you are laying people off, frenetically repositioning yourself in the marketplace or growing your business, managing change is the new reality. In the midst of all the chaos, it’s time to think of the future in new ways.

Take an opportunity to step away from the fray, be inspired, and get a renewed perspective from one of Canada’s most respected voices on leadership and organizational culture. David Irvine’s thought-provoking session will provide practical tools and processes for keeping your talent engaged in an uncertain economic environment.

  1. Leave with practical insights and strategies for building an engaged culture when you are in the midst of laying people off.
  2. Understand how everyone is impacted differently by the change and how to respond effectively to the diverse array of reactions.
  3. Re-build bridges of trust. Restoring trust after a layoff is mission-critical in organizations today. Effective and productive organizations and teams need mutual trust and respect based upon authentic and accountable connections. Discover ways to restore trust in the demanding environment of continual change.


“I hired David to inspire and to motivate. Based on the post-presentation comments received from my staff, he not only met but exceeded my expectations.” – Larry Wilson, Regional Director, Canadian Coast Guard, Maritimes Region

 “I have been receiving overwhelmingly positive and rave reviews regarding the workshop and the materials David presented… More importantly for staff was the personal message [David] shared and his open, narrative style of presentation. David helps illuminate the difference between capriciously floating along and intentionally navigating a more satisfying course through life.” – Vincent Deberry, Centre for Public Management, University of Oklahoma



The Foundation Of Leadership

“Trust is the glue of life. It’s the most essential ingredient in effective communication. It’s the foundational principle that holds all relationships.” – Stephen Covey

Trust is the keystone of success – both in leadership and in life. It’s the new global currency. It crosses cultures and generations. Trust lies at the foundation of every relationship and is perhaps the most important issue facing the world today. Building and restoring trust is your number one leadership challenge, and your number one accountability as a leader.

Take this opportunity to gain a new perspective on trust in today’s world from one of Canada’s most respected voices on leadership and organizational culture. But rather than gaining simply greater knowledge and an intellectual understanding of trust, you will leave with an experience of shifting the fundamental way you build trust in your relationships. You will leave with a new view of who you are as a leader and a fresh vision of what your organization can become – through your capacity to build trust.

Leaders will benefit from this workshop by being able to:

  • Recognize, describe, and demonstrate positive authentic trust building behaviours.
  • Demonstrate essential skills for trust building with employees who exhibit trust blocking behaviours.
  • Develop and demonstrate a personal process to build trust with individuals who exhibit blocking behaviours.
  • Achieve greater authenticity in all relationships.
  • Develop the capacity to build and maintain trust with groups.

Organizations will benefit by having leaders:

  • Assist employees to develop accountability.
  • Develop organizational “simplicity” by “maximizing the amount of work not done” for greater efficiency.
  • Assist in developing capacities and skills in managing conflict amongst teams.
  • Develop skills to manage meetings where conflict arises, thus decreasing wasted time and efforts.



Working With The Ones You Love

To be sustainable family businesses must be built on the foundation of a strong family.
In this session, learn the fundamentals of family dynamics. You will leave with skills for opening communication within and between generations that will lead to respect, high trust, and clear goals that support both the family and the individual – so the family can run the firm instead of the firm running the family.

Potential topics for a family business audience:

  • Building Bridges of Trust – Trust is both a belief in and reliance upon something or someone. It’s about connect-ability and reli-ability. This session offers a practical and proven Accountability Agreement Process™ that ensures highly trusting, accountable relationships within the context of a family business.
  • Accountability In An Age Of Entitlement – Without accountability there will be no success – in a family or in a business. How do you ensure that the coming generation has the necessary mind-set to take the business to the next level and make it in the world?
  • Succeeding At Succession – In this session you will learn why most family businesses fail to make it past one generation by understanding the three fundamental tasks that are essential for succession success – and a clear path to achieve these tasks.
  • Conflict Resolution – Conflict is part of any family and any business. This session focuses specifically on the dynamics of an intergenerational family business and ways to effectively handle conflicts that arise.
  • Building An Engaged Business Culture – Authenticity is the ability to align your passion and talents with the needs of the business and is what keeps everyone in a business family engaged, focused, and loyal. This session will provide a practical, meaningful road map to ensure that everyone in your family is finding their voice, and thus sustaining their commitment to themselves, to the family, and to the business.



Coaching And Development Skills

Building a customer service mind-set within your organization starts with a service mind-set toward your employees. This inspiring, engaging leadership development session teaches the fundamentals of service leadership.

A service leader is committed to identifying and meeting the legitimate needs of their people and removing barriers so they can serve the customer. To lead, you must serve. The primary difference between a service leader and a traditional hierarchal manager is that a service leader is committed to helping people reach their highest potential. Service leadership is not a technique. It’s a philosophy for both leading and living.

As a service leader, the aspiration to lead is preceded by a commitment to serve. It’s about choosing service over self-interest.

  • What does it mean to be a service leader?
  • How do you coach and help your employees grow?
  • What is the mind-set necessary for a leader in order to create a service mentality in your organization?
  • What is the difference between being a servant and being a “slave” to your staff?



Boards serve a vital role that goes beyond simply “getting through the agenda.” As leaders, you have an opportunity – and a responsibility – to inspire and engage people, create a shared vision, foster trust, and build an aligned organization.

The leadership necessary to build a great organization does not come about by accident. It takes intentional action, focused discipline, and life-long learning.

David Irvine offers a renewed view of the fundamentals of leadership, culture, and board governance. Gain, in this session, a revitalized perspective on your leadership responsibility, and strengthen your competence in the practice of leadership as a board.

In this inspiring and interactive session, you will learn practical insights and strategies for building a strong board that serves and fosters your full potential as an organization.

  • Learn the fundamentals of board governance, and your key roles and responsibilities as leaders to achieve an aligned, high trust, collaborative, and focused board.
  • Develop your mission, vision, and values to ensure that these are current and relevant to your present organization.
  • Learn the fundamentals of building a cohesive, high-trust leadership team as a board. A healthy culture starts with a healthy board.



Parenting in today’s fast-paced, self-indulgent culture of entitlement is not easy. Never has there been a more important time to instill accountability in young people and help them grow into adults capable of facing life with self-reliance.

With over thirty years of experience as a family therapist, youth leader, parent, and mentor to executives, David Irvine understands the importance of raising responsible, resourceful and resilient children who treat themselves and others with dignity and respect.

David’s unique perspective and dynamic, down-to-earth approach will challenge, inspire, and guide parents to:

  • Balance supports and demands…to nurture accountability in young people.
  • Instill an accountable mind-set in youth – a commitment to full citizenship rather than consumerism.
  • Lead young people with a new understanding of rights, responsibilities and contribution.
  • Work together with teachers to cultivate accountability with youth.

Be prepared for a new awareness of yourself as a parent. You will be supported, stimulated and energized as David inspires you in your challenging and important role as a parent in today’s changing world.

This presentation can be a valuable add-on to any corporate event where spouses can be invited for an engaging and inspiring evening presentation.