Business Advice From a Veteran

Gail Davis, 21 November 2014

The contributions our veterans have made to protect and serve this country are immeasurable, but I also know that many of these men and women serve as valuable resources to corporate America.

I have the privilege of knowing Eric Maddox, the Army Interrogator behind Saddam Hussein's capture. While serving in Iraq, Eric’s breakthrough interrogation techniques revealed information from the dictator's inner circle that pinpointed the precise location of Saddam's Tikrit spider hole.

One day when talking with Eric I asked, “How did you accomplish this assignment when so many other attempts to find Hussein had failed?”

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Top A-Team Traits That Deliver Successful Results

Gail Davis, 03 November 2014

by Gail Davis

After 15 years matching top professional speakers with some of the world's most respected companies and organizations, I am often asked by other business leaders, “What's the secret of your success?”

Well, the secret is, it's not my success, it's the success of the whole team.

Recently after being asked this question, I decided to stop and think about the traits that make the team successful. It was a great personal and professional exercise to watch the team in action and fully appreciate each team member and how they work together as a cohesive group. 

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Setting Your Moral Compass

Gail Davis, 16 October 2014

I have known General Peter Pace, the former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, for more than five years and, without fail, every time I get the opportunity to listen to him speak, I gain new insights that make a lasting impression.

Recently, GDA Speakers hosted a breakfast for some of Dallas’ top executives to hear firsthand from the General. Pace is passionate about helping corporate leaders learn from his experience commanding our armed forces and advising the President. While he shared many leadership lessons, it was his message on setting your moral compass that made the biggest impact on me.

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Don’t Drop the Ball on Introductions

Gail Davis, 24 September 2014

Recently I had the privilege of introducing world-renown speaker Nando Parrado at an EO St. Louis learning event In addition to representing Nando for more than 15 years, he is my friend; so introducing him was a very easy and natural thing to do.

But, I, like most people, have learned from experience.

One of my biggest learning moments came years ago after working for months to place the perfect speaker at an event. As I sat proudly in my chair waiting for the presentation to begin, something went terribly wrong. The executive assigned to introduce the keynote speaker was MIA, and, before I could get to the stage to assist, one of the company’s directors stepped up to the podium and started to wing it.

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A Role Model for Those Who Stay, Leave and Everyone Else

Gail Davis, 10 September 2014

As the nation focuses on the Ray Rice controversy, I am deeply grateful to Leslie Morgan Steiner for helping me understand this very troubling topic of domestic violence. I’ve had the privilege of knowing Leslie for more than eight years and I continue to be in awe of her passion as an advocate to help educate our society and inspire other women and men to break free of the vicious cycle.

As I watched her recent interviews on MSNBC and on Anderson Cooper 360, I suddenly gained a deeper insight into Leslie. She is much more than just an inspiring example of breaking free from domestic abuse; she is a role model on how we can and should use our suffering to help others— abused or not.

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Secret Weapons

Gail Davis, 17 July 2014

I have two secret weapons when it comes to internally selling an idea to decision makers: focus groups and industry knowledge.

After an event, I like to run informal focus groups. It is important to get a nice mixture of participants in the group. Ideally I like to find:

-a person who attends the event each year
-a person who attended the event as a first timer
-someone from leadership/board
-if it is an incentive trip, invite a spouse or guest to participate.
-if it is a nonprofit fundraiser, invite various sponsor and patrons.

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