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Michel Neray

travels from Canada

Consultant and Facilitator

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About Michel

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As a consultant and facilitator, keynote speaker Michel Neray helps companies massively increase sales by getting everyone in the company – including the sales team – to rally around and communicate their core competitive advantage in the most compelling way. It’s what he calls their ‘Essential Message’.

Michel Neray, MBA, B.Sc, Master NLP Practitioner

Keynote speaker Michel Neray knows what it’s like to feel ‘different’. Born to a Jewish mother from France who had survived Auschwitz, and a Jewish father who fled Iran during during WWII to join the French Foreign Legion, his parents settled in Montreal to start a new life and raise their family. Michel grew up as a French-speaking Jewish kid in an English Protestant school in a province that was overwhelmingly French Catholic.

Having a girl’s name didn’t help him blend in either. Rather than hide his differences, he learned to embrace them. Strong-willed speaker Michel Neray credits his early childhood experiences for the foundation of his unique expertise in branding and positioning. Today, resilient speaker Michel Neray is widely considered an expert in helping organizations and individuals discover and communicate their greatest strengths and differentiation, enabling them to succeed both personally and professionally.

“If you want to discover your true difference,” says Michel, “you have to dig deeper than traditional marketing approaches, and use non-linear, counter-intuitive techniques to see what is quite likely right in front of you.”

A naturally dynamic, fun and engaging speaker Michel Neray is passionate about helping his audiences discover and communicate what he calls their ‘Essential Message’. That’s the most basic building block that enables individuals and companies to be the best at what they do; to have stronger relationships and better rapport with customers, colleagues, family and friends; to stand out from the crowd and make a difference; to provide exceptional customer service driven by a genuine desire to help; and above all else, to lead a more fulfilled, more effective professional and personal life.

For his corporate clients, it’s also the key to stronger brand positioning, sales focus and market messaging. Some of his clients have reported sales increases of 60% as a result of working with Michel. In 1995, Michel Neray founded Portfolios Online, the world’s first Internet search engine for advertising and creative professionals. Michel co-authored The Great Crossover, which made it to Jack Canfield’s Achiever’s Recommended Reading List. In 2005, his chapter, “Everything Starts With A Conversation” was selected as the lead for the book, ‘Sales Gurus Speak Out’ and then again for ‘Awakening The Workplace Volume 3′. He has an MBA from McGill University, a BSc from the University of Waterloo and is also a Master Practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP).

Since 2008, speaker Michel Neray has held leadership positions in the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers, and has spoken professionally in more than seven countries. He’s married with three children, two dogs, three snowboards, a whitewater canoe and a black belt in Karate.

See keynotes with Michel Neray

    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Differentiation as a Platform for Brand (and Personal) Leadership

    • Learn why it is so important to stand out and be different!
    • Michel teaches his audience a simple model for finding the strongest market message for their business
    • Using personal stories and experiences, Michel teaches everyone how the model can be applied to every individual in the room
    • In these uncertain times, we need both personal and business leaders!
    • Audiences walk away with the right tools to establish market leadership and the personal motivation to make a difference in your business.


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Purposeful Storytelling™: How leaders lead, coaches coach, salespeople sell, teachers teach and influencers influence.

    • We can all agree: Stories are more powerful than simple boring facts
    • Through stories we can discover the true values of an organization
    • It is how we influence our customers, teams and stakeholders
    • In this keynote, Michel will teach his audience how to master the art of storytelling and how to present it in the right way


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray


    • Being able to connect with your customers or patients is a valuable skill in the most industries
    • In this workshop, you will learn how to actually connect with your customers or patients
    • Learn how to listen to that little voice in the back of your customer’s head and know what they truly need from you
    • Most people are able to feel empathy but some struggle to listen to it and actually use it


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Conversational Networking, Marketing & Selling

    • Learn how to develop customer-centric listening skills
    • Learn how to ask intelligent questions that actually speak to the customer
    • Discover what actually will be interesting and valuable to your customers and partners about your service and business
    • Michel will also tell you why elevator pitches don’t and will never work


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Sales Telepathy

    • This skill-based keynote or workshop is for everyone in an organization who ‘sells’, including salespeople, proposal writers, managers and leaders.
    • Using principles of change management, neuro-linguistic programming and tried-and-true direct response copywriting techniques, participants learn how to engage listeners/readers in a conversational approach that often feels (to the reader/listener) that you are reading their minds.
    • A template is provided that allows participants to write extremely rapid first drafts of introduction and sales emails/letters.


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Make Friends With Your Stereotype & Stand Out From The Crowd

    • Unfortunately, stereotyping and judging is a part of business
    • Before getting to know you or your organization people will have an opinion about you
    • In this keynote you will learn how to gain confidence despite what people may think of your industry, position or background
    • Discover how you can transform your differences into something positive!
    • Increase credibility and connect with everyone around you


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    The Employee Engagement Workshop

    • This workshop has been adapted from the Essential Message workbook, What Drives You Crazy Makes You Great!
    • Employees gain a great appreciation of the unique value that each individual brings to the job.
    • Learn how to turn the perception of the negative stereotype that your role represents into an opportunity to positively differentiate yourself and stand out
    • All employees will benefit from this workshop!


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    (Better) Testimonials as a Strategic, Competitive Advantage

    • Many companies already know the value of testimonials in their marketing, but are still missing the real potential of testimonials waiting to be harnessed.
    • In this workshop, participants learn how to solicit and craft intelligent testimonials that not only position the company better, they also help improve customer loyalty and pride of association.
    • This is an excellent workshop for salespeople, front-line staff and the marketing team to do together!


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    The Better-Than-Branding Workshop

    • This workshop is not anything like your usual branding-workshop
    • Michel looks at the little differences that make you YOU
    • Learn what makes you unique and how you can implement your differences in your branding strategies


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Discovering Your Personal Brand by Digging Through the Five Layers of Differentiation

    • This workshop helps participants explore the often hidden personal motivations behind their success in their lives, business and/or careers.
    • For leaders and staff, it supports personal development and peak performance, and enables participants to actively develop their careers along a ‘best fit’ strategy.
    • For entrepreneurs and business owners, it supports a deliberate brand strategy based on authentic competitive advantage.


    Keynote by Speaker Michel Neray

    Creating Logical Frameworks for Clear, Compelling Communications

    • This workshop is for all employees, at all levels of the organization, who must communicate effectively.
    • Participants learn a communications technique that not only helps them create more compelling and persuasive presentations and proposals, it also helps them develop critical and creative thinking skills.
    • It is presented in a fun, interactive format that enhances teamwork and collaboration.

Interview with Michel Neray

What is the message you hope people take away from your presentations?

The key message that people take away from my workshops and keynotes is that ‘what makes you different as a person is what makes you better…in your business, your career and your life’. Differentiation is the basis of competitive advantage in business as much as it’s the basis of our ability as individuals to truly make a difference in this world.

What is the feeling you would like people to take away?

People walk out of my keynotes and workshops empowered and inspired because I help them recognize the unique contribution they have to make to their companies, their teams, their clients and customers, their friends and their family. More than just a superficial emotion, however, my keynotes help them understand the logic, psychology and science of differentiation. With head and heart in sync, they walk out with a genuine determination to make the changes that will make the difference in their business, career and life.

How do you prepare for speaking engagements?

I prepare for my speaking engagements by seeking to understand the key issues — both fears and aspirations — of the people in the audience. I have found that while most fears and aspirations are universal, they manifest themselves in different ways to different groups of people. By making my stories specifically relevant to the audience, the impact of the event is stronger and most lasting.

What do you gain personally from being a public speaker?

I am not a celebrity; I did not survive a tragic accident; nor did I climb a big mountain. The audience relates to me as an individual who is striving to make a difference in the same way they can. Each and every one of us can make a difference in the world in our own unique way, using our own own unique passions and strengths.

Being a speaker on the topic of differentiation, and relating it to both business and life is how I make a difference. As the speaker, I have the ‘best spot in the house’. I get to see the figurative ‘light bulbs’ turn on above their heads; I can feel the fire that burns within them.

How much does humor factor into your keynotes and other speaking engagements?

When people open their mouths to laugh, they can’t help but open their hearts to feel, and open their minds to learn. Humor is an incredibly vital tool that speakers have to work with in order to engage their audiences. Keynotes are like movies — and the best movies take people through the full gamut of emotions. Humor on its own is simply a comedy show. Humor as a counterpoint to thoughtfulness elevates the entire experience for everyone in the room.

Can you briefly describe what makes a leader stand out?

I cannot describe a comprehensive definition of leadership, but I do believe the best leaders know that in order to make a difference, you have to know what makes the difference. Their ability to communicate that difference in a simple, powerful vision and their genuine willingness and ability to align each person’s unique difference around that powerful vision, are two key pistons in the engine of leadership that drives change in people, companies, and countries.

How are your keynote presentations unique?

There are many speakers who talk about branding, sales, marketing and motivation. Most of those speakers may mention differentiation as the key to competitive advantage, but few focus on it as the key building block in business, career and life as I do. What’s more, I not only talk about the importance of differentiation, I give people the tools they need to discover it for themselves. I blend business and personal, and the lessons are universal.

Do you have any unique memorable moments in your speaking career?

My most memorable moments in my speaking career are as much on the platform as several years after when I get an email or I hear from someone who had been in my presentation, and I learn about the incredible results they have achieved since the event.

What are some of the skills needed in order to be a great salesperson?

The skills needed to be a great salesperson are the same skills needed to be a great leader: the insight to see the difference that will make the difference — to the customer — and the ability to communicate it simply and powerfully.

See keynotes with Michel Neray
Non-binding request for Michel Neray

Send a simple request. You’ll get a quick reply with fees and availability

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Keynote topics with Michel Neray