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Learn to negotiate for success

J. Paul Nadeau

travels from Canada

Motivational speaker on business negotiations, conflict resolution and increasing employee loyalty

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Keynote speaker J. Paul Nadeau’s experiences as a former hostage negotiator, SVU detective and international peacekeeper have resulted in voting him as one of the most interesting people in North America. He’s worked as Oprah Winfrey’s bodyguard, talked a suspected terrorist off a jet in Paris, France in 2005, did a TED Talk and had his life saved by a terrorist during a terrorist attack in Amman, Jordan while on a peacekeeping mission.

Reasons to book J. Paul Nadeau

  • Paul has developed a simple and proven formula using a negotiations model that’s easy to remember, follow, and apply – and it works to build rapport and trust between negotiators, as well as solid lasting relationships. He calls it PIER Negotiating.
  • He has experienced first-hand how to negotiate and resolve conflict with some of the toughest of ‘clients’ imaginable, from terrorists to criminals and beyond, and his approach has resulted in a 100% success rate with hostage takers and persons in crisis, and a 70 to 80% success rate in drawing confessions from the most hardened of criminals.
  • Paul’s stories come with lessons, and his stories are right out of Hollywood blockbuster movies! He’ll keep your audience entertained and the lessons he teaches will stick.

J. Paul Nadeau delivers empowering, impactful, and entertaining keynote talks, with engaging stories, geared toward the meeting planners’ objective for each of their events. Paul is an expert on business negotiations, conflict resolution, mental wellness strategies, personal development and how to beat self-sabotage in the workplace and at home. His life experiences are a blockbuster movie, and he’s sure to entertain and educate your attendees at whatever event you choose him to speak at.

A retired police detective who completed an exemplary 31-year police service career, specializing in Hostage and Crisis Negotiation, International Peace Keeping, Counter Terrorism, Sexual Assault/Child Abuse Investigations, Professional Interrogations and Polygraph, Paul knows how to connect and earn the respect and cooperation from his ‘clients,’ and he teaches his proven methods in his keynotes and seminars.

He’s a successful author of three books, and a motion picture based on one of his life experiences is now being developed. Paul’s life experiences have taught him that we are all more alike than we are different, and that by treating each other with compassion and understanding, we inspire others to make better choices and gain their trust. His negotiation principles work with even the toughest of ‘clients’ in sales and negotiations and will teach you the essential skills on how to positively influence the behaviour of others in life and in business.

He has received the highest recommendations from the International Peace Keeping Branch, United Nations, The Office of the Independent Police Review Director, among many others. He is now a regular consultant for CNN, CBC World News, The National, Global News, CP24, The Star and other news media services.

As Canada’s most highly recognized Hostage Negotiator, Paul’s daily challenges involved getting suspects to admit to heinous crimes, free hostages and surrender to the police and negotiate with people in crisis. His keynotes will touch your heart, stimulate your mind and have you applying winning techniques immediately. A story teller extraordinaire, Paul’s keynotes resonate with his audiences.

See keynotes with J. Paul Nadeau
Keynote by speaker J. Paul Nadeau

Business and ‘Life’ Negotiations

We all negotiate, every day of their lives, be it in business or in life. Negotiations are simply requests for agreements. Understanding that it is your right to ask for an agreement or a deal is the very first step in reaching those agreements. Reaching that point requires simple steps that must be taken to build a bridge to a ‘yes’.

Paul Nadeau will provide you with those steps in a keynote or workshop that takes you and your staff through his 4 simple principles to help you reach your very best outcomes. He uses the PIER NegotiatingTM, a 4 step, principle-based technique Paul developed over years of negotiating in some of the toughest situations.

Keynote by speaker J. Paul Nadeau

Conflict Resolution and Dealing with Agitated Clients

Most people completely avoid conflict or are fearful to approach it, even when it’s unavoidable and begs to be addressed to resolve a disconnection between businesses or individuals. The reason for that avoidance often comes down to how we look at conflict.

As a former hostage negotiator, international peacekeeper (whose life was saved by a terrorist during a deadly conflict) and criminal interrogator, Paul has been personally involved in hundreds of situations involving conflict that drew on his expertise to resolve, often saving lives and building relationships. In part, his approach involves seeing conflict as opportunity. Yes, opportunity. Opportunity to address conflicting points of view respectfully; opportunity to understanding others and opportunity to open the channels of communication, enabling the aggrieved parties to build trust, respect and understanding.

Doing so builds stronger relationship. Let Paul Nadeau teach you proven and easy methods to resolve conflict in a way you may never have imagined possible. Through story-telling and key points, Paul will help you deal with your most difficult clients (or staff) and help you tear down walls and build bridges.

Keynote by speaker J. Paul Nadeau

Taking Control of Your Life – Lessons on Personal and Business Motivation

Life and business can be challenging. Many of us sabotage ourselves by what we tell ourselves or by what others have told us. Many of us fear moving forward and living the life we deserve to live because we don’t know how. Before we can achieve most worthwhile things in life, we need to leave our difficult pasts behind, focus on our internal strengths and believe in our strengths. What holds many of us back from feeling capable of doing that is fear. That, or allowing past failures or experiences to dictate our futures – all of which is part of our human condition.

In J. Paul Nadeau’s acclaimed book, “Take Control of Your Life,” which rose to #9 bestseller in Canadian airports in 2021, he draws on his own past and that of many victims of crime who have risen above their fears and adversities to take control of their lives to live the lives they deserve to live. Whether it’s your staff needing to be motivated and energized to reach their full potential since COVID 19 and the uncertainties of this world, or helping students, groups or organizations deal with the challenges of life, Paul Nadeau has a keynote for you.

His book and keynotes on this topic have helped many people from all walks of life: CEO’s in finding renewed energy, employees in re-establishing motivation, individuals suffering from posttraumatic stress, depression and loss of hope, victims of sexual abuse or domestic violence, and more. Paul was the opening speaker at the Canadian Mental Health Associations 2019 National Conference, the largest in Canada, and received a standing ovation for his talk. Let him help your group deal with their challenges.

Watch speaker J. Paul Nadeau in action:

Finding humanity when you least expect it, with J. Paul Nadeau TEDxToronto

See keynotes with J. Paul Nadeau


Paul is an excellent speaker. His content is unique and he was very engaging. He was able to take his years of experience in hostage negotiation and make it relatable to our sales industry. Our audience left with useful techniques to improve customer engagement and negotiate fair business. I would highly recommend Paul.

Renee Schouten, Director of Marketing

INX International Ink Co.

Take Control of Your Life” to our entire team and the feedback has been amazing. I have read it myself and highly recommend it. I would highly recommend Paul to be part of your business training plans in the future.

Ron Deegan, Sr VP Sales North America

INX International Ink Co.

J. Paul recently spoke at our company’s sales meeting. Paul gripped us with his real-life experiences, getting rises from laughter to trauma, summing up with how we can apply those experiences within both our personal and professional lives. He gave easy to interpret tools on building, maintaining and guidance for turning negative relationships into strong long-term relationships. Examples of holding accountability of self-worthiness reflects to how we hold ourselves hostage in everyday life. Overall, Paul was very enlightening in many ways during the time provided. Personally, I have started reading his book “Take Control of Your Life” which is reminiscent of the way he spoke, making for a good read.

Michael “Jamie” Ryan, Solutions Sales Representative

INX International Ink Co.

Interview with J. Paul Nadeau

By treating others with compassion and understanding, what aspects of your life have been affected?

I chose a career in law enforcement. That meant that I dealt with many situations involving crisis and danger. I discovered that when I treated people the way that I wanted to be treated myself, the outcome was always far much better. So much so that that approach to dealing with people saved my life more than once. This approach saved my life in the Middle East when I was about to be killed by terrorists. Not only did this approach work in my professional life, it also worked in my personal life. It’s a recipe for success.

That said, treating others with compassion is often easier said than done; which are the most difficult challenges have you had to face when trying to act with compassion, and how did you overcome them?

I would have to disagree with the statement that it is far easier said than done. Why should it be so difficult? The problem is, as I see it, that we simply need to remind ourselves to separate a person’s actions from who they really are, deep down inside. For example, if a person has wronged us, we tend to focus more on the wrongdoing than we do on the person and how we can mend the broken bridge. We need to put the wrongdoing aside at first to establish rapport and connection and open dialogue. In this way the other person is more willing to listen and we are both more willing at reaching understanding.

What skills are needed to be a good negotiator?

Active listening skills are by far one of the best skills a hostage negotiator can have. That sprinkled with patience and focus. People in crisis, a hostage taker for example, can be very confused and uncertain. As in any type of conflict, one of the best things to allow a person to do is to let them talk without interruption. And when I talk about “active” listening, that in no way involves thinking about what you’re going to say next. It is really about being in the moment with the other individual to let them express themselves so that you are then in a better position to help them.

Can you give some tips for how to stay cool-headed in stressful situations?

I certainly can. Slow things down. Take deep breaths and be open and honest. If you need a moment with the person you are in conflict with, say so. There’s nothing wrong in saying something like, “I really want us to resolve this but I need just a few moments here to catch my breath. I want us to work this out.”

Recognize that you must remain in control of your own emotions if you hope to resolve the situation amicably. Don’t rush anyone or dismiss how they feel. Understand that the person across from you is more similar to you than they are different. Ask yourself how you would like to be treated by the other person, then treat the other person accordingly.

What do you gain personally from being a public speaker?

For me, it’s spreading a good message and helping others. What a wonderful feeling it is to share your years of experience and knowledge with someone who can then immediately use it to help improve their present and future circumstances. I get such joy of sharing my stories and the lessons that I learned from my stories with others and then hear how they were able to use it to their benefit. That is such a reward.

Who or what inspires/motivates you to do your best?

I motivate myself. My inspiration comes from hope and belief in myself, my vision and my aspirations. I remind myself that I have a choice every day to be happy or to be sad, to be kind or to be cruel. I know that only by working hard and remaining focused can I succeed in life, love and profession, and I act accordingly. I’m also inspired by the stories of other people who have faced challenges in their lives only to choose to overcome whatever obstacles were in their way and succeed. I love motivational stories! They help motivate me immensely.

See keynotes with J. Paul Nadeau
Non-binding request for J. Paul Nadeau

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

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Keynote topics with J. Paul Nadeau