Adam Kreek

Peak Performance, Change Management, Strategic Planning

A Two Time Canadian Olympic Gold Medalist turned Adventurer and Engineer, Adam Kreek is a Social Entrepreneur who walks the talk. Adam is Chair the Board of Directors of Greasecycle, a start-up Biodiesel company on Vancouver Island, and he runs Kreek Speak Enterprises Inc. where he teaches strategies of high performance, framed in compelling narratives and supported by cutting edge research.

A world-class and interactive storyteller, Adam’s timeless performance philosophies serve to embolden organizational culture, re-boot team performance, and expand resiliency. Adam delivers keynote addresses and workshops on the topics of Shared Leadership and Teamwork, Managing Change Successfully, Cultivating a Safety Culture, and Strategies for Peak Performance. Relevant, powerful, and transformative, Adam’s keynotes motivate, inspire, educate, and entertain.

During his 13-year rowing career, Adam won over 60 medals, including 43 gold medal performances. After a disappointing loss at the 2004 Athens Olympic Games, Adam and his team powered their way to a gold medal at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games. Following his Olympic career, Adam was named Athlete Leader of the Year at the prestigious Canadian Sports Awards, and was elected to the Canadian Olympic Committee to direct sports policy in Canada. Adam Kreek and his teammates were inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame in June of 2014, the fourth hall of fame to recognize their momentous accomplishment.

Always eager to take on new challenges, Adam made the first ever attempt to row unsupported across the Atlantic Ocean from Africa to North America in January 2013. His goals were to advocate for adventure as a tool for self-development, to educate youth about the importance of sustaining the health our oceans resources, and to collect scientific data about the state of the Atlantic Ocean. After four years in planning and 73 days at sea in their 29-foot rowboat, Adam and his three teammates capsized just 10 days short of their destination. Fortunately, the crew’s exceptional safety and emergency planning ensured that all four members survived and much of their equipment and data was salvaged.

Adam Kreek also serves on the Board of Directors of the Island Biodiesel Coop and is a founding member of the Board of Directors of the BC Biofuels Network. He is a spokesperson for Whitehall Spirit rowing boats and clubs. Adam is former Board Member of the Canadian Olympic Committee where he worked in a leadership role to ensure the benefits of sport spread to the broader Canadian society, and of Clean Air Champions, where he worked for many years to educate Canadians about the importance of the link between personal and environmental health.

Adam is a Big Brother, with Big Brothers and Big Sisters. He recently served as Honorary Co-chair of the Elk Lake Boathouse Renewal Project and helped to raise $1.3 million to renovate the community facility that houses Canada’s Olympic Rowing Team. In addition to his work with organizations, Adam Kreek has worked with tens of thousands of youth in schools, instilling within our next generation the idea that the “secret to happy living is giving.” Adam holds a degree in Geotechnical Engineering and Hydrology from Stanford University. He lives in Victoria, BC, with his wife and two children.

Topic Presentations

As a society, we’ve been oversold the quick fixes. Be the boss now. Lose weight in one week. Get rich tomorrow. We want to believe there’s a secret cheat code, a hack, or a hidden short-cut. When the quick and easy routes fail, we often blame others: it’s the CEO’s fault, our partner’s fault, the client’s fault, the sales team’s fault, the operation team’s fault or even our parent’s fault. The list goes on.

In the face of uncertainty, crisis and today's fast paced business environments we are all forced to deal with making quick decisions in high pressure situations. Some of the best leaders can recognize these situations in the moment and adapt the approach to ensure a positive outcome in these situations. A shared process by many of these leaders is that they are able to tap into their past experiences to slow down their thinking and act on the fly.

In his engaging, thought-provoking and behaviour changing keynote, Adam shares his principle of The Responsibility Ethic, and teaches the practice of Self-Leadership.  That is, we each can achieve any desired outcome (personal, professional and team) when we recognize our role in the current state of affairs. We must align our vision, plan and behaviour with our goals.

This keynote challenges and heals those who have been told to follow their dreams…but not given the fine print: will require hard work and consistent action.  Attendees are challenged to find the courage to tell themselves the truth, point the finger inward, and hold personal accountability for their vision, values, goals and actions.  Dreams transform into results with vision, planning and action.  We alone create our direction and circumstance through our daily focus, choices and actions.

Learning Objectives:


  • Skills, tools and strategies for effective self-leadership.

  • Methods to successfully craft, plans and execute for maximum results.

  • Maintain an agile and adaptive approach through accountability

  • Increase control and empowerment, optimize decision-making and reduce stress.

An incredible power is released when we work effectively together. When teams function optimally, they can be excellent tools to ensure resiliency, manage risk, and maximize achievement in times of change. When the whirlwind takes over, busyness gains priority and stress levels run high. In a fast-paced environment, we often let communication and team dynamics suffer, and the costs are significant. Empower your team to navigate current and future uncertainty with confidence. Participants will gain my best practices for managing change, and the tools that are necessary for consistent self-improvement.

Learning Outcomes


  • Understand the change curve and stop resistance

  • The power of clear values in times of crisis

  • Focus on what you can control

  • Communication for highly effective teamwork and shared leadership

What are values?  What makes the practice of values identification so powerful?  Can values create the foundation of an engaged workforce – and team culture that eats strategy for breakfast?  How is the alignment of values and action essential to individual and organizational success?

We operate in an increasingly competitive, globally diverse economy.  When our organization’s values are unclear and unlived, performance and productivity are sacrificed.  It takes more than a fear of being fired or financial incentives to motivate employees. Without common, identified and actively embraced values, an organization will struggle to thrive.

In his interactive keynote, Adam brings the power of values to life, evoking professional passion and more fulfilling success.  Adam teaches audiences to unearth their personal and professional values, and how to align them directly with action to be more engaged, productive, focused and ultimately effective.

Learning Objectives


  • Identify and express your personal and organization’s values effectively

  • Optimize decision making and limit distractions

  • Create sustainable team engagement and powerful organizational culture

At the Beijing Olympic Games, my team’s goal was to gain one inch over our competition with every stroke. We won Olympic Gold by just over one second—or 220 inches. That’s one inch for every stroke.


The inches add up.


The same is true in business, entrepreneurship, career and life: quick fixes do not drive excellence.


Too often, we race for quick fix solutions, clinging to claims of easy success: “If only we could fail faster, schedule smarter or work harder”. We maintain unsuccessful strategies at all costs to evade slowing down, re-strategizing and regaining our focus.


The truth is, it takes focus and consistency to establish effective habits. We achieve peak performance when we prioritize the inches: powerful habits, strategies and tools that drive results.


The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over again and expecting a different result. It’s time to take time. Step back and implement the inches that will create and sustain peak performance.


Learn Key Skills for Sustained Results, including:




  • Focus on what you can control

  • Embrace a growth mindset: inspire intrinsic persistence

  • Reject instant gratification: find happiness in effort, drive and process

  • Harness the power of authenticity

  • Capitalize on the value of active listening

  • Do the work

At the Beijing Olympic Games, my team’s goal was to gain one inch over our competition with every stroke. We won Olympic Gold by just over one second—or 220 inches. That’s one inch for every stroke. The inches add up.

The same is true in business, entrepreneurship, career and life: quick fixes do not drive excellence. Too often, we race for quick fix solutions, clinging to claims of easy success: “If only we could fail faster, schedule smarter or work harder”. We maintain unsuccessful strategies at all costs to evade slowing down, re-strategizing and regaining our focus.

The truth is, it takes focus and consistency to establish effective habits. We achieve peak performance when we prioritize the inches: powerful habits, strategies and tools that drive results. The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over again and expecting a different result. It’s time to take time. Step back and implement the inches that will create and sustain peak performance.

Learn Key Skills for Sustained Results, including:


  • Focus on what you can control

  • Embrace a growth mindset: inspire intrinsic persistence

  • Reject instant gratification: find happiness in effort, drive and process

  • Harness the power of authenticity

  • Capitalize on the value of active listening

  • Do the work

We’ve got the balance wrong.


A healthy fear of failure is essential. It reminds us of our accountability and emboldens the threat of consequence. But excessive emphasis on failure can paralyze productivity and stop us from achieving our best work. 


Risk aversion, inner-resistance, self-sabotage, procrastination, anxiety and perfectionism are all signs that we hold an unhealthy fear of failure.


Successful teams and organizations require a healthy relationship with failure. Too much fear – or too little – signals future disaster. Managing your fear of failure effectively allows for individual authenticity and reclaimed confidence. And we need both for sustained success and performance.


It’s time to reframe our fear of failure.


Learn Key Lessons to Empower Drive, Engagement and Growth:




  • How an inaccurate conception of failure cripples engagement, growth and ability

  • How to separate self-worth from past success and failure

  • Differentiate between blameworthy failure and praiseworthy failure

  • Reclaim lost confidence: the action-growth connection

  • Big dreams and small steps can increase your capacity for achievement

Work-life balance is about identifying what’s most important in our lives, explicitly communicating our priorities to our colleagues and our loved ones, and setting definitive boundaries necessary to achieve and sustain our desired way of life.

There is no one size fits all ‘work-life balance’; it is as unique to each of us as our shoe size.  Leading and executing our personal work-life balance requires visioning, planning and the courage to stand up for our values and needs.  Once achieved, work-life balance provides the freedom to live more calm and fulfilled lives.

Adam’s customized and action-oriented keynote teaches participants to:


  1. Identify their top work priorities, and focus on these essential tasks daily to reduce distraction and ensure that work is complete within determined work hours. Tools and strategies provided.

  2. Design and prioritize your personalized balance between work, life and health.

  3. Explore how assertiveness helps us to set boundaries to ensure desired work-life balance is achieved and sustained.

  4. Communicate effectively to convey your new work-life balance to family, friends and colleagues.



The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result. Our daily habits, routines and mental states are no exception.


Statistics don’t lie. We’re more stressed, overworked, overweight and less healthy than ever before. Yet we get up and repeat our behavioural patterns, regardless of whether they are serving us.


As a business owner, entrepreneur, and father of three, Adam has adapted the skills and strategies that propelled him to Olympic Gold to meet the demands of his current pursuits – business, family and community life.  As a lead Champion for the Canadian Men’s Health Foundation and advocate for mental health and wellness programs, Adam teaches simple, practical and science-based strategies to strengthen mental fitness for day-to-day wellbeing.


Join Adam for a transformational keynote or workshop to explore ways you can take back control of your own health and wellness.  Set and fulfil your personal goals and develop a mental fitness for life.


Participants will leave with practical and actionable habits and strategies to better their personal mental fitness for life.


It’s time to hop off autopilot and reboot. To pause and dedicate time to take a breath, reclaim yourself and reset for the next chapter of your life.


Sample Keynote & Workshop Topic Areas:


All keynotes and workshops are tailored to meet the client’s conference goals and theme. Below are sample topic areas; we work with clients to pick 5-10 topics to include in a keynote or workshop. Both programs are designed with a strong behaviour change focus, and participants should arrive ready to write, reflect and take action.





  • Master Your first hour




  • Harness the Power of five-minute Journaling




  • Create and practice small habits for momentum




  • Experiment with a personal resilience meditation




  • Become your own coach; engage the power of self-talk




  • Prioritize “the 3 things” for a successful day, everyday




  • Stop treating life like an emergency




  • Focus on what you can control and ignore the rest




  • Embrace the mindset: Reflect, learn, grow, let it go.




  • Adopt the motto: debate ideas, not people.




  • Take action or calm down; worry is an excuse for inaction.




  • Plan a “positive habit vacation”




  • Engage mindfulness though practiced cues




  • Master the art of routine reflection




  • Learn the skill of behavioural visioning




  • Nutrition for mental performance: quality in, quality out




  • Build and refine personal mantras that support you




  • Physical movement for mental health: the most underutilized medicine




  • Technology to support your health goals






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The Responsibility ETHIC by Adam Kreek

This book is created to help driven professionals fulfill their leadership potential through Adam Kreek’s life story, alongside business case studies and professional development insights.

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