Gary McDougall

Gary McDougall

Calgary, Alberta
Conflict Resolution, Communication and Negotiation Expert
Gary McDougall is a retired police officer who served with the Calgary Police Service for 25 years & was a member of the Hostage/Crisis Negotiation Team for 8 years. Gary McDougall presents in the areas of interest-based negotiation strategies, workplace violence and situational awareness to enhance employee safety and constructive conflict management.
  • Communications
  • Employee Management
  • Mental Health
  • Business Management
  • Conference
  • Health and Safety


Gary McDougall is a retired Police Officer who served with the Calgary Police Service for 25 years. For the last 9 years of his career, he was a member of the Hostage & Crisis Negotiation Team.

Gary McDougall served as both a Team Leader and Training Coordinator for the Calgary Hostage Negotiation team and was a frequent Instructor at the National Canadian Police College in Ottawa, delivering both basic and advanced hostage/crisis negotiations courses to police officers from across North America.

Additionally, Gary McDougall served as an Instructor at the FBI Training Academy in Virginia, assisting in the training of new FBI Hostage Negotiators. After retiring from law enforcement in 2006, he became a frequent presenter at hostage and crisis negotiation conferences and seminars and is an internationally recognized subject matter expert in the area of negotiations, having presented at over 70 conferences across North America in the past decade.

Gary McDougall is currently a lead instructor for an organization called the National Tactical Officer’s Association and travels throughout North America teaching both Introductory and Advanced training courses in “Hostage and Crisis Negotiation” strategies and techniques. He has parlayed the experiences he gained through his hostage negotiation career into the corporate world and now applies those training concepts to the presentations he offers. He specializes in the area of interpersonal conflict and engaging in conversations and interactions with difficult people. Additionally, he offers presentations in the areas of interest-based negotiation strategies, workplace violence, situational awareness to enhance employee safety and constructive conflict management.

Gary McDougall is a certified Mediator and holds a Certificate in Mediation and Negotiation, receiving that certification through the Alberta Mediation and Arbitration Society and the University of Calgary. He also holds a Certificate in Personnel Management from the University of Calgary. Gary McDougallreceived the Senior Police Administration Certification while serving with the Calgary Police Service. He is also the holder of the Alberta Centennial Police Service Medal as well as the Canadian Long Service Medal for his commitment to law enforcement in Alberta.



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Gary McDougall Topic Presentations

communication skills - because every word matters

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Gary McDougall’s engaging and powerful keynote presentation entitled “Communication Skills; Because Every Word Matters” will invite you to look at the way you have traditionally communicated. Effective communication seems to be a dying art in North American culture as people seem to have become socially isolated. Given this degree of social isolation, when we do find an opportunity to communicate with others, we need to maximize the value of that communicative investment.

    This presentation will assist you in conveying your message, managing assumptions and ensuring that the message intended was the message received. Some of the communication strategies we have historically subscribed to may not be effective in terms of message delivery, and there is value therefore in looking at not only what we are saying, but also what we mean.

negotiating for optimal results

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Negotiation is defined as a discussion between at least two people, in which at least one of the participants has a desired outcome or agenda.

    If you had any interaction with your children this morning, it likely involved negotiation – Get up and get dressed, it’s time for school.  The conversation you had with your co-worker this morning may also have been a negotiation – Where do you want to go for coffee?

    Most people learn negotiation skills at a very young age and have been practising them through childhood. Some of those strategies are effective and others are less so. The focus of this presentation is to underscore the value of the negotiation strategies you already employ and to offer suggestions on how to be more effective during your negotiations. Whether you are negotiating over the sale price of a new car or negotiating a multi-million dollar contract on behalf of your organization, these skills help to create value.

    Gary McDougall is a firm believer that the negotiation tools and strategies he learned as a hostage and crisis negotiator are interchangeable with negotiation strategies used within the sphere of business negotiations. In this presentation, he will share the strategies that worked well during his negotiations, as well as those that did not work well and those lessons learned, which can offer powerful insights to the attendees of this presentation.

constructive conflict management

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Functional interpersonal relationships are at the core of business success, and in some cases, interpersonal conflict is a significant impediment to a successful relationship. Conflict is defined as a state of tension, opposition, or an expressed struggle between two parties who perceive incompatible goals, scarce rewards and interference from the other party in achieving their goals. One aspect of the conflict is related to “perception,” as, in many cases, your perception drives your thoughts, your feelings, and your behaviour.

    Every conflict, every difficult interaction, and every difficult situation—has three different components, which include: the issue at hand, each party’s position and their underlying interest. The key to managing these kinds of interpersonal conflicts is to shift from engaging in a positional conversation and instead, seek to understand what is important to each side (their underlying interest and yours).

    In this presentation, Gary McDougall will explore strategies and techniques for navigating through these difficult engagements and strive to arrive at an outcome that meets each party’s needs. He will share techniques to ensure that both conflicting parties feel they have been heard, listened to and validated. For those high conflict situations, Gary McDougall will share the strategies he used to manage difficult engagements in his former career as a hostage and crisis negotiator.

workplace violence - prevention and prediction

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Recent changes to Canadian Legislation place a significant burden on employers to ensure that they maintain a safe work environment for their employees. Ensuring employee safety is a legal requirement since the proclamation of Bill C-45, which is now addressed in Section 217.1 of the Canadian Criminal Code. Employers are legally bound to ensure employee safety and there are significant criminal and civil ramifications for non-compliance.

    In this presentation, Gary McDougall will provide you with an insight into how in many cases, violence follows a pattern of escalation, which creates a need for employers and co-workers to recognize these indicators of escalation. Additionally, attendees will gain an understanding of the classification of risks which include the risk associated with an unknown person (not associated with your workplace) entering to commit a crime such as a robbery, assault or theft.

    Other risks include the risks that can be posed by co-workers and former co-workers, the risks associated with clients or former clients and finally, the risks associated with a domestic situation spilling into the workplace. Gary McDougall will offer information about how, in many cases, violent people are purposeful in their actions; dates, methods and locations are significant and often drive the violent actions. He will also explore the similarity in patterns between suicidal subjects and homicidal subjects. The session will also offer strategies to employ in the unlikely event a violent situation arises in the workplace and what actions to take to ensure your safety.

enhaning employee safety through situational awareness

  • Keynote Presentation
  • While the law requires that employers create and maintain a safe work environment for their employees, when a violent event occurs in a workplace setting, each individual employee is responsible for their own safety. That said, in some workplaces, there are employees that operate in a state of oblivion, with no recognition or understanding that situations and circumstances may arise that are a risk to their personal safety. In this presentation, Gary McDougall will provide information designed to create situational awareness and encourage people to match their level of awareness with the potential risks that may be present in the workplace.

    This session will also outline the route potentially violent people follow as they move toward violence. Understanding this escalation pattern is critical information for anyone that may work in an environment in which there is a potential for violence. The session will also include information relating to human intuition and our need to pay attention to the subtle warning signs that sometimes lead to violence. People attending this presentation will walk away with tangible strategies for creating their own personal safety plan, using the information offered during the presentation to create their own plan.

dealing with difficult people

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed to deliver an understanding of why difficult people act as they do and to provide you with tools for addressing those difficult situations. When you encounter a reasonable person acting unreasonably, there are several highly effective strategies for restoring the relationship to a productive and functional state. This course will give you the tools to control your emotional responses and also show you ways in which you can manage the other person effectively. If you have frequent interactions with difficult people, this course is for you. This course can be structured to be delivered at any length from a 90-minute “Lunch and Learn” session, a 4-hour interactive training session, or a full 8-hour day. The full-day session contains extensive material, while the shorter presentations are tailored to contain components from the course of specific interest to the client.

dealing with victims

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed specifically for people working in any industry in which they are required to interact with victims. Specifically, this course is applicable to the insurance industry, victim services groups and any other occupation in which their primary function is to interact with victims. Note: This course is accredited through the Alberta Insurance Council as a 7.5-hour credit course. This course can be structured to be delivered at any length from a 4-hour interactive training session to a full 8-hour day. The full-day session contains extensive material, while the shorter presentations are tailored to contain components from the course of specific interest to the client.

ethics-based decision making

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed to invite you to examine your own personal and ethical “line in the sand.” During this session, you will be presented with a number of ethical dilemmas and invited to take a position on each issue. Participants are free to enter into the discussion or maximize their ethical learning by observing the interactive discussions. The learning occurs during the interactive discussion around which position is the “correct” position, and during most sessions, many people flip from side to side based on the information being discussed.  This session will also present you with a structured model for making those difficult ethical decisions.

workplace violence - prevention and prediction

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed to raise your awareness of workplace violence issues. Traditional thinking tells us this is not an issue we need to concern ourselves with, however, the reality is that workplace violence IS occurring in our world. This course will invite you to examine risk within the context of YOUR workplace and look at ways in which you can best manage those risks. You will be introduced to the sources of workplace violence risk, pre-incident indicators you should be mindful of and strategies for what to do if you experience an incident of workplace violence. This course can be structured to be delivered from a 90-minute “Lunch and Learn” session to a 4-hour interactive training session in which we examine the risks posed by your workplace.

workplace bullying

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Workplace bullying is subtle and difficult to pinpoint.  This session is designed to raise your level of awareness to ensure this doesn’t happen to you or someone you know. Workplace bullying is insidious but present in almost every workplace to varying degrees. In some cases, the workplace bully walks a fine line, flirting with our corporate respectful workplace policies and in some cases, the bully has absolutely no regard for these policies and operates openly. This course will identify specific behaviours, look at ways in which you can protect yourself from the workplace bully and give you a strategy in the event you find yourself the target of the workplace bully.

negotiate anything

  • Keynote Presentation
  • Any human interaction in which at least one of the parties has an “agenda” can be considered a “negotiation”. We negotiate every day in situations; either business-related or in our personal situations. Not all negotiations are limited to boardroom situations. This course is structured to provide you with an insight into how you can be more effective during your everyday negotiations. You will learn how to manage the negotiation process, as well as manage your emotions and emotions in others during your more difficult interactions.

    This session will provide you with a model for preparing yourself in anticipation of negotiation and give you a structured model to follow to ensure the best results possible. This course can be structured to be delivered from a 90-minute “Lunch and Learn” session, a 4-hour interactive training session, or a full 8-hour day. The full-day session contains extensive material while the shorter presentations are tailored to contain components from the course of specific interest to the client.


  • Keynote Presentation
  • In many cases, the success of a work or business unit depends on the cohesiveness of the Teams that work within that area. This session focuses on taking an existing work group or team and increasing cohesion to maximize team function. The training sessions can be of any duration in length ranging from a 90-minute “Lunch and Learn” style session to a full 8-hour workshop. In most cases, the training can be presented at your workplace for the convenience of your staff. The balance of the session focuses on highly interactive teambuilding activities in which members of the group move through a series of challenging tasks and must work through these activities as a cohesive unit. Through this process, behaviour patterns emerge and those participating learn valuable lessons about themselves and their fellow team members.

leadership workshop

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed to offer a diverse menu of topics from which you can choose the areas within “leadership” that would be of most value to your organization. This training emphasizes the value of “leadership” over “management” and highlights the importance of relationships being at the core of effective leadership. This course can be structured to be delivered at any length from a 4-hour session to a full and interactive 2-day leadership workshop.

suicide - assessment and intervention

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed to deliver a complete spectrum of information relating to suicide, spanning from motivation for suicide through signs and indicators and offering strategies for managing a suicidal person. This information is applicable to anyone that may be in contact with a potentially suicidal person from loved ones, friends, employees, co-workers or even complete strangers. Suicide touches many lives and this course will provide information relating to factors that motivate people toward self-harm and illustrate the differences between a suicidal gesture and a suicide attempt. This course will give you the tools to effectively assess and if necessary, manage a potentially suicidal person. This course can be structured to be delivered at any length from a 90-minute  “Lunch and Learn” session, a 4-hour interactive training session, or a full 8-hour day.

advanced presentation skills

  • Keynote Presentation
  • This course is designed for anyone that is required to deliver presentations, speak in public, instruct in a classroom or who just wants to develop confidence in speaking in front of others. Public speaking is said to be one of the most debilitating fears for some people, and this course will offer tips and tricks to develop your confidence in speaking, instructing or presenting. This course can be structured to be delivered at any length from a 4-hour interactive training session to a full 8-hour day.

Gary McDougall travels from Calgary, Alberta & delivers customized and tailored keynote speeches, presentations, workshops and training sessions. on the topics enlisted below. These services are designed for a variety of audiences, industries, and event types and event formats.


Gary McDougall relates well with employees from all age groups and the sessions are educational and informative. Examples from his personal work-related experiences provide credibility that is second to none. Attending Gary’s sessions has provided our team members with valuable tools, enabling them to do their jobs in a safe efficient manner. In addition, key learnings have enhanced their personal lives away from the workplace.

Randy Skimmings

Manager of Facility Services
Vivo Calgary

Gary McDougall professionalism, attitude and clear enjoyment of what he does is evident in each of his presentations. His feedback has always been incredibly positive and I’m often asked when he will be returning to deliver new and different content. Gary’s content and his style are exceptional!

Paula Booth

Manager, National Claims Response Centre Operations
Co-operators Insurance

Gary McDougall presentation on “Workplace Violence; Prevention and Prediction” was very well received by the staff as they found the information to be both current and extremely interesting. Comments were made about Gary’s exceptional ability to hold their attention for the entire session, as well as provide them with useful tools and information in dealing with various workplace scenarios. After attending many seminars regarding a variety of topics in our industry, Gary’s stands out to be the most enjoyable by far!

Lainie Nordin

Vice President
Aurora Land Consulting Ltd.

Articles & Media

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How to book Gary McDougall for an event?

Gary McDougall keynote speaker is an expert presenter and has a wide range of experience speaking to a wide variety of audiences and organizations. Gary McDougall delivers keynotes, workshops & training sessions. They may also host or emcee events. Hire Gary McDougall from Calgary, Alberta for your event to inspire the audience to take action and make change in their work and their lives. Your workplace will benefit from our keynote speaker and their keynote talks and speeches will shift the mindsets or behaviours for the audience members in Canada. 

Interested in booking Gary McDougall for an event?

Are you looking to hire Gary McDougall for your event? Gary McDougall Calgary, Alberta is a dynamic and engaging speaker that offers audiences researched content paired with expertise and a dynamic speaking ability. Gary McDougall is also a Canadian corporate consultant and coach and facilitates workshops and training sessions for a corporate audience. Gary McDougall is an expert keynote presenter and speaks on wide variety of topics. Hiring a great speaker for your event is important and working with a thought leader like Gary McDougall from Speakers Canada’s roster will engage audiences into the content of the presentation to bring awareness and a fresh perspective for their approach to their work and their lives. Book Gary McDougall to educate, motivate and activate the audience through an interactive and entertaining presentation at corporate meetings and gatherings.

Known as a popular key note speaker in Canada, Gary McDougall creates life changing experiences for the participants with practical insights and strategic advice they can implement right after the session. Working with a one our leading expert speaker like Gary McDougall from Calgary, Alberta offers organizations a fresh perspective to assist the people of the organization. No matter if it is a government, association, or business crowd, Gary McDougall is a perfect speaker for your event. Through unique practical insights for trending topics and years experience speaking to different organizations, Gary McDougall focuses on changing individuals to make better decisions at work and their lives. No matter if you are holding an in person or virtual event, having an influential speaker such as Gary McDougall will engage, motivate, and activate the audience to make a change in their lives and inspire action for results to meet organizational goals. Your workforce will benefit from Gary McDougall’s presentations and speeches, with measurable results set to shift the people of the organization and core direction of the company. Book Gary McDougall speaker for your annual general meeting, conference, summit, or convention in Canada.

How much does it cost to hire Gary McDougall for a keynote presentation or virtual event?

Gary McDougall is an expert professional key note speaker with a lot of experience speaking and delivering engaging talks to organizations and audiences in Canada. Each of Speaker Bureau Canada’s talent have different ways to assess their fees, and Gary McDougall speaker fee ranges depending on the size of the audience, event format (in person or virtual), event location, and if the organization booking them is a non profit, association, government department/government agency or business/corporation. The speakers we work with are flexible with their fees, and it is important for us to learn more about your event before we approach them, as it is our role to work for you, and to help you find a speaker within budget. 

Please contact Speakers Bureau of Canada and provide us with your event details so that we can contact Gary McDougall to check availability or confirm the pricing and associated costs to hire a great speaker like Gary McDougall for your event. As Gary McDougall's agent and as a Canadian top speaker bureau and talent agency for speakers, we are able to propose each event opportunity from each host organization’s behalf to try to help you get in touch with Gary McDougall and confirm them for your in person or online meeting/event. We can also provide and advise on the booking process and potentially negotiate their fee. Speakers Canada is a client focused speaker agency, and we work for you in finding good speakers for your team meetings and booking processes.

Gary McDougall Disclaimer
Speakers Bureau Canada assists companies and event planning teams seeking to hire talent like Gary McDougall for speaking engagements, virtual meetings, conference appearances, training sessions and workshops facilitations. Our Canadian speakers bureau does not claim to exclusively represent Gary McDougall, however they are represented by Speakers Canada, and we work with them closely for their Canadian speaking opportunities and bookings. As Canada’s top speaker bureau, we represent Canadian motivational keynote speakers and professional guest speakers that will be available on your upcoming events date and location that are withing the budget. Our talented bureau speaker booking agency can help find business speakers or celebrity speakers that aligns with each organization, audience, event theme and the topic themes you hope for the speaker to address in their presentation. 

When SBC receives a request to book Gary McDougall we provide you with their speaker fees, travel costs and check their schedules. We work closely with the host organization’s event planning team and the speaker to handle the logistics and to relay or negotiate associated costs. Our talented team members then will work with our talent directly or their agent/manager/assistant to confirm the Canadian speaker fee and travel expenses, so that event planning teams can receive an official quote for the speaker appearing at the event. Speaker fees and travel costs vary per speaker and our role is to contact Gary McDougall about your event, after we have connected with the event organizers to learn all the event details and/or conference program. Each booking request is unique since session durations and audience sizes can vary which may affect the speaker’s fees. If you are looking to hire Gary McDougall, we recommend filling out the booking request form so a booking agent from Speakers Bureau Canada can get in touch with our talent to help you coordinate with your team to engage the speaker for a successful event.

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