10 Facts

10 facts about David Tovey

Professional speakers often use an ‘ice breaker’ based on the audience choosing which statements about the them shown on a slide are true or false. Well I’ve never appeared on a hit record or cooked for the Royal Family as one of my PSA (Professional Speakers Association) colleagues has –  but I have done some interesting ‘stuff’.

I once spoke at a venue where a government minister was speaking in the next room. Our radio mics were on the same frequency and my voice was heard by his audience. Not for too long though – some burly police officers suggested my mic be switched off!

A few years ago I had a private air show from the Red Arrows (RAF Aerobatic team) – from above them. I was piloting a light aircraft over the Bristol channel when air traffic control asked me to relay a message to ‘Red Leader’ as they were flying too low to receive information direct. As a reward the ‘Red’s’  flew a thousand feet below my plane and put on their coloured smoke – guess who didn’t have a camera that day?

I was a Special Constable for several years and was heavily involved in community policing. I applied business leadership principles to a run down estate where community members were able to claim back their streets from criminals and drug dealers and received a Special Constable of the Year award in 2009.

As a boy I sang in a church choir, singing duets with a fellow chorister  ‘Nigel’. Today my voice upsets our pet Labrador!

During my private flying career I was taught aerobatics in an ex Russian military aircraft by an instructor who had worked on the Russian space programme. He would sometime make me fly inverted for long periods – on one occasion I ‘greyed out’ – I had a vague notion of Gennardy saying ‘David can you hear me’ in a heavy Russian accent. On the ground later I told him I could hear him I just couldn’t do anything!

When I decided to write my book I desperately wanted to get testimonials from three of my business heroes. Richard Denny, Charles H Green and Stephen Covey. They all agreed (Charles H Green wrote the foreword) but sadly only two appear in the book as Stephen Covey passed away before he finished writing a piece for me.

Speaking at a conference in Bali the air conditioning failed, the temperature and humidly soared in the conference room. The organisers had insisted on full ‘booted and suited’ for speakers but as we were about to start the client organisations Australian CEO insisted we get changed into shorts and light shirts – as most of the audience was dressed. Only time I’ve presented from a stage wearing shorts and tee shirt!

At a conference in Arizona the screen and ‘set’ fell on me as I walked on stage!

I designed my first web site in 1995 and toured Europe and Australia speaking on how to use the Internet to market a business. Websites were no more than simple on line brochures back then.

I studied the Royal Marines approach to leadership at the commando training centre Lympstone. I was ‘invited’ to take the commando challenge and complete their assault course. It involved being dragged through water filled tunnels and attempting to run through more types of mud than I ever thought existed. I still vividly remember the sign at the end of the course which reads ‘Its only pain’!