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Upon returning from the Gobi March in 2009 where he placed first in the 40-50 age group, Stéfan was invited to share his experience to a group of peers, the members of Young President Organization. Through word of mouth, Stéfan started to share the story with broader audiences. Within a year, a few thousand people were touched by his experience, be it at company town halls, sales and team meetings, annual retreats, customer events, and annual general meetings.

A year later, Stéfan ran another desert race, the Atacama Crossing. This time, seeking a different experience, he entered in the team competition alongside two colleagues, Luigi Santaguida and Ernie Votis. They won the race. The experience produced new insights about team leadership and what it takes to win.

The speaking road show spread further and many attendees showed interest in running the desert, which led to the Sahara Race where 8 executives from Toronto joined Stéfan to raise awareness for a charity. Stéfan also entered the team competition, this time with Sophie Collett, a veteran ultra-runner and previous winner in the team category in the Gobi desert, and Ernie Votis, previous team mate in the Chilean Atacama desert.

Stéfan's presentations are customized, from a 40 to 90 minutes, and include a powerful audio visual background. Presentation topics include:

  • Overcoming adversity
  • Managing change
  • Overcoming fear of failure and fear of success
  • Choosing a winning mindset
  • Re-interpreting past and current events to empowered ones
  • Replacing defeating habits
  • Exploring possibility

Observing the winning team in the Gobi March and being part of a winning team in the Atacama Crossing created rich content for team-based leadership distinctions, and learn to thrive when under duress.

Stéfan uses the desert as a metaphor to present some of the personal and team leadership insights. He also has 20 years of experience as CEO of Mandrake, one of Canada's largest executive search firm, as well as NEXCareer, a well-known career transition firm.

Stéfan has spoken at the companies listed below. Contact us and we will provide you with names of appropriate leaders to contact at these companies and obtain a reference.