Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in professional training and coaching but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Dr. Denis Cauvier, CEO, keynote speaker, best-selling author & trainer, based in Ottawa, ON, Canada.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

For 33 years, I have focused on providing practical solutions for business owners and their key management teams on proven strategies to increase sales, profits, recruit, lead, develop and retain great people. Based near Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, I operate an international training and coaching firm. As President/CEO of three companies, I understand senior executives' realities, challenges & opportunities in today's turbulent economy and have guided my clients through three previous global recessions. I am an Adjunct Professor with ESC Clermont Graduate School and IPAG University Business School. As a recognized global talent management and business development expert, I bring years of consulting experience from the field, researching and implementing the best business ideas, practices, and case studies from around the world. I take this global perspective and create localized solutions for my clients, thus providing them with competitive strategic advantages. I was named YPO (Young Presidents Organization) 2012 & 2013 Global Speaker Resource. My clients include dozens of start-ups, hundreds of SMEs, and over 200 multinational companies from 57 countries.

Tell us about yourself

I first coached adults in martial arts at the age of 12 and discovered that I had a knack for sharing techniques and concepts in an engaging way. My first micro business was at age 14, buying and selling stuff at local flea markets. I thoroughly enjoyed dealing with the public and learning about the fundamentals of business. I realised at an early age that some of my favourite things involve helping and coaching business owners, traveling, and moving businesses forward. In hindsight, it's not surprising that after more than three decades of keynote speaking, training, consulting, and writing, I am still passionate about serving my clients worldwide.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

Long-term, meaningful relationships are critically important to me, and 89% of all my clients rehire me. My clients don't just hire me because we get along and enjoy each other's company; ultimately, they invest in my services because they want results. I am very proud that my training, coaching and advisory services to date have increased my clients' revenues by over $1.2 Billion and their profits by over $271 Million. I pride myself on providing low-cost/high-impact solutions tailored for each client.

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

One of the hardest things all business owners will have to deal with can be described as a limiting mindset. If the owner has self-doubts or crumbles under challenges and adversity, then they and their business are doomed for failure or, at best, mediocrity. Developing mental toughness is critical for business owners. Adversity and challenges are abundant and a part of business life; some owners cave in under the pressure while others rise to the occasion. The good news is you don't have to be born with mental toughness; it can be learned, developed, and capitalized on. I recently wrote the book Bullet Proof – Mental Toughness the Key to Winning in Life which explains in detail step-by-step how business owners can become Bullet Proof. The book is divided into eight sections based on the 8 keys of mental toughness model of inner strength. The word STRENGTH is an acronym to help remind you of the 8 critical components of mental toughness, as shown below.

  • Stretch beyond comfort zones
  • Teachable mindset
  • Resilience during adversity
  • Emotional maturity
  • Neutralizing negatives
  • Goal & purpose focused
  • Tenacity, disciplined & ability to move into action
  • Happiness, gratitude & enthusiasm

Once your business starts getting traction and you start enjoying some success, it's very common for business owners to take things for granted and to start to believe that they know it all. The moment this happens is the bigging of the end in that if you think you know it all, you will be closed to creative suggestions and critical feedback on where you and your business are vulnerable. The key to overcoming this is to be "coachable"; in fact, most say that they want feedback, but in reality, they seek praise. In my most recent book, Coachable – Beyond Winning Teams to Changing Lives, my co-author Bill Whittle and I cover in great detail, with many powerful self-assessment tools and relatable examples of how to develop as a business person, two key areas, being more coachable and how to coach others more effectively. Both of these books are available worldwide through Amazon.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Understand not all businesses are created equal. I have developed the Business Ranking Scorecard , which assesses any business on a 21 points scale. As a business coach, I use this proprietary tool to help my clients assess their businesses and determine practical ways to improve them. Reach out to me directly at if you are interested in applying to have your business assessed.
  2. Be real with yourself, identify any key areas within yourself that will likely hold you back, and resolve to improve in these areas. This is being "coachable."
  3. Get a mentor or a coach who will accelerate your ability to scale and reduce the chances of your being blind-sided by something you didn't expect. Ultimately put the odds of success in your favor!

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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