Paul Tobey, founder and CEO of Training Business Pros, author, keynote speaker & award winning jazz pianist.
He is widely regarded as one of North America’s top business trainers specializing in digital marketing. With over 120 appearances a year throughout Canada & the USA, he continues to help thousands of entrepreneurs and business leaders learn digital marketing strategies.
Paul is the author of Suggestology – A self-help guide on how to use the art of asking questions, and how to push a herd upstream. He first rose to prominence as a multi-award winning jazz pianist and former Arkadia Records recording artist.
For 22 years, Paul had a successful ride in the music industry, recording eight albums, touring 21 countries, composing symphonies, and receiving thousands of dollars in awards and grants. However, a fierce fight with Tinnitus combined with the fact that Arkadia Records didn’t survive the aftermath of 9/11 abruptly ended Paul’s jazz career.
Out of desperation to re-invent himself, Paul began mentoring under the tutorship of the world’s top internet marketing trainers. First, Paul began to sell sheet music online, and then downloadable jazz piano lessons, which eventually led to co-founding Training Business Pros in 2007.
TBP has since become a North American leader and provider of high-level business training courses for entrepreneurs. Over the past five years, under the co-leadership of CEO Paul Tobey, and his wife of 20 years Nancy Houle, the company has delivered training courses to thousands across North America, helping small business generate millions in sales.
Tell us about your background. Who you are, where you are from?
I was a concert jazz pianist for the majority of my life. The media reviews had suggested I was a prominent player woven into the fabric of Canadian Jazz. However, I had to shed the skin of starving artist to become who I am today. At the age of 40, I went through a painful yet ultimately rewarding transformation.
I am a proud father, a spiritual partner and deeply committed husband, a brother, a son, a friend, an artist, a CEO, a mentor, a learn-it-all, a speaker, a trainer, a casual golfer, a boater and an over-all grateful soul. Originally born in Owensound Ontario, I was raised in the Wayne Gretzky town of Brantford. Eventually, my career led me to take up residence in places such as Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Park City Utah, and Montreal. Finally our family settled in Toronto.
What themes does your book explore and what do you hope the readers will take away from the experience? Is there a particular feeling or experience that you hope to evoke for the reader?
The book is about transformation. It offers a tool called “Suggestology” which is how to get what you want by asking the right questions. Suffering, trauma and emotional distress often associated with sudden change or loss. People that run smack dab into unexpected major roadblocks in their careers. It can be in the form of hitting the glass ceiling, downsizing, a lay-off, or simply the realization that their core genius is not needed.
I was a concert jazz pianist with industry reviews that awarded me significant cash awards, prizes, and media accolades. However, even with all of the awards, the reality of waking up at 40 and being a starving artist didn’t bode well with having a family. Shedding the skin of who we think we are and allowing “new people, information, mentors, and training” come into your life may often lead you to who you were “meant” to be. I transformed my life at 40 and by the age at 50 I was the CEO of the fastest growing training company in the country. The book offers inspiration and a roadmap to accept change and build a new rewarding life path.
What prompted you to be an author and did you have a particular inspiration in mind? Were you influenced by a particular person, artist, or genre?
I had been invited to speak in front of thousands of people at various business tradeshows and conferences inspiring people to learn new skills to define a new path. It seemed like a natural evolution of these talks to offer the story in its raw form.
My plan was not to be a bestselling author (writing is not my core genius), but to simply tell an easy -to-read story to my fellow entrepreneurs seeking to manifest a positive change in their lives. I’ve had many mentors and influencers help me through this transformation.
Also authors such as Ecker Tolle, Paulo Coelho, Joe Vitale, Verne Harnish, Deepak Chopra, etc. have been part of my personal library. I’m an avid reader.
I’ve been fortunate enough to share the stage with some of those best-selling Canadian authors I admire including Brian Tracey and the Wealthy Barber (Dave Chilton).
If you could compare your book to any other existing works, which ones would it be and why?
The book “Suggestology” is a business book, which belongs in the “personal development” category.
People that enjoy reading books from T. Harv Eker (Millionaire Mind), Joe Vitale’s Attractor Factor, or even authors such as Brian Tracey will enjoy my book. It’s best suited for DIY entrepreneurs who seek some insight into new business intelligence while being inspired to realize their dreams.
Tell us about your latest work and what inspired you.
I have just finished a new book entitled “Brain Dead Offer #1” which is available only through Amazon right now. It’s sexy material if you need to get fresh, current and highly relevant with the big picture when it comes to digital marketing. What is driving the sales of this book is that our Digital Marketing & Sales Certification is now very accessible to small and medium sized companies with 2 or more employees, through a 10K grant. In other words, if you want to learn it, let the government pay for it.
It’s empowering businesses to keep the company intelligence in-house and keep those assets, instead of giving their power away to third party suppliers, who may not be as motivated to do a good job of marketing their company.
Thanks for taking the time for this interview. All the best!
Thank you, Paul Collins. I hope we can do much more together.