“Marv spoke to a group of software developers at a Vancouver “meetup of meetups” meeting with a message designed to inspire and motivate. His talk was based on the story of Lt Rowan who was tasked to carry a message to Garcia during the Spanish American War. In a room full of technically minded people, holding one, sometimes two smartphones in their hands, you could hear a pin drop as Marv laid out the backdrop of the story, and related it to the modern-day workforce. No one looked at their devices during his talk, no one carried on a side conversation with their neighbor, no one moved. They were riveted. At one point he asked a question of the audience and engaged someone at the back, giving him command of the entire room. As he expounded on his theme, many heads nodded in agreement.
It was a masterfully told tale, with a timeless message about the value of carrying out a critical mission with unquestioning obedience, and unflinching determination to succeed. His application to the modern world laid bare the chasm between the ideal and the status quo and exposed the character flaws revered by society today that are now deeply imbued into the modern consciousness. It forced the listener to evaluate their core beliefs and come to a starkly different conclusion from the one propagated by today’s levers of power in education, the media and the political sphere. Organizations today are plagued with graduates who have been taught to question every request, resist every order, and walk away and avoid problems rather than running directly at them.
Judging from the body language in the room as the speech progressed, I would say “Mission accomplished.”
Bob Hall, DL3, CC, CL, Vice President Education, TM-3091
"To paraphrase William James, I believe the greatest use of one’s life is to spend it on something that will outlast it. As I am familiar with Marv Serhan's career and what a tremendous impact he has had on his students (I was one) dating from his time as a professor, I can say that it’s obvious he ascribes to the same philosophy and that he at all times acted with total dedication and devotion to his followers and in so doing, he helped make their lives and the legacies they will leave better. As a speaker, he routinely relates powerful stories to his audience that are both rich with meaning and leave a lasting impression. I have observed him on more than one occasion earn an audience’s rapt attention while talking about ethics and leading with passion. Marv Serhan most certainly made a difference. I thank him for that experience!"
—Katherine Velliquette, United States Marine Corps Gunnery Sergeant (Retired), and University of San Diego MSGL graduate
"What I enjoyed about your presentation today, was that you brought real world, tangible, examples of your experience to the group. I trusted that your message would resonate with the crowd. A delicate challenge. Today, you did exactly that. Congratulations."
"I just heard Marv's speech at a meeting of the Institute of Management Consultants. When you know someone is going to speak on ethics and leadership, it's easy to think it will be boring, but Marv's presentation is anything but! He will leave you mesmerized, thinking about your company's culture, and hungry for history. Do your organization a favor and hire Marv to speak. You'll be so glad you did. We certainly were!"
—Julia Marracco, Executive Performance Coach, Mental Iron Coaching
"Marv Serhan keynoted our 2008 Conference on Project Management and Leadership in Los Angeles. Marv was recommended to us by a colleague, and we were more than impressed when we finally had the opportunity to see him work in person. His one-hour speech was compelling and inspiring to all. He stitched together several interesting stories about such leaders as the historic ruler Charlemagne, NCAA Passing Champion Rich Lichtel, US Vice Admiral James Stockdale, and even one about an old and crusty Chief Petty Officer. Each story repeatedly hit the mark about what makes a good and effective leader. Marv is a great speaker and one that I look forward to working with again. Thanks Marv! You got our conference started off right!"
—Edward Dabran (Event Master of Ceremonies)
"I hired Marv to deliver the keynote presentation at the 7th Annual Managing Projects & Programs conference held on July 17th, 2008. From his response to my RFP to his delivery of the speech, Marv was a total pro. His public speaking was clear and he took the time to to understand the conference audience. Marv's message was simple but full of powerful stories that helped the audience resonate with that message. Based on this e experience, I am proud to recommend Marv Serhan as both a speaker and educator."
—Ryan Brown, Program Manager at Portland State University
"Your work in training all of these flyers is extraordinary. Can you imagine how good corporate leaders would be if they had the same kind of training in their businesses? MBA's have terrific business acumen, but the degree doesn't come close to the military system in educating or training people as leaders."
"You're the guy to deliver this kind of stuff. You're a hero in a land of mediocrity—use of the “distracting” technology to get back to the basics."
—Dale Collie, CourageBuilders.com, National Speakers Association member & former Army Officer
"Dear Marv, A very big thank you from the team. We've aready received rave reviews from attendees. Your delivery was outstanding and well done. Your dedication and devotion to country really showed. Thank you again my friend. Congratulations on a well done assignment."
"Marv has to be one of the most sincere humans I know. He is definitely one of the finest examples of arête [pursuit of excellence] there is. Everything I have seen Marv do is done with excellence. On February 7, 2009, Marv spoke to The Leadership Forum, in Beaverton and presented "A view from the trenches; why we follow.” He had the audience awestruck. It was a fantastic talk on leadership. We are forever grateful for his time and delivery. When you are looking for wonderful motivational and knowledgeable speaker Marv is the man."
—Cleon Cox III and the Leadership Forum Team
"I really enjoyed your inspiring keynote speech, "Arete: Ancient Wisdom for Modern Leaders". You are a great example to me and all the Toastmasters in D7."
"I had the privilege of meeting Marv Serhan while I was a graduate student in the University of San Diego's Master of Science in Global Leadership (MSGL) program. As an adjunct professor, he taught Project Leadership for Global Business (MSGL-533) to a diverse cohort of scholars. His great insight into Project Management, Leadership techniques and considered approach to presentation made him one of my favorite professors.
He has the gift of public speaking, presenting a wide variety of materials on numerous issues that effect the management of projects. Most importantly, he has refined his skills to the point that he is able to make relevant tie-ins with his audience. Personally, this enhanced my ability to retain the material he presented.
Marv is an excellent educator, public speaker and proven leader. I would jump at the chance to hear him speak on any topic."
—Dennis Horn, MSGL
“Marv did an amazing job speaking at our recent MAP Alliance forum. He provided quality, relevant material that led to group discussions and eager participation. His knowledge and experience allowed for his presentation to inspire and engage attendees throughout the community.”
- Mistie Josephson, Business Growth Mentor & Analysis Program (MAP) Manager, Washington State University Vancouver
"Hi Marv, FANTASTIC job today! Thank you again for such a thoughtful and powerful presentation. You gave all of us a new perspective and tools to use in our careers."
—Walt Duddington Welldiggers
"Marv, the stories were very relevant – and it’s a good reminder of how one person can touch someone’s life in such a way – in this case your quarterback. I do hope to have the opportunity to hear more stories. I’m sure you have many more from your experience! ...If I’m ever in the position to coordinate the speakers, you will be the first one I call. Experience is the best teacher."
—Laureen, Project Manager
“For Marv Serhan, Captain U.S. Navy (Retired) who has seen what can so easily be lost, and has dedicated his life to helping others remember.”
—With gratitude and appreciation, Stephen Bertman, Ph.D.
"I wanted to send a personal note to thank you for your thoughtful and inspired talk at the seminar last week. I’ve taken classes and listened to various talks on leadership, but I found yours to be the most informative. Additionally, your story-telling approach was quite enjoyable.”
"Thanks for sharing your experience with us. I appreciate the opportunity to learn from it."
"It was my pleasure to hear you speak at the March 27th Greater LA Project Management and Leadership Seminar in Cerritos, CA. Both your keynote address and participation in the panel discussion provided many insights into leadership. I would appreciate it if you would forward a copy of the keynote slide deck as I would like to keep the principles you discussed in the forefront of my thinking as I lead projects."
"I had the opportunity to hear Marv speak on Leadership at a conference where we were both speakers. He is a very passionate speaker. As an attendee he held my interest for his entire presentation. I have heard many presentation on leadership in the past thirty year but none that kept me engaged like Marv's. His knowledge, expertise, and suggestions on leadership were without a doubt the most motivating I have ever come across."
"A good report Marv, I received a glowing report from CC about your presentation at the leadership forum. In fact CC gave a rather detailed summation of your entire speech as we sat around the dinner table last night. He was very impressed with the various inclusions of history, which he loves, and how you tied it together in a powerful manner. Hearing what he said, I felt cheated in having missed such a stellar performance. If you have speaking engagements open to the public over the next few months, please keep me informed. It would be a treat to hear you and learn."
—District 7 Governor from Toastmasters International
"I heard you speak at the Beaverton Leadership forum, and would like to thank you for one of the best speeches that I have ever heard."
"As 2013 IMA Past President and on behalf of IMA PDX, I would like to extend our appreciation for Marv's graciousness to speak with our members at the last minute, as we faced a speaker cancellation. On a daily basis, I embrace the mantra, “we can make more money, but we cannot make more time.” His sacrifice of time, sharing of expertise and enthusiasm was very refreshing. The fact that he arrived an hour early established at fantastic first impression followed by his engagement with members as they arrived on the scene. Most of all, his hospitality was amazing, I felt that he was one of us – an IMA member! He used people’s names and their pre-meeting converstations in his examples. Bravo! Great, great job in all aspects, Marv. You covered all the bases and hit the ball out of the park!"
MBA Mario's, Executive & Personal Assistant to Mario Bisio
"The MSGL Program is fortunate to have a dedicated professor like Marv Serhan. He consistently goes above and beyond to help his students learn about project leadership, and provides excellent feedback to help his students learn and grow, both personally and professionally. Marv is very-well organized, and demonstrates many additional talents as an educator, public speaker, and business leader."
—Samuel K. Chung, Ph.D., Instructional Design | Data analysis | Data visualization | Web programming | Project management
"Marv's innate leadership abilities readily command your attention. He possesses outstanding communication skills which easily spans a wide range of audiences; from high school to college to the professional arena. And, his educational training and expertise allows him to adapt quickly to the needs of his audience.
For the past few years, my classes at the Clark County Skills Center have greatly benefited from Mr. Serhan's guidance and training. He has generously served as a guest instructor of Speech Craft, the high school division of Toastmasters. The student's received him well and as a result of Marv's training can not only appreciate the power of a good speech but also demonstrate it.
It has been a great pleasure to work with Marv. He analyzes, strategizes, prepares and delivers with thoroughness and quality. He is a professional in every aspect of the word "
—Pam Archer, Fashion Merchandising and Management Instructor at Clark County Skills Center