Michele Rigby Assad

Author of Breaking Cover, Former CIA Counterintelligence Expert

  • Michele Rigby Assad`s Keynote Speaker Fee This reflects Michele Rigby Assad`s U.S. Speaking Fee

    $10,001 - $20,000

  • Languages Spoken

    English

  • Travels From

    Florida, USA

  • Michele Rigby Assad`s Keynote Speaker Fee This reflects Michele Rigby Assad`s U.S. Speaking Fee

    $10,001 - $20,000

  • Languages Spoken

    English

  • Travels From

    Florida, USA

Suggested Keynote Speaker Programs

SwiftSword ™ Risk Mitigation Tools for High Performance Companies

Learn how to optimize operational decisions and mitigate risk using vetting methodologies from the world of intelligence. The ability to make wise decisions is what sets apart average companies from exceptional ones. The secret sauce is the ability to vet people, ...

Learn how to optimize operational decisions and mitigate risk using vetting methodologies from the world of
intelligence.

The ability to make wise decisions is what sets apart average companies from exceptional ones. The secret sauce is the ability to vet people, products, vendors, and opportunities. Just like vetting is critical to our national security, vetting is the cornerstone of sound business and personal decisions. It enables a spectrum of activities from hiring the most talented and highly motivated employees, to identifying the most promising investment opportunities, to choosing the right childcare provider.

Vetting (verifying, scrutinizing, authenticating) is essential to our everyday lives, yet those who are expected to vet are rarely provided the training to do so. The SwiftSword ™ training course will give you the tools to become a Truth Hacker—able to vet people and information like a pro. Michele’s tools will enable you to cut through chaos, lies, and marketing fluff, to steer your company to success.

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Lessons from the CIA — How to Pivot in Times of Crisis

One thing you learn planning and carrying out operations in war zones is that no matter how hard you try, you can’t prepare for every contingency. You have to get good at pivoting in the moment and making decisions on the fly. Such is the new world thrust on us in 2020. ...

One thing you learn planning and carrying out operations in war zones is that no matter how hard you try, you can’t prepare for every contingency. You have to get good at pivoting in the moment and making decisions on the fly. Such is the new world thrust on us in 2020. Strong leadership understands that now is not the time to maintain continuity of operations—it is time to rethink everything.

  •  Learn how to harness fear to cultivate optimism and resiliency.
  •  Understand how to promote an environment in which your team members’ unique experiences, outlook, and creativity can be harnessed to solve operational challenges.
  • Develop new strategies for tapping into your diverse workforce to navigate changing realities and requirements. (You will be surprised how many amazing ideas come from staff that, up until now, hasn’t had the opportunity or encouragement to share fresh ideas that can breathe new life into operations.)

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Unconscious Bias: How to Knock Down the Walls

I’m used to assumptions. I’ve dealt with them my entire life. It is hard for people to merge the two seemingly different versions of me: an outgoing and kind person who cares very much about others-with the counterterrorism and Middle East expert...

I’m used to assumptions. I’ve dealt with them my entire life. It is hard for people to merge the two seemingly different versions of me: an outgoing and kind person who cares very much about others-with the counterterrorism and Middle East expert. Most human beings are conditioned to associate a leader with someone who wields power in a more forceful manner. Those with sunny dispositions are often relegated to the second tier or the back row. This cognitive dissonance is a product of an Unconscious bias that sets our expectations of people’s strengths, weaknesses, personality and interests. Our assumptions are based on a lifetime’s worth of input, so this happens without our cognizance. We are not aware that this process is occurring.

In the workplace, subconscious bias affects internal processes such as hiring, promotions, leadership development, training decisions, and project management. In terms of operations, subconscious bias affects our marketing and sales strategies, product design, prioritization of projects, and so much more.

Learn the first steps to knocking down the walls to unconscious bias and creating a culture of strong leaders:

  • Acknowledge that we can do a better job
  • Dig deeper and get to know others better
  • Ask more questions
  • Determine whether unconscious bias has affected the way you’ve done business and identify one way to start rectifying that

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How Leveraging War-Zone Tactics in the Workplace Can Help Overcome Stereotypes

Michele uses her experience as a female in the male-dominated intelligence sector to show how your unique personality and perspective are key to being a stand-out in the workplace. Despite being told that she could not carry out successful counterterrorism operations because ...

Michele uses her experience as a female in the male-dominated intelligence sector to show how your unique personality and perspective are key to being a stand-out in the workplace. Despite being told that she could not carry out successful counterterrorism operations because she would never be accepted as a female by the terrorist sources she would have to work with, Michele turned this assumption on its head. She explains how she triumphed by turning her perceived disadvantages to her advantage in the debriefing room, acquiring
intelligence others could not.

Key Takeaways:
– Understand why diversity is critical to creativity and success
– Develop strategies for disrupting the status quo and reframing other’s perception of your capabilities
– Discover how your “disadvantages” can actually enable you to shine in the workplace

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What Dealing with Terrorists Taught Me About Business

 In this program you will learn: How to build rapport using intelligence profiling secrets How to read body language to learn how others are experiencing you or the environment Learn to leverage a technique called “...

 In this program you will learn:

  • How to build rapport using intelligence profiling secrets
  • How to read body language to learn how others are experiencing you or the environment
  • Learn to leverage a technique called “framing” to avoid confrontation and find ways to exploit areas of commonality

Learn More

My Advantage as a Woman in the CIA

 In this program you will learn: Use in-the-field techniques to turn challenging situations around so that you leave conversations in a positive way Leverage women’s intuition to gain an “unfair” advantage in high-stakes...

 In this program you will learn:

  • Use in-the-field techniques to turn challenging situations around so that you leave conversations in a positive way
  • Leverage women’s intuition to gain an “unfair” advantage in high-stakes negotiations
  • Ninja strategies to engage women and minorities in important conversations for collaboration and growth

Learn More

Going Undercover: Finding Your Purpose in a Dangerous World

In this program you will learn:

  • Secrets for escaping an attack or surviving an ambush that you can apply to pushing out of your comfort zone
  • How “going to war” teaches you to manage fear and elevates your game

God’s Looking for the Ordinary

Defying ISIS

Christian Persecution and the Roots of Terrorism

The Courage to Find Your Calling

How to Hear the Voice of God

About Keynote Speaker Michele Rigby Assad

Michele Rigby Assad began her career in the government relations department of an international relief and development organization in Washington, DC, in 1995. She joined the CIA in January 2002 to work as an intelligence officer in the Directorate of Operations, the covert arm of the agency. Specializing in counterterrorism and counterintelligence issues, Michele worked in Iraq and other secret Middle Eastern locations.

To date, Michele has lived in six countries in the Near East region and traveled to more than forty-five others. After a decade of government service, Michele left the undercover life to serve as a public speaker, author, trainer, and international security consultant focused on the Middle East, North Africa, and Europe.

Her book, Breaking Cover: My Secret Life in the CIA and What It Taught Me about What’s Worth Fighting For, published by Tyndale Momentum, was released February 2018 and is currently in production to be made into a major motion picture.

She and her husband, Joseph, live in Florida. Michele holds a master’s degree in contemporary Arab studies from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and a political science degree from Palm Beach Atlantic University.

Michele credits student-led mission trips to Egypt, Russia, and Ukraine and a study abroad program in Egypt, Israel, and the West Bank as being the catalysts for her passion for foreign cultures and international travel. The year she spent studying in the Middle East changed the course of her life, taking her from rural central Florida to the front lines of the war on terror.

Michele is motivated to use her unique platform to educate and inspire, showing how critical courage is to live a life of impact and purpose. Michele writes about her many passions at www.michelerigbyassad.com, where she features articles on counterterrorism, personal security, the Middle East, faith, and inspiration.

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