Hi, Al Argo here.
I am a skydiving accident survivor and visually impaired author, encouragement coach and international speaker. It is also my pleasure to host the weekly Encouragement 511 Podcast!
For more details simply read on below!
I grew up in the beautiful foothills of the Appalachian mountain chain near Mount Cheaha, Alabama, the highest point in all of Alabama, but have lived the last 20 years in Asia.
At the young age of nine I went to the doctor and he told my parents and I that, as I got older my vision might get progressively worse and that one day I might go totally blind.
Earlier that same year, in an evening worship service at church, I had felt a call to do something great with my life. I really sensed that God had a plan, purpose, reason and destiny for my life and my future.
And then, just a few months later I received this news that no one would ever want to hear at any age!
Because of my thick glasses, speech impediment (I couldn’t even say my own name correctly) and hearing loss issues I was sometimes made fun of by kids my age. And then there were some, like Jody, Kevin, Lori, Kristy and others who accepted me as I was and, actually, we are still friends today (4 decades later!).
I went to work at a newspaper at the age of 14 (I later became marketing director at the same company) and also began work at a restaurant at the age of 16.
Although honestly not the best student, I received almost a full ride scholarship to the University of Alabama which I will always be grateful for.
While studying at Alabama I joined the skydiving team and had a major skydiving accident when my parachute did not open completely or correctly. (I tell this full story in my 2022 book, Blessed Beyond Stress: How to Overcome Adversity, Manage Stress and Live a Life of Resilience!).
EVERYONE HAS OBSTACLES!
To make a long story short I have overcome a crazy amount of challenges and obstacles and have enjoyed an amazing and wide variety of wonderful experiences along the way.
AL ARGO'S WORK EXPERIENCE
Since I began to work at age 14, I have worked as:
- Ice maker (yes, at an ice factory)
- Caterer/Chef (and yes, I still cook!)
- Shoe salesman/Door-to-door salesperson
- Enumerator (for the US Census Bureau)
- Student Mechanic (at a University Motor Pool)
- Bellman at a 5-star hotel
- NASCAR vendor (@ Talladega 500)
- Japanese Gardener (very short time)
- Professional Mover
- Travel agent
- Call center/BPO employee/trainer
- Advertising executive
- Marketing director (For a healthcare company and later a monthly magazine)
- Real Estate/Mortgage Industry
- Small business owner
- Pastor (for Children’s Ministry and later as Lead)
- Coffee shop operator
- Executive Coach
- Management Consultant
- Corporate Trainer
- Professional Speaker
- Podcast host of Encouragement511.com
I studied Advertising/Marketing at Alabama, attended Bible school in Dallas, did one year of my MBA and have a Masters in Management and Leadership from Western Governors University.
I have met and learned directly from Jay Abraham (Marketing), Dan Poynter (Publishing), Charles “Tremendous” Jones and Zig Ziglar (Speaking) and John Maxwell (Leadership). I often tell people that my name, Al, is an acronym for “Always Learning!”
AL ARGO SPEAKING/TRAINING/COACHING
I have traveled to and spoken in over 25 different countries over the last 25 years.
I have been able to train employees (mostly in sales, leadership or personal effectiveness) from such companies as AIG, Audi, BMW, Fluor, Standard Charterd Bank, Napoleon Hill Foundation, Nepal Bankers Association, Motion Industries, Pfizer, Regional Medical Center as well as many others.
I also have extensive experience training non-profit leaders and doing humanitarian disaster relief and community development work across Asia.
For years I was a John Maxwell EQUIP trainer based out of Singapore and trained leaders in his network all across the region.
From the March of Dimes to the Rotary Club and WMM, I love to volunteer and serve! I am Past President of YMCA Toastmasters Singapore and past board member of Asia Professional Speakers Singapore.
I have been on TV in Indonesia, had a radio show segment in the Philippines and been mentioned in The Chicago Tribune.
I am the author of 10 books in 3 genres: children’s books, inspirational books and personal development books.
I have coached and helped numerous leaders in multiple countries publish their books.
I love adventure (think zip lining, hang gliding), travel, reading (especially nonfiction), Alabama football and the occasional TV show (think Matlock, Andy Griffith, Rockford Files, Newhart, Doc Martin).
Most importantly I’m blessed with family and friends, like you, literally around the world!
Click here to read my new poem, The Face of Encouragement.