Doug Griffiths

President & CEO, 13 Ways Inc.
Bestselling Author, 13 Ways to Kill Your Community | Community Enthusiast, Building and Consulting

Doug Griffiths is a wildly popular community strategist and author of two best-selling editions of “13 Ways to Kill Your Community”. He has supported, guided and inspired hundreds of communities to create effective change. Whether through speaking and presentations or through advising and consulting, he is dedicated to helping communities across North America find their own pathway to success.

He grew up on a ranch outside a small town where he learned the value of hard work, critical thinking skills, and the value of community. That background led him into politics, but he insists he has since been through rehab and is fully recovered. His experience in politics gave him a deep understanding of how to move people and get things done. He deliberately retired from politics in January 2015, after serving for 13 years, to return to his passion for community building.

Griffiths has an Executive MBA and Honors B. A Philosophy Degree, as well as his Bachelor of Education, all from the University of Alberta where he has taught community and municipal leadership courses for elected officials and administration.

In unrelated news, at one point Doug worked as a teacher by day and a rancher by night.


13 Pathways to Success

Whether you’re looking to build capacity, overcome negativity, or simply position your community for both short- and long-term success, you’ll find tremendous value in this visionary and insightful presentation. Doug focuses on ideas and proven methods that are realistic and attainable, supporting them with real-life examples of success in progress that are sure to leave you imagining all that your community can be.


We can’t be everything all the time, but we don’t need to. Success is about being really good at one thing and embracing it wholly. This presentation presents 13 different ways a community can find success laying out practical pathways forward and clear steps you can take. 


If you’ve heard and read about 13 Ways to Kill Your Community (based on Doug’s best-selling book of the same name), this is a natural follow-up and essential next presentation for communities and community leaders alike.

13 Ways to Kill Your Community

In this presentation, Doug Griffiths offers valuable lessons on what makes the difference between a prospering community and a failing one. Based on the bestselling book, 13 Ways to Kill Your Community, this presentation is sometimes startling and often revelatory. Doug’s passion shines through in this keynote. He makes every audience member feel as if he was speaking directly to them about their community.  His anecdotes deliver both wit and wisdom to challenge audiences. He’ll have the crowd inspired and confident in their role in creating a stronger community, organization or business!

The Change Is The Way (Renaissance: The Re-Rise of Rural Communities)

Change is no longer on the way; it’s here. And it’s here to stay.


Communities do all they can to remain prosperous while prioritizing the health and well-being of their citizens. As a result, dreams and aspirations have been put on hold while other new challenges and opportunities have arisen in their place.


We can’t become our new selves unless we are ready to let go of who we were before. The 2020 pandemic and other global challenges have accelerated the changes coming at us, and they are creating incredible new opportunities for our communities. So it’s time to stop trying to recapture the past and instead embrace the future. It’s time to start dreaming big once again.


Those who oppose change are taking part in something of a counter-revolution. They see their very way of life (including accepting certain antiquated, outdated beliefs) as being under threat. Through the chaos, negativity, and antagonism, they will do anything they can to resist change and disrupt progress.


We need to understand and accept change as being inescapable, and in doing so, leverage and embrace it for the many tremendous opportunities it presents. Ultimately, it’s creating a renaissance for our rural communities that we need to recognize and take full advantage of. In doing so, we’ll open ourselves to a world of possibilities we previously thought only imaginable.


In this captivating and engaging presentation, Doug Griffiths uses just the right amount of candour and insightful humour to demonstrate both the need for and power of community and communities in a world that remains in a state of constant change.

Collaboration, Cooperation and The Future of Communities

We all know the adage: if you want to go fast, go alone, but if you’re going to go far, go together. We see the value of cooperating, yet we don’t. Instead, we outright refuse to work together because of illogical reasoning and irrational fears. And so we stand alone, we feel safer, and yet our communities shrink, and our economies die. This presentation will utilize humorous stories and blunt truth as it takes you through the myths of cooperation held by the public, administration, and community. In addition, it will show you the best places to start working together, and just how good it can be to collaborate and cooperate.

The Economics of Beauty and Fun

 (with Heather Thomson)


Rural and urban communities are desperately seeking ways of reintroducing vibrancy and rediscovering their prosperity. An experience-based social and commercial hub (i.e., downtown core) can do both.


Consumer behaviour demonstrates the accelerated migration of people and businesses to place where they (and their employees) can simultaneously work, live, and recreate — a trend easily attributable to some of our most innate human desires. We are attracted to things and places that look nice. We seek experiences that provide us pleasure. And in the age of social media, we endeavour to capture and share it all.


But while community-building focuses have in the past been overlooked, they’re now being demonstrated as essential. They present tremendous opportunities for both social and economic gain.


In this inspiring and prophetic presentation, speakers Heather Thomson and Doug Griffiths explain how and why any significant community revitalization effort should both begin and end with beauty and fun.

The Seven Essentials for Success (with Heather Thomson)

Every community has a strategic plan and a budget. Most have a communications plan and some even have a marketing strategy. However, for most communities they are generic plans that fail to create results. The 13 Ways approach to creating community success goes beyond textbooks and formulaic processes to get real results. This session takes you through this revolutionary process – Assess, Engage, Strategize, Budget, Brand, Market, Rinse and Repeat – explaining precisely how to do it and why it works.

Entrepreneurship / Leadership / Management Strategy / Motivators / Workforce/HR
Michelle Stacy
Business Strategy / Creativity / Leadership / Management Strategy / Women / Women in Business / Women-Speakers / Women's Leadership / Workforce/HR
Business Strategy / Customer Experience / Entrepreneurship / Fresh Perspectives / Social Change / Women in Business