Russ and Laurel are personable speakers. Sincere, down-to-earth and candid, they put their listeners at ease, as they describe a very personal and tragic event in their lives.
Russ' background as a commercial painter allows the audience to easily relate to and identify with him. Laurel's twenty-seven year career in geriatrics has given her a compassion for her audience -- a quality seldom seen in most professional speakers.
Included in their message is a strong warning that one split-second decision can change many lives forever. Russ explains the dangers of an "It-won't-happen-to-me" attitude, and reminds the listeners that accidents can happen to any one of us, especially when carelessly ignoring safety precautions.
The Youngstroms strive to make themselves available to all shifts on a company's schedule, so that each and every employee has the opportunity to hear their message. Russ and Laurel are willing to speak to any audience, at any location, and have presented to less than a dozen workers, on-site, when requested. They have also spoken to thousands of workers in large venues.
Russ doesn't show up in a suit, armed with a power point presentation. He rolls in, dressed in jeans and a t-shirt, and basically says, "Hey, I was one of you guys. I made a bad decision, and ended up in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. If you're not careful, this (or worse) could happen to you and your family!"
While they have managed to make the most of their situation, the emphasis during the Youngstroms' presentation is about the worst-case scenario: where the employee loses his or her career, family, home, friends, and possibly their life.
Russ and Laurel don't speak condescendingly to their listeners, although they pull no punches. There is no question they won't answer. Depending on the duration of the question and answer session, the presentation lasts from forty-five minutes to one hour.