Homegrown Business: Author & Dog Whisperer, Jesse Sternberg

We spoke with Jesse Sternberg, author, dog whisperer and business owner, to learn more about his business “Peaceful Alpha Project” and its unique approach to expanding human consciousness and cultivating emotional intelligence.

 Jesse Sternberg

What is your business called and what does it do?

My business is called the Peaceful Alpha Project. It is an organization that aims to find clever ways to get the marketplace excited about expanding human consciousness, as well as cultivating empathy and emotional intelligence in humans. Typically these things haven’t been at the top of our collective priority list, yet many would agree that they are becoming increasingly important. Our mission is to find sexy ways to package this information and using dogs as the main vehicle, we’ve been able to have a huge impact.

What made you want to do this work?

In order for me to maintain my own inner peace, mental health, and joy, I needed to find a way to align my career with my own personal values. In committing to this vision, I get to do what I’m passionate about while also helping people who appreciate it, and this feels incredibly energizing and free. Perhaps the biggest reward is that I genuinely believe I’m making the planet a more beautiful place for future generations.

What problem did you want to solve with the business?

How do we, as a human species, find our inner peace and drop our emotional baggage? These are pretty huge (opportunities) problems of our present time. The thread that connects this to dog training and makes it relevant for pet owners is that our animals are our reflections, and they’re always responding to our body language (which is driven by our emotional state).

Dogs only misbehave when they’re feeling scared or neurotic, and what they’re really doing is just trying to act out their emotions so they can feel better again. We do the same thing.

Who are your clientele/demographics?

We serve mindful dog owners all over Canada, the UK and the USA by teaching them the methods of enlightened dog training over the internet, through our book, and through courses that we have developed and hosted on our website. We also offer private dog training services to clients in Toronto, but don’t limit it to only here. Jesse is about to hop on a plane and head to California to consult with a dog rescue, give a body language workshop, and explore developing a tv series with Gaia.

How does your business make money? How does it work?

Dog training is a fun business to have, but it’s difficult to scale and have a huge impact. Therefore, the lion’s share of our revenue comes from book sales and offering keynotes and workshops to the business world on leadership, mindfulness 2.0, empathy, emotional intelligence and the secret language of the animal kingdom. Since you can’t really use money or power to get a dog to respect you, there’s a treasure of insight here for humanity.

Where in Toronto can we find your profession?

Our main location for dog training is at St Clair and Warren road in Toronto. We train many dogs in this area, but we also travel all throughout the city to serve. More information can be found on our website – www.peacefulalpha.com.

What is the best question a prospective customer could ask a member of your profession when comparing services? Give the answer as well.

I’m a person who is drawn to truth, elegance, and mastery. Just like the dogs, I’m less concerned with the words of a person, and far more interested in the quality of their actions. Actions always speak louder, don’t they?

My advice is to frame an open-ended question and then observe the quality of the answer given, the posture of the person speaking, their tone of voice, and most importantly, how it makes you feel. Confidence, wisdom, humour, love – these virtues all have a resonance that you can detect if you’re tuned in and present. When I was first learning the art of dog training, I’d get together with other trainers and simply observe how well their dog behaved and what they did when their pet was bad.

What is the best part about what you do? What is the worst part?

The best part of what I do is that feeling you get when someone has a eureka breakthrough. I just love that energy. Same with the energy after an amazing keynote. The worst part is knowing that we are going to outlive our pets.

What is your favourite joke about your own profession?

Q – What kind of store should you never take your dog to?

A – The flea market.

What are your social media channels?

Facebook | LinkedIn | YouTube | Instagram

PAY IT FORWARD: What is another Toronto business that you love?

Dog owners, check out Uberdog. They are a full-service dog business with multiple locations throughout Toronto (boarding, training, grooming, walking, retail, etc.) When they purchased Woof & Shloof from us a few years ago, we really got to know the ownership team and see how much love they serve with. I still take my dog, Little Jimmy, to their grooming outfit on Wychwood