Individual Coaching Sessions

Are you pitching to investors? Speaking to new contacts about your company and message? Have an upcoming workshop or keynote? Let's talk about the skills to develop to feel confident and get results. 

  • Do you know your why?

  • Who is your audience?

  • What outcome do you want?

Schedule a free 20 min consultation.


How long have you been coaching and how did you get to be a speaking and communications expert?

Actually, my undergraduate degree was in music with a full scholarship in cello performance at the University of Arizona, but I had shaking anxiety on the stage. After graduation, I essentially quit performing.

But I loved teaching. For 10 years I watched and trained with music teachers who were masters in the philosophy of the humanitarian violinist Shinichi Suzuki. About 40% of our work was on technical cello skills, but the rest was focused on communication: how do you establish an inviting environment where the student is open to learn? Can you keep a vision in your head of where you want to lead the student? Can you offer small, single steps to guide the student towards your vision?


I ventured beyond my music world in 2012 and entered the field of communications. Soon, I started coaching speakers for TEDxSaltLakeCity, and quickly found there were many overlaps between the skills I had been honing as a teacher and public speaking. How do you establish an inviting connection with the audience where they are open to your ideas? What is the vision in your head for where you want to lead the audience by the end of your talk? Can you break down your message into small, single ideas to guide the audience towards your vision?

Now, after work in the Master of Strategic Communication program at Westminster College in Salt Lake City, and coaching over 100 TEDx speakers, I’m excited to share the communications concepts I understand with my clients.

Which clients are a great match for your programs?

My sweet spot is people who are at a point of growth and transition. They see that a next key step includes speaking well, connecting their message to their audience, and building their reputation and their business through the public speaking that is coming their way. Clients who already have work in their field and who are driven towards their purpose are a great match with me.

What if you haven’t worked with someone in my field?

Every time I meet with a new speaker I get to dive into a new idea, a new system, and often a new field. This means that there are many many fields I have already worked with, and have the flexibility for new ones! Since it is important for all speakers to be clear on the message, to draw the audience in to care, and to create understanding through storytelling, I work well with speakers from a very large varieties of fields.

What makes you different from other speaking coaches?

Even though I have coached a large number of TEDx speakers, I shine with clients who find themselves in, or have been looking for new places of leadership. I like to say that “Speakership is Leadership.” If you stand on a stage with fear, mumble all your words, never look at the audience, and only tell knock-knock jokes…. you are still leading your audience to a specific place - probably not a very influential or profitable one.

My clients see they could be, or are already are in a place to influence people with their words, and want to work with me to be sure they are leading their audience where they want them to go.

What do you expect of your clients?

My coaching programs are created for people who are ready and serious to grow their public communicating skills. Our sessions will dive deep into honing their message, understanding the gifts they are giving to the audience, and practicing for results.

Speaking in front of people is not for those who wish other people to do their homework for them.

For what type of client is your program NOT going to work?

Understand that I am selective about who I invest my time in and I cherry-pick my clients. I have gently chosen to turn away people I see aren’t ready to dive into the work I ask of them.

My system is not a great match for professionals who don’t know what they want to do or bring to the world. There are other books and professionals out there to walk you through every beginning step of finding your passion. I’m happy to recommend some and then chat again when someone has clarity and some experience. My clients have projects in action, a vision of where they are going, and are ready to hone their communication skills for the next step.

What exactly is your coaching system what does it include?

Speakers looking for one-to-one coaching can choose to do a single deep-dive session, signature talk, or long term leadership communication development. (Those in the Boulder/Denver area interested in exploring group training can look on the MasterSpeaker Lab site here.)

Leadership Communication Package:

Objectives: Develop your message, find your stories that give the gift of your message to your audience, explore and develop your team communication patterns, create talks for various audiences, integrate your talk with your business model, prepare you for multiple speaking engagements, and polish your presentation skills.

Outline of process:

  • Personalized plan to reach your leadership communication goals and objectives

  • 4 months minimum

  • In-person/Zoom meetings

  • Assignments between meetings

  • Non-meeting week support through audio or video messages

  • Membership in Master Mind Facebook group and weekly calls

  • Discounts to workshops and online courses

By application

Signature Talk Development:

Objectives: Complete development of a signature talk to tell the story of where you have been, what you see, and to extend an invitation to your audience to join you in what you are building next. This signature talk can be a foundation for multiple talks into the future, from a 5 minute Ignite talk, to a 40 min keynote. This project will take some creative time and will provide an accountability partner to show you the milestones, nudge if you get off-track, and be there to celebrate when you cross the finish line! 

Outline of process:

  • Timing: no less than 6 weeks, up to 4 months.

  • One-to-One Sessions

  • Stages of Speech Preparation, with clear plans of action, milestones, and goals

  • “Audio postcard” welcomed


Single Deep Dive:

Objectives: Explore audience, objectives, current resources, history, purpose, and vision. Find core idea, or reach goal determined by client. Create a succinct statement to clearly communicate your core idea and what it brings to an audience whether event organizers, clients, or yourself. 

Outline of Process

  1. Pre-session: share current assets surrounding core idea (articles, book excerpts, podcast interviews, etc.) for coach to thoroughly review and absorb 

  2. One on One Coaching: one session of two hours

  3. Post-Session: debrief one week later to discuss results and next steps


What have been the experiences and results from some of your other clients?

You can read from my testimonial page, or my LinkedIn recommendations that my clients have had great results from their speaking projects such as.

  • Expanded Leadership

  • Clarity of message

  • Confidence to speak up

  • Effective audience influence

  • Message story arc

  • Feeling of being understood

  • Newly discovered speaking skills

  • Analysis of exactly who your audience is

  • Clarify what results you want

  • Develop a message that stands out and is memorable

  • Storytelling techniques that draw audiences in

  • Moving the needle towards results with more effective communication

  • “Sell” your business without selling

  • Greater visibility for your business, your brand, and yourself

Can I contact some of your former clients to see what it's like to work with you?

Yes, please do! Go to my testimonials listed throughout the site, or LinkedIn, Facebook and Google and read them. See which ones you feel drawn to, either because the person has gotten the results you want to get too, or perhaps because that person is in a similar profession. Feel free to email or call them and ask what they got from working with me. Then email me to let me know how it went!

How can I guarantee myself that I will improve my public speaking?

Do all of your assignments and fieldwork. Show up for all your coaching calls and events. It takes time for you to plant the seeds and for those seeds to grow into the fruit that you can enjoy.

Do you have clients come back?

Yes! After a client has successfully completed one speaking project, they often find that there are more coming their way and they want to keep upgrading their skills. For leaders in organizations, once they see the benefits of working with me, they often want similar results for their team members as well.

Some clients think of me as their ongoing secret weapon. Bwaaahaa-haa!

Do you accept credit cards?

Indeed! I send an invoice and clients can pay how they wish.

OK, I know I want to do this. How do we get started?

Great! Did you know that one of the most prominent characteristics of successful people is that successful people take action? They take educated risks. Yes, they make a mistake (we all do), but overwhelmingly, they are decisive and they take action. It’s a well-known fact that these people make decisions based on their gut instinct. So, that being said, since this feels right for you, then go for it.

Here’s what you do: Email me at and let me know results you want to get. We’ll set up a day and time to make a plan and start our coaching.

From what you wrote, I will customize a plan for you using your goals and where your speaking is now. Because you will have done this, when we actually speak the first time, we hit the ground running, give you strategies, assignments and get your started.

If I'm not sure I'm ready to commit, how can I sample your work at low cost to see if it works for me?

First, sign up for my newsletter below where you will get communication ideas, links to blog articles, and announcements of events. Write to me on the “Let’s Talk” tab at the top of the page, and let’s do a free 20 min consultation. Then, look to to find my next workshops and low cost online trainings!

I have a very full life. Although I want to improve my speaking skills and grow my business through speaking badly, I don't have much time. How much time do I need?

If you can even spare one hour a week, you will be able to take just one tiny step a week, or learn one new idea a week, plus a bit of time for reading recommended books. Know that this approach will take longer than if you throw yourself into it wholeheartedly, but if you don't ever start, you will never get there. They say every journey starts with a single step and I know, personally, that I’d rather fail miserably at something I tried, than never have given myself the chance to succeed. I work full time too, yet I’ve found a way to balance both areas of my life nicely. The question really is: how much do you really want it? If you want it a lot, you will find time for it.

OK, I'm ready! I have a couple of additional questions. Can I call you?

Good! Sounds like you are ready to step into new places with your speaking! Make your own free 20 min appointment!



" to transform..."

"Every now and then, you work with someone who is so truly gifted and skilled at what they do that you gain a sincere appreciation for their position. Margaret is one of those amazing people who is not only able to quickly mentally digest complex concepts, she's able to transform, refine, and restructure them in such a way as to make their communication effective. I was honored to have had the pleasure of working with Margaret in preparation for my TEDxSaltLakeCity talk and much of her influence is directly present in its final rendering. I would wholeheartedly endorse her for any and all aspects of communication, public relations, and public speaking strategy functions. She is a rock star.."

/  Bassam Salem  /


“…giving you and your startup or small business the edge you need to get noticed.”

Founders pitching their startups need more than generic direction and feedback, we need a presentation coach we can call on for content strategy and confidence to overcome our fears. Margaret delivers on all fronts - her techniques in public speaking and presentation work. She will elevate your pitch to the next level giving you and your startup or small business the edge you need to get noticed. I highly recommend Margaret, we’re blessed to call her our public speaking coach and mentor.

/ Kristen Miller /


"...generous listening...added power to my message..."

"Margaret coached me in 2016 as I prepared to present at the Global Health & Innovation Conference. During this memorable journey, Margaret led mostly with generous listening and questions, guiding me to reconnect, or perhaps I should say, connect more deeply with my own humanity and my message. She helped me see how humor and story added power to my message and connection with my audience. The changes she inspired in me still inform my speeches today.

"Back in 2016, she guided me all the way to the semi finals of the Global Health & Innovation Prize."


/  Marielle Pariseau  /


“…the talk of their lives without a background in public speaking”

“Margaret was a perfect balance of being a coach, motivator and friend; all in non-judgemental, encouraging environment. What was surprising with our experience was how so many TEDx speakers in our group seemed to really give the talk of their lives without a background in public speaking. My son (and I) was very fortunate to work with Margaret!”

/ Jack and Steve Bonneau /


"...exceptional...kind but clear...unique and refreshing..."

"Margaret is an exceptional coach. Her ability to deliver constructive criticism in a kind but clear way is rare. Her skill at distilling complex and convoluted ideas into clear stories that can be understood by a broad audience is unique and refreshing. I would highly recommend Margaret for anyone with a technical or complex topic that needs distilling and those that need assistance in their performance/speaking skills."

/  Ivy Estabrooke  /


"…the benevolent scalpel"

Margaret served as my coach for TEDxBoulder. I can safely say that, for all of us speakers, Margaret was our safe haven from the storm throughout the entire process. She has an unmatched ability to hear a speaker's idea, help them separate the wheat from the chaff, and lovingly push them to craft their initial idea into a powerful narrative. She has been referred to as "the benevolent scalpel," helping to sculpt a speaker's story into its most essential truths, and providing constructive, encouraging feedback throughout an often grueling, discouraging process. My talk was much improved by having Margaret as its shepherd, and my nerves were calmed by her presence alone!

/ Katie Breen - TEDxBoulder Speaker /


"Thoughtful...amazing...a huge impact..."

"I teach visual, verbal, and graphic communications to architecture students at the University of Utah, and invited Margaret in to run a half-day training for the group of 35 students prior to a public speaking assignment. I was incredibly impressed both by the thoughtful preparation she did with me to understand the particular needs of the students and prepare a series of interactive exercises. It was amazing to see even my most shy and reserved student drawn out of their shell and taking part in the day. In such a short time with so many students, I don't know how she managed to have such a huge impact. I learned an incredible amount myself and plan to recommend to my college inviting her to develop a program for our faculty who speak at conferences and at events across the country. She's a gifted teacher!"

/  Erin Carraher  - University of Utah /


"...Smart, intuitive, kind, organized, and driven."

"Margaret is smart, intuitive, kind, organized, and driven. Through my experience preparing speaking at TEDx SaltLakeCity, Margaret was my biggest advocate. She helped put me at ease when things got crazy. She helped draw my talk out of me, and helped me deliver it in a way left exactly the impact I had hoped. Margaret isn't just a great speaker coach, she's a great human being. She understands others in a way many people don't. She picks up quickly on their concerns, and worries, and passions.
She's the kind of person you want to lead the charge of pulling out the best stories and lessons at an event like TEDxSaltLakeCity."

/ Nate Bagley - Loveumentary /


“I watched my talk develop into a compelling piece of oratory greatness!”

I worked with Margaret on my TEDx Boulder talk. I started the process with a bunch of ideas without any cogent narrative and I was so unsure of myself. After a few weeks, I watched my talk develop into a compelling piece of oratory greatness! And when I took the stage, in front of 1200 people, I felt more comfortable and confident than I ever could have anticipated. This is all thanks to Margaret, her coaching, and her support.

/ Liz Marasco /