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ECHOLOCATED CONSULTING
PERFORMANCE COACHING FOR SHY PEOPLE

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LOOK, MOST LIKELY YOU'RE NOT REALLY
THAT SHY

Perform with anxiety not against it

 

YOU JUST NEED FEEDBACK THAT RESONATES.

 

"Working with Mark illuminated the power of storytelling and fun in communication, helping me translate a complex initiative rollout into an engaging and memorable experience. His philosophy of being an observant partner rather than a fixer offers a refreshing perspective that empowers you to effectively convey your message and inspire action. I gained a great deal of confidence that has served me well beyond this project."

Ineke van Waardenburg,

Nike Director of Customer Experience & Service Design

Who am I?

Definitely mostly "some guy."

I have a couple decades of experience in performance, storytelling, facilitating group experiences, and making reverently irreverent training and teaching experiences.

I'm also an avid Dungeons & Dragons fan.

I have an MFA in Devised Performance (think like how musicians jam to make songs, theatre people improvise to make performances), and I'm in my second year of a Masters in Organizational Leadership.

I facilitated virtual teambuilding events and trainings for 3 years during the pandemic, and I work in higher education now, assisting curriculum design and teaching workshops on Non-Verbal Communication and Storytelling.

I ran the Experience Consulting wing of Museum Hack for four years and LOVED the work I did with clients to clarify and connect them to their stories, and to share them with authenticity and specificity.

And I want to do that now forever!

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MY BELIEF:
WHY you’re shy doesn’t matter,
“fixing it" isn’t important.
Shyness is only a label &
it barely offers any useful information
about
how you communicate.
HOW you get over shyness doesn’t matter -
you’ll “get over it” or not 

when you do
it’s a RESULT of input,
not something you can actively control - 

as is gaining confidence.














 

GROUPSPEECH

Join a virtual group of fellow shy folks looking to get experience speaking in front of others. Practice speaking on topics in supportive, facilitated social group formats and gain confidence in saying what you have to say. 

Think a group of people practicing speaking, building an amalgamated conversation, instead of there being feedback and evaluation.

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SPEECHGROUP

Practice saying what you have to say to a group of people. Work on engaging them. Get facilitated feedback and experience tailoring what you say to others.

Think "rehearsal." Think "beta" speech. Think product testing. Think having a person group of listeners to tell you what they really think, with an experienced leader ensuring you're getting what you need to know to get what you have to say to the next level of effectiveness.

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ONE-ONE COACHING

You don't need an audience yet, you need a partner to help you shape what you have to say, figure out what it is you even want or NEED to say, and you need help figuring out how to say it. You want individual feedback and tailored focus to address your concerns, get honest feedback on your work, in the privacy of a one-on-one environment.

Can (and frequently will be encouraged to) be combined with GROUPSPEECH and SPEECHGROUP.

MY THEORY:

What you likely could use 

(instead of a label and a 5 step "healing" solution) 

is an OBSERVANT PARTNER to work with you on the specific challenges of your SPECIFIC communication

event(s) & to get SPECIFIC about WHAT YOU WANT WHAT ACTUALLY COMMUNICATES IT clearly, evocatively, and with a particular move to inspire action.

OFFERINGS

Performance is you doing things,

a lot of the time in front of others, in real time, or in important moments.

It's the speech you give to your colleagues to focus them around what you think matters.

It's the pitch you make to motivate people to believe in your work.

It's the moment of networking that hinges open a new endeavor, the way you open a call or a coffee date that connects two people to a new trusting relationship, the improvisational impulse to say something you didn't expect to say that strikes at the heart of the matter.

It's the manner of or how you do these things, not just what you do or even why you do it.

It's your best shot at your impact.

And it's an art, not a science.

It's a skill. It takes work and experiencing and learning what the muscles are, where are the levers, ideally with an audience to get feedback and be able to see outside yourself.

Good thing you have help.

Shy people tend to think they can't "perform well."

Maybe you feel like that.

You're probably right.

(In that you feel that way, not that you can't actually perform well).

 

But this isn't because of some inherent trait you have.

You likely just don't have much training. Or much effective training.

Performing, speaking, presenting, pitching - these are all skills that take time and feedback to develop!

You can learn how to perform, but you can't do it with a few boilerplate 5 step methods or general speaking workshops.

You need direct, specific feedback on actual communication events you're going into. You need practice. You need a collaborator to see what you have and offer what you may be missing.

Let's talk

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TL;DR:

I worked with Mark Kennedy over a period of two years on two separate performances that he directed and helped me co-create. He brought incisive questions into the rehearsal studio and always offered new ways to look at the dance-theater material. He inspired me to create layers of complexity in the choreography with his keen outside eye. He problem-solved nagging tech issues. He helped me consider subtle nuances of audience experience that allowed me to perform vulnerable material in a way that could draw people in, rather than alienate. When I decided to start a new project he was the first person I called to work with me, and I wholeheartedly recommend him as a collaborator, guide, supporter, creative companion.

Nicole Bindler, dance-maker,

Body-Mind Centering® practitioner,

writer, and activist

ON WHAT I DO &
MY
PERSONAL RANT

Notes on My Approach
  • COMMUNICATION IS AN ART, NOT A SCIENCE

  • Communication skills are not static, one-size-fits-all, universal principlesthey are context dependent, they are audience-dependent, they are YOU-dependent (and how often are YOU the same on any given day), and building skills at getting your ideas and messages across gulfs of unknown takes specialized, collaborative, interactive, improvisational work

  • Everything should be specific, about specific challenges, issues, situations, events

  • Nothing is “customized” because every situation requires specificity, there is no standard to customize from

  • I do my research – I want to understand what you need me to understand so I can help you articulate it, so as we go I’ll be learning alongside you so I can help articulate & offer ideas too

  • I’m walking beside you, not ahead, not over, not from a place of knowledge but a place of curiosity

  • Can involve embodied practices, can get creative, but easily can focus on professional contexts

  • The work is Rigorous AND playful, irreverent and passionately dedicated

    • Non-judgmental & improvisational

    • Non-hierarchical

    • Focused on effective action

  • Human communication and connection is a highly volatile, uncontrollable, difficult and endlessly complex process, and the biggest illusion you can have as a person is believing communication has already happened

Who Am I?

I AM NOT AN EXPERT

And I’m suspicious of anyone who claims to be.

Fundamentally, I'm just a person online, like you are.

  • AND I am a life-long student and lover of communication, of storytelling, of translation

  • I am a trained MFA-certified creative collaborator

  • I've worked in entrepreneurial ventures most of my myriad careers, in sink or swim environments where articulating a vision, offering insight, inspiring action, were the way I survived

    • Think the field-disrupting renegade museum tour company Museum Hack​

    • Think the daring devised theatre approaches of Pig Iron Theatre Company

    • Think boiler room sales at New York Theatre Workshop, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Context Travel, & elsewhere

  • I genuinely actually actually love working on communication challenges

  • As a bilingual bisexual autistic/ADHD-brained genderqueer immigrant you could say it’s been my special interest/hyperfocus out of necessity

  • My whole life in many ways has been one big constant act of translation

What I believe:
  • Most people don’t really need to be told what to do

  • They already have the answer

  • What people need is partnership and collaboration to gain multiple perspectives and see what they see, they need people who are curious, open to alternative ideas, searching together for answers

Who are my clients?

Shy,

intellectual,

introverts,

curious,

cerebral,

analytical,

don’t think they’re good communicators but know they have important things to share,

care about others/the world,

want to give,

they’re kind,

nerdy,

articulate when they get going or stop being nervous,

good at understanding and maybe even obsessively passionate about complex things,

introspective & reflective on their own processes/behaviours,

maybe they feel disconnected from themselves or others somehow

seeking connection,

they possess an intrinsic set of values,

they're seeking permission to be who they are

What are our shared values?
  • Fundamental kindness & patient respect

  • Humility & skepticism of expertise

  • Openness to new experiences, to challenge, to the unexpected & untraditional

 

What do I offer?
  • One-on-One Communication Coaching

    • Business

      • Pitch Crafting, Presentation Work, Meeting Management, Experience Design, Coaching the Coach, you name it​

    • Relational

      • Are there ways you're trying to get things across important things to your friends, family, loved ones, or even enemies that you could use support with?​

    • Situationally Specific:

      • Autism/ADHD Forms of Neurodivergence Focused

      • Artistic Focused

      • Sales Focused

      • Grief Focus

  • GROUPSPEECH

    • A facilitated group of shy folks speaking on topics to practice speaking on topics, gaining support and witnessing from each other​

  • SPEECHGROUP

    • A facilitated audience to witness each other's presentations/performances, to offer facilitated feedback and support. Your chance to rehearse in front of a group.​

  • Ongoing Mentoring in Performance, Sales, &/or Speaking Skills

  • Creative Consulting on Projects

  • Leadership Consulting

  • Something we devise together that you think I can help with

What are my rates?
  • When I was the Experience Consulting Creative Producer for a start-up, by the time we were in our 4th year with an operating budget of over $2m, I worked at $1000/hr.

    • We mostly sold to corporate clients for those rates (think places like GE, Nike, Novartis, etc.)

  • On my own I have a lot more freedom, and I am doing this to support myself, and after that 4 year Producer role I went to grad school for an MFA and now again I'm getting a Masters of Science in Organizational Leadership, so if money doesn't make you sweat, let's make it happen.

  • If you're sweating, let's talk!

    • I also can offer discounts or partial trades for referrals and testimonials.​

 

MY RANT

 

A lot of communication coaching services and professional training seminars and one on one "customized" personal development workshops are like “here are the 7 steps” that boils down to…

Just... have this exact structure?

(that doesn't really work in many situations you need help with)

Prepare?

(but nothing is clarified as to exactly what to prepare for when)

Be confident?

(just like... be it?)

Breathe?

(I think if I weren't I'd be... dead? what does that mean?)

Use arm gestures?

(I don't feel comfortable doing that, why do I need to do that?)

Get rid of negative self-belief!!!

(if I could even attempt to do that while keeping everything else in my head, I probably would've figured this out by now... seriously working on it bud but this isn't helping)

 

I mean… okay. Yes. Sure. Some of that CAN be useful in SOME contexts.

But… the whole point of you looking for help is you don’t know how to do that, and just being told TO do it in a general way...

Will just talking about it really help?

This is surface level, generic, intellect-based stuff. Basic stuff. A formula for mass production.

It doesn’t actually help anyone if that’s where it lives conceptually.

Based on psychological principles, cutting edge neuroscience, etc. Sure. Fine. It's nice to feel confident that there's information to support your ideas.

 

But so much of that information is so NEW and so difficult to put into practice.

It might be counter-intuitive, or VERY intuitive, but it gets stuck in the head. 

Human psychology and psychological studies frequently leave out SO many variables and people in search of a predictable result.

WHAT ABOUT WHEN WHAT YOU'RE ABOUT TO DO IS JUST FUNDAMENTALLY UNPREDICTABLE?

 

Where is stuff about performance skills

that’ve been traced back to the Greeks & Romans & earlier?

(WHICH AI won’t help anyone with, by the way)

Shy intellectual people need structural writing help, sure, but mostly they need EXPERIENTIAL help, with feedback, workshopping, grunt work in the weeds, performance coaching, directing, creative collaboration.

It’s not "teach a person to fish from the bank above"

It’s "get in the river with them and help them see the fish, learn about the fish’s environment, find the right spot, go through the mechanics of the rod, wire strength, the science behind flies, and then get in the water with a net and help figure out how to catch the actual fucking fish."

 

That’s how they’ll learn.

WHY you’re shy doesn’t matter, “fixing” it isn’t my job

HOW you get over shyness doesn’t matter --- you’ll “get over it” or not when you do, it’s an autonomic process, as is gaining confidence. It’s a RESULT of input, not something you can actively control

WHAT YOU NEED IS A PARTNER IN WORKING OUT THE SPECIFIC KINKS AND CHALLENGES OF YOUR PARTICULAR COMMUNICATION EVENTS (networking, presentation, job interview, date, relationship challenge, performance, creative project, entrepreneurial business endeavour) & TO GET SPECIFIC ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT AND HOW YOU CAN COMMUNICATE IT CLEARLY, EVOCATIVELY, AND WITH A PARTICULAR MOVE TO INSPIRE ACTION.

The more you DO it, with the structured help I offer, the more you feel that confidence naturally, that sense of authenticity and voice is earned, and the preparatory arousal/anxiety lessens on its own because you have done the things enough with enough support to be able to notice what works, what doesn’t, and start to trust your instincts.

Perform WITH anxiety, not against it.

​​

If you want to work with someone who rants like this, you should send me an email (listed below) and we can set up a call.

Let's talk

You're curious about:

Thanks for submitting!

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