Skip to main content

“In a short hour I went from a decent pitch to a targeted, clear, well focused ask.”

Joshua Ginsberg, President
Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies

“In one hour, I was able to see more clearly how we can better illustrate the need for our work.”

Diane McCloskey, Executive Director, CLEARCorps Detroit

“An approachable, interactive and energetic coaching style that made the training worthwhile and easy to apply!”

Nicole Melaku, Executive Director, National Partnership for New Americans

What we do and why it matters.

We help you attract more support by changing how you talk about what you do. Why does this matter? How we speak to garner interest and support decides whether we will fizzle or thrive. Speaking is the passageway through which our efforts must go to succeed. At stake is not just our individual success but–ultimately–our collective ability to create positive change in the world.

What you get

Have a framework for any speaking situation.

Our training offers you the 10-step Elevator Speech Framework that you can use as a skeleton structure to master any speaking situation, including one-on-one conversations. It makes preparing for or even winging a speaking challenge as easy as painting by numbers.

Increase confidence and gravitas.

Anxiety about public speaking is natural because our brains are hard-wired to fear rejection. The training offers a systematic approach to managing your fear not by trying to vanquish it but by befriending it. In the process, you will also learn tools to “prime your brain” before entering a speaking situation.

Discover how to be most interesting.

When making a first impression, being interesting is far more critical than being informative. The unique way we go about our work is often more interesting than what we do. The training offers a framework to identify what is most interesting about your work and for communicating it effectively.

Get your listeners to trust you.

In all situations, mutual trust is crucial for people to realize the full potential of collaboration and connection. The training gives you an easy, surprising, and highly effective step-by-step approach for enabling your listeners to experience a trust boost towards you in less than 30 seconds of speaking with them.

Solve the challenge of having too much to say.

A common challenge our clients experience is having to convey to listeners the complexity and sheer volume of their work. The training offers a solution to this problem. It leaves your listeners looking forward to continuing the conversation with you. It even turns them into messengers to others about your work.

Create a frame of relevance and purpose.

Everyone focuses on their day-to-day work. That focus often becomes the first thing we discuss when explaining what we do. The Elevator Speech Framework helps ensure that you step back at the beginning of speaking situations to answer the question, “why does it all matter?”

How we work

Step #1: We do research.

We do research about your work and your professional background to customize the training to your specific needs and context.

Step #2: You prepare a bit.

Preparing is as quick as answering these three short questions. If you want to prepare more deeply, simply use our preparation worksheet.

Step #3: We do the training.

The training is a one-on-one Zoom call. It requires one or two hours. It’s not a testing situation. Think of it as a fun workshop where imperfection is OK.

Step #4: We follow-up.

After the session, we’ll send you an email with a summary of your specific key take-aways. We’ll touch base a couple times a year to reinforce what you’ve learned.

Endorsed by Leaders

"Exceptionally useful" ratings
"Very useful" ratings
Endorsements from CEOs
Testimonials from Happy Clients

“If only all my one-hour meetings were so productive!”

Priya Jayachandran, CEO, National Housing Trust


“Elevator Speech Training helped us translate our successes more clearly to crucial investors like Morgan Stanley.”

Julia Kumari Drapkin, CEO, ISeeChange


“This one hour session was more impactful for me than the hours, days, weeks that I have spent in other communications trainings.”

Dan Nissenbaum, CEO, Low Income Investment Fund


“Marc’s Elevator Speech Training was, quite simply, transformational.”

Heidi Binko, Executive Director & Co-founder, Just Transition Fund


“I have never experienced a more streamlined, to-the-point, and helpful one-hour training session.”

Ben Strauss, CEO and Chief Scientist, Climate Central


“Marc’s training was like hitting a re-start button.”

Gladys Limon, Executive Director, California Environmental Justice Alliance


Click here to browse more testimonials and here for a client list.

Marc Fest

About Marc Fest

Helping leaders worldwide communicate better

Marc Fest is the creator of, a free toolkit helping thousands of NGOs, companies, nonprofits, and governments globally create key messages and increase messaging discipline. He is a former vice president of communications for the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and the New World Symphony.

He lives at a remote farm in the Everglades. When he is not coaching clients, he enjoys hanging out with his Belgian Shepherd dog Zeus and an assortment of lizards, sparrow hawks, and raccoons.

Contact Marc