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August 19, 2019

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Posts By Career Expert

Margaret Graziano


THE 5% FACTOR™: The key to turning “Should” and “Can’t” into “Did” and “Done” and Had a Blast
Choose Wisely: Impact Your Hiring Batting Average
Keeping Your Top Producers
So You want to be a Big Biller
Sell John Brown through John Brown’s Eyes: Increasing Sales with Communication Effectiveness


HR industry thought & action leader Margaret Graziano, CPC, CTS, CERS is today’s “go-to” source for best practice strategies on talent recruitment, development, performance management, and retention. With tools and tactics that propelled her staffing agency, Alliance HR Network, into a multi-million dollar business, this top producer has been named one of the nation’s top 50 recruiters, honored by NAWBO as a “Woman Business Owner of the Year” and distinguished by Chicago media as one of the region’s “Most Influential Business Leaders.” With her commitment to empowering people and organizations, Margaret now leads the KeenHire strategic hiring and retention initiative, consulting and speaking globally about leveraging the power of people.

At 21, single mother Margaret Graziano had a tough choice to make: to fight for child support or try supporting her family with a straight commission sales job. She chose the latter and never looked back. Graziano began her personnel career as an employment consultant earning a six dollar an hour draw and within 10 years, had opened her own staffing agency. In testament to her business savvy she has established a client base stemming from 80% repeat business, earned more than $5,000,000 in personal “desk production” income, and placed more than 2,000 candidates in direct hire positions with a 98% placement satisfaction rating.


A top producer in the staffing and recruiting industry for more than 20 years and business owner since 1993, successful entrepreneur Margaret Graziano is also a published author and sought-after business coach, consultant and speaker with the unique ability to lead change. Margaret’s expansive knowledge of industry trends is critical to winning the war on talent and managing the complexities of the human capital business. From benchmarking programs to behavioral interviewing and other industry-leading assessment tools, her dynamic, provocative and innovative presentations will challenge your audience, catapult their thinking, and set forth the context for learning and development that is sure to make any conference a huge success!

Don’t expect an evergreen presentation. Margaret’s laser-pointed messages target the trends and issues of the day. Her contagious enthusiasm motivates, empowers and inspires her audiences. Your attendees will be entertained, engaged and moved to participate in the conference fully. They will be compelled to bring all of themselves to the development opportunities facing them and will walk away with:

–An “aliveness” and hunger for learning
–A renewed motivation to take action in their life
–Inspiration to create goals that awaken their passions
–Awareness of what stops them
–Ability to use tools for turning breakdowns into breakthroughs
–Empowerment to make superior choices
–Capacity to turn “should & can’t” into “can, did, and had a blast!”

Margaret’s powerful “take-away” ideas provide instant opportunities to initiate expanded service offerings and implement innovative staffing and hiring solutions that directly affect profitability and enable exponential growth.

Rave Reviews

“If you’re considering having Margaret Graziano speak to your group, prepare to have your world thinking turned upside down. From the probing pre-event interviewing Margaret did to assure that her remarks were on message, to the mind-stretching, engaging delivery of her speech, Margaret raised our awareness of issues that drive the future of our industry.”
— Terry Rohde, President, Wisconsin Association of Personnel Services

“You rocked our world! The intensive training was nothing less than amazing. It was incredible how you were able to transform the way that we do business in just two days. We have a completely new perspective that will enable us to meet our goals.”
— Spencer Schmerling, Managing Director, VTI Staffing Professionals

“Margaret provides a powerful action-oriented format for taking your business to the next level – whatever that may be for you. I’m finding it to be a jumpstart approach for an already established business.”
— Alane Watkins, Systems Administrator, Kraft Foods, Inc.

“Your management training seminar was great. Everyone walked out appreciating what they learned with a better understanding of the personality types of the other managers. It was an important value-add for our company.”
— George Kriza, President, Marketing Technology Concepts

“The work you did with our management team clarified our goals and values, making it so much easier to discriminate among candidates. The tools you provided are invaluable. The interview questions and behavioral checklists are used by all of us who meet with potential employees. They have enabled us to standardize the hiring process that you designed especially for our needs – saving us time and money.”
— Barbara Rose, President, S. N. Peck Builders


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Margaret Norton


“What is a Life Coach?”
“Don’t Let Your Family Drive You Crazy”
“The Many Faces of Abuse”
“There is Life After Divorce”
“Getting Started as a Writer”


I am a middle-aged wife, mother of two, step-mother of one, grandmother of four, and rich in life experiences.

I married young, was abused, divorced, made many mistakes and struggled with low self-esteem for many years. Enrolling in college at the age of 28, I found more success in the business world than in my personal life. For 15 years I was self-employed and received numerous awards for my contributions to women in the sales field.

My degree is in Business Administration, which has been a tremendous benefit to me, but completing the Dale Carnegie Class was what finally helped me to understand and love myself. I donate my time as a coach with this organization and receive much satisfaction in seeing others break out of their shell just as I did many years ago.

As my confidence grew, I started to get involved with domestic violence organizations. I wanted to share my experience with others by giving them hope that they too could escape the cycle of abuse. Currently I am a volunteer with Lydia House in St Louis.

My work experience includes mortgage banking, franchise owner, life insurance sales, retail management, and non-profit organizations.

In 2004 I started to write about my life experiences which turned into a 400 page memoir. My agent is currently looking for a publisher. As a result of the writing, I decided that I wanted to spend the rest of my life helping others in a more personal way. That’s when I became a life coach.

Though I have spoken to all types of groups, my ideal audience is women and the topics I feel most passionate about relate to women’s issues.


If you want a speaker that is passionate about life then you should hire me.

It is my belief that passion takes many forms and mine is a quiet, inner feeling. To be honest, I am not the most charismatic person one would ever meet, and typically I do not win an audience with my charming ways and words. But I do captivate their attention with my sincerity and my genuine love of other people.

I am not a stand up comic but have been told by many that I have a wicked, dry sense of humor. Often my topics are serious by nature, and I am a serious type person but I do try to use humor as much as possible when doing a presentation.

In giving a speech I try to teach my audience something they do not know or challenge them to look at old ideas in a new way. I use handouts and graphics. And to make the experience more enjoyable I invoke active participation or game playing.

I try hard to connect with my audience and my goal is that they will take away something that will make them a better person and better able to cope with life.

Rave Reviews

“Margaret made me think of abuse in a different way. Her presentation was very informative and brought this unpleasant subject closer home for me. After hearing her speech I am so much more aware of those around me who might be experiencing this problem. Before I was hesitant to get involved but now I know how to speak a kind word or just offer my support. I now know there are many facets of abuse and I am more aware of my own words and actions.”
-Lynne E

“I attended this presentation because I was facing a terrible divorce and feeling hopeless about my situation. Margaret’s presentation gave me ideas on how to cope and how to build a new life for myself. Her candid comments from her own life were much appreciated. Though I am still uncertain how my situation will play out, I now have hope that one day things will be better. She helped the audience to see that divorce does not have to be the end of something but rather can be the beginning of something new and exciting. I highly recommend her as a speaker.”
-Jean B

“Margaret spoke to our local writing club on how she got started as a writer. It was obvious that she had spend much time and done much research as a new writer. She was eager and happy to share with us all that she had learned. It is rare for a new writer to start out writing a novel and even rarer to have your first attempt accepted by an agent. Knowing she was able to do this inspired me to continue pursuing my dreams.”
-Cathy H

“After listening to Margaret speak about her family I now know that my family isn’t so bad after all and there is no “normal” situation. For years I had struggled to get along with certain family members and felt I was the black sleep. I felt that I had failed myself and my family as I struggled to be perfect. The guilt and pain were almost unbearable. But as I listened to Margaret speak, I was able to put this situation into perspective. I no longer allow my family to define who I am and I know it is OK to be different. I am so grateful that my church decided to have her as a speaker.”
-Linda P


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Margie Warrell


Courageous Conversations! How to Speak Up About the Things That Weigh You Down (No Matter How “Touchy”) Without Putting Your Foot in Your Mouth.
Leadership Is Choice; Not a Position! Five Crucial Questions to Grow Your Influence, Expand Your Contribution & Fulfill Your Leadership Potential.
Upping Your Courage Quotient (CQ): Five keys to living with greater clarity, confidence and courage… everyday.
Success is a Balancing Act
Harnessing the Power of Vision: Daring To Dream Bigger & Live Bolder


Originally from Australia, Margie Warrell is an Executive & Life Coach, Speaker, syndicated Columnist and Author recognized internationally as an expert on courage as it relates to communication, relationships, leadership and life! A mother of four, in July 2007 her second book “FIND YOUR COURAGE!” became an Amazon Bestseller. Margie has degrees in Business & Pyschology and formerly worked as a marketing executive with large multi-nationals corporations including BP Oil and KPMG. A dynamic speaker, clients include NASA, Verizon, American Airlines and ExxonMobil.

In 2006 Margie co-authored “101 Ways to Improve Your Life” with Jack Canfield, John Gray, Richard Carlson & Bob Proctor. Her latest book “Find Your Courage!” has received extraordinary praise from experts in her field, academics and industry leaders.

As an ICF accredited and certified ontological coach, Margie works with individuals and teams to expand their vision, enhance communication effectiveness, strengthen leadership competence and fufill individual potential. A dynamic and sought after speaker, her most popular programs including Courageous Conversations!, Success is a Balancing Act! and Leadership is a Choice!

Since leaving her parents farm in rural Australia at 18 (where she rode her horse to school!), Margie’s work and intrepid spirit has taken her to nearly 60 countries around the world from the Middle East and Africa to South America and Papua New Guinea.

In more recent years Margie’s sense of adventure has extended into the realm of family: she is ‘mum’ to four young (and noisy)children. As a mother of four, she is passionate about helping other women successfully pursue the goals that inspire them – professionally and personally – with greater clarity, confidence and courage.

Margie has been interviewed as an expert on TV/radio/press extensively across the US including appearances on ABC, NBC and Hallmark Channel.


Margie’s upbeat and down to earth style, entertaining stories and powerful message will challenge the minds, touch the hearts and ignite the spirits of your audience.

An internationally accredited coach, Margie has an extraordinary ability to get to the core of the issues which limit success, stifle potential and keep people ‘stuck’. An experienced speaker who has given hundreds of presentations to tens of thousands of people, Margie highly interactive programs empower her audience with fresh perspectives and practical strategies they can use immediately to rise above their doubts, fears and limiting beliefs to enjoy greater success and a deeper sense of purpose in their relationships, career, business and life.

Margie’s warm and genuine personality quickly engages her audience and earns their trust because she genuinely walks her talk when it comes to living a courageous life. Her very unique & entertaining stories and powerful lessons draw from her diverse personal and professional experience: from her childhood growing up in a large family on a farm in rural Australia to her intrepid travels to nearly 60 countries from Algeria to Papua New Guinea to her experiences as a Marketing Executive for international corporations including BP Oil and KPMG to the challenges of raising for young children whilst moving around the world, Margie eloquently captures the keys to living a bigger, more rewarding and more courageous life.

The reviews of Margie’s clients attest to the real and last impact she has on the members of her audiences. Her enthusiasm is infectious, her message is powerful and the spirit of adventure which she embraces in her own life truly inspires her audience to live with more clarity, confidence and courage!

A demo video of Margie speaking is available upon request.

Rave Reviews

Margie knocked our socks off! She was both really educational and truly inspirational. I would recommend Margie as a speaker to any group wanting to get clear on their priorities, be more effective in their careers and find more meaning in their day to day life. Margie made our event a huge success! -Brooke O’Shae / Sabre Holdings

What an enlightening and outstanding program! Margie delivered her program with tremendous enthusiasm, great passion and great depth knowledge. It was extremely well received by all and we look forward to having her back at NASA soon.
-Kim Haney/ Director/NASA HQ/ Washington DC

Margie was a BIG HIT at our annual physician’s conference getting the highest rating possible by 94% of attendees! She completely engaged our audience – not an easy feat with a room of 90 tired and distracted physicians. A joy to work with, I would not hesitate to recommend her to other event planners.
-Kathleen Bozis / Medical Society of Virginia

Margie is energetic, professional, easy-going and quite a breath of fresh air. Without notes, props or even a chair, Margie delivered divine words of wisdom for women seeking to make changes and promote themselves at work and at home through conversations with others.
-Deanna McRae King / British Telecom

Margie was an awesome speaker who really connected with the audience at our National Leadership Convention. Her stories were funny & touching, her ideas thought provoking & relevant, and her personality down to earth & delightful!
-Lynda Bayliss/ American Business Women’s Association

Factual, not fictional. With both feet on the ground, and a delightful accent that delivers a straightforward message, Margie Warrell can and does, in the best business sense, ‘tell it like it NEEDS to BE.’
-Susan Wight / eWomenNetwork Executive Managing Director

“Your presentation was a superb and your dynamic style was just what our group needed.”
-Jacque R. Lytle, Ph.D/Southern Methodist University

“Margie’s presentation was professional, her candor and energy refreshing, her remarks highly valuable and her strategies extremely relevant, practical. Undecided on a speaker? Hire Margie”
-Melody W.Orrantia/ Accenture

“Wow, what a fun presentation! It was great to get information for bettering our lives while laughing. It was one of the best presentations we have ever had!”
-Stacey Perkins / American Business Women’s Association

“Margie’s presentation was powerful. We got nothing but great feedback – our members want her back!”
-Jennifer Dicks/ Dallas Career Women’s Network


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Maria Bailey


The Art of Juggling: Balancing Family, Life and Work
Marketing to Moms: Getting Your Share of the Trillion Dollar Market


Maria T. Bailey is an award-winning author, radio talk show host,
internationally known speaker and the foremost marketing authority on marketing to moms. She has been an invited presenter to Burger King, Coca Cola, Best Buy, General Mills, Buena Vista Entertainment, and many other major corporations.
Her book, “Marketing to Moms: Getting Your Share of the Trillion Dollar Market”
(2002, Prima) is the first to examine the buying power of mothers and the most effective
marketing initiatives to tap the $1.7 trillion market and is published in several languages.
Maria’s newest book, “Trillion Dollar Moms: Marketing to a New Generation of Mothers” (Dearborn, 2005) focuses on the emergence of Gen X and Gen Y moms and how they compare to Boomer Moms.

Maria has an audience of over 11 million moms a month. She is the host of Mom Talk Radio, a nationally syndicated radio show for moms, co-host of Doug Stephan’s “Good Day”, Founder/CEO of, the award winning Website for executive working mothers and host of The Balancing Act on Lifetime TV. She is also the creator of Smart Mom Solutions, a product line that offers solutions to everyday challenges for busy moms. She has informed and entertained audiences around the globe with her passion and charisma.
She has presented at The International Direct Marketing Association Annual Conference,
The International Volunteerism Conference, The National Association of Industrial Psychology,
Alliance for Work/Life Professionals and many corporate sponsored seminars including
Noni International’s Woman’s Health Summit, Highlights-Jigsaw National Convention, Johnson & Johnson
and Southeast Toyota Lunch and Learn Series.

The mother of four young children, Ms. Bailey lives in Florida with her husband. She is a marathon runner and enjoys travel.


Maria Bailey has entertained, engaged and educated audiences around the globe. Her charasmatic style has made her a sought after keynote speaker as well as session facilitator. She has been an invited speaker at companies such as Disney Global, Nestle, HP, Microsoft, Cartoon Network, Chuck E. Cheese and Office Depot. Maria has presented at industry conventions such as The American Diary Association, Produce Marketing Association, Bowling Alley Owners of America, Youth Marketing Conference, Marketing to Women and many more.

Rave Reviews

“In ten years of meetings, Maria Bailey was the best speaker we’ve ever had” Disney Executive

“We learned more in your one hour speech than we did the entire conference.” VP, Packaged Goods

“Maria Bailey not only was informative but she was entertaining. She kept us laughing the entire time we were learning.” SVP, Marketing Furniture Industry


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Matilda Virgilio


Express to Destress
Start With the End In Mind
Joy In the Simple Life
Where have you been. Where are you going?
Women Warrior


Much of Matilda’s creative expression step from her immigrant roots. The use of collages grew from a child’s dream to have beauty in an ugly world, to an adult’s need to express emotions and complex concepts via collage assemlby. A favorite quotes states that “art is a way of knowing”; collage assembly helps to simplify what words alone can’t say.

Married at 21, divorced at 31. Her seven year daughter was never the same emotionally, and the newborn struggled most of her life with both physical and attention difficulties. Matilda had to dig deep into her creative spirit and come up with some hope and a survival plan. Her dining room became a sewing room and over a span of twenty years garment alterations evolved into a costume design business. Being self employed helped shape her into a very resourceful, competent mother and interdependent woman.

Getting effective child support, a never ending cycle of frustration, was well worth the 25 year effort. Carla, now 37, has a Journalism BA from Hofstra University. She is a web designer for, recently married and lives in Tucson Arizona. Annette, now 25 and expecting her first child, majored in Musical Theatre/Education NYU. She teaches young children at the Waldorf School in Garden City NY.

Matilda’s BA in Sociology & Business was from Molloy College. She is still self employed, teaching English and Italian at the Berlitz School of Languages. Recent projects include a visual aid teaching module tool. She hopes to share her passion for self discovery via collage assembly. She is also a Dale Carnegie life coach with several private clients and is facilitating hospice care for her 89 year old “mamma”.


Story Telling is a craft. The most engaging speakers take you on a journey without your knowing it. They transport you to their world. New perspectives open your imagination. You link the story to your past totally connected to the story, the speaker and the moment. It’s as if time stands still…and before you know it…you want more, but the speaker is walking off the stage. Eager for a more intimate connection, you make sure to ask how you can catch their next appearance. Their story is now part of you.

Rave Reviews

2007 “Power of Collage and Gestalt Therapy”- Silver Hill Hospital, New Canaan CT – Rehab Applications
2007 “Children’s Favorites Retold” -Valley Stream Library – Art Show Exhibit and Discussion
2006 “Collage Fun for Children” – Queens County Farm Museum County Fair – Facilitation and Discussions
2006 “Express to De-stress” -NAMI National Convention, Washington DC – Art Exhibit and Presentations
2006 “Story Boards and Dreamscapes” -Valley Stream Library – Art Show Exhibit and Discussion
2005 “Inside the Pages”- Self Esteem & Teens – Girl Scouts of Nassau County, NY – Collage Facilitator
2004 “Award for Achievement in Public Speaking”-Dale Carnegie Institute – Unanimous Peer Vote
2003 “The Shadows of Expression” -Valley Stream Library – Art Show Exhibit and Discussion
2002 “Expressive Personal Journey” -Valley Stream Historical Society –Art Show and Discussion
2001 “Domestic Violence in the workplace”- Wingate Inn, Mineola, NY -Bi-lingual Presentation
2000 “Memories and Dreams” -Department of Mental Health of Nassau County -Team Renewal
1997 “Hospice Care and the Expressive Arts”- Molloy College, Rockville Center, NY- Gerontology Workshop


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Melody Brooke


Oh, Wow, This Changes Everything! Transform Your Life and Relationships.
Creating a Culture of Compassion in the Workplace
What is the Right Use of Power? (Ethics)
Raising Compassionate Kids
Success From the Inside Out


After a childhood of abuse and neglect and two failed marriages Melody decided there had to be a better way. Counselors and self-help books agreed that it was her parent’s and husband’s fault. Applying this new knowledge widened the gulf between them. It didn’t take much of this before she KNEW their had to be a better way. With three kids to take care of, she needed to find it fast. Well, it took a dozen years to grasp how alike we really are, and more importantly, how to bridge the gap between us when all seems lost.

Melody first worked with adolescents and their families. Success required helping everyone see each other’s perspective. When Melody entered private practice she was drawn to working with severely emotionally disturbed clients. Behind their seemingly irrational behavior she saw rational processes controlled by a viewpoint distorted by years of abuse.

Melody’s model evolved from understanding the distortions her clients used to survive in a scary world. Her techniques transformed their lives and allowed many of them to return to the workplace for the first time in decades. The results are just as remarkable when applied to couples, families, and even in the workplace. What she loves about sharing these tools with “normal” people is the ripple effect it has on their children, spouses, parents, and co-workers.

Practicing what she preaches, Melody is now happily married and has five children enjoying the ripple effect in her life.

Melody is a Professional Counselor and Marriage and Family Therapist, graduating Texas Woman’s University in 1989. She is published in Radix Journal, Dallas Recovery Magazine, The Southwest Morticians Journal, Plano Child Magazine, on the Dan and Jennifer Relationship website, and is the author of Cycles of the Heart; A way out of the egocentrism of everyday life.


Melody explores the mind-body connection in her crusade to transform our personal and professional relationships. Her proven techniques work in the most stressful situations to help entrenched parties bridge the gap between their irreconcilable stances.

Through her nearly 20 years of experience working with clients from all walks of life, Melody has reached people with her positive messages about love, happiness and the search for meaning in our lives. When you are faced with low morale, communication conflicts, customer service issues, managing change, the need for improved teamwork, or just need a great laugh and attitude adjustment…the Counselor is in!

On stage, Melody is a bundle of energy that inspires you with specific, fun-filled strategies that launch you into action. You will be energized with new ways to enhance your relationships, increase the joy in your life, and to find the success you deserve.

With boundless energy and a message that invigorates even as it enlightens, Melody Brooke tells it like it is. She captivates audiences with real, practical solutions for successful communication and relationships without fluff and hype. You will walk away with a better understanding of leadership, life, your self and communication. This brilliant creator of the “Cycles of the Heart” model uncovers the secret ingredients of every day relationships to unveil hidden obstacles to success at home and in the workplace. And she makes it fun in the process. Known for her authenticity and energy, Melody blends humor and story telling with interactive, application-based programs that inspire motivation and implementation from her audiences.

Melody’s message is a powerful aid whether your group wants to improve their personal relationships at home or develop a team of collaborative and trusting colleagues at work.

Rave Reviews

“Melody is a skilled facilitator with great management of her audience. Her fun presentation really reaches her audience.”
-Elexis Rice, Speaker, Author

“Melody surprised me with her fun, light and playful approach. I really want others to know that Melody can provide a real possibility of a breakthrough.”
-Claire Phillips, Bedford, Tx

“Melody is an engaging speaker-articulate, warm, and light hearted. Her material is creative and accessible. She inspires hope for lasting Change-both in behavior and in attitude.”
-Cedar Barstow, RightUse of Power founder.

“Melody speaks from the heart about the things that matter most. Her delivery is authentic, gentle and moving.”
-Lisa Olson, Spark! founder.

“Melody’s presentation helped me see the patterns in relationships I’ve had. She was enthusiastic and got everyone involved. She presents a very Buddhist way of thinking and interacting.”
-Kathy Staford, Ancho’s Personal Chef Service

Feedback from attendees:
“I really enjoyed it!”
“Your talk is right on target”
“Good information I can share with my clients, thank you!” (from a therapist)
“I enjoyed Melody’s presentation in every way!”
“It was light and uplifting and well organized.”
“Melody’s talk enlightened me. It helps me plot a path for my thinking when dealing with issues.”
“Totally enlightening!”
“Great visuals and examples.”
“I enjoyed the whole program. It was well spoken with good content.”
“What I will take away is that taking ownership doesn’t mean getting down on myself for making mistakes.”
“I really enjoyed sharing with the person next to me and your ‘real’ stories from your clients. You are an honest, open, pleasant speaker. I love the hearts- wonderful (given out at the end.)
“The presentation made it clear how we operate in situations and made me think more about empathy.”
“It was very clear and helpful.”
“I loved the magic wand!”


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