my story

    from Speech Impediment to Professional Speaker

    Hi, I’m Olivia. I’m a keynote speaker, executive coach and presentation skills trainer.

    "Is it possible to have a speech impediment and go on to become a professional speaker? It’s been a journey, but yes, I’m proof that it is."

    When I was young, due to my speech difficulties, I couldn’t express myself with words, I focused instead on expressing myself through movement. I trained as a dancer in England’s top dance academy, The ‘London School of Contemporary Dance,’ A highlight was performing with Rudolph Nureyev at the Royal Opera House for Prince Charles and Princess Diana, quite a contrast to a later job as a circus performer in a Mexican Circus!

    My speech impediment put an end to my dream to make the shift from dancer to actor. After taking a degree in Communication and Linguistics, I joined the BBC... this time I was behind the camera. I worked in media companies for twenty years, learning about camera craft, messaging, dealing with difficult clients and getting the best out of performers and production teams. I worked closely with celebrities like Goldie Hawn, we shared a carrot juice using the same straw, I’ll never forget it.

    The thrill of the stage never disappeared. In 2010, now living in Berlin, a friend took me to a public speaking club. I only went to meet some new people. It was the start of a journey of discovery - exploring my voice and with it my value. I ended up on stage in Las Vegas, in front of an audience of 2000 expressing myself ...with WORDS….. It was the final of the World Championship of Public Speaking, and I, the girl with the speech defect and all the scars that came with it, the sole woman to make it to the final.

    I had found my true calling in life. On the stage again, but different.

    An actor is an expert at being someone else.
    A speaker is an expert at being themselves.

    My journey proves our biggest asset is ourselves, defects and all… and our biggest liability... believing in our limitations. Instead of trying to fit in, we need to stand out and own who we are. To be authentic, vulnerable, transparent as speakers, as leaders, as people.

    Now I help others be themselves. I help them use presence, presentation skills and persuasion to lead their businesses and spread their ideas.
    I’ve been lucky enough to speak at Tedx, given speeches in over 20 countries on 6 continents, and addressed audiences of more than four thousand.

    I’ve worked for some household names, here are a few you might recognise - Accenture, American Express, Gore Tex, Heineken, Roche, IBM, BNP Paribas, Shell, Starbucks, Swift, Zalando.

    In my keynotes and workshops, I draw from lessons learned from my journey, from the film and dance industries and from my clients.

    My mission is to empower you to be your best self.