Karen Martin, along with her SPEAK STRONG program, rolled into our office three months ago.
IBW Surveyors has a strong staff of about 70, and we are always looking for ways to develop our team and develop our staff. At every level of our professional organization, we rely upon strong communication - communication with our project partners, with our colleagues, and mostly with our own team. Karen sold us on the Speak Strong program as a path to improving ourselves that would include a lot of laughs along the way - and she delivered by bringing her sense of humour every week and through her dedication to each and every participant.
It has to be a daunting task to lead a group of individuals that were brought to the room kicking and screaming, carrying with them anxieties and nervousness. But each week we saw the participants coming back, with fewer concerns, and eventually with eager anticipation. On the final day, I listened to one participant after another describe how the Speak Program helped propel them personally and professionally. IBW Surveyors continues to see the benefits Karen and her program brought to us through Speak Strong. I would not hesitate to recommend KM 2 Communications to any company looking to develop a strong team and have a little fun along the way.
Crystal Cranch, O.L.S.,
President of IBW Surveyors
Karen prepared me greatly for an in-class presentation. She taught me that there was more to standing in front of a class and reading off cue cards. That the class was my audience and I had the opportunity to capture their attention and teach them valuable information. She taught me to carry myself with confidence and project my words and pause after important or captivating moments to really get my point across. Thank you, Karen, for giving me these important pointers that I will continue to use going forward in my time here at Centennial college, and as I take the next step into the professional world.
Karen is a dynamic speaker and exceptional workshop facilitator. She was able to provide valuable presentation skills to my students in a fun and exciting way that kept them all engaged and ready to participate. During the student presentations it was clear that they utilized her tips and tricks to confidently present their material. I would highly recommend Karen to anyone who needs to develop their public speaking and presentation skills.
Massage Therapy Faculty, Centennial College
I found Karen's workshop full of helpful tools to use in all types of public speaking. Her presentation was fun and interactive and got us all actually practicing in front of our classmates right away! Before we knew it, we were feeling much more confident in ourselves and ready to take on the next assignment.
Karen is such an excellent speaker and so confident in her abilities that she made me feel confident as well! She has amazing tips. She is really an asset in helping you make your presentation count. Knowledge is power! Thank-you Karen!
"The tips and tidbits she gave me helped me so much when I had to do my presentation. I made sure that I did something that could get me in a good mood before my presentation (singing to great songs). I found that to be the most helpful tip for me. It really made a huge difference for me and my presentation. Thank you, Karen for coming into our class and providing that amazing workshop. I really APPRECIATE IT!”
Public speaking was never my strong suit when I was younger and one of those things I dreaded in school. With your help I was able to be more confident on the stage and also deliver a better introduction. Even though I didn’t take home one of the prizes, I think just getting up and being able to say my speech to a large, unfamiliar audience was a great accomplishment. Thanks again!
EIT, finalist in UOIT’s Three Minute Thesis Presentation (3MT) competition for 2018
I attended Karen’s Speak Strong series at Collins Barrow. Prior to attending Karen’s sessions I had the opportunity to do a lot of public speaking through my role of President at the Ajax Pickering Board of Trade. I wish I would have attended the session before taking on this role. Her training in public speaking with confidence is exceptional.
Shannon Moore, CPA, CA
Client Service Manager, Collins Barrow Durham
The workshop Karen created for UOIT's School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies’ Three Minute Thesis competition was informative, engaging and interactive! She had thoroughly prepared to meet students' needs and understand the parameters of our event. Thank you Karen for supporting our event and teaching our students how to be effective and confident communicators.
Graduate Student Engagement Coordinator
School of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies
University of Ontario Institute of Technology
Karen Martin’s Speak Strong program is spectacular! She breaks down the fundamentals of public speaking and tackles your fears head on. I regularly do presentations and engage in dialogue with clients and Karen’s program has helped me to speak with confidence. I recommend Karen Martin’s program to anyone and everyone. Thanks Karen!
Megan Hanzal, CPA, CA
Client Service Manager, Collins Barrow Durham
“Karen is a skilled communicator. It was a pleasure to learn from her and practise my own speaking abilities. She presents information and feedback so that it is exciting, memorable, powerful, and personal.”
Sales Representative, Royal LePage
This program “up’d my confidence. It encouraged me to practise more and think before speaking. Great tips!”
Shelley Allen, Bowmanville
Branch Manager, Petley-Hare Ltd. Insurance Brokers
“I want to thank you for coaching me with my speaking engagement at my Symmetry 7 Conference in Montreal. Through your ability to ask all of the right questions, you guided me along. By the time I was to present my talk, I felt fully prepared. The outcome was outstanding. The presentation went smoothly and the audience was engaged. When the next speaking opportunity arises, I will not hesitate to contact you to coach me again. Many thanks and I look forward to working with you in the future.” With best regards,
Wendy Starr, Sales Representative,
Keller Williams Energy Brokerage
“Our Sunday afternoon of fun and fashion was made so much more special with Karen’s amazing sense of humour and talent to “ad lib”. Kudos to Karen.”
Monica Scott, Sales Associate,
Cachet-Leisure Lady, Bowmanville
"I had the pleasure of completing a Toastmasters International Speechcraft course in October 2016. Karen participated in all three sessions as an evaluator and mentor to our group of students. Karen provided excellent feedback and encouragement to all students. She gave objective advice for improvement while reinforcing strengths and identifying learning challenges. Karen also led modules of the course. She “practises what she preaches” by being an effective public speaker who readily engages her audience.”
Inspector Steven Jones,
Durham Regional Police Services
"Karen’s contributions, (as the Master of Ceremonies), to The Smiles Walk/Run were invaluable. Her energy and passion kept our participants engaged all through the event.”
Organizer of The Smiles Walk/Run
“Karen’s speech at our Graduation Ceremony was inspiring! She was animated, humorous, professional, and she drove home their accomplishments.”
Deborah Jollymore, Oshawa Campus Director
for TriOS College
“This course has been an inspiration to all of the participating individuals, whether it be from increasing our individual self-esteem to overcoming our shyness and delivering a strong, confident and powerful speech in front of an audience. It has been proven over the last ten weeks that you can teach young and old dogs new tricks. Thank you Karen from KM2 Communications.”
Tammy Schevers, CPA CGA Manager
Collins Barrow, Kawarthas
“We enjoyed our time with you over the ten weeks and can definitely say we have learned some tips we will use in our futures. Thanks again!”
Sarah Wagstaff, B. Comm Junior Accountant
Collins Barrow, Kawarthas
Karen Martin recently gave a two-hour presentation to a group of our camera club members to help us deal with speaking to a group. I was amazed how well the participants responded to her simple skill sets for learning to be comfortable speaking in front of an audience. Everyone relaxed, laughed and thoroughly enjoyed themselves. In the past, I was always tense when I needed to speak to a group, but just some simple ideas have already helped me.
At a recent camera club meeting, I took her advice from her presentation and used my Power Point presentation, that was projected behind me, as a guide only. Previously, I felt that I needed to convey my information in great detail, reading out what was on the screen. However, I realized that since all the details would be uploaded to our club website, I only needed to direct the audience to check there after the meeting. The pressure to remember everything, was gone and I felt so much more at ease, allowing me to look at the audience while I spoke. Going forward, I will continue to use her suggestions when addressing the club and hope my confidence continues to grow. Thank You Karen, for all your help.
President-Oshawa Camera Club
When I am asked to speak in public I always ask Karen to review what I plan to say. She has provided me with great strategies that have helped me to communicate more effectively and confidently both verbally and non-verbally. What we say and how we say it is one of the keys to success no matter what our occupation. Karen can help you do it more effectively.
Peter Hobb, CPA, CA, CFP
Partner, Collins Barrow Durham LLP
“Public speaking is feared by many. Karen provided a fun and practical workshop for Oshawa Public Libraries Staff Development Day that energized us with lots of helpful tips on how to be a better public speaker and engage our audience.“
CEO of the Oshawa Public Libraries
“Thank you so much for the workshop. You delivered exactly what I was looking for and the staff couldn’t say enough about how much they enjoyed the afternoon.
I appreciate all the effort you put into making this an enjoyable training session and I know you got the staff thinking of new ways to deliver our material.”
Laura Suchan, M.A.,
Executive Director, Oshawa Community Museum
“Karen is very inspiring. My confidence, I feel, has improved. I didn’t think it would in a few hours. Public speaking techniques can be used in social situations, as well.”
Participant in a full-day workshop,”Confidently Speaking”, at Durham College
“Karen will teach you techniques that for some to master may take awhile,
But before long you’ll learn about the 5 P’s, the Hook, and even the importance
Of applause and a gentle smile.
How to extend a sincere handshake
And the impression it will make.
Karen teaches you the important and timeless details
Whether you’re in business or in marketing and sales.”
Participant in a full-day workshop, “Confidently Speaking”, at Durham College
“I recently participated in Karen Martin’s “Speak Strong” workshop on public speaking. Here I learned or had reinforced a multitude of speaking preparation techniques including first impressions, effective cue cards, overcoming nervousness, and the power of body language. Having a snack break with homemade cookies was an added bonus. I know everyone who participated learned something new and thoroughly enjoyed themselves.”
Kristof Lindale, Youth Ambassador Director
Uxbridge Chamber of Commerce
“We asked Karen to provide us with a 10 week program for our entire organization – everyone from reception to partner. We watched everyone in the organization become more comfortable and confident in speaking in front of a group. More importantly, we learned more about one another and shared many laughs in the course of doing so. The biggest plus was that it made us a better and closer knit team. It was a great experience.”
Ian Bergin, CPA, CA
Collins Barrow Durham LLP
“Karen took great care in working with us to customize a unique 10 week program to develop our team’s communication skills. She was patient and accommodating as we made changes both before and during the program. Many of our team members were nervous when they heard about the program, but Karen quickly put everyone at ease with her friendly and approachable personality. She seamlessly blended lessons on communications skills with formal and informal communication and public speaking practice each week. Most of all, she made public speaking fun and she helped us all build our confidence. I highly recommend Karen Martin from KM2 Communications to other businesses and professionals who want to work on their communications skills to take their business and careers to the next level. “
Laura Wilson, CPA, CA
Collins Barrow Durham
Crazy entertaining! It was well articulated. We all enjoyed your ‘paddle prop’, your animated body language, and your underlying message of your speech.
Beta Sigma Phi
“ Karen taught me techniques to keep both my mind and body calm and relaxed. With just a few tweaks to my articulation, grabbing and keeping an audience’s attention became much easier. I would highly recommend her to anyone wishing to have a memorable speech.”
Dunbarton High School
“Our speech went well. I didn’t “freeze” and delivered the speech comfortably. I was satisfied with my delivery based on how nervous I felt initially about public speaking.”
Father of the Bride
"Your workshop was a benefit to my class – absolutely. One student mentioned that he thought it was the best class all semester. You had some great activities and you kept them engaged throughout the class. As such, the strategies you taught were reinforced with the activities.”
Durham College Professor
Owner/director Smart Acts
Andrew was a vibrant member of one of my public speaking classes at Uxbridge Secondary School. While he had confidence in front of an audience, he needed to refine his public speaking skills. He learned how to make proper introductions that captivated his audience, to keep his audience engaged with his topic, and to read his audience to improve his connection with them.
Since graduating from high school, Andrew has delivered many successful business and academic presentations. He says he owes his success to the skills he learned in my public speaking class.
Amy had this to share: “Mrs. Martin’s Public Speaking course proved to be incredibly valuable in my post-secondary experiences. I recently graduated with my Communications degree and have Mrs. Martin to thank for the confidence I have with large crowds and presentations, as well as, the successes I achieved as a result. Prior to her class, I was never comfortable delivering speeches or presentations in any setting, but her experienced teaching was a huge benefit and very relevant to many areas of my life after graduation. “