The seed was planted 24 years ago when Marcie Balaban was mesmerized by her father’s performance in a Yiddish production at Place des Arts.
“I knew then and there that I too, wanted to interact with an audience,” says Balaban 38, who dabbled in theatre and spent 16 years in sales before establishing Let’s Get Going in 1993.
“Here I assume a different role than in acting or sales,” Balaban says. “But like show business, I’m constantly reaching out to people. Now my energy is being channeled into the business end.”
To date, Balaban has completed over 200 business motivational seminars embracing over 300 businesses. She currently has 75 industries on board, and stages business seminars, conducts trade shows and arranges power lunches at centres throughout the province.
Among her clients are professional, private and public corporations and non-profit organizations. Dawson Colege students and Jewish community groups have also benefited from her sessions.
“I have achieved results through referral and sales tracking systems,” says Balaban, who is certified by Toastmasters Inc. She is also a proponent of educator John Bradshaw’s work on self-development. Bradshaw carried out extensive studies on the inner child and Balaban embraces his use of animated characters such as Minnie Mouse, as tools in motivational strategy.
Balaban describes herself as a “business matchmaker.” She brings business people together and encourages mentoring. “We have lots of companies to tap into in Montreal,” Balaban says. “Neighboring companies should capitalize on each other’s resources and contacts. People often miss out because they fail to seek out potential clients on their territory. I’ll put two businesses together and through a series of tools, I’m able to show them how to get results.”
Balaban accepts only one member from each industry. “This is the key to creating a relaxing, trusting environment, where business people are open to ideas. I make sure each participant knows what makes them special, and subsequently I introduce them to others on the wheel.”
Speakers and presentations prove a big draw at her seminar series. Balaban cites the case of an aerobics instructor representing a top gym. He arrived at a seminar with an entourage and enthralled the audience with his presentation. As for sales action, Balaban notes a printing franchisee, who racked up over 100 sales directly through Let’s Get Going.
Clients receive course-packs filled with leads, motivation strategies, and customized company blueprints. They bring agendas and wear identification tags.
“At Let’s Get Going (514-421-6999), everything has a purpose,” says Balaban pointing out visuals displaying black type on bright yellow paper. “The background is cheerful and meant to inspire.”