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About Us: Speech as a Catalyst for Positive Change

About Us: Speech as a Catalyst for Positive Change

We talk a lot about our speakers, but we don’t talk a lot about ourselves. We have the standard “about us” page, sharing our origin story, what makes us tick, and introducing the faces behind those emails, but beyond that we tend to put the spotlight on our clients and roster of experts, deservedly so.

But when we decided to hit the reset button on our brand, update our look, and modernize our website, it became a far-reaching and fascinating look at who we are and how we got here; a story we want to share with you.

So, we sat down with our co-founders, Martin and Farah Perelmuter, as well as our staff and some of our clients, to dive deep into what makes Speakers Spotlight, Speakers Spotlight. This is the first piece of our “About Us” series, going behind-the-scenes of our “why”.   

A Purpose-Driven Company from the Start

Speakers Spotlight was founded on the belief that a speech can be the catalyst for positive change. This belief became the foundation of our company mission — we’re a speakers bureau on a mission to change the world by helping our clients put the right speaker in front of the right audience at the right time.

Armed with only one desk, one phone, and one computer, Martin and Farah launched Speakers Spotlight in 1995 out of their spare bedroom. They had no clients, experience, staff, or money, but they had a clear vision. They believed that the right speaker in front of the right audience could create lasting impact, plus they knew that event planners, speakers, and audiences could be served in new and better ways.

While they played with several mission statements over the years, it always came back to the power of a speech in sparking real change. This was finally cemented after Martin was gifted the book, Working the Room, by Nick Morgan.

The first sentence states that the only reason to give a speech is to change the world. A bold statement, Martin thought at first but after reading why, he couldn’t help but agree. In the clip below, hear from Martin himself on how this book impacted him and Speakers Spotlight.

Serving Clients and Speakers in a New and Better Way

Having an impact and influencing change through speech is only made possible if we’re able to find that right speaker for our clients. This is what we pride ourselves in and it’s why fostering connection and building relationships — both internally and externally — make up the foundation of Speakers Spotlight. How else could we help our clients find the right speaker for their specific audience at that exact moment in time?

From day one, our goal has been to serve event planners, speakers, and audiences in new and better ways. Hear why Farah believes connection is a key factor in that in the video below:

Impact in Action

All of us at Speakers Spotlight have felt this exact impact that a speech can make, but one of the first speakers to have this effect on Martin was Rubin “Hurricane” Carter. He was a middle-weight boxer who, in the 1960s, was arrested and convicted for a triple homicide that he did not commit. Rubin spent nearly 20 years in prison before he was freed. Upon release, he moved to Toronto.

When Martin and Farah were launching Speakers Spotlight, Martin saw an interview with Rubin and immediately purchased his book, The Sixteenth Round. After both he and Farah read it cover to cover, they reached out to Rubin in hopes of adding him to their roster. We worked with Rubin for 18 years, up until his death in 2014.

“We saw the impact that he had on our own lives and the lives of the audience members he spoke to,” Martin said, “so he was probably the first [speaker] where I realized that this is more than just providing ideas and information to people, this can actually change how people think about topics, and ultimately change their own perspectives and even their own lives.”

Acting on Our Beliefs

From our mission, grew our six core values and beliefs:

  • We are passionate and compassionate people.
  • We value relationships more than transactions.
  • We respect intelligence, not arrogance.
  • We do everything with the long term in mind.
  • We take work seriously, but not ourselves too seriously.
  • We believe impact is the best measurement of our success.

We’ll be exploring these in more depth over the coming weeks, adding our staff, clients, and speakers into the conversation.

We want to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU for joining us in our mission to have a positive impact on the world by helping us put the right speaker in front of the right audience — one event at a time. 

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