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Leaving the Corporate Gig for a Speaking Career, with Mic Drop Alumni Corrie LoGiudice

July 10, 2024
Corrie LoGiudice shares her journey from doubting her potential as a professional speaker to succeeding as a keynote speaker.
Leaving the Corporate Gig for a Speaking Career, with Mic Drop Alumni Corrie LoGiudice
July 10, 2024
Corrie LoGiudice shares her journey from doubting her potential as a professional speaker to succeeding as a keynote speaker.

LISTEN TO THE EPISODE

ON THIS EPISODE OF AMPLIFY

Corrie talks about how clarity, confidence, and community help you tackle challenges and move forward in the speaking world. She began with us at Mic Drop Workshop, moved on to Mic Drop Academy, then took on unpaid gigs before landing a TEDx talk, marking key moments in her career journey. Through personal anecdotes and practical advice, I learned how she navigated challenges and built a thriving speaking career.

ABOUT OUR GUEST

Corrie Logiudice

Professional Speaker, Coach, and Consultant

Corrie LoGiudice is a professional keynote speaker, leadership coach, and entrepreneur known for her impactful storytelling and expertise in overcoming adversity. With a background in corporate leadership as a third-generation senior vice president of her family’s business, Corrie has navigated significant personal challenges while maintaining her professional responsibilities. These experiences have shaped her signature talk on “Overwhelm,” which she first presented at a TEDx event.

Corrie’s journey into professional speaking began when she left her corporate role to start her own business and spend more time with her son. Encouraged by a mentor and a growing interest in her story, she pursued opportunities in public speaking, eventually joining the Mic Drop Workshop and Mic Drop Academy. She honed her skills through these platforms, built confidence, and transitioned from free local gigs to high-profile, paid speaking engagements.

Now, Corrie works with fellow speakers and entrepreneurs, sharing insights and strategies for success. Her dedication to clarity, confidence, and consistency has made her a sought-after speaker and coach, inspiring others to leverage their unique stories and achieve their full potential.

SHOW NOTES

When Corrie LoGuidice was juggling a high stress career as a Senior Vice President while being a single parent, she knew it was time for a change. She saw an ad for Mic Drop Workshop, and decided to sign up.

Shortly after, she was on the TEDx stage.

Today, Corrie talks about her Mic Drop experience and what she’s accomplished since jumping off the corporate ladder.

Rate Amplify on Spotify and Apple Podcasts and leave a review for Jess Ekstrom.

Amplify with Jess is produced by Earfluence, and brought to you by Mic Drop Workshop.

TRANSCRIPT

Corrie – 00:00:02:

If you’re not clear on what message your keynote is going to be, you’re not clear on who your audience is, you don’t have clarity around those areas, you’re never going to move forward, you’re going to kind of stay stuck. If you’re not confident in your message, which confidence kind of comes from clarity, they kind of go hand in hand. But if you’re not confident in your speaking ability, you don’t make eye contact, there’s different ways in your delivery, that’s going to keep you stuck where you’re at. If you don’t have the right people surrounding you.

Jess – 00:00:33:

Welcome to Amplify with Jess Ekstrom, a show designed to help women get out of their head and into their zone of influence. Today, the teacher becomes the student as we welcome professional keynote speaker, leadership coach, and Mic Drop graduate, Corrie LoGiudice, to the show. Corrie started with the Foundation’s Mic Drop Workshop, our course designed just for women on how to get your first paid speaking engagement. A few years later, Corrie joined Mic Drop Academy, our 10-week live group coaching program for women who want to scale their speaking business to full-time. I am so proud of what she’s accomplished. If you want to give Mic Drop a try, you can try our free training at micdropworkshop.com/speaker. Now, given everything she’s accomplished, you might be surprised to learn that Corrie really never saw herself as a professional speaker. But when she left her corporate gig to start her own business and spend more time with her son, she started to see the signs that maybe this was the path for her.

Corrie – 00:01:34:

Anytime I was at an event and I would be sharing how I started my business and why I was in business doing what I’m doing and what I was passionate about, people would always be asking me, like, do you do professional speaking? Like, you should. You have a really unique story. And I had hired a coach, you know, a mentor to work with when I was first starting that business. And she was an author speaker coach, same type of thing. And she was the first one that kind of planted the seed in my head that said you should apply for TEDx. And to me, that just seemed insane because I was like, I’ve never been on a stage before in my life. You know, I’m like, you do this professionally. Like, why would anybody think what I have to offer is interesting?

Jess – 00:02:15:

Which is, I think, like, the number one thing that keeps people from speaking is, like, you don’t think your own story is interesting.

Corrie – 00:02:23:

But clearly, it is. Yeah. You know, and it’s interesting, too, because after that conversation, maybe, like, two months or so after, it was one of those scenarios where the universe just kept showing signs. You know, where I’d be, like, a Barnes & Noble, and there would be a book on the floor in front of me. Start your speaking business. And then ads for Mic Drop started showing up in my feed. So finally, one day, I was like, fine, enough. Okay. Like, I’ll sign up.

Jess – 00:02:45:

Who is this blonde chick that keeps coming up on my For You page? Yeah.

Corrie – 00:02:51:

Yes. So you pop-up.

Jess – 00:02:52:

Good. I am going to tell our ads team that they’re doing a good job. Just keep having people. Yeah.

Corrie – 00:02:57:

So I was like, I give up. Okay, cool. Let’s do this. So I signed up. I signed up for Mic Drop Workshop at that time. And I want to think I signed up for it in August, if I remember right. This was back pre-pandemic. It was 2019, I think, 2020, right before..

Jess – 00:03:12:

And for anyone who’s listening who’s new to our community, Mic Drop Workshop is our foundations course, really, for someone who’s new to speaking to get your first paid gig. And so that’s where you were at.

Corrie – 00:03:23:

Yeah. Well, let’s just say I started with Mic Drop Workshop. I took it in a weekend. I just love the content. It was quick, very easy. I just blew through it. And then I took it really seriously at that point. I’m like, you know what? If I’m going to do this, I’m really going to do it. So I got out there. I started booking a ton of free gigs. I did a lot of Lions Clubs and places like that locally. And I applied for TEDx because I was like, why not?

Jess – 00:03:49:

Can we just pause on the free gigs for a second? Because it might seem like going backwards. You know, you’re like, well, this is supposed to be something that I’m supposed to get paid to do. And this is why I signed up and all this stuff. But the free in the beginning is so important just to get those reps in and figure out what you want to be known for. And the best form of marketing is speaking. So were you finding that with those free opportunities? Like, what was the value in free for you?

Corrie – 00:04:21:

For me, the free, and I still do them to this day, was really helpful, number one, with my confidence. And number two, figuring out how content lands. So I viewed it from the standpoint of a stand-up comic going to do open mics or whatever until you do.

Jess – 00:04:34:

Yeah, I love that.

Corrie – 00:04:35:

I was like, let me do this and figure it out. And ultimately, it ended up working in my favor because I signed up for Mic Drop Workshop in August, September, October, November. I started doing all those free gigs. I applied for my first TEDx in November and I got an email the end of December that I was accepted to the very first one. I had no talk done. It was just literally an idea, bullet point. And I wasn’t sure exactly what to speak on, but ultimately the topic of my TED Talk ended up becoming what I speak on now professionally. And yeah, it all started with your ad in my feed.

Jess – 00:05:11:

Oh, good. Seriously, I’m literally going to call our marketing team after this and be like, keep doing what you’re doing. But so the topic that you landed on for your TED Talk is about overwhelm. Is that right?

Corrie – 00:05:23:

Yes.

Jess – 00:05:23:

Okay. How did you, was it through like speaking for free? Like a lot of people have an idea of what I want to speak on or have like five different things. How did you know that this was the topic? Walk us through your, almost your creative process for that.

Corrie – 00:05:40:

So for me, when I started to write the TED Talk and I literally had writer’s block and I was like, I have no idea. Like, what am I supposed to do here? So something intuitively told me I needed to speak about what my greatest weakness was. Something about that would be very resonant. And for me at that time, it was my ability to always push through what’s really overwhelming situations, regardless of what’s going on. So it’s my greatest strength was also my greatest weakness at the same time. So that’s really what the talk was about. And the framework I more or less developed to be able to do that. And it really came out of my own personal story, which at the beginning of this conversation, I didn’t think anybody would find was valuable. But, in a span of five years, I had experienced a miscarriage, abuse, a high conflict divorce, and then later a suicide loss. And it was all while I was navigating running my family’s business as a third generation, as a senior vice president, and no one having any idea. You know, what was happening that I handled it that well. So now speaking about there’s overwhelming situations in every area of your life, whether it be your personal life or in your career, or we were even talking about it earlier in terms of when you’re starting your speaking business, it’s really overwhelming, you don’t know what’s going on. So having a framework or a toolkit to be able to do that is really impactful, I found. And it was one of those things too. And I think this is so important a lot of times when something comes easy to us, we have a tendency to dismiss it, like, oh, why would anybody like want to hear my story? Or why would anybody want help with that? And the reason why it’s valuable is because it’s unique. And because of your experience and dealing with it. So it took me, like I said before, I was really the reluctant speaker, I didn’t want to do it. But it took me having to kind of unpack a lot of mindset, limiting beliefs that I had, that what I had to offer was valuable, because to me, it’s simple, but to everybody else, it’s not.

Jess – 00:07:45:

That is fascinating. And I think a really good point when it comes to what we want to speak on or what we want to write about or what we want to create, I feel like there’s a season in your life where this is the thing that you worked on. This is the thing that you were actively not good at, what you were talking about. And usually that’s the thing that you probably have a lot of resources and thoughts around because it was something that you actively had to work on. And then you become 10% ahead. You become 10% ahead on overwhelm. Or for me, you become 10% ahead on optimism or motivation. And then all of a sudden, the thing that you worked so hard at becomes a little bit more natural to you. And you now have not just a gift, but what I call a responsibility to throw the rope down and teach it. And even with your story, I think this is another like pitfall that I see people fall into is just like… Well, I’ve heard my own story a million times. I hear it every night I go to bed. I think about it all the time, no one wants to hear this. You have to remember that this is the first time someone else is hearing it. And it doesn’t have to be this like insane, crazy, oh, I got lost on Kilimanjaro and wrote a lion down. And you’d think that it has to be this crazy thing. But most of the time, people just want to relate to who you are and what you’re doing. And so you’ve been able to take what was the lesson that I needed to learn? What frameworks did I use to overcome it? And now how can I teach? Like getting out of overwhelm to audiences. So, okay, going back to the TEDx Talk. You’re writing the TEDx Talk, you figure out, okay, overwhelm is where I want to go. What next?

Corrie – 00:09:28:

Because it wasn’t actually titled Overwhelm at that time.

Jess – 00:09:32:

Oh, okay.

Corrie – 00:09:32:

It’s interesting. So my TEDx Talk is actually called Don’t Give Up, Change Your Strategy. So it was really more about that continuing to push forward thing. And it wasn’t until during the pandemic after I literally gave the last TED Talk before the world shut down. It was like the last one on stage. So everything had kind of shut down at that moment. But the topic was very relevant to what was going on, because I talked about pivotal life moments and stuff like that. The pandemic was a fourth pivotal life moment for everybody. And it was at that time, the framework that I talked about that I named it The Overwhelm Culprit after because I got so much interest in it afterwards that I was like, okay, well, how can I make this easier to communicate in other forms?

Jess – 00:10:11:

Yes, that’s a great point. It’s like all the free stuff and all the times that we put out like a LinkedIn post or whatever, like what are the things that people are resonating with? What are the words that people are using? And so when you talked about Don’t Give Up, find what, what did you say it was?

Corrie – 00:10:28:

Don’t Give Up: Change Your Strategy.

Jess – 00:10:30:

Change your strategy, figuring out, okay, well, the through line through that is overwhelm, which a lot of people are experiencing. It’s not necessarily changing a lot of the content, it’s changing how it’s packaged in the words that you’re using in that. Okay. So find, okay, Overwhelm is where I want to go. What next?

Corrie – 00:10:50:

Then from there, it was getting out of my own way. Because to your point earlier, sometimes it’s so difficult to tell the same story over and over again, albeit to different audiences, and have them get value out of it. When you’re on the side of having heard it all the time and lived it and this and that. So a big challenge for me has been not trying to change it.

Jess – 00:11:12:

Yeah.

Corrie – 00:11:12:

It’s like you have the keynote. It’s working great. The slides are good. The pitch is good. Like everything’s good. Don’t break it.

Jess – 00:11:18:

Don’t break it. Yeah. Just because you might get bored with it doesn’t mean anyone else is bored.

Corrie – 00:11:23:

Right. But I think intuitively for me, I’m like this, I need to improve it or change this because a lot of it too, it comes back to that idea we were talking about earlier where you feel like your story isn’t enough. Or your story isn’t worthy, or people shouldn’t be interested in this, you’re still trying to find those like kind of self sabotaging reasons why.

Jess – 00:11:40:

Yeah.

Corrie – 00:11:41:

It shouldn’t be working. So probably after, you know, like you said, the big thing for me has been like, just staying in my lane and talking about what really resonates with people. And for most people, most audiences I talk to my story and specifically the overwhelmed culprit seem to really resonate. So that’s what I stick with.

Jess – 00:11:59:

So then, I mean, I feel like there was some inflection point where all of a sudden you got a deal to be the, I don’t know what you would call it, like spokesperson for the public library. You’re starting to make five figures per gig. Were you like? What is happening or what was that process to go from, okay, in August. I signed up for a course. Then I was speaking for free. Then I gave a TEDx Talk. And now I’m getting paid five figures per game.

Corrie – 00:12:33:

Well, here’s what’s interesting with that. Because there’s a gap there. You know, there’s a gap. I had actually gone from doing the TEDx Talk then the world shut down. But I also got pregnant during the pandemic. So then I had a baby and I didn’t want to travel. And virtual gigs. I was still doing some virtual gigs and stuff like that for free. But I really and mind you to during that timeframe, that’s when I took Mic Drop Academy.

Jess – 00:12:57:

Yeah.

Corrie – 00:12:58:

Which was great, but I didn’t do anything on it for like two years.

Jess – 00:13:01:

Yeah.

Corrie – 00:13:02:

Finally, my husband was like, Corrie, get off the couch. The kids don’t need you here. People need to hear your story, like get out on stages again. And so talking in terms of timelines, I decided to like go all in on my speaking business more so than my coaching and other things that I offer. And it was within probably like a six month timeframe. It took off, like you said, but it was following all those same processes and consistency and making sure I follow up and stuff like that to get those results.

Jess – 00:13:35:

Okay, I want to hit on following up because in the Speaker Sister Facebook group, which is the group that all of our students are in, you had this post that touched so many people, including myself, and was so helpful. And you were like, look, don’t forget to follow up. Let me tell you this story. Can you share with us the outcome that you’ve seen from following up?

Corrie – 00:14:02:

Oh, I could tell you with no exaggeration.

Jess – 00:14:04:

Yeah.

Corrie – 00:14:05:

I did four gigs in the last month, majority of them for like international women’s day and stuff like that. And all of them were based on like third, fourth, fifth follow-ups.

Jess – 00:14:14:

Heck you.

Corrie – 00:14:15:

Yeah.

Jess – 00:14:16:

Okay. For someone who’s cough me, someone who’s like, but if they don’t want me in the first try, why, what, what do I say? I don’t want to be pushy. I don’t want to be too much. Talk me through that. How do you think about it? And then what do you say?

Corrie – 00:14:36:

Sure. It’s definitely a mindset shift. So for the folks that never responded to me, I just six months later pitched them the same as I did before, because we might not have seen it. It might not have been a priority. It might not have been the right time. They never remember the first go around. So it doesn’t matter. If you have a conversation going with somebody, that’s when you really want to make it a little bit more personal. But I always take the mindset of they probably didn’t see it. And it’s an act of service for me to continue following up with them, especially if it’s something that they said that they want to do, because I’ve had times where people have said like, oh yeah, I want to talk to you about that. And then it’s ghost town for two months, three months, whatever. And I keep following up with them. And then finally they’re like, thank you so much for staying on me for this. I really did want to do this. Just the timing wasn’t right and our event wasn’t soon enough. And I just forgot. So until they tell me no, I will keep following up.

Jess – 00:15:37:

Until they tell you, no, then it’s a maybe.

Corrie – 00:15:40:

Yeah. One thing that I do that I think is, is really awesome though, when it comes to automated follow-up, because we’ll do three emails in a sequence when I’m doing a cold pitch, initially somebody who doesn’t know who I am. So we have like the first intro email and then I have two automated follow-ups that go out. So then I don’t have to worry about it. They go in the system, they’re going to get emails. If they do respond to us, then we shut the automation off, obviously, because we don’t need those emails crossing. That’s just kind of weird. But at least then you don’t have to worry about thinking about like, oh, next week, follow up with the 10 people from last week and the 10 people the week before that, it gets crazy.

Jess – 00:16:17:

I think that also just like what you said about like, oh, I just assume they didn’t see it. Most of the time that that’s true, like, or they forgot about it. And we just internalize and make things personal that don’t have to be. I remember my mom was applying for something and they didn’t respond. And she was like, can you check my follow-up email? And it was like, her follow-up email was something around, I promise that I, like just reinforcing how she could be the one to do this, which my mom’s amazing. She would crush anything. But I was like, you don’t, a follow-up is not about convincing them of your abilities. It’s about what you said, the tactics. Did you see it or did you forget about it? Like, let’s not make it personal.

 Corrie – 00:17:09:

 Right, exactly. It’s not about you. It’s about them. And one of the things that I did in my three-part sequence, the very last email, and this works beautifully too, is I’ll word it in a way where it’s like, hey, I don’t know if you saw this or not. This is the last time I’m going to follow up. Just putting that out there, this is the last one. I get more messages from that third email than any of the other two combined. And usually people are like, I’m so sorry. I totally missed the first ones. I didn’t mean to keep you waiting just because I set that boundary. Like this is the last time.

Jess – 00:17:44:

This is the last one. Yeah. Yeah.

Corrie – 00:17:46:

And they actually didn’t have an intention to reach out. They just didn’t have an opportunity.

Jess – 00:17:50:

Oh, I love that. But I want to make sure we touch on this process. One of the biggest things I feel like I see in Mic Drop Workshop or Mic Drop Academy is like, okay, I know what I need to do. And I know the rule book. But this seems overwhelming to do all of this. But you have been so good at just tapering it out and doing what you can with what you have. From your Overwhelm Culprit and all the things that you provide people, can you give us some tips of how to not make this process feel so overwhelming?

Corrie – 00:18:26:

Sure. So if you’re looking at the framework, The overwhelm Culprit, there’s five of them. They all begin with C.

Jess – 00:18:32:

And we’ll link them in the show notes. Yeah.

Corrie – 00:18:34:

They’re very easy to remember. So there’s a lack of clarity, lack of confidence, lack of community. So that’s the people that you surround yourself with who support you. There’s lack of conditioning, which is your physical and mental health. And then there’s lack of consistency, right? Even just for the sake of this conversation, you can see how all five of them are very relevant to everything related to speaking. So if you’re not clear on what message your keynote is going to be, you’re not clear on who your audience is, you don’t have clarity around those areas, you’re never going to move forward, you’re going to kind of stay stuck. If you’re not confident in your message, which confidence kind of comes from clarity, they kind of go hand in hand. But if you’re not confident in your speaking ability, you don’t make eye contact, there’s different ways in your delivery, that’s going to keep you stuck from where you’re at. If you don’t have the right people surrounding you. So that’s one of the things that’s been beautiful being a part of Mic Drop is the community. I actually even now today, I mastermind with certain with girls that I met within the community on a monthly basis that were kind of staying in the loop with each other’s businesses, talking about different ideas, things that are working, things that are not working. You have to have that kind of support system to people who either know how to do what it is you want to do and are doing it at the same time or slightly ahead. So know where you need to go that you’re taking the right actions, you’re not making the same mistakes, because sometimes there’s a lot to be learned from people who are a little further along the way than you. Obviously, your conditioning, your physical and your mental health. I mean, that needs to come first before speaking. If you’re a working mom and you’ve got four kids and you’re trying to run your speaking business in addition to working a full-time job, it’s like have some grace with yourself and make sure you’re sleeping and you’re hydrating and everything first. Like take a slower path. It doesn’t have to be so fast. And then lastly, it’s consistency, right? So it’s are you doing three, four follow-ups or once somebody goes in your pipeline? What are you doing to market every single day? What are you doing to network and build your connections every single day? It’s business is built off of small, tiny actions taken every single day that are somewhat boring. Than being one big thing that makes things explode. It doesn’t work that way.

Jess – 00:20:42:

Totally.

Corrie – 00:20:43:

It’s all tiny, consistent actions.

Jess – 00:20:44:

It’s like, I think you remember like America’s Next Top Model and which I’m like, how was that on the air? That show was so toxic. But it was like, you just thought that you were going to be walking in the mall one day and someone would be like, have you thought about modeling? And let’s get you on New York Fashion Week Runway. That’s just how we were taught or told about success. It’s like, you’re just going to be walking one day and one person’s going to pick you. But I love how you flip the narrative. And what we hope at my job is we flip the narrative is like, speaking and thought leadership isn’t about waiting for someone to pick you. It’s about deciding that you have something to say and that you’re going to pursue it, which you have definitely done that, Corrie. So let us know where can people find you. We’ll be sure to link the Overwhelmed Culprits in the show notes. You are an amazing follow on LinkedIn. Where can people find you and book you and all the things?

Corrie – 00:21:39:

Well, my website is Corrielo.com, C-O-R-R-I-E-L-O.com. And then you can find me on every major social media platform, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, all of them. My handle is @iamcorrielo.

Jess – 00:21:54:

Corrie, thank you for being a shining star example of what’s possible for Mic Drop Workshop and Mic Drop Academy. I’m so glad that you were fatigued from seeing my face on ads and you decided to sign up.

Corrie – 00:22:07:

I’m so grateful your face popped up that day.

Jess – 00:22:10:

Thanks, Corrie.

Corrie – 00:22:11:

Thank you.

Jess – 00:22:16:

Thanks for listening to Amplify. If you are a fan of the show, show us some podcast love by giving us a rating and review. And give us a follow @MicDropWorkshop and @Jess_Ekstrom. This episode was edited and produced by Earfluence. And I’m Jess Ekstrom, your host. Remember that you deserve the biggest stage. So let’s find out how to get you there. I’ll see you again soon.

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