Maria Franzoni is the Founder and Chief Enthusiast of Speaking Business Academy.
She is one of the most experienced speaker bookers in Europe and recognised as a speaking industry expert, Maria supports speakers (established and new) to enter into new markets, develop content, make strategic decisions about their speaking business, develop longer relationships with clients and maximise their income.
Maria has held senior positions with 2 leading speaker bureaus: CSA Celebrity Speakers and London Speaker Bureau. In 2007 she founded her own multi-million-pound bureau, Maria Franzoni Ltd. She is a founding member and former co-chair of the European Association of Speaker Bureaus, Director of Operations at We Do Things Differently cultural change consultancy, and host of the Speaking Business Podcast.
Prior to working with speakers, Maria worked in retail management, management consultancy, educational travel and as an entrepreneur. Her experience in other industries has given her an excellent foundation and hands-on understanding of how to run and grow profitable businesses.
Innovation is a fundamental element of the business. We listen to our clients to learn best practices and to find new and improved ways of working together. We always welcome your feedback and ideas.
As a former management consultant, Maria is obsessed with efficiency and attention to detail. We will do our utmost to offer you a seamless and efficient experience from your initial enquiry through all the time we work together
This means success for you and for us. We want you to succeed as much as you do and we will use our experience, knowledge and connections to help you do just that.
Our business is not complex and we are simple straightforward creatures. We do our best to keep things simple.
We aim to respond to your requests and enquiries as quickly and as accurately as we can. Where we need more time we will let you know. We will do our utmost to respond to any requests you put to us.
Maria’s work experience:
Maria is proud that after 6 years at the company she then ran the only UK licensed office of London Speaker Bureau, a global network with 18 offices in Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia and North America for 14 years. LSB was co-founded in 1994 by the current visionary CEO Tom Kenyon-Slaney and his former partner Brendan O’Connor.
Maria Franzoni is Operations Director of We Do Things Differently, a cultural change practice. The WDTD team: Mark Stevenson, Jamil Qureshi, David Price, Tim Reid and Jack Milner aren’t just successful entrepreneurs and business-people, they’re also all independently successful artists, performers and writers.
WDTD works with clients as diverse as UK Sport, Comic Relief, NASA, Unilever, BBC and the National Theatre.
Maria Franzoni Limited is a founding member of the European Association of Speakers Bureaux (EASB), a non-profit trade membership organisation aiming to regulate the speaker industry and to provide a voice for the ever-growing market. On 1st March 2018, Maria took on the role of EASB co-chair.
EASB enables industry professionals to meet, discuss and enhance business cooperation at a European level, with the ultimate goal of helping to promote the benefits of using a Speakers Bureau, as well as creating a code of ethics by which the members of the association should always conduct their business.
Maria Franzoni Ltd supports the following charities:
Getting To Know ….. Maria Franzoni Personally
What Did You Want To Be As A Child?
Independent! My strongest memory as a child was being desperate to be old enough to drive. I didn’t really think beyond that, or where I was going to drive to!
Advice To Your Teenage Self?
Use sunscreen every day, you’ll be grateful when you’re older.
Karaoke Tune Of Choice?
Manah Manah by Piero Umiliani
Career Plan B?
There was never a plan A ☺
Who Would Play You In A Movie Of Your Life?
Sarah Jessica Parker
Secret To A Happy Relationship?
Communication – and it helps if you fancy each other lots
Cat Or Dog?
Dog – please refer to our Head of Security – Keaton – my baby
I’m terrible at keeping up with fashion, I don’t really have a style or style icon. I have been accused of choosing comfort over form on more than one occasion ☺
Your Coffee Order?
I prefer tea, good old English Breakfast – My favourite is Yorkshire Tea.
Number One On Your Bucket List?
Discover how to have a work/life balance
I am the voice of Agent Tag in the real-time, class-based strategy game Satellite Reign (www.satellitereign.com) set in an open-world cyberpunk city! How cool am I ???!
Dream Dinner Date?
What Was Your Big Break?
Answering a very cryptic job advert that brought me into working for a Speaker Bureau. I haven’t looked back
Where Is Home?
I am living in my dream home, a gorgeous converted barn in a Surrey village with my dream man and our fur babies.
I don’t have a favourite villain but I have a favourite Super Hero – Batman. In fact, I named my dog after my favourite batman actor – Michael Keaton
Book That Changed Your Life?
There have been quite a few – but most recently David Price’s book: OPEN – How we will work live and learn in the future. Made me really rethink my business.
Roxanne by The Police
When You Look In The Mirror You See..?
Someone who desperately needs a suntan!
On A Night Off We Would Find You?
The local gastropub for a fab steak
What Is Your Favourite Meal?
I love Thai food and being Italian am addicted to ice cream.
Signature Dance Move?
Who Do You Most Admire And Why?
Being surrounded by amazing speakers there are so many I can name, I couldn’t choose one person (the others would get jealous). But I do admire people who know who they are, where they are going and who are making the world a better place along the way.
Motto You Live By?
Do what you say you are going to do.