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Talented Self-Employment

Mary G. Mora is the owner of MGM Speakers Bureau, located in Winston Salem, North Carolina with services available worldwide. MGM Speakers Bureau is a Talent Agency who works with Corporations, Event Planners, Associations, For-profit and Non-profit Organizations, HR Departments, Individuals, and others.

When and why did you join the NASE?
You don’t become a success by yourself. When I heard of NASE and everything they offered I knew that I had to join. I have been a member since 2011.

When and why did you start your business?
I had wanted to work for myself for a while. I decided it was time to take a leap of faith and go for # 1 on my bucket list and in January 2009, I decided to become a solopreneur. Working with the “Talent” that has a passion for what they share and leave audiences with content they can use, gives me great satisfaction.

What challenges have you faced in your business? How have you overcome them?
There are and will be trials and tribulations when you own a business. One of the main challenges is the area of Finances, not getting the expected client and low cash flow can keep you up at night! Having people that you thought were on your side show their true colors can be painful. But I have found that the best formula to follow is “Integrity + Persistence + Perseverance and letting go of Pride” works all the time!

How do you market your business?
I market my business mainly through social media, word of mouth, remaining in contact with business connections and continuing to build relationships with them. Being based in North Carolina but available worldwide, it’s fun to connect with professionals all over the world. And I still use the “sort of dreaded” telephone calls!

Do you have any employees?
I do not have any employees at the present time, but work with independent contractors for various areas of the business. Maybe will add in the future, but no time frame yet.

What’s your schedule like, what’s a typical day for you?
Mornings usually: Search for events, conferences that just can’t wait to hear from us and are in need of speakers, etc., as well as companies that require training for their employees. Submit proposals. Maintain roster and update the profiles with the latest offerings. Afternoons: Reach out and stay in touch with connections and team members, always a joy to catch up. This may continue into the early evening, depends on where/which coast they are.

What’s the best thing about being self-employed?
It may turn into a 24/7 job some days, but most of the time you are able to set your own hours. Getting to know each of the team members on a personal basis and building relationships with them and those that we work with is very cool! And, of course, there is the feeling of satisfaction knowing that you were able to help and took stress away from someone makes it even better!

What’s the best compliment you’ve ever received from a client?
A recent and great compliment that I received is “I just wanted to send a quick thank you your way for all of your help with The Summit! The presenter was amazing! Thanks again and I look forward to working with you in the future!”

What’s the most important piece of advice you would give to someone starting their own business?
As I said before, you don’t become a success by yourself. Surround yourself with knowledgeable individuals. Listen to suggestions. Read motivational books. Learn and grow from your mistakes! , And, remember, there is nothing wrong with asking for help.

Any other information you would like to share?
Be open to building a relationship with a competitor. You may be able to share things that they have been done and worked for them that you have not tried. You can become a sounding board for each other.

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