Talking Personal Brand with Speaking Industry Expert Leanne Christie

Stand Out Effect Interview 002

How do you show up each day to work?

How do you take control of your personal brand?

How has this concept of a “social brand” changed over time?


Just some of the questions we covered when I interviewed with Leanne Christie, CEO of Ovations International, Ode Management and Standing Ovations.


Meet Leanne Christie

Leanne Christie knows a thing or two about personal branding, having worked in the professional speaking industry for over 30 years. Leanne founded the first training brokerage in Australia in 1988, and today Ovations International has represented thousands of global professional speakers and entertainers. In the last decade, Leanne launched Ode Management, a speaker management company with some of the hottest speakers both in USA and Australia and her third business Standing Ovations focuses on coaching and developing speakers.

I met Leanne, when I was awarded the Kerrie Nairn Scholarship in 2017, and was offered a mentoring session with her to understand the “business” side of speaking. We hit it off immediately and I was profoundly impacted by her wisdom and generosity, and she played a pivotal role in cheering me on and guiding me in the first steps of launching my speaking business. I then went on to help with the strategy and set up of Ode Management’s social media; glimpsing in to the back end management of some of the world’s top speakers, and how to position and market them.

I wanted to interview Leanne, because she always has her pulse on the hottest trends in the speaking and marketing industry, and her experience of working with global speakers means she intuitively understands how to meaningfully engage and connect with an audience in person or online. Leanne will always ask the provocative questions, she’ll be the first to say, “Why?” And she’ll always say, let’s go one step further.

I’m certain there’ll be a pearl of wisdom here for you, also.  So here we go…


The Stand Out Effect with Leanne Christie


And here we go with the intro….



  1. Why is personal branding important?

Personal branding doesn’t happen to you, it’s something that you can control.

I loved Leanne’s take on personal branding. How do you portray yourself to the world? How do you show up?


2. How do you show up?

They say your reputation is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. And Leanne shares a story about friend and colleague, speaker Lisa McInnes Smith and how she shows up and the impression that leaves.

Have you thought about the way that you show up either in person or online?


4. What advice would you give to a leader building a social brand today?

I love her parting advice to leaders no how they could build their personal brand.

She says – “first you have to start, and second don’t over think it. You are more prepared than you think.”

What stood out for you?

What has been the key message that you’ve taken away from this interview?

My Big 3 Takeaways were:

1.    You are in control of your personal brand

2.    How you show up shapes up the perception that people will have of you in person or online. So how will you show up?

3.    Just Be You.

I’d love to hear what other insights you had, please share in the comments.

If you found these insights helpful, you’ll love following Leanne on social media where she shares tips and insights through Standing Ovations. She’s on LinkedInFacebook and Instagram.

Want to watch the Full Interview?

Here it is. 17 minutes of goodness. You’re welcome.



Kirryn Zerna is a speaker, facilitator and advisor. Her passion is to help businesses and leaders to stand out, without selling out, in this age of online influence. Known for her work in brand communication, strategy and social media, what’s unique about Kirryn is her broad experience across sectors. She draws on over 15 years experience working with businesses of all sizes – from corporate, government, consulting agencies, small business and high profile individuals.