Connection is the mission. SPARK™ is the method. Social skills are the tools.
I teach social skills to help people better connect with each other. I transform my clients’ relationship-building techniques with SPARK™, a science-backed method to cultivate connection. It begins with a single question: How do you want to be remembered?
Figuring out how to effectively connect with people has always been my passion. I competed in speech and debate through high school and college, which taught me to “read the room.” After law school, I joined the Los Angeles office of a prestigious law firm and spent several years testing my people skills as a corporate trial lawyer. While working in big law, I learned that social skills—engaged listening, crafting clear messages, and powerful first impressions to name a few—are game changers. While the technical legal skills of my brilliant peers were roughly equivalent, I noticed that excellent people skills largely separated thriving associates from struggling ones.
My years in debate rounds, court rooms, and negotiating around conference tables confirmed a powerful truth: Social skills are either setting the stage for your success or sabotaging your performance. How we treat people is the ultimate game changer because we do life and business with those we know, like, and trust.
Wanting to understand the science behind why and how we effectively engage one another, I earned a Certification in the Foundations of Neuroleadership. Years of research led me to create SPARK™, a powerful social skills model based on our biologically hardwired need for connection. SPARK™ teaches you how to read the room and equips you with practical tools to help you connect with people in every situation you encounter.
When you walk into a room or a virtual meeting, do you know what to do? What to say? What to wear? Do you know how to connect? I want to help you be remembered for all the right reasons by equipping you with the skills needed to step confidently into the spaces you dream of.
• Melissa was a three-time state champion in speech and debate, placed ninth in the nation in high school, and fourth in the nation in college. Out of 93,000 competitors, Melissa was one of only 25 people honored as a National Forensic League All-American in 2001.
• She graduated magna cum laude with special honors in economics from the University of Puget Sound,
• Melissa earned a J.D. from the University of Southern California Law School while serving as the University-appointed student teacher for all first-year legal curriculum.
• She earned a certification in the Foundations of Neuroleadership with distinction.
The Real Deal (1:52)