Student Success Story: Tara Thomas-Gettman

Here at The Speaker Lab, our goal is to help you get Booked and Paid to Speak. Our Student Success Stories share first hand experiences from our students of how they’ve booked paid speaking gigs and grown their businesses by applying the concepts they learned in our courses.


I am a person of deep faith, and so I don’t believe that anything happens coincidentally. I was working as a communications executive for a technology adoption firm when a colleague of mine stumbled across The Speaker Lab training.

It really piqued my interest because for almost 15 years I have had a calling on my heart to be a professional Christian speaker.

So that was the catalyst for me to pursue The Speaker Lab, and so began this six-month journey that has been incredibly fruitful and engaging. It actually exceeded my expectations!

I was fortunate during my 20 years as a television news anchor that I could marry the two; my professional television career and my faith.

Today, I essentially share a message of how to help Christians not check their faith at the office door and align their personal and professional lives around their morals, values and passions.


It’s been an amazing, expedited journey to incredibly quick success. This was the nudge that I needed. I was so fortunate that the timing of getting to work initially with Dan who said, “Hey, you need to connect with Michelle. I think she’d be a great coach for you.”

I really appreciated that he was so enthusiastic and gave me such a resounding recommendation, because Michelle totally exceeded my expectations.

I was aligned with a coach who I felt really believed in me, and who I could relate to.

That coupled with all the lessons that Grant pours into sharing with everybody, I was impressed because there are so many rocks you haven’t turned over and there are so many angles that you will not have considered – but this is what TSL does for us.

I appreciated hearing from Grant and the coaches about the mistakes they have made and how to avoid them.

I feel informed about what to look for, what to expect and really how to truly navigate the speaking business life. Speaking is part of it, but the business aspect I feel much more confident about.


So in conjunction with wanting to pursue speaking, a former colleague (the woman who replaced me as the evening news anchor on the TV station I left), she and I became fast friends and at some point years after leaving the business, she said we should do a podcast.

So we started one three years ago called Faith and Four Letter Words. I’m the faith component. She’s more on the four-letter word side. We are really a contrast; yet we have an incredible bond and chemistry and really love to share our stories of life, leaving the boys’ club behind and the politics of work as women.

One day she said we should take this on the road. And that we did. We have been so fortunate that we booked our first gig in January and we had 455 women and one man pay to show up to see us in a small town in Iowa called Dyersville–where the Field of Dreams is located.

We’ve since had two other shows on our tour and our latest last Friday night 375 women attended. In Dubuque, Iowa we had 300 women come out. So we’re very humbled, blessed, excited to get that many women to come to hear our message.

The timing could not have been better. Now that I have the confidence from working through The Speaker Lab content, it all feels serendipitous.

I feel informed, prepared to run this as a smart businesswoman and I can see how I can scale this and make it a sustainable, hopefully, full-time gig down the road.


If you or anyone you know has ever said, Hey, I could do that, when you’re at a conference or you’re somewhere where there’s a keynote speaker on a stage and you could see yourself doing that, I would highly encourage you to take that next step.

If you’re somebody who thinks you might enjoy it, but you’re very nervous when it comes to public speaking, the process is going to be a longer one.

Doesn’t mean it won’t be possible, you will just have to navigate the confidence piece of seeing yourself as an expert speaker. Plus, you will have to journey through building the business.

For me, having been speaking most of my adult life on television, I saw the benefits almost immediately. It also helped to have a coach like Michelle, where I could run things by her to ensure I was going about this correctly.

I love how The Speaker Lab is upfront about understanding the difference between the topic you want to speak about and the need for that content in the market.

Is there an actual market for your talks? Once you understand that yes, what you are speaking about is needed, then the confidence comes from wanting to get out there and talk about it.

So, whether you have been at this for a while or are completely new to speaking, The Speaker Lab will get you there if you put in the work and follow the expert guidance.


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