One-on-One Coaching

  • The results that I garnered from working with Melissa are that I gained structure around my interview preparation and picked up valuable interviewing tips that I leveraged to help me land a Chief Strategy Officer role in an energy company. What I liked best about working with Melissa was her response time in that she was there when I needed her, her quality and focus, and that she prepped for our meetings. I would highly recommend her to other senior professionals who are committed to doing the work necessary to ultimately get the best results.

    — Thierry Delarue | Chief Strategy Officer | June 11, 2015

  • I think partnering with Melissa is a good investment, particularly for people who have been out of the job search loop for a while. I felt she was results oriented. Even though we had specific sessions scheduled, I never felt like we left something out because of the time limit. Melissa is super responsive and on top of things. Melissa also provided great insights on how to approach the job search, as well as specific companies and industries. Our mock interview was also very useful. Melissa was also a great help with my resume. When I show it to other people almost every time they have nothing to change.

    — Procter and Gamble | Purchasing Executive | September 21, 2015

  • I wasn’t sure that a person with 10 yrs of experience could help someone with 30 yrs but I took a chance because I wanted to be fully prepared. The value that I got in working with Melissa was really around being able to focus in on the important aspect of the interview which is getting across to the interviewer that I was best candidate. Specifically, I felt the most beneficial advice was the chart of my work experience relative to the new job.  Talking during the interviews about how my experience was the same, different, and key learning really solidified me as the winning candidate! Our session allowed me to expand my thinking about my career and now I will consider using a coach in more parts of my life. Melissa’s method brings results. I received an offer and accepted the job which we targeted. Yes, I would recommend Melissa’s services to my HR team, my boss, and several people who are looking.

    — Paul Musho Program Manager of GE Global Operations | May 7, 2015

  • In the beginning I felt hesitant about networking and getting in contact with people. I had always worked with recruiters before so I felt a little outside my comfort zone. However, after having a few conversations with a couple like-minded people in my network I think I am really coming around to idea of being in charge of your career destiny. I definitely would recommend Melissa’s services. I could have had a couple of friends try to help me with the resume and some of the other topics, but no one has the time or inclination to dedicate the kind of detailed attention that I wanted. It’s like career personal training. Could you get results if you hammered away? Sure. However, in today’s competitive market I think it you want to minimize the amount of mistakes you make before finally getting an offer – which I did within 30 days. I would however recommend that prior to launching into a career coaching relationship, it’s important to have a real conversation with oneself about what you really want going forward.

    — Tracy Johnson Vice President | May 5, 2015

  • The biggest result I’ve noticed after partnering with Melissa is feeling like I have a direction I want to move in. Before we started I had no idea what I wanted or how to get it. I also was struggling to get my resume and cover letters in order. I now feel more confident when networking because I know how to reach out to prospective connections. I also understand how to recognize whether a potential job will be a good fit. A big hesitation I had when choosing to work with Melissa was if I was too young in my career to benefit from your services. I felt like her site was more tailored to experienced professionals looking for a career switch. I expressed this to Melissa and still agree with her point that the skills she teaches are relevant across career level and could really give me a leg up in moving forward. Melissa also tailored my specific program so that I could get the most out of it. I would recommend Melissa to even those earlier on in their careers, I already have to the majority of my young professional friends across industries who are feeling “stuck” and unsure about what they want to do. I honestly think Melissa should go around to different colleges and do a senior year workshop. I would have killed to have something similar to this my senior year while applying to jobs and figuring out what made sense for me. The most important thing to know is that the effort they put in will match the benefit they get out. I like this program because she doesn’t just answer all the questions and make all the connections- she challenges us and helps guide us in discovering what will be best and make the most sense. Lastly, doing this is 100% worth it for any age or career level.

    — Elley Symmes | Latin America Research Analyst | September 17, 2015

  • Melissa is very focused on developing applicable skill sets that people can immediately and effectively put to use in landing their next role. She is a great partner for executives who have commonly gone lengthy periods in their careers with one or a few companies and can benefit from polishing their approach to job search, digital networking and interviewing. I worked with Melissa through five well-orchestrated sessions using time between to engage with the material and apply learning’s. As a result of our time together, I’ve raised my confidence and competency in networking and developed an effective approach to both screening and final interviews to land the next role.  Melissa clearly explained the critical aspects of a truly effective LinkedIn profile including how to measure, monitor and maintain the information for best results. What I really valued was her well-planned calls with agenda and expectations; her candid, direct and actionable feedback also was useful and clear and thus able to be put to practical use in working on the job search and prepare for the interview process. Finally, the development and critique of go-forward game plans was also very helpful for me to keep the job search work organized and on-track. I would gladly refer others in career transition to hire Melissa.

    — Jess Wilson Operations Leader | January 13, 2015

  • Melissa means business! She brings a ‘no nonsense’ approach, like you’d expect from a New Yorker, and it was exactly what I needed. Melissa’s originality in approaching interview questions and thank you notes – highlighting my skills or an interviewer’s viewpoint on the issue — made me stand apart from other candidates to land my dream job. After working with Melissa, I have an increased sense of confidence in interviews and better insight into the questions I ask each interviewer. I would definitely recommend Melissa to any professional looking to accelerate their job search.

    — kris neely business consultant | January 13, 2015

  • Melissa’s impactful career coaching and commitment assisting me to successfully conquer the interviewing process. She masterfully listened and comprehended my unique background to artfully outline meaningful themes in my work experiences. Melissa masterfully empowered me to succeed in achieving my goal.

    — Elizabeth Swanzy-Parker, Governance, Risk and Compliance | February 21, 2014

  • I have thoroughly enjoyed working with you. I felt at our first conversation our goals were aligned, and from then on – you were extremely dependable, professional, and structured in your approach to this project. While I always like to think that folks do what they say, I am usually disappointed in some aspect in customer service. Being in a professional services organization, I know your job is probably a balancing act, and you do it very well. Thank you, and I look forward to working with you again when the opportunity arises.

    — Cari Thomas, CFO at HealthCo Information Systems | December 12, 2013

  • Melissa is a fun, badass coach who will get to the heart of why you want that job and then help you communicate it. After 3 Skype sessions, I learned to use word clouds to find language trends that will help me target my audience. I have gained confidence in my job search. I know where to start and I know new strategies for getting jobs. For example, I learned about how to tell a compelling story that will hook my audience in my cover letter.  I also really appreciated the extra time Melissa spent with me during every session, sometimes double the amount of time she allotted. That made me feel like I was getting a lot of value out of our interaction. I really liked how Melissa praised my strengths from beginning to end, even in her first email. This gave me confidence and made me feel good about myself when I was feeling down and hopeless! Yes! I would recommend Melissa to anyone struggling on the job search who has enough money to hire a coach.

    — Emily P./ESL Teacher | 4/15/2015

  • Melissa was not just a career coach but more like a mentor to me. She spent a lot of time on getting to know me in order to better “brand” me and position me in the job market. She helped me revamp my Linkedin page completely. I was recently approached by a recruiter. The recruiter told me the reason she approached me was because she was attracted by my Linkedin profile. Melissa made sure my profile not only shows my professional experience but also shows my personality.

    Melissa has been a great help every step of the way. Her blog is inspirational and work is exceptional.

    — Evena Liao, MBA, Brand Strategist, Global Project Director in Pharma | April 9, 2013

  • Melissa, it was really nice talking to you. Thank you for your sharp insights & answers, very helpful in this (fun) storm.

    — Philippe Dubost, Creator of the Best Online Resume Ever | February 1, 2013

  • Melissa is absolutely terrific – cannot say enough good things. I connected with her via email and she set up a session for me less than 48 hours later. I came to her with specific concerns that she addressed and also connected to the bigger picture in my career growth. Talking to her gave me confidence that I was making the right choices about my career, in salary negotiations, etc. She has excellent follow up and is truly knowledgeable in her field. I have never used a career coach but I’m a true convert now and would recommend Melissa to anyone…she really makes a difference.

    — Amy Gulati, GPHR, SPHR & SPHR-CA, Human Resources Business Partner at Helios HR | December 14, 2013

  • Melissa was a great career coach and provided a lot of value added information that was needed in today’s job market. She does her research and personalizes her services to her customers to help them meet their career goals.
    I reached out to Melissa for coaching consultations to assist me in my search for a job, but more importantly one that I could be passionate about. Melissa gave me insight into what qualities companies are looking for in employees. Further, she worked with me on learning my career history and helped me to build a strong resume that would appeal to any company. Finally, she made sure to give me thorough feedback on interview responses to better assist me in my job search.
    Barely a month later, I have found my dream job working as an Executive Manager for Macy’s in Herald Square, the biggest retailer in the U.S. Recruiters gave me feedback on how strong my resume was and how it listed all the things that they look for in qualified candidates. They felt my accomplishments and experiences helped me to stand out amongst other candidates. Further, they felt that I spoke well to my potential in the interviews. I have to thank Melissa for that feedback. I would recommend Melissa to anyone seeking assistance in today’s job market or even just looking to build a stronger outlook on their career history. She is a wonderful mentor and coach. Thank you Melissa!

    — Eric Mojica, Executive Team Leader of Logistics, Target | July 18, 2013

  • Melissa is a fantastic career coach! I utilized her career coaching services for my most recent job search and found her input to be highly valuable. She helped me create the right approach by understanding the mindset of the hiring manager and tailoring my resume and cover letter to each position. I recommend her not only for seasoned professionals but also current MBA students. Thanks to Melissa I obtained two great job offers!

    — Andrea McNeal, Executive Lead - Strategic Accounts | July 15, 2013

  • Melissa’s career coaching was inspirational for me! Her coaching questions provided clarity to my career dynamics and how to formulate a career strategy. Melissa is keen with targeted questions and conversation to unveil what is most important to me as a leader and as a person! Without question, I would recommend her! I am certain I will request her career coaching assistance in the future!

    — Kimberly Gibbs, Manager of Line Maintenance Applications at American Airlines | June 29, 2012

  • I hired Melissa to assist me in building a Resume for International Student Marketer of the Year. She blew me away with her passion and understanding for Career Coaching. Here is how – immediately after our phone call she sent me exercises to learn what set me apart from my competitors. Then, we spoke for almost 3 hours on the phone where she asked me deeper questions about this content. Finally, she used all of this info to provide a resume that was HIGHLY targeted for RESULTS and IMPACT. I sent out the first draft to 12 of my most trusted mentors and received “WOW” results! If you are considering doing this alone. Wait! Call Melissa and just talk out your plans. She can and will provide you with the same great results that she provided me!

    — James Bois Smith, former Specialist E-4 in the Army National Guard | December 11, 2011

  • Melissa is a creative, thorough and insightful career coach. Her preparation and innate understanding of my needs exceeded all my expectations. In helping me prepare for interviews, Melissa helped me express my personal mission and hone in on the unique talents I can offer that set me apart from my peers. And articulate these skills a way that resonated with the organizations where I wanted to work. Not only did she prepare challenging and relevant questions, but she gave me innovative ideas to propose to potential employers to meet their needs. Most notably, she suggested that I offer to prepare a presentation for Master’s candidates on my field experience for a contact at an academic institution during an informational interview and it was a hit! Working with Melissa built my confidence and gave me the tools I needed to conduct a stellar interview. I would work with her again in a heartbeat.

    — Jessica Rodrigues, Independent Consultant for the Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric AIDS Foundation | March 21, 2012

  • I’m excited to say that I am now part of Melissa’s success stories. We worked together for only about two weeks and in that time she transformed my whole approach towards navigating the job market. The most impressive aspect of her work was how thorough she was when evaluating each and every one of my past experiences. Afterward, she re-drafted my resume and found ways to highlight all of my achievements in a truly inspiring manner. She provided me with a strategy on how to work my Linkedin network and then she gave me thorough interview prep, specific to the job that I was interviewing for. Since graduating two years ago, I continually sought to become a part of the JP Morgan Chase team and thanks to Melissa’s guidance, I finally had the right approach and was more prepared than ever. I was ultimately extended an attractive offer and so it is with great pleasure that I say that my investment in her career coaching paid 10X. Actually, I feel like she set me up to help me meet my future goal of getting into a top business school. Melissa’s career coaching and guidance is invaluable.

    — Jimmy Figueroa, Sourcing Manager at JPMorgan Chase & Co. | March 23, 2012


  • I hired Melissa to do a two-hour training targeting post-9/11 military veterans who were looking to transition into civilian roles. Melissa delivered what she promised, she respect everyone’s values and time, she was committed to her clients, and delivered a high-quality presentation. The best thing about working with Melissa is her commitment and follow-through. It is important to me to know once I have a commitment from a trainer/presenter, I don’t have to worry, it’s done. In addition to conducting the training, she even invited a guest who has made the transition from military to civilian employment. Her presentation was great and I believe her story and her husband’s story will inspire students to do well because they know what others have done. During Melissa’s session, I even learned a few things myself. For example, Melissa uncovered other veteran-friendly organizations that I have not thought of inviting to CTER’s [Community Training & Employment Resources] breakfast to expand our job development list of employers. This is extremely valuable information to Community Training & Employment Resources as we aim to prepare people to become successful job seekers and employees. Lastly, I would recommend Melissa’s services to others, because I believe they will get a well thought through presentation based on their requested topic, a committed person who will do what she says, and a speaker who is guided to do a great job.

    — Mamie Brown | Founder of Community Training & Employment Resources | October 13, 2015

  • Bloomberg hired Melissa to participate in a career development half-day curriculum for students who took the Bloomberg Aptitude Test. She helped us identify the most relevant topics that Gen Y needs to address to find attractive jobs, excel in them, and eventually move up the ladder. Specifically during our B*Ready Event, Melissa delivered a presentation tackling how to interview successfully and also how to build a professional reputation. As an observer during the event, I saw attendees vigorously taking notes and following the event…one attendee incorporated Melissa’s guidance (to send physical thank you notes after networking meetings) when he mailed me a hand-written thank you note. I was extremely satisfied with Melissa’s ability to create targeted content for our audience of aspiring financial professionals as well as with her ability to motivate immediate action from her audience members. I’d definitely hire her again.

    — Anthony Aldano, University Relations - Strategic Partnerships | July 17, 2013

  • We asked and Melissa graciously accepted the role of moderator at the 2013 NYU/Dartmouth Adaptive Careers Alumni Conference. She extensively researched the backgrounds of all our panelists and asked insightful questions establishing an atmosphere conducive for a deep exploration of the contemporary job market across several industries. Her expertise with the nuances of modern career management made her an invaluable asset to the conference team, and we hope to work with her again soon. The link to the conference description is here: http://events.nydailynews.com/new_york_ny/events/show/325277483-nyu-dartmouth-career-event-adaptive-careers-how-to-succeed-in-a-rapidly-evolving-world.

    — Issac Marshall, NYU Student / Event Organizer | July 1, 2013

  • I am really happy that I was part of the seminar presented by  Ms.Llarena in our W!se Institute program. Her overall presentation on the variety of ways individuals may use the internet to earn maximum life time earnings was of great interest to me. Ms.Llarena  pointed out the usage of various internet media sources as I have never thought of before. Her presentation was very informative and proved great professionalism. I was really impressed with Ms.Llarena’s interaction with the students and the use of the activity that would tie up her presentation to the class. Her knowledge of  finance is tremendous and I hope she continues to share that content with other students in the near future.

    — Mirsad J., Student at the High School of Economics and Finance | March 12, 2013

  • Melissa Llarena’s Making LinkedIn Your Ultimate Career Advocate workshop at the LGBT Career Fair was so popular I was glad the fire marshal didn’t stop by.  The room was packed with people not wanting to leave, there was not enough of Melissa to go around and I can only hope she will come back and share more.

    — Kristen Kentner, Corporate Relations Officer for the LGBT Community Center in NYC | October 25, 2012

  • Melissa was incredibly accommodating and easy to work with while producing excellent results. Melissa came to lead a behavioral case interview workshop at the Latina Empowerment and Development Conference held by Latinas Unidas de Harvard College and worked with the organizers to create a program that would interest those attending the workshop. Because it was a smaller workshop she was able to specialize her presentation so that it was especially relevant to those in the room. The attendees were captivated by her presentation and every attendee mentioned in the recommendation form how much they enjoyed and learned from her workshop. The workshop that she held was right before lunch and even though lunch was being served, the attendees pleaded that she should continue. They kept asking questions way past the workshop ended because of the interest they had and how much value they found the workshop. Many of the attendees listed her workshop as their favorite part of the conference and one even commented that we absolutely need to bring her back next year because her advice and insight for interviews is crucial for the job market. Not only did her presentation energize the attendees, her broad range of expertise was helpful and she specialized the content of the workshop to what the attendees wanted. I would definitely recommend Melissa and look forward to working with her in future conferences.

    — Jennifer Rodriguez, Student at Harvard University and Treasurer of Latinas Unidas de Harvard College | March 29, 2012

  • We were delighted that Ms. Llarena accepted our invitation to serve as presenter for the Jobs for America’s Graduates Career Development Conference at Monmouth University, New Jersey. Her presentation on financial literacy to high school students was more than informative.  Students remained engaged as she shared relevant anecdotes and facilitated collaborative group work to aid students in recognizing financial belief systems, where they emanate, and how to adjust one’s thinking about spending and saving that will result in a good quality of life beyond high school. Her experience in working with various audiences was evident, and her professionalism in working with our conference team was welcomed and appreciated. We hope Ms. Llarena will continue to share essential knowledge with our students in the future.

    — Sandra G. Strothers, Ph.D., JAG New Jersey Conference Chair | July 26, 2012

  • Melissa presented a workshop this June as a part of the Wasserman Center for Career Development’s programming for NYU alumni. Her presentation focused on “Strategies and a Road Map for Those Actively Seeking to Transition out of the Financial Services Industry”. The Wasserman Center received a lot of positive feedback from alumni who found the presentation to be both insightful and motivating. Melissa was an enthusiastic and reliable presenter.

    — Tara Schwartz, Assistant Director, Career Development Counselor, NYU Wasserman Center for Career Development | June 18, 2012