Speaking & Training

Since winning her first speech contest in fifth grade, Kristen Harcourt has loved to speak – on stage and on video. A proud member of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers and winner of a Toastmasters “Competent Communicator Award,” Kristen is beloved by corporate, conference, association, and business school audiences because of her one-of-a-kind mix of warmth, authenticity, and humour.

A potent storyteller with a gift for audience connection and inspiring real-world action, Kristen’s energy and passion for personal and professional transformation are contagious. Her presentations at the intersections of emotional intelligence, mindfulness, and owning your voice as a leader inspire people to think differently about themselves, their work, and their influence. Kristen shows her audiences how to make profound and lasting changes in all areas of their life that benefit their companies, families, communities, and their own personal growth.

Signature Keynotes:

The Key to Leadership Success: Self-Awareness and Emotional Intelligence

Research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation, and Stanford Research Center shows that 85% of job success comes from having well-developed people skills, and only 15% of job success comes from technical skills and knowledge. The best thing leaders can do to improve their effectiveness is to become more aware of what motivates them and their decision-making. This presentation will give specific strategies that leaders can implement to improve their emotional intelligence so they can develop more effective relationships, deepen their empathy, more accurately assess their strengths and weaknesses, address little c and big C crises, and cultivate an engaged and productive workforce.

By the end of this presentation, audience members will be able to:

  • Build stronger relationships at work
  • Listen with empathy and compassion
  • Recognize their strengths, blind spots, and behavioural patterns
  • Facilitate more effective coaching conversations
  • Shift from reacting to effectively responding in stressful situations


Mindfulness: The Pathway to Greater Productivity, Creativity, and Wellbeing

In today’s fast-paced workplace we can become so focused on the doing that we lose track of the being, and this negatively impacts how we show up and perform at work. Numerous pro athletes, Fortune 100 CEOs, and Silicon Valley billionaires have evangelized how meditation and mindfulness are effective tools for increasing health, amplifying personal performance, and reducing stress. When we are more mindful, we not only feel better – we do better. We develop stronger relationships, unleash greater creativity, and adapt better to change. In this presentation, Kristen will discuss what mindfulness really is (despite how it’s often marketed to us). She also shares key ways individuals can build mindfulness into their personal and professional routines, cultivate resilience, and heighten their self-awareness to enjoy greater success and wellbeing in the workplace.

By the end of this presentation, audience members will be able to:

  • Recognize moment-to-moment thoughts and behaviours and respond to triggers by design rather than by default
  • Use new tools and practices to reduce stress and increase productivity
  • Build stronger relationships through mindful interactions
  • Reduce brain chatter to access greater focus and creativity
  • Navigate discomfort in their bodies and see the mind-body connection


Own Your Voice and Unlock Your True Potential

While success used to be measured by achieving wealth, respect, and fame, for many business professionals and leaders, meaning, engagement, and authenticity are the new metrics for success. Irrespective of age, title, or rank, people want to feel connected to their companies, to their work, to their communities, and they want to feel safe speaking up for the ideas they are passionate about. In order to cultivate connection, confidence, and self-trust, people need to identify their vision, purpose, values, and drivers as well as their blind spots and the self-limiting beliefs that hold them back. This presentation will outline a clear pathway that employees, managers, leaders, and HR professionals can take to show up more authentically, experience greater fulfillment in their work and lives, and, as appropriate, show others how to do the same.

By the end of this presentation, audience members will be able to:

  • Develop a more empowering inner narrative
  • Differentiate between a fixed vs. growth mindset (and choose thoughts and behaviours that support the latter)
  • Shift from being a human doing to a human being
  • Create more time and space for purposeful self-reflection
  • Silence their inner critic to speak with candor and conviction

Signature Training:

Emotional Intelligence for Mindful Leadership

For associations and organizations who want a deeper dive with Kristen, in this training (which can be offered as a half-day, full day, or multi-day institute), participants will engage in a variety of individual, small group, and full group experiences that bolster emotional intelligence and make mindfulness an individual and cultural workplace habit.

Key Takeaways include:

  • Develop EQ competencies
  • Clarify how to bring EQ into one’s daily work (including into coaching, management, and leadership)
  • Differentiate between a boss and a true leader
  • Learn EQ and mindfulness dos and don’ts from global leadership case studies
  • Compile a variety of mindfulness practices to cultivate wellbeing and respond effectively to everyday stress and larger crises
  • Discover the true costs of stress, how to build self-care into one’s routine, and how to avoid multi-tasking
  • Explore how to facilitate buy-in to creating EQ and mindfulness-driven initiatives that positively transform workplace culture

As a trainer, Kristen has a unique ability to bring diverse groups of people together, show them how to let down their guard, and ensure that all people feel seen, heard, and valued.


Step into Your Moxie® Speak-Up and Influence

As a Step into Your Moxie® Certified Facilitator, Kristen teaches leaders and team members how to speak up and influence in the workplace. In this training, leaders learn how to strengthen their inner and outer voice so that they can speak up for themselves and the ideas and issues that matter most to your company. Through a mix of coaching, training, role play, and small and full group conversation, participants will develop the mindset, skill set, and habits to boost their communication confidence so they can speak with power and impact and move people to take action whenever they speak. Workshops can be delivered over the course of a half-day, full-day or two-day experience.

Key Takeaways include:

  • Reframe diminishing self-talk so that it supports rather than undermines communication confidence
  • Harness a “Yes And” attitude and play nicely with feelings that come up when presenting ideas and navigating uncomfortable situations
  • Minimize vocalized thinking and amplify their speaking presence to increase credibility, likeability, and trust
  • Call people to take action on ideas in low and high stakes speaking situations (i.e., team meetings, project pitches, or presentations)
  • Address common pain points and personal motivators that get in the way of people taking action
  • Articulate their value and go after visibility opportunities that position them/your company as thought leaders

See Kristen in Action:

Previous Speaking Engagements:

  • 3P Exchange Leadership Symposium
  • Barrie HRPA
  • Bloomington-Normal Human Resource Council
  • Burlington Chamber of Commerce HR Roundtable
  • Canadian Bar Association
  • CMPA
  • Connection Corner
  • DeGroote School of Business
  • Digital Sales Camp
  • Drive-Thru HR
  • DisruptHR KW
  • DisruptHR Ottawa
  • DisruptHR Toronto x 2
  • ENGAGE Conference
  • First Advantage
  • Grand Valley HRPA
  • Halton HRPA
  • HRPA Annual Conference
  • Imagine Your Workplace Conference
  • Independent Women in Leadership
  • InnovateWork Toronto
  • Ivey Business School
  • McDonald's Restaurants of Canada
  • Niagara HRPA
  • NY State SHRM Annual Conference
  • Ontario Power Generation
  • Operation Reinvent
  • Peel HRPA
  • Sheridan College
  • SHRM Talent Management Conference
  • The Rethinking Disabilities Conference
  • Thoughtexchange Transform Toronto
  • Toronto HRPA
  • United Way Halton & Hamilton’s ConnectEd
  • West Toronto HRPA
  • Women Who Roar - Female Leaders in Mining
  • Workhuman Forum
  • Yellow Door Energy
  • YMCA of Hamilton, Burlington & Brandford
  • York Region HRPA


“Yesterday evening, I attended HRPA’s “The Power of Knowing Yourself to Unlock Your True Potential.” It was presented by the amazing Kirsten Harcourt, and it was the perfect workshop to start this year off right. She shared a wealth of insights as she spoke to us about the importance of self-care, self-compassion, and self-reflection (among many other things!). Kristen, thank you for sharing time and space with us!

Kristen is a phenomenal speaker and an awesome coach. If you're in need of a coach (and I think everyone should have a coach!), check her out.”

Kris Amaral
Former Vice President of People and Talent at LOGiQ3

“I absolutely loved the talk that Kristen delivered at a PwC event for Female Leaders in Mining. I was so captivated by the content and delivery - it really resonated with me.”

Dorena Quinn
Global Vice President People, IAMGOLD Corporation

“Kristen is a talented and engaging public speaker. She was the keynote speaker for our Niagara Chapter HR Professional Association where she spoke knowledgeably about Levering Your Strengths and Increasing Your Effectiveness, and her friendly and interactive style was much appreciated by our members.”

Marcey Saunders
Human Resources Business Consultant

“Kristen is an engaging, interesting, and entertaining speaker who lent her thought leadership at Disrupt HR Toronto. Her talk, “Why the CEO should report to the CHRO,” was amongst the most popular talks delivered to date.”

Kathleen Teixeira Virtu
Senior Manager, Talent Acquisition Strategy at Loblaw Companies Limited

Podcast Appearances: