How to Transform Culture Inside Out with Marie Deveaux

During How May I Serve You podcast Episode 29, we sat with Founder of High Tides Consulting, Marie Deveaux to talk about her transition from her education profession to becoming a coach.


About Marie:

Leadership coach, Speaker, Truth-teller, Change-maker, Marie founded High Tides Consulting to provide personal coaching and professional development workshops designed to magnify the voices and agency of women and people of color in business spaces. She specializes in career transitions, entrepreneurship, and communication skills.

Born in Queens, raised in California, and lives in Brooklyn, Marie started her career in nonprofit and then moved into the education sector. For the last fifteen years, she has provided professional development for teachers. Along the way, she got licensed as a financial advisor. The last role she had before starting her company was in training and development, focused on adult education. “How can we get grown-ups to act like grown- ups?”


Questions asked:

What was it like growing up on the west coast?

She grew up in Silicon Valley before it became the bastion of tech start-ups. Her first love was dance.

When she wasn’t in school, she was in dance class. She danced to ballet, tap, hip-hop, and jazz. “Growing up I was introverted. Very quiet. Still much of a bookworm. And a small circle of friends.”


How did you transition into becoming a coach?

It started with a passion for personal development. “Every coach is a personal development junkie.”

“How can we continue to get better?” Her last job was building out training and management programs. It was the most challenging job of her career. 

The work culture was frenetic. Then after four years of working there her manager sat her down and said, “I don’t know what you do here.” Devastated, Marie didn’t allow it to stop her, she looked outside for other opportunities. 

At the time, she was already doing some coaching and consulting and building her practice on the side for a year. She gained invaluable experience as a public speaking coach. “Public speaking has always come really naturally to me.” 

When she was let go, she found an opportunity at Facebook doing a workshop. She dove in full-time and never looked back.


Since you focus on leadership and speech when you introduce yourself to people, what’s your title?

“It depends on who I’m introducing myself to.” “All of communication comes down to the nature of the

relationship. So, you really must be clear about who you’re speaking to and how you’re best meeting their

needs, so they can find out how you can support them.” For example, if she’s speaking to a corporation who’s looking for a shift in work culture, she is a Leadership Coach.

 If she’s speaking to a black woman who wants to get out of her job, she’s an Entrepreneur Transition Coach.

 If she’s speaking to someone who’s trying to figure out management and development for their team, she’s a Leadership Coach.


Who do you coach?

Her favorite clients to coach are black and brown women who are highly motivated; women who have side businesses and need some direction on how to further grow. 

She works with progressive organizations and teams, whose trying to figure out how to make work culture more inclusive. “How do we transform culture from the inside out?”


What’s your style of coaching?

Communication is key. She believes that communication is the most important tool human beings can use

to change the world. “We have the power to communicate our needs.” She uses a combination of ontological and facilitative methods. 

She prefers more ontology. Getting to the source of what drives her clients is the foundation of her coaching. As an English major, she spent a lot of time reading books critically, creating multiple interpretations for the same work, which is what she aims to do while coaching.

“There is no one size fits all.” Her style is customized.


Do you factor in a person’s learning style?

Marie asked her clients if they learn better one on one or in a community environment. Furthermore, during the intake process, she asked her clients how’d they like to communicate with her.


What traits would you advise someone who was looking for a coach to look for?

Her message to anyone looking for a coach is to be present in those initial conversations. “You’re looking for someone who listens more than they speak.” Look for someone who doesn’t have to be right all the time.

Coaching is not about someone being an expert. It must serve and meet the needs of the person.

Find a coach that you connect with on a deeper level. Having synergy with a prospective coach is important. 

“After you get off the call with a prospective coach, you should feel that this person gets me.”

The coaching client relationship is intimate, so you should find someone you feel comfortable being vulnerable with.


What’s one of your client’s success story you?

One of her favorite clients worked with Marie in her six-week program that supported women needing to scale their business idea, so they could create new space and opportunity for working in their life. 

Her client was an adjunct professor who built a consulting business on the side, reforming the education

sector. During the course, the client made a shift after implementing her advice which changed everything. She started to pay herself first and her team a salary. This allow her client to pay for her wedding and honeymoon, and she was still getting paid while she was away. 

Four years later and the business is on track to do a million dollars in revenue.


What drives you?

She lives for those magical moment when someone realizes their own power to create change.


Are you working on any new projects?

Her company is getting ready to launch a twelve-week program. She has two new online courses on the catalog. Ninety-day goal setting. She’s also crafting a course in development and inclusion for teams.

Where can people find you? or From the home page you can reach out for team coaching or one on one support.

You can also connect with her on Linkedin where she’s the most active on social media.