Better Communication. Focus. Insights. Self-Care. Training. Facilitation. Goal-Setting.
Better Leadership.

Creating conscious + effective leaders

MER Leadership Design helps organizations optimize their senior talent and teams, creating more conscious and effective leaders.

We offer 1:1 executive coaching, training, and facilitation — with a focus on marketing and media agencies, early-exit-phase startups, and non-profits.

By integrating these three leadership pillars, we create a more effective foundation for positive change, and provide a coveted benefit for the organization.

Marie Elena’s counsel is transformational, a force for unlocking one’s full potential. As I have progressed to the role of CEO, she has been an invaluable touchstone who is deeply grounded in experience, wisdom, philosophy, best practices, science, and love. I have leaned on her professional guidance throughout every step of my journey. She possesses the uncanny ability to draw out the most profound solutions to the most prickly problems — solutions that are already within you.”

Thomas Lee

CEO, First Place for Youth

Learning & Development

Mental Fitness | Positive Intelligence

Perhaps the most important skill for any executive is the ability to manage emotions through stress and challenges, and stay laser-focused when everyone else is swirling…

This 8-week intensive can produce lasting results, visible changes in behavior, and a deeper level of connection and trust among participants. PQ is based on neuroscience, positive psychology, cognitive behavioral therapy, and performance science — and is backed by research and case studies of thousands of CEOs worldwide.

Leadership Curriculum & More

MER’s Leadership Curriculum has been designed to offer valuable professional development for your organization, with learning and development modules on a wide range of topics — including Effective Communication, Conflict Resolution, Team Building and more.

Download this PDF guide for more information on Service Offerings, Training Modules, Client Feedback, experience and background — along with descriptions of some of our most popular training modules.


MER Leadership Design’s integrated approach provides a unique lens across the entire organization — leveraging a deeper understanding of the strengths, challenges and opportunities for individuals, departments, and teams. 

  • 1:1 Coaching
  • Training
  • Facilitation

1 :1 Coaching

 As an executive, all eyes are on you. You hold yourself and others to a high standard. You provide support for your staff, your teams, and your colleagues. But how are you supporting yourself?

One-on-one Executive Coaching helps ground your decision-making, clarify your thinking and communication, and offers you an objective thought-partner. Someone who can help you reframe things in a productive way, avoid pitfalls, and ensure you are driving long-term vision as well as executing against short-term goals.


What if you had a trainer who understood your company, its mission, its people — and who delivered a professional development experience that took staff beyond insight into action?

MER Leadership Design offers a curriculum with structure and flexibility to address your company’s needs, including communication, self-awareness, people management, performance management, conflict resolution, and team building. The investment value and impact multiplies when training is integrated with 1:1 coaching and facilitation — resulting in better employees (and better humans).


What if you had a neutral third-party who could see and communicate challenges more clearly than the team could? Who could foster collaboration between and among departments and business units? 

Facilitation breaks down silos and elicits productive communication and problem-solving. It makes meetings more efficient and effective, navigating group dynamics to keep your objectives on track. Facilitation helps ensure that all voices are heard and ideas are captured with action steps to move decisions forward.

Change comes from within, and Marie Elena is a powerful catalyst. She is a consigliere, a counselor, and a coach, the rare person in a leader’s orbit who has no agenda other than helping them find a path where both internal harmony and external success can coexist.”

David Rielly

Group Creative Director,

Marie Elena guided us into being better communicators, collaborators, and arbitrators. She pushed us to apply common sense tools to real-world challenges, and identify specific steps we could take. The experience has made me more confident as a leader, with some great advice to fall back on.”

Mehera Bey

Head of Creative Operations, Cashmere Agency

Marie Elena sees your potential and inspires and supports you to get there. As a first-time CEO, she helped me work through my initial imposter syndrome, develop strategies for coping with the complex challenges of restructuring and pivoting a company, and provided tools to sharpen my mental acuity and focus around fundraising.”

Jeff Veldhuizen

CEO, Capti

Invaluable in helping me examine myself… how I receive information, respond to situations, and come across to others. As someone overseeing two large teams, I’ve found Marie Elena to be incredibly flexible and complementary. She connects inputs from multiple conversations, finds commonalities across personal and professional situations, and provides ‘cheat codes’ to help quiet my mind and reference the work we’re doing.”

Matt Matzen

EVP, Group Account Director, Deutsch LA

Marie Elena Rigo brings a unique lens to the business of coaching, with more than 30 years of experience spanning the agency, corporate, and non-profit worlds.

She holds a master’s degree in psychology, is certified as a Positive Intelligence/ Mental Fitness Coach and leads executives and teams toward a deeper understanding of themselves and others as they navigate the challenges on the goal line and soul line of life.

Marie Elena believes that the answers to clients’ questions lie within. She also knows that the brain requires helpful frameworks to be more productive and support generative thinking. She uses these mental models to guide clients from insight into action.

Because effective leadership and self-actualization are inextricably linked, the workplace arena is a fertile growth environment. Combined with traditional skills training, Marie Elena supports VP-level to C-Suite execs in discovering new pathways, avoiding pitfalls, and becoming more conscious in their professional roles and in their lives.

Marie Elena is an ACE Certified Coach, and holds a master’s degree in spiritual psychology from the University of Santa Monica and a bachelor’s degree in classics from Trinity College in Hartford, CT. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and two children, Ryan and Alexa.

Ready to bring lasting positive change to your organization?

Connect with Marie Elena

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