By Jackson Cline
On a Tuesday afternoon 25 years ago, Leslie Becker called up Samuel French Bookshop and asked if they’d like to purchase any copies of her new organizational workbook and planner for actors. They ordered 25 copies. Little did they know she had not written a page. For the next three days, Leslie toiled away at her keyboard, and The Organized Actor was born.
Over the years, Leslie continued updating her bestselling book as she pursued her career as an actress. It’s now in its 7th Edition. She started taking on private coaching clients and slowly began building a web presence. In 2018, Leslie decided to take a huge leap to expand her business even further, offering online courses, webinars, and The Actor’s Roadmap — a weekly email subscription that guides its members forward in their careers with weekly focuses, expansion exercises, and action steps without the high price of hiring a private coach.
It’s no surprise that private coaching has become a major part of Leslie’s business. “If someone were to ask me what my natural gift is... the one I came into the world with, it would be coaching,” says Leslie. “I always had a natural ability of supporting people and showing them how to open their minds to bigger possibilities.”
In Leslie’s private coaching sessions, she not only focuses on her clients’ careers, but makes sure to spend time on their lives, as well. “An actor is a human being first. My coaching addresses all areas of their lives, because it is all connected,” says Leslie. “Quite honestly, if all you are living through is your acting career… you’re not really paying attention to all of the other things that matter, too.”
Coaching can be helpful for artists at any stage of their careers. “It doesn’t matter what level you’re at,” says Leslie. “ You always need somebody there who is another set of eyes for you… You want somebody who is going to support you, but call you out on your crap.” However, it’s important to remember that the coach is not there to do the work for you. “If you don’t do the work, it won’t happen,” says Leslie.
How is coaching with Leslie helpful for an ensemblist? Leslie knows first-hand what it’s like to work in that sector of show business. Along with several principal roles, she has also performed on Broadway in the ensembles of Nine, Anything Goes, and Amazing Grace. Whether working with a client who plans to be a career ensemblist or one who would like to transition to principal roles, Leslie believes “finding the joy in what you do have and not taking it for granted is essential.”
From Broadway to TV and film, Leslie’s artistic clients have found great success working with her. But her client list goes far beyond actors. She’s even helped a scientist build his own lab! “As a coach, I’m providing a space of possibility for people and ultimately giving them permission to create a life they love,” says Leslie.
After nearly two decades of coaching, Leslie is continually inspired by seeing what her clients can achieve. Plus, it keeps her own acting career moving forward powerfully. “If you are coaching others, you have to make sure you walk your own talk,” says Leslie. “All the systems I use for my clients are ones that have worked for me and others.”
Visit The Organized Actor website to learn more about Leslie Becker, her book, and her coaching business.