Monday, June 27, 2016

40 Under 40 Honors Fairfield County Professionals

I am proud to have been a supporter-level sponsor of the recent 40 Under 40 Awards, hosted by the Fairfield County Business Journal and Westfair Communications. 

The Business Journal honored 40 professionals at the 12th annual event held at the Dolce Norwalk. More than 300 guests attended the event, which included a cocktail reception and a formal award ceremony.

The 40 awardees thanked their colleagues, mentors and loved ones, and called upon the group to bring about change in their respective industries. 

For more information, photos and a list of the winners, visit

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Gilda did an incredible job engaging with professionalism & humor

"Gilda did an incredible job engaging our alumni with the perfect combination of professionalism and humor. Our group found her to be refreshing and energetic. I walked away with useful tips that I applied in my working environment the very next day, and will continue to keep her advice in mind in future professional interactions. The alumni office at Marist College is looking forward to continuing our relationship with Gilda with additional events in the future."
- Lisa Lombardo, Associate Director, Alumni & Donor Programs, Marist College

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Gilda to Present "Opening & Closing the Deal" 6/11 for WBDC

I'm excited to be teaching a session for the Women's Business Development Council's Saturday Studies: Winning and Delighting Your Customers. 

My session is: Opening and Closing the Deal
Boldness means being confident, distinctive and imaginative. And bold communication skills are a key component for entrepreneurial success especially when you are attempting to open up a dialog or close a deal.

Session Overview:
·         Use powerful and engaging body language to connect to your audience and convey your expert content
·         Step out of your comfort zone and overcome any anxieties you have about speaking with potential clients and talking about your business
·         Create and practice relevant and memorable ways to initiate connections with new clients

 There are two other workshops being offered that you can attend before or after my session:

Build and Manage your Business' Brand Using a Solid Social Media Profile
Your brand is essentially the essence of who your company is and how it is perceived in the marketplace. Discover ways to leverage your branding to build, manage and protect your business through social media outlets.

Keeping  Them Engaged – Customer Service
Customer loyalty is the cornerstone of any successful business. In this session, we will teach you how to create “brand ambassadors” – a truly loyal customer who will not only stay with you but spread the word of his/her positive experience and refer others to you.

Session Overview:
·         Create increased trust between you and your customers
·         Successful resolution of customer conflicts – even the most horrible experience can gain you a client for life
·         Become the Trusted Advisor and not the Vendor

Pre-Registration Required/No Charge/Light Breakfast Provided

Saturday, June 11, Shelton CT, 9-1:30
For more info or to register, visit

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Don’t Start Your Presentation by Admitting You’re Unprepared

I once saw a speaker start a presentation by saying, “When I did my research for this presentation, just now in the parking lot, I found that…” With that line, he instantly undermined his credibility and caused his audience to question whatever he said next, if they were still listening to him.

Was he trying to sound “authentic” or to be funny, or worse, was he telling the truth? Whatever his reason, as an experienced professional, he should have known better than to start by announcing that this speaking engagement was not important enough for him to take the time to research the group and the topic.

It was insulting to the audience and to the people who had brought him in (and paid him) as a subject matter expert.  (And no, this was not a last-minute engagement; he had plenty of time to prepare.)

Even it were true that he hadn’t made the time to prepare his remarks or customize them to this specific group, why would he broadcast his ignorance of the topic and his lack of preparation to the audience? At the very least, they would be unimpressed and at the very worst, they would be offended and stop listening to him.

I would have thought these best practices about presentation skills were obvious: Prepare your presentation ahead of time.  Don’t insult your audience.  Don’t start your presentation by admitting you’re unprepared. 

How was the rest of his presentation? I don’t know – I stopped listening.  But I doubt it got better from there.

Gilda Bonanno's blog

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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Gilda's workshop was excellent - fun and engaging!

"It was great to meet you and thanks so much for presenting at the National Speakers Association 2015 Convention!  You workshop and your presentation skills were excellent.  Yours was one of my favorite workshops.  You were fun and engaging and put the audience at ease. You also demonstrated to us how improv exercises can enhance our presentations.  And the exercises you led enabled me to make great connections with my two partners.  Well done!"  
Emily Ballance, MEd, LPC, Certified Speaking Professional 

To see more testimonials about Gilda's work, visit