Friday, July 31, 2009

Ah, the "Glamorous" Life of a Sleep-Deprived Entrepreneur on the Road

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

A few days after flying back from speaking at the NSA Convention in Phoenix, where it was 115 degrees, I flew to Buffalo, NY to do a 2-day training program for a client.

The first night at the hotel, the people in the room next door were very loud until very late, so I didn't get much sleep.

The second night at the hotel, the fire alarm went off at 1 AM thanks to a cigarette butt thrown into the mulch outside an air conditioning unit. So we evacuated the building and stood outside for 1 hour while the fire department made sure the smoke had dissipated and the building was safe. So I got even less sleep.

The final night in Buffalo, I was scheduled leave on a 6:25 PM plane to JFK. Rushed to the airport in the pouring rain only to find out at the gate that New York was having massive thunderstorms and JFK had closed runways. I remember sitting in the one airport restaurant that remained open after 9 pm, asking the people at the next table, "What city am I in?"

By the time we boarded the plane at 10:30 PM, I was beyond tired. Once we landed in JFK after midnight, there was a further delay because the airline put our bags on the wrong carousel… I finally got home at 2 am and had to reschedule a meeting with a potential client in Manhattan that was scheduled for first thing the next morning because I was too tired to speak coherently.

Moral of the story: Be prepared - what can go wrong, will, and usually in rapid succession. And never schedule a client meeting for the morning after a flight, even if it's "only" a 1-hour flight!

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Gilda's NSA Speech Video Posted

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

I had a great time attending the National Speakers Association (NSA) Convention in Phoenix a few weeks ago! It was my first time attending and I got to hear fabulous speakers and meet great people!

Check out the video of the speech I gave, "How Will You Spend Your 28,000 Days?" It was part of a new format at NSA - the 20/20 Lightning Round. Like the Pecha Kucha presentation format, I had 6 minutes and 40 seconds to deliver my speech, using my 20 slides that advanced automatically every 20 seconds.

The audience of more than 150 people was standing room only!

Gilda Bonanno from Edward & Camelia Burleson on Vimeo.

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Friday, July 10, 2009

Gilda to Speak at NSA Convention in Phoenix

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

I'm preparing to go to Phoenix, AZ to present at the National Speakers Association Convention in mid-July. The NSA Convention is like the "Woodstock" of the speaking industry. This is my first time attending and I'm so excited that I have the opportunity to present my motivational speech, "How Will You Spend Your 28,000 Days?"

I am one of 11 specially featured NSA members who is presenting as part of a new format - the 20/20 Lightning Round Session. I have 6 minutes and 40 seconds to deliver a speech, using my own 20 slides that advance automatically every 20 seconds! So I have to be prepared, focused and concise - and the graphics have to be crisp and compelling. I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

And if you're attending the Convention, stop by my session and say hi.

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Grads4Hire Earn Money & Donate Time

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

We can't control what life throws at us - but the one thing we can control is how we choose to respond to a situation. For example, we all know the job market is tough right now, but one group of young women I know is dealing with the situation in a positive and innovative way.

Danielle and five of her friends just graduated from college and have not yet found full-time jobs. Instead of spending their summer at the beach, complaining about the job market, they have started a summer business called Grads4Hire. They will do any odd job from sitting (baby/pet/house) to running errands to tech-savvy tasks like selling items on ebay or teaching people about Facebook and Twitter. And the best part is that for every hour of work they get, they will also do an hour of community service.

They have started working with Meals on Wheels, spending 2 hours every week delivering meals to the homebound and shut-ins. They are also working on a project to create an informational board about recycling at their local town transfer station.

What a great idea!! Kudos to Danielle and her friends for being enterprising and giving back to the community.

If you'd like more info or if you're interested in hiring Grads4Hire (in Fairfield County, CT), please email or call Kristen at (203) 253-6112.

And the next time you face a problem, rather than just complaining about it, try to come up with a creative and generous solution.

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Declaration of Independence

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

I think we should read the historical documents upon which our nation was founded... lest we forget the principles we aspire to as a nation. In honor of Independence Day on July 4, here is the Declaration of Independence...

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — [emphasis mine] That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

Read the rest of the Declaration of Independence at

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Teen Money 101

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

If you have a teenager in your life, then check out this new book by my colleague, Stacia Morris.

Teen Money 101 is a workbook to teach teenagers about the concepts and use of money. This book was inspired by Stacia's teenage nephew and niece and is an introduction to financial education that every teen should have, especially in these challenging economic times.

The workbook is formatted in a "Lights, Camera, Action" format. The "lights" introduce new terms in the chapter, the "camera" depicts the teenagers' stories, and the "action" provides activities to reinforce the chapter's concepts. The goal is to help teens become financially responsible adults.

Teen Money 101 is intended for teenagers (ages 13 to 16), though it can be used by any age. It can be used in facilitated classroom settings, in schools or after-school programs. Stacia can facilitate these sessions or she can train teachers and educators to run the sessions.

Read more about it or order it for $19.99 at

Stacia holds a post-MBA Certificate in Accounting, an MBA from Pace University, and a BA in Economics from the University of the West Indies. She also holds the financial and insurance certifications for a Financial Advisor (series 6,,63, and 65).

Gilda Bonanno's blog