Friday, July 29, 2011

Women in Business (WIB) Golf Outing

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Lyman Orchards Golf Club
70 Lyman Road
Middlefield, CT 06455

Learn to play the game or perfect your skill. Enjoy a delicious lunch as you network with professional women from across industries. Shop for yourself, friends and family in the boutique area featuring a variety of vendors.

Golf Clinic includes: 2 1/2 hours of personalized golf clinic with PGA professionals from Lyman Orchards Golf Club and use of Golf Clubs and Carts (space is limited).

Already know how to play? Perfect your skill with 9 holes of golf including golf cart.

8:30am – Continental Breakfast and Registration
9:00am – Golf Clinic/Golf (9 Holes)
11:30am – Lunch – Network – Shopping
2:00pm – Event Ends

For more information or to register, visit

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Powerful Presentation Skills: Balance Your Message & Time Limit

Professional speaker and presentation skills coach Gilda Bonanno explains the importance of staying within your time limit when giving a presentation - and how to make sure you cover your message.

If the video does not play, please click here:

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Saturday, July 23, 2011

10 Career Invention Lessons From Coach Nancy Collamer

In honor of her 15th year in business, Nancy Collamer has compiled 10 lessons about career reinvention.  Nancy is the career coach that I worked with when I was changing careers and deciding to start my own business and I highly recommend her services.

One of my favorite lessons from her post is:
5.  Be true to who you are: I've had the great pleasure of interviewing hundreds of clients over the course of my career and I have yet to meet two people with the same mix of talents, skills, interests and values. Honoring who you are and what makes you unique is the first step in aligning yourself with a career that allows you to shine and radiate your brilliance to the world. Perhaps Steve Jobs summed this up best when he addressed the graduates of Stanford University in 2005 and said, "Your time is limited, so don't waste it living someone else's life."

And thanks to Nancy for mentioning me in Lesson #10: You don't need to be Mother Theresa to do work that matters.

Read the rest of Nancy's career reinvention lessons here:

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Thursday, July 21, 2011

8-Step Brainstorming Process

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

Brainstorming should not be a free-for-all where people shout out ideas and are disrespectful to each other. In order for true creativity and innovation to flourish, brainstorming should follow a  clear process:

1. Explain the process. The meeting facilitator should clearly outline the process and guidelines.

2. Explain the problem for which ideas are needed. What is the question to be answered or the problem to be solved?

3. Gather ideas. A trigger may help, such as a creativity exercise or describing an idea that was successful.

4. Capture all ideas publicly. You can list them directly on a flip chart or have people write them on sticky notes which are then posted on the walls or flipchart. ALL ideas must be captured and there should be no judging of ideas at this point.

5. Sort the ideas. Group similar or related ideas - the sticky notes can be helpful here because you can easily rearrange them.

6. Cull the ideas. Now apply judgment, within an environment of mutual respect, and decide which ideas are best to pursue – discuss each idea and vote. For example, you can ask each person to put a dot or checkmark next to the top three ideas.

7. Prioritize the remaining ideas. Have the group decide the order of importance.

8. Decide what will happen next with the top few ideas. Define the next steps for moving the idea further along the process  - this may include steps such as presenting the idea to senior management, gathering feasibility data, etc.

For more on what NOT to do during a brainstorming session, see my July 19 blog post, "5 Mistakes to Avoid When Brainstorming"

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

5 Mistakes to Avoid When Brainstorming

by Gilda Bonanno LLC

A few years ago, I was called in to an organization to work with a team that was not performing up to its potential. I observed a team meeting during which a brainstorming session occurred and could see from their behavior during this meeting why the team was dysfunctional.
Here are the 5 mistakes I observed that you should avoid when conducting a brainstorming session:

1. No brainstorming process. The meeting facilitator just said, "Let's brainstorm ideas" and it became a free-for-all, with no guidelines or time limit.

2. No clear focus. When one person started looking at another company's solutions as a means of triggering ideas, one person said "Great" and started working off of them, while another person said, "Stop listing those other solutions. It's annoying," and the meeting facilitator said nothing.

3. No public listing of all the ideas. The facilitator made notes in her own notebook, but only of the ideas that she liked.

4. No open or encouraging environment for all ideas. Ideas were labeled "bad" by team members. In fact, I observed team members rolling their eyes and laughing at ideas, saying out loud, "what a dumb idea."

5. No clear time limit. Clearly the meeting facilitator had an idea of how long the brainstorming session should take because at one point she said to someone sharing an idea, "Hurry up - move on." However, the time limit was never communicated to the team.

For more on how to brainstorm effectively, see my July 21 post, "8-Step Brainstorming Process."

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Gilda Photo's from Phoenix, Arizona

I just returned from Phoenix, Arizona where I facilitated a 3-day training program for new supervisors for a Fortune 500 client.  Here are some photos:

A typical Phoenix view... it was over 100 degrees Fahrenheit,
with less than 7% humidity

A view of the mountains beyond the hotel

One of several pools at the hotel - though due to the heat,
not many people were in them during the day

A view from the conference center... blue sky, desert blooms
and mountains in the distance

Paco, a yellow-naped Amazon parrot,
at home in the hotel lobby

Gilda Bonanno's blog

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Powerful Presentation Skills: Focus on Your Audience

Professional speaker and presentation skills coach Gilda Bonanno explains what it means to "focus on your audience" as a presenter and why it's important.

If the video doesn't play, please click on this link:

Gilda Bonanno's blog