Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Universal Sisters

Imagine this scenario. Email: Gloria are you interested in serving on a panel to educate women on finance? It's August 15th, 8am-5pm.
Reply: Sure! I'm all about educating a nation.
Prepare to Put on Calendar: Saturday? What?! I don't know about taking my whole Saturday. Hmph!
Ultimately: Give in - with the stipulation of arriving at 9:30am vs. 8am.

Result: I was blessed to have the opportunity to mingle with 1,200 African American women at the 4th Annual Universal Sisters Health Conference. There were workshops on everything from domestic abuse, to menopause, to balding, to incontinence. Free health screenings were provided by the staff of The Cleveland Clinic, there always a group of women in the hallway trying out some Zuumba dance moves and there was a great, very well attended session titled "What Your Mama Didn't Tell You About Sex", that was presented by two female physicians and a nurse. Let's just say when the nurse starts quoting Madea - "Cling, cling, shut it down!", it was a very real, open and honest session. You're never to old to be educated on that topic.

I presented with three other ladies on the topic of financial health. I was able to share my experiences as a commercial banker serving nonprofits and governments, a women business owner advocate and a board member to provide insight to small businesses and nonprofits on how to succeed in this economy. My clients have had lots of practice this year trying to survive! I spoke about how important it is to stay active to drive revenue. This includes, networking, using social media, talking to your government officials and giving presentations to targeted groups. Then I discussed the importance of trimming the fat by reducing expenses. I provided lots of ideas, but my favorite one was......go green! Anyway, I have since shared greening and marketing strategies with a very well known family business in the area and have been asked to be a resource for non-profit news from one of the newspapers reporters in town.

Lesson: Kharma baby! Give a little, get a lot.

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