An energetic and innovative corporate trainer, speaker, and workshop facilitator, Dana leverages years of corporate and management consulting experience to help individuals and teams reach new levels of performance. She garnered critical team leadership and management consulting experience through her years with AT&T Bell Labs, AT&T, IBM Consulting, and EMC Corporation. She also possesses an impressive array of credentials including an MBA (Emory University), BIE (Georgia Tech), BS (Spelman College), IBM Business Transformation Consulting Certification, Project Management Professional, and Myers Briggs Type Indicator Qualification. A much sought after speaker and trainer, Dana has presented to audiences in five countries and authored a course taught in five countries. Her courses are specifically designed to provide best practices and techniques that participants can immediately apply in the workplace.
As a manager with various Fortune 100 companies in the 1990s and early 2000s, I attended numerous professional development events filled with mostly mediocre presenters and keynote speakers. During these presentations, I maintained two parallel, pressing thoughts: 1. I could have gotten a TON of work done if I’d skipped this presentation….AND 2. I should be up there doing that! After years working in corporate America as an engineer, project manager, team leader and eventually an IBM certified business transformation consultant, I started my own boutique professional development training company in 2003. After more than eight years of successfully helping organizations large and small build more effective teams and improve individual and collective performance, I can truly say that my unique talent lies in my ability to pull from a rich reservoir of experience to share stories, anecdotes, and examples that provide practical solutions, tips, and techniques for many of the most pressing and most common performance challenges faced by organizations today.
After nearly a decade of speaking to audiences as an expert in areas including project management, meeting facilitation, effective communications, and personal productivity among others, I’m now formally increasing my focus on cultivating professional speaking opportunities and look forward to the opportunity to partner with your bureau. As a corporate trainer, I present to audiences constantly and am aware that I have a unique ability to connect with participants leaving them not just entertained but more importantly motivated to try one of my suggestions or techniques – even the crazy ones! I believe that my natural mix of expertise/credibility with casual approachability/humor creates an extremely inviting environment for participants to relax and truly embrace new ideas. I think that one of my session attendees summed me up perfectly years ago by saying…”She’s like a cross between Martha Stewart and Chris Rock!”
Over the years I’ve observed many keys to success for teams and individuals. I’ve also witnessed painful dysfunction in organizations and learned how to avoid it. Although I’ve provided training in numerous areas, my core competence focuses in the following topic areas:
Personal Productivity – Helping individuals work smarter, not harder.
Managing the Meeting from Hell – Dispelling the myth that meetings must be dry, inefficient and unproductive.
No More Slackers!!! – Building a culture of accountability within teams.
Are You Communicating…or Just Talking? – Equipping teams with the skills needed to truly communicate.
Project Management Secrets of Success – Building and leading effective project teams to really achieve their goals and actually enjoy the experience along the way.
Over the years my audiences have reaffirmed time and time again that the topics that I present cut to the core of the challenges faced by so many today. Possibly my most jarring recognition of this was during the 2008 PMI North America Conference where I’d been selected to present to an audience of project managers. As I checked into the Denver conference center, I was given a brochure outlining the locations of all the presentations. Being the directionally challenged person that I am, I checked for my room location immediately in the brochure. I was startled (and a bit confused) to see it listed as “201/203/205/207” and indeed more surprised to find the room and realize that due to the sheer number of registrants for my break out session, the conference organizers had reserved four adjoining rooms for the presentation. Indeed, when I arrived the following day to present, I was greeted by an audience of nearly 400! I wish I could claim that the significant turnout was a reflection of conference registrants’ interest in me….it wasn’t (although the line waiting to speak with me afterwards was hopefully a reflection of a great performance); instead, my topic/core area of expertise was just so compelling for so many. In short, my topics are real, relevant, and practical. My goal with each talk is to leave each person with a new technique or idea that they can put into practice immediately….and they do!
Possibly, my most compelling characteristic as a speaker is that I’m so enthusiastic and zealous about my topics. I’ve often had participants describe my energy as infectious, and I believe it is because I feel so strongly about my topics. In my experience that energy transforms the experience for the participant. Indeed, I feel that I’m not just giving a speech. I’m sharing a bit of who I am and what I know for sure to hopefully help someone in their journey.
1) The Secrets to Working Smarter, not Harder
If you feel like you’re never able to complete your “to do” list and somehow not really getting much done, the good news is that you’re not alone and this presentation is for YOU! Oftentimes, we make the mistake of trying to work harder, but instead we need to learn to work smarter. If you’re perplexed by people who seem to stay on top of their email, never forget a detail, and just seem ridiculously effective in their daily interactions, don’t fret because we’re sharing a few secrets on how they do it!! You will leave with some tips you can begin implementing immediately to enhance both your effectiveness and your efficiency in the workplace and beyond!
2) No More Slackers!!! Building a Culture of Accountability Within Your Team
As team leaders or project managers, we are often charged with building and fostering teams of highly accountable individuals. Unfortunately, too often we’re also saddled with “slackers” who simply don’t follow through on tasks or action items as promised. This presentation explores this issue and provides specific best practices and facilitation techniques that you can use to foster a culture of accountability within your team and your team meetings. It is this “culture of accountability” that encourages each team member to place a higher priority on following through on tasks, respect due dates, and ultimately focus on coming through for the team every time! We will explore the importance of action items – how to document/assign them the right way and how to manage them on an ongoing basis. We’ll distinguish two primary motivators for “slacker behavior” and diagnose appropriate techniques to address each. We will also explore seven conditions that foster a culture of accountability, learn how leaders can position a team member for success, and identify tips for enhancing team member motivation. Don’t let slackers drag down the productivity of your team sessions. Learn some effective techniques to easily address that behavior and begin using them immediately!
3) Using Project Management Secrets to Enhance Your Leadership Skills
Today’s leaders are being asked to do more with less increasingly challenging workplace environments. Likewise, project managers are constantly tasked with simultaneously controlling time, cost, and quality while continuously motivating their cross functional teams. Many of these project management principles can easily be applied to enhance leadership abilities as well. If you’re a leader who is often frustrated by slacking team members, difficult projects to manage, and constant workplace miscommunications, this presentation is for you! You will leave with specific tips and techniques you can begin to use immediately to enhance your leadership abilities.
4) The Secrets to Motivating Your Team During Difficult Times
Dale Carnegie said “There is only one way to get anyone to do anything. And that is by making the other person want to do it!” The question is how do you do that? In many ways this is the precise challenge that team leaders, project managers, and executives have with their teams – how to motivate in a way that is truly lasting? This presentation explores four specific actions a team leader can take to truly motivate their team even during challenging times.
5) Are You Running a Meeting or Drowning in Chaos?
Are you frustrated by difficult personalities in your meetings? Do you have a few participants who dominate discussion, play on the PDA, or simply ramble and take the group off topic? If so, this presentation is for you. We will provide you several easy touse techniques that will show you how to deal with these difficult personalities with finesse and ease. When you use these tips and techniques, you will not only benefit through increased productivity but also enhance your credibility with your team. Whether you are new to the workforce or a seasoned executive, these are the facilitation secrets you need to know!
6) 5 Secrets to Virtually Cut Your Meeting Time in Half!
Managers spend too much time in long, inefficient, ineffective meetings. We all know that meetings are often necessary but most of them last TOO LONG! This presentation reveals 5 key secrets you can use to reduce the length of your next project meeting. Learn how to manage lengthy discussion, develop agendas to encourage brevity, and get team members to come prepared and actually get involved in the meeting facilitation. Use these tips to transform your next meeting!
7) The Secrets to Managing Difficult Training Session Attendees
Most trainers have encountered the dreaded “problem participant”. Indeed, it is amazing how one truly problematic attendee can dampen and even destroy the learning experience for the entire group. The good news is that there are very effective methods trainers can use to manage these challenging personalities. In this engaging session, we will explore four of these most common challenging personalities and provide you practical techniques you can use to manage them effectively.
Specifically, we will explore these four problem personalities:
“The Know-It-All” who wants to prove that they are the real expert on the topic
“The Multitasker” who is too busy texting on their PDA to pay attention
“The Wet Blanket” who is always whining “That would never work in my environment”
“The Vaccum” who is sucking up all your time with questions/comments
If you are a trainer and you haven’t yet encountered these personalities, this presentation is for you because you will!