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Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley

Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley

Attend a dinner forum of the Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley

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Call Ira Bryck, President of the Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley, Inc., at (413) 835-0810 to get more information, discuss your situation, and commit to an evening that will expand your thinking about growing your business.

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DECEMBER 6, 2016 •TUESDAY, 5:00 PM-8:30 PM

Log Cabin Banquet and Meeting House, Holyoke, Mass

LEARN TO BE MORE PERSUASIVE, ENGAGING, INFLUENTIAL AND EVEN ENTERTAINING, WHETHER SPEAKING TO EMPLOYEES, INVESTORS, CUSTOMERS OR EVEN YOUR SPOUSE AND CHILDREN

As business owners, we are constantly presenting ourselves and our expertise. We speak to customers, clients, employees, colleagues, vendors.  We introduce ourselves at networking meetings, pitch prospects, interview new hires, negotiate projects, and deliver technical presentations.  Most of our communication is spent listening and speaking and yet it is estimated that 70-90% of communication in business is misinterpreted, changed or misunderstood!  And, when it comes to presentations, most people would rather die or eat a live bug than make a speech. How do we influence others to take action, take advice, take a risk?  How do we engage a tired audience, attract a customer, motivate an employee, differentiate our business from our competitor’s?  In tonight’s interactive session, you will hear plenty of practical communication and presentation tips and see several people, just like you, putting these skills into action.


Presented by EILEEN N. SINETT, CEO of Speaking that Connects, who has over three decades’ experience working with professionals and corporations to improve their business presentations and personal communication performance.  Her mission is to promote confidence, clarity and connection in speakers worldwide! Eileen is the author of Speaking that Connects, published in 2011, which explains her thinking, doing and being process for presentation excellence and  is currently writing her second book, 4 Points of Connection.Eileen has a Masters of Arts degree in Speech Correction (Kean University, NJ) and a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in the Communication Sciences (Emerson College, Boston), with advanced training in Improvisation and Facilitation skills for business. Sinett was recognized as the Champion for Business by the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce in 2015 and served as the Chair of the Plainsboro Business Partnership 2014-2016. She is a very approachable, energetic and engaging speaker, workshop leader and business professional.

OUR INSURANCE QUIZ SHOW, brought to you by Alana Sambor and Michael Long of Axia Insurance Services, will test how much you really understand about the tedious, yet necessary evil known as insurance. Be prepared to learn, including what you don't know you don't know. It will also involve fun and prizes.


MARCH 7, 2017 •TUESDAY, 5:00 PM-8:30 PM

Log Cabin Banquet and Meeting House, Holyoke, Mass

EMBEZZLED! SURVIVING FRAUD IN YOUR FAMILY BUSINESS

In 2014, Tyra Dellacroce's family business, Connecticut Stone Supplies, fell victim to a large scale embezzlement scheme that was perpetuated by the company's contract CFO, a personal friend of the family. Instead of being victimized, Tyra and Connecticut Stone went on the offensive and assisted law enforcement in the investigation, federal prosecution and sentencing of the suspect. The Connecticut Stone story is one of perseverance and dedication not only to justice but to rebuilding and strengthening a family business and a community that was nearly destroyed from one person's greed.


APRIL 19, 2017 •WEDNESDAY, 5:00 PM-8:30 PM

Delaney House, Holyoke, Mass

THE ELEPHANT IN THE ROOM IS LAUGHING: HOW TO MANAGE WORKPLACE STRESS AND CHANGE WITH HUMOR AND CREATIVITY

You're very lucky if you think that work is fun. It's not at all funny that 70% of employees hate their jobs, and less than 1/3 are engaged at work (even fewer are married). Tonight's presentation will explore how to create a lighter, less stressed feeling at your workplace; how to use humor to create more positive teams that believe in themselves; examples of real and practical ways that companies can make themselves a better or best place to work. Be prepared to get a new perspective on how to make your company a place where people want to be.

We're glad to again hear from IZZY GESELL, organizational alchemist, who will help you understand the different ways that people use humor, and what you can tell about your organization from the kinds of humor on display. Izzy was one of the first to use Improv Theater concepts as tools for personal and organizational learning. He is the author of Playing Along: Group Learning Activities Borrowed From Improvisation Theater, a co-author of Cancer & The Healing Power of Play, and of Humor Me: America’s Funniest Humorists on the Power of Laughter, and a contributor of a chapter on Improvisation as a facilitation tool in the IAF Group Facilitators Handbook. His latest project is a deck of cards with improv games on them. Recognized by his peers, he has earned a Certified Speaking Professional (CSP) designation from the National Speakers Association. Less than 15% of NSA’s 4,000 members are CSPs. The International Association of Facilitators (IAF) regularly calls on him to train facilitators in his techniques.


JUNE 13, 2017, •TUESDAY, 5:00 PM-8:30 PM

HOW TO LEAD AS A DECISION ARCHITECT, CREATING AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE EMPLOYEES MAKE CHOICES THAT LEAD TO GOOD OUTCOMES

Delaney House, Holyoke, Mass

You may not realize it but simple, irrelevant factors can have profound consequences on your decisions and behavior, often diverting you from your original plans and desires. Tonight’s presentation by Harvard Professor Francesca Gino will help you identify and avoid these influences, so the decisions you make do stick — and you finally reach your intended goals. Dr. Gino will help you explore inconsistent decisions played out in a wide range of circumstances — from our roles as consumers and employees (what we buy, how we manage others) to the choices that we make more broadly as human beings (who we date, how we deal with friendships), to the decisions we make as business managers and employees.  We will explore how the work environment can include factors that are likely to sway our decisions in directions we did not initially consider; and what can we do to correct for the subtle influences that derail our decisions. This presentation will help you identify the common biases that affect your business decisions, including excessive optimism and overconfidence; how groupthink, egocentrism, sunk cost fallacy, status quo bias and more can impair your ability to objectively evaluate information, form sound judgment, and make effective decisions. Your increased understanding of behavioral economics and choice architecture could result in reducing high employee turnover, missed deadlines, and poor strategic decisions; and help you create a method to define problems, diagnose underlying causes, and design and test solutions. Your decision to attend this dinner forum is a great first step to many more correct choices.

Our presenter tonight is FRANCESCA GINO, professor of business administration in the Negotiation, Organizations & Markets Unit at Harvard Business School. She is also formally affiliated with the Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School, with the Mind, Brain, Behavior Initiative at Harvard, and with the Behavioral Insight Group at Harvard Kennedy School. Francesca teaches Decision Making and Negotiation in the MBA elective curriculum and in Executive Education programs at the HBS, co-chairs an HBS Executive Education program on applying behavioral economics to organizational problems, and teaches a PhD course on Behavioral Approaches to Decision Making and a PhD course on Experimental Methods. Her research focuses on judgment and decision-making, negotiation, ethics, motivation, productivity, and creativity. Her work has been published in top academic journals in both psychology and management, as well as in numerous book chapters and practitioner outlets. Her studies have been featured in The Economist, The New York Times, Newsweek, Scientific American, Psychology Today, and The Wall Street Journal, and has been discussed on National Public Radio and CBS Radio. She has won numerous awards for teaching, including the HBS Faculty Award by Harvard Business School's MBA Class of 2015, and for her research, including the 2013 Cummings Scholarly Achievement Award, from the Academy of Management Organizational Behavior Division. In 2015, she was chosen by Poets & Quants to be among their "40 under 40", a listing of the world's best business school professors under the age of 40. In addition to teaching and doing research, she advises firms and not-for-profit organizations in the areas of negotiation, decision-making, leadership and organizational behavior.


SEPTEMBER 19, 2017 •TUESDAY, 5:00 PM-8:30 PM

HOW HIGHLIGHTS MAGAZINE LIVES THEIR GUIDING PRINCIPLE "FUN WITH A PURPOSE" INTO THE 4TH GENERATION

Log Cabin Banquet and Meeting House, Holyoke, Mass

In a two-room office over a car dealership in Honesdale, Pennsylvania, a young couple, Garry Cleveland Myers and Caroline Clark Myers, created Highlights™ a monthly magazine for children ages 6 to 12. They filled it with stories, adventures, brainteasers, and Hidden Pictures® puzzles. The magazine reflected their philosophy that children become their “best selves” by using their creativity and imagination; developing their reading, thinking, and reasoning skills; and learning to treat others with respect, kindness, and sensitivity. Since then, the Highlights brand has grown to a diverse and inclusive family of products for kids from birth to 12, including games, websites, mobile apps, and book clubs; and spans the globe, now in 40 countries and in 16 languages. It's now a 4th generation family business, and we are proud to have as tonight's presenter, KENT JOHNSON, their CEO and the great grandchild of the founders. Kent earned his undergrad degree at Amherst College, and doctorate in physics at Harvard. Before joining Highlights in 2005, he served in various roles in scientific research and development, manufacturing and operations.  Though he’d had no aspirations to join the family media brand, Johnson found himself inspired by the company’s mission to help children become their best selves and motivated by the challenge of carrying that philosophy into new markets around the world. Kent will discuss with us how his company operates as a family business, how they've viewed succession and expansion over the years, while keeping to their guiding principles; the role they are proud to have in helping children be creative, caring, curious, and confident; and what it has taken to keep their brand and product profitable, relevant and innovative over the last 70 years (ie: their first customers have grandchildren and great grandchildren).

Archive of past Family Business Center of Pioneer Valley dinner forum

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or come as the guest of a member company or corporate partner
For more information, or to register, call Ira Bryck at (413) 835-0810 or email Ira Bryck

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