The first New Jersey Business and Industry Association (NJBIA) event I attended was the annual Women Business Leader’s Forum.

I did not know what to expect. I was only two weeks into my new job here at Priority Payments Local and I was still learning about the NJBIA – the largest business organization in the United States which just so happens to be located an hour from where I live and work.

After a week and a half of getting promotional products and signage ready for the Forum which Priority sponsored, I drove up to the Hanover Marriott in Whippany, New Jersey dressed in colors that match our branding – black and yellow. It was go time and I was ready to conquer this event!

My first initial thought when I walked into the venue was, “Everyone is so friendly.” The NJBIA was very welcoming and made me feel like I had known them forever.

Sponsors are always required to arrive at least 15 minutes prior to events beginning. Afraid of being late, I got there much earlier and already saw other sponsors setting up. There were Berkeley College and New Jersey Manufacturers, just to name two. I became fast friends with the rep from Berkeley. Apparently, it was his first event too. Shortly after, guests started to arrive. They flooded in and filled the venue as this event is one of the NJBIA’s biggest events. While I did not have a chance to catch all the speakers, I sat in for the closing keynote: Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno. She spoke about keeping business in New Jersey and I was blown away with her ability to connect with her audience.

Fast forward one year later. I’m getting ready to attend my second Women Business Leaders Forum and boy am I excited! Since that first event, I have gone to at least 20 of the NJBIA’s events and the Women Business Leaders Forum has been my favorite. Over the past few months I’ve had the opportunity to sit on the Women’s Business Committee and have been in the loop on the inside scoop for this year’s event. If you have not registered, do it now! It’s an event that’s not to missed by both men and women.

Per the NJBIA’s website, this event brings attendees together to network and identify how to increase gender diversity in corporate leadership, improve communication and negotiation skills, and provide personal strategies for success.

The morning will kick off with breakfast and registration.

At 8:30am, NJBIA President and CEO Michele Siekerka will give the opening remarks.

At 8:45am attendees with engage in speed networking.

At 9:10am, there will be a quick presentation of awards followed by the opening keynote in which Sally Glick, Principal & Chief Growth Strategist of Sobel & Co., LLC CPA will discuss communication and leadership styles.

At 9:50am we’ll break for networking.

Following networking, the breakout sessions will begin. Attendees will be able to choose from one of three sessions.

Session 1, The Non-Profit Board, will be all about the challenges and concerns non-profits face.  A panel of experts will share their perspectives on the common characteristics of high performing non-profit board members. Attendees will be given the opportunity to hear what non-profits may expect of their board members while also accessing some practical tips that will make their own board search more efficient and effective.

Session 2, Say it With Style, will teach attendees how to find their voice and use it strategically.

Session 3 will feature our COO Angelo Mendola moderating a panel on Getting to the Win/Win. Attendees will get practical advice on becoming excellent problems solver while still getting what they want, without damaging their reputation. Plus, common negotiation mistakes will be discussed.

At 11:30 attendees will break for lunch and the kick off the afternoon at 12:15 with a panel about unlocking the C-Suite.

For the complete agenda and to register, visit the NJBIA’s website.

Hope to see you there! If you’ll be attending, shoot me a message on our Facebook page and let me know.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *