“Yes, I had a great time!” said the caption on the smiling picture. Donna Smith Bellinger, the founder of the Business Revenue Accelerator, was posting on social media about her recent speaking engagement at ISACA’s SheLeadsTech, a half day seminar following the North American CACS conference held in Chicago April 30-May 2, 2018 — a speaking engagement she got through Innovation Women. A professional speaker, revenue accelerator and author, Donna Smith Bellinger specializes in working with those who feel they have “hit the wall” when it comes to personal or professional growth.
The ISACA CACS Conferences are the premier events for audit/assurance, COBIT, compliance, risk, security, and strategy/governance professionals. They host attendees from all over the world. ISACA is an independent global nonprofit helping individuals and enterprises achieve the positive potential of technology. ISACA’s SheLeadsTech program seeks to increase the representation of women in technology leadership roles and the tech workforce.
Event managers from SheLeadsTech found Smith Bellinger on the Innovation Women platform and invited her to speak at their event. What they also found was a very collaborative speaker. “They pick the title,” said Smith Bellinger.  “They named the ‘baby’ and I delivered it.”
In this case, the ‘baby’ was a presentation, “Increasing Visibility and Credibility in your Profession,” one of three workshops focused on the three pillars of the SheLeadsTech program, Raising Awareness, Preparing to Lead, and Building a Global Alliance.
“I started out in tech, am doing sales now, and I am very aware of the challenges women face in tech and stem,” said Smith Bellinger.  “We have a wonderful opportunity to become much more visible and be selected for speaking opportunities like these. Women are the top of the pecking order now but how can event managers find us if we are sitting in our cubicles being worker bees? If we stay there, with our heads down, we will stay there…permanently.”
We took a few minutes to talk to Smith Bellinger about her presentation at SheLeadsTech and some of her other experiences.
“SheLeadsTech was a fantastic event with attendees from all over the world,” said Smith Bellinger. “I was lucky; it was practically in my backyard…not quite walking distance but close. I made a number of terrific connections and picked up some great endorsements.”
She also shared some techniques that she uses to get speaking engagements and expand her network.
One tactic is the handout she uses to collect feedback.  “I tell them, don’t say DSB was enthusiastic, entertaining and fun. I know that!  Tell me what you learned. I tell them to include their name if I have permission to use their quote. That guidance means I get great quotes that I can use on my website.”
Here’s an example of one of those great quotes:
“DSB made people think about their inner being.  The presentation was engaging and thought provoking; leaving the audience wanting more!  Thank you DSB for pushing me toward greater levels and expectations for my life!”   ~ Paula C
The handout also includes a place to check-off, “My group needs a speaker like DSB,” and “I would like to be put on your email list”. As we like to say at Innovation Women, “speaking begets speaking” and the more you speak, the more you will speak.
As a speaker, Smith Bellinger closes with some advice, “It is our responsibility to make ourselves memorable; it is not our audience’s responsibility to remember us!”

Related Articles