Never attended a Membertini? Here are 5 reasons why you should!

Post by Karen Lombardo, Owner of Put Another Way, LLC.

The Women’s Business Council (WBC) promotes the full participation and leadership of women at all levels in the workplace, the community and government.

The WBC develops programs that provide opportunities for women to learn and network as well as share their expertise with each other and to address the unique issues of women in business.

Image result for free martini glass imagePresented by the Women’s Business Council, the Capital Region Chamber is pleased to announce the annual Membertini. If you have not attended a Membertini, here are 5 things you may not know about this annual event:

Support our nonprofit: Join us at the 2019 Membertini at Daley’s on Yates on September 25th to find out more while supporting the WBC’s 2019 Adopted Nonprofit, Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern New York.

Meet the Women’s Business Council: Want to connect with members of the Women’s Business Council, learn about committee work and discover how you can get involved in this impactful, regional network? Sure, you do! There are so many ways to be active with the WBC. Come and chat with the members and learn how you can be a part of this active and enthusiastic group.

Networking at its best: The WBC events are always well attended and provide a great opportunity to meet new people and expand your network. All genders are welcome at WBC events!

Visit a venue you may not have been to before: The WBC and the Capital Region Chamber select businesses and locations all around the Capital District in support of the those that participate in the Chamber. Perhaps you have not visited Daley’s on Yates in Schenectady? This is a perfect opportunity to do so!

Did we mention martinis? Say no more. In addition, the event includes complimentary hors d’oeuvres, cash bar, raffle prizes and just plain fun.

We look forward to seeing you there however, space is limited! Please register by Wednesday, September 18!  $12 members, $15 non-members

For more information:


5 things about The Collar City, Troy, NY

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Credit: @troyinnovation

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

The Chamber recently held the August Network by 9 meeting at Franklin Terrace Ballroom, formerly Mario’s, in Troy. As usual, we had a wonderful turnout and the venue was spectacular.

Troy, NY is a hidden gem.

Troy was originally known as the Collar City with a stellar reputation for its production of textiles and men’s clothing including shirts and collars. The addition of steel production made Troy the 4th wealthiest city in America at the turn of the 20th century.

Located in Rensselaer County, and is the official home of Uncle Sam, who was a meat packer from Troy named Samuel Wilson.

Troy is rich in history and reputation. Here are 5 things you may not know about Troy, NY:

Population: Last population report states there are just about 50,000 (+/-) people in Troy and 50.1% are female. The city is ranked 13th in the State of New York.

Troy Waterfront Farmer’s Market! Need I say more? Click here and see what wonderfully tasty and unique things you can find on a Saturday morning.

Entertainment: Looking for something to do after work or on the weekend? Fall is coming so why not stroll the tree-lined streets of Troy and stop in for a coffee, beverage, or a quick bite to eat. With so many options from unique and local fare to breweries and riverside dining, you will find something that hits the right spot.

Education:  There are five colleges and universities in Troy NY:

  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute-Lally School of Management and Technology
  • The Sage Colleges
  • Samaritan Hospital School of Nursing
  • SUNY – Hudson Valley Community College

Start-ups and Tech companies:  Are you a new business or thinking about starting a new business? Troy, in addition to the sister cities of Schenectady and Albany, might just have some solutions and tools for you!

Troy Innovation Garage

Entrepreneur Boot Camp

Troy is an important part of the Capital Region Chamber and visiting Troy for the recent Chamber event reminded me there is much to see on the other side of the river. In this post, a few things are mentioned, and that’s just skimming the surface. The entire Capital Region is full of resources and tools to help businesses grow and it is worth the time to investigate it.

The Women’s Business Council plays a dynamic role in community activity. Why don’t you come to our next event, The Women’s Business Council Membertini on September 25th? It is sure to be a great evening!

For more information:

Email: Marna Redding at 


Five summertime things you can do for your business

Five Things from the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner: Put Another Way LLC

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With the Fourth of July behind us, summer is in full swing. We are planning summer camps for the kids, family vacations and possibly getting a freshman ready for college.

Yes, we are all busy, but summertime can be slow in July and August so why not do something summer-ish before Labor Day?  Here are five suggestions that we hope you like!

Have an ice cream party! – Years ago, I worked for a book manufacturer in Troy, NY. The bindery was hot, and the people back there worked so hard. One day we hired an ice cream truck and we all took 30 minutes reminiscing about Mr. Ding-a-Ling when we were carefree kids. You know what? We were all feeling a little carefree that afternoon!

Hire a summer intern. I know we are mid-summer but there are still students looking for some experience. Small jobs, cleaning up files or doing research- this is a generation of Google kids. Use them!

Donate. You can donate time to a non-profit or a local community cause. Engage your employees and do this together. What better way to build a team than to become a team and work on something worthwhile?

Close early one Friday afternoon. Not all businesses can offer summer hours but few if any of your clients would begrudge you a Friday afternoon off. Your people will love it and it is a simple way to say thank you for all the days and nights of extra effort.

Take your work outside. Again, I understand not all business can work away from a desk but working outside frees the soul! When I was in elementary school, we would take reading hour outside and lay in the grass under those huge maple trees made reading soooo much more fun.

So, think outside of the box, engage your teams, employees, and clients to find ways to enjoy summer. Fall is beautiful too, but we can talk about that later!

Looking for some fun things to do this summer and build your business? Visit the Events page on the Chamber website- .

5 Things You Can Do to Mentor Someone

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

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I recently completed a six-month commitment to the 2019 Executive Mentorship Program of the Tech Valley Young Professionals Network (YPN). I use the term commitment loosely because it was more of an adventure and learning experience.

The YPN is a part of the Capital Region Chamber and offers a tremendous opportunity to share your skills and experience and in turn, mentor a young professional in the community. It truly is a win-win.

This is a fantastic program that just runs from January to June each year. But that’s okay, there are other ways we can help young professionals and people rejoining the workforce throughout the year. Here are 5 things that you can do to mentor someone:

Start at home.

So many of our young people including our children, nieces, and nephews, are not sure how to begin to be ‘professional.’  Help them by showing them your LinkedIn profile and assisting them in setting up their own profile. Discuss the cautions of social media and begin to instill in them the idea of professionalism.

Look around the office.

Is there a new hire or perhaps someone was promoted? Chat with them about their social media activity especially LinkedIn, and see if they need help setting up an account or updating their profile announcing their new job or title.


There are so many organizations in the Capital Region that are looking for professional people to help and mentor those returning to the workforce. The YWCA helps women get back on their feet. I bet they could use someone to help these women with a resume or some good advice and support!

Invite a stranger.

And on that note, invite that person out for coffee in a relaxed environment and let them pick your brain!

Be a leader.

Lead by example. Walk the walk and talk the talk. Be a leader. You and your community will benefit from your time and effort.

I have enjoyed my experiences with the Chamber, the YPN, and the Women’s Business Council. I look ahead to many years of learning from my peers and of course my mentee! The Women’s Business Council provides committees and events that help develop us as leaders and mentors.

For more information, E-mail Marna Redding or call 518.431.1421 to learn more!


5 Things About Chaos

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

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On Tuesday, I attended the Women’s Business Council program, If You Don’t Manage Your Chaos, Your Chaos Will Manage You with Melissa Cook, Catharine Potvin, Tracy Slocum & Matt Phelps.  It was informative, eye opening and prompted some serious soul searching.

I feverishly took notes on my phone and I would like to share 5 quick thoughts on chaos, managing chaos, and living with chaos in your life.

Ask the question: Are you productive busy or chaos busy?

Great question because there is a difference. Productive busy is not always a bad thing and often times is short lived. Chaos busy? Not so much. Answer the question first and then look to examine the ways to manage or lessen your chaos. Great quote from the speakers: Every hour of planning saves 4 hours of execution. Write it down! Too much in your head? Prioritize it.

Delegation: Friend or foe?

Delegation can be a fruitful tool to manage chaos and allow you to be more productive. The speakers and the audience’s questions addressed delegation and empowerment. Many of us, myself included, are control people, (note I did not say freaks), and know we need to get things done via delegation…but for some reason, we need to get it done our way. That’s not a good thing and we know it. Teach. Empower. Let go. Try it, it can be cathartic and remember most times there is a better way.

Just say no.

Why is that so difficult? We take on more than we can do; we promise to get it done in warp speed; oh, and we charge what we think the client wants to pay. Just this morning, I had a friend say, it is only a good deal if it is good for both of you, not just the client. Just say no or maybe often an alternative.


Yes, I know, we all agree we need to communicate effectively but communication crosses multiple channels such as email, text, and face to face discussions. Communication should be consistent and simple. Focus on the topic at hand and do not creep into other topics or issues. Schedule another time for those topics.

Lists and wine.

Two great tools that do not necessarily go hand in hand. Make lists in whatever method you choose whether it is paper or electronic. There is a great deal of satisfaction that occurs when you cross off or check off a completed task.

If all else fails and you have tried everything imaginable, turn to a temporary vice such as a glass of wine. This option was quite popular during the luncheon! Vices come in many forms and afford us the luxury of shutting off while we heal our chaotic brains. I prefer a beautifully crafted cappuccino in the afternoon. Do you believe that? Nah! Wine is good.

Happy organizing!

The WBC events are very informative, empowering, and collaborative. Don’t miss out on these events.


MARNA S. REDDING | Vice President, Member Services |



5 Things or Reasons For Coffee

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

People who know me know that I love coffee to a fault, and I will meet with anyone over a cup of it. Why? Because coffee is a binding agent even if you don’t drink it. OK, you’re a tea person. I don’t judge but meet for 30 minutes and let’s chat…and collaborate.

Here are 5 reasons why you should meet over a cup of Joe:

Coffee is great. Nothing more to add.

Coffee meetings are minimally invasive. Yet, you would be surprised what you can learn about someone or their business over a piping hot cappuccino. The world is small and sitting with someone face-to-face engages something in us that sparks the formation of a relationship.

Coffee is not intimidating or threatening. Years ago, when I was in sales and I would take a client to lunch, I always waited until coffee and dessert were served before talking about business. After a spectacular NYC lunch, we were ready to chat over coffee. Even billing discussions seemed less intimidating over coffee.

Coffee is for learning. Use coffee time to train someone on your new product or meet and discuss a new project. Collaborate!

Coffee is soothing. Whether iced or hot, mocha or doppio, I have done my best thinking over coffee. Truth be told, I bring coffee to the gym at 5am to kick start the process!

Let’s make a deal. Why don’t we all reach out to someone that we have wanted to learn more about or do business with and invite them for coffee. Rest assured it is worth your time and hey, you never know what it will bring!


5 Things to Spring Clean your Professional Life

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

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Technically, we are in the Spring season. Not quite so sure with the rain/snow mix in the forecast but don’t let that get you down. Most of us are ready to take off the flannel sheets, put away the down jackets, and return the snow-brushes to the darkest corner of the garage.

But what about our home away from home and our professional life? Let’s look at these 5 things you can do to spring clean your professional persona:

Clean your desk. C’mon look closely? I am sure you can remove the old coffee cup in the back corner, and maybe a few pair of shoes, ladies, that haven’t seen the light of day since 2001. Old datebooks? Gone. Copies of Excel charts for projects that have long since been implemented? Chuck ‘em.

Revamp your logo/website. If you own your own business, take a look and perhaps get a freshen up tweak. I plan a tune up every spring whether it is a new page, new content…something new. And then tell people about it!

Pack and appointment bag. My Tech Valley Young Professionals Network mentee, Allyson, is pregnant and due in a few weeks. We were talking about the hospital bag ready and waiting to go insuring that you have what you need when you go into labor. Well? Work is labor and wouldn’t it be great to have a small bag or cinch-sack with the staples you may need for a meeting? You could add a phone charger, pad of paper, extra writing utensils, business cards, and maybe a snack. Meetings can make you hungry.

Spruce up your look- Gentlemen, how about a new tie? Ladies, a springtime scarf, or pin can make a difference. You look good, you feel good.

Work on that face! Times can be trying. Family and business present challenges and it is hard. I try to smile a bit more, it is springtime after all.

So, there is it- simple spring (professional) cleaning. Now if you are really feeling engaged, learn more about some of the great classes and events available from the Women’s Business Council , E-mail Marna Redding or call 518.431.1421 to learn more!

Be sure to check out Chamber’s plethora of events:

5 Things You Can Do To Be A Good (Business) Human

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From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

This week I took a class at the Capital Region Chamber entitled “Business U: LinkedIn tips and secrets. The presenter, Bill McCormick, Vice President, LinkedIn Strategist, Social Sales Link, was spectacular and he made a simple comment about business not being B2B or B2C but H2H: Human to Human. I found this remarkably interesting and I began to think about human interaction and experiences shared with me by peers, specifically in business.

So, I thought I would share 5 things we can do to be a good (business) human:

Be present. Humans cannot actually multitask. We are not truly doing more than one thing at the same time, as much as we are switching between tasks very quickly. So, you cannot listen and be present and check your email  or cell phone at the same time….effectively. It can wait, usually.

Be thoughtful. In a time when much of our communication is in texts and emails, why not call a client, prospect or vendor and actually talk with them? You may be surprised at the results.

Listen and communicate meaningfully. So many people listen with a partial ear just enough to be able to craft their response back. Listen and spend the time to learn about the person in front of you whether he/she is a client or someone you met at Network by 9! Try it. The difference in the experience is tremendous.

Respect each other’s time and talents. So often we meet people who maybe share our space, our talents and perhaps a client or two. No one can be everything to everyone so respect what the other person does. I think it will come back to you in spades.

Kindness is free. No further explanation is needed.

Ok humans let’s give this another shot and spend our time with each other wisely and with respect at the root. As an ex-New Yorker, I can tell you good human behavior did happen in New York and if it can happen there, it can happen anywhere, it’s up to you…. or so the song goes.

Interested in learning more about some of the great classes and events available from the Women’s Business Council , E-mail Marna Redding or call 518.431.1421 to learn more!

5 Things We Love About Winter Living in the Capital Region

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, Owner, Put Another Way, LLC

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This time of year, when memories of boating on Adirondack lakes and poolside cookouts are a distant memory, we need to find solace in our living environment.

I am an Ambassador with the Capital Region Chamber. I have not been doing this long but I have had such fun learning about businesses in this area. I witnessed first-hand how pools are made, and this week stepped on the ice to learn curling, yes curling!

Being an Ambassador, I have welcomed new businesses, shared a few cups of coffee, and spoke of the grace of living here, in the winter. So here are 5 things I love about winter living in the Capital Region.

It is beautiful. Season change is a benefit of northeast living and winter is spectacular. Yes, it can be cold and dark but when it snows and the flakes fall to their own rhythm, it is magic.

There is a lot to do. Really. There is! There are food festivals, craft fairs, hikes in the woods and the Women’s Business Council is full of fun. Check out this one: Make Your Life an Exclamation! Not an Explanation.

Meeting up with someone you have not seen in a while. Everyone loves a good hot cup of Joe or tea! Reach out to a new business or a friend that maybe you can collaborate with and share some good old tea time!

Trying something new. Specifically, the Women’s Business Council has committees for everyone. It lets you stretch your legs and use your skills to so something great! E-mail Marna Redding or call 518.431.1421 to learn more!

Getting to know your community. Social media has events listed, college games posted, and local traditions available for all. Volunteer with a local charity. Our 2019 adopted nonprofit, The Epilepsy Foundation of Northeastern New York is looking for raffle prices for the luncheon.  Read more and help us out!

So, are you feeling the Capital Region (winter) love? I knew you would.

Have a great day!

Resolutions? Maybe Just 5 Things

From the desk of Karen Lombardo, President of  Put Another Way.

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It’s that time of the year when the gym is crowded, the diet food aisle in the supermarket is packed and intentions for change are high. In about 3 weeks, the gym will be back to the regulars, the diet items will be on sale, and so many people are left disappointed and frustrated with resolutions that could not be achieved. Why?

I have thought about this is great detail and found that with small attainable goals, I have been able to sustain these tweaks to my ‘self’ and removed frustration and disappointment.

So, here are 5 things to take as food for thought when making a new year’s resolution:

  1. Let’s start inside. Are you ready to make some changes in your health, work, or social life? Sounds simple but change can be stressful. Answer this question first and then you can fine tune your resolutions.
  2. Do something that makes you feel good. It will have a long-term positive effect on anything else you want to change. Take a yoga class, volunteer at a shelter. We have a great not for profit here at the Women’s Business Council. Come check it out!
  3. Now pick a resolution. Many choose to lose weight this time of year but let’s put a spin on that. How about getting healthy? No numbers and calculations are involved with that. Move more, eat a little less. Broad strokes and small goals.
  4. Be mindful. Ask yourself why you want to make this change. Look at your surroundings and amend them to set yourself up for success. Using your treadmill as a clothes hanger? Hiding those M&M’s in the freezer? (I do this) Start with these and feel a cathartic rush from beginning your journey.
  5. Don’t stress. Experts say it takes 2 weeks of repetition to make a change. If you miss a day, don’t beat yourself up. Just start the clock over. Treat yourself when you ‘win.’ Purchase a heart rate monitor or a new water bottle and celebrate your success.

Resolutions can be fun and rewarding. Just remember, you are competing with yourself and no one else. Do you feel empowered and ready? I knew you would!

Don’t miss the next WBC event:  Successfully Managing Change in the Workplace on January 29th – Sign up here.

For more information:


Note: Interested in doing more and learning about how to become more active in your community? Contact Marna at and join a committee for the Women’s Business Council!

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