Chamber speaker encourages personal growth

Mentor and motivational speaker Bob Chiusano was the keynote speaker at the Monticello chamber’s annual banquet on Jan. 29. Demonstrating his desire to do things for others, Chiusano gave away two courtside tickets and a parking pass to Sunday’s Iowa men’s basketball game. The winner was Melissa Carstensen. (Photo by Kim Brooks)
Kim Brooks
Express Editor

The Monticello Area Chamber of Commerce welcomed an inspiring mentor as its guest speaker during the annual banquet on Jan. 29. 

Bob Chiusano with RMC Consultancy, LCC shared his secrets to success in his speech titled “Becoming All You Can Be.” 

In between sharing his seven personal attributes to happiness in life, Chiusano also shared several bits of Monticello trivia. Those who answered correctly received a copy of his book, “Mediocrity is Not an Option.” 

“This book was written after I left Rockwell Collins,” said Chiusano. “It’s a story of my professional advice. It talks about reaching your full potential.” 

Attribute #1:Ethics and integrity. 

“People use those words interchangeably,” prefaced Chiusano. 

“Ethics” means the rules, the law. “Integrity” means knowing the rules and how you behave. 

“We’ve all had situations in our lives where you get the opportunity to do something that you know was wrong,” explained Chiusano. “But your integrity is supposed to be the guard against you doing that. 

“Don’t let your integrity ever get compromised.” 

Attribute #2: Do as you say. 

“If you make a commitment to somebody,” said Chiusano, “do as you say.” It’s as simple as that. 

Attribute #3: Learn how to communicate flawlessly. 

In addition, Chiusano said this trait also entails being a good listener, something he admitted is hard for him to do. 

“You’d be surprised what you can learn if you listen to the experience of other people,” he said. 

Attribute #4: Diversity of thought. 

Having been born and raised in New York, Chiusano said all he’s known as a young adult was the Italian way of life. 

“The way you increase your chances of becoming more creative is to listen to others around you and put that into your database because you never know when you’re going to roll it out,” explained Chiusano. 

Attribute #5: Be a visionary. 

This is where Chiusano encourages everyone to think about what’s next in their personal and professional lives. 

Attribute #6: Stay in the moment. 

“It sounds simple,” warned Chiusano. “It’s very hard these days with technology and all kinds of ways to communicate. 

“Give the people you’re with the benefit of your presence,” continued Chiusano. “It will be recognized quickly; it will be appreciated and you will gain their respect.” 

Attribute #7: Have compassion for others. 

Chiusano said we all have something that makes us feel better about ourselves, gives us a high in life. For him, it’s doing something nice for others. And because he’s a busy man and pretty generous, Chiusano gave away two courtside tickets to Sunday’s (Feb. 2) Iowa men’s basketball game against Illinois, not to mention his front row parking pass in front of Carver Hawkeye Arena. The winner was Melissa Carstensen. 

“It doesn’t have to be costly,” explained Chiusano. “Sometimes a very little thing to you is a mountain for somebody else.” 

Lastly, Chiusano encouraged everyone to do three simple tasks every day: Have fun, make a difference, and learn something new. 

“If you’re short in any or some of these,” said Chiusano of the seven traits, “spend a little time during your day to help yourself focus on these and improve on these. You’ll find yourself a lot more effective in what you’re doing. You’ll find yourself a lot happier in life.” 

So who won the Monticello trivia questions? 

Trivia #1: What year was the new chamber of commerce established? 

August 1933. The winner was Andrea Hall. 

Footnote: The Monticello Area Chamber of Commerce became reorganized in October 1989/ 

Trivia #2: What month does the Camp Courageous Omelet Breakfast take place? 

April. The winner was Chris Brokaw. 

Trivia #3: What years has RAGBRAI stopped in Monticello? 

1974, 1985, and 1998. No one got them all right. 

Trivia #4: What is the Great Jones County Fair anniversary year this year? 

168 years. The winner was Jan Hoag. 

Trivia #5: Who was Monticello’s first mayor? 

S.Y. Bradstreet. Again, no clear winner.


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