Check out our March 2017 Events!

Spring is nearly here!  Tax time, we had all 4 seasons the last week in WI, let’s keep moving forward with Spring!

Not sure which chapter is nearest you?  Take a look at WISHRM’s Local Chapters page for more information.

March 3 Sole Practioner Networking Group Meeting Eau Claire, Chippewa Valley SHRM

March 8 –FMLA/STD/ADA Update– Beaver Dam, SHRM – Dodge County

March 8 – FMLA– Oshkosh, Oshkosh Area SHRM

March 9-HR Undercover-Wausau, Central WI SHRM

March 14-Making Millennials Great-Beloit, Blackhawk HR Association

March 14 – Influential Leadership – Fort Atkinson, Jefferson Co HR Management

March 15 – President Lincoln: Social Media Genius – La Crosse, La Crosse Area SHRM

March 15 –7 Habits for Managers-Green Bay, Green Bay Area SHRM

March 16 – Drugs in the workplace– Sheboygan, Sheboygan Area – SHRM

March 21-Leadership & Strategy: The key to fitting the strategy into HR – More info to come SCVEA

March 21- Employee Benefit Planning Innovations – Kimberly, Fox Valley SHRM

March 21- GMA SHRM Professional Summit-Madison, GMA SHRM

March 22-Monthly Meeting-Manitowoc, LAHRA

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2017 WI SHRM State Conference Keynote Announced – Josh Bleill


The Wisconsin State SHRM Council is excited to welcome Josh Bleill as the next keynote speaker for the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference being held at the Kalahari Resort & Convention Center in the Wisconsin Dells, October 11-13.

Josh Bleill describes himself as follows: “I’m a father, I’m a husband, I’m a Christian, I’m a spokesperson, I’m a Marine.”

After attending Purdue University, Josh was working in corporate America when, like many of us, the events of September 11, 2001, changed his life forever. Something clicked inside him after that fateful day and, two years later, Josh followed in his father’s footsteps and enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps. In 2004, at 27 years old, Josh was off to boot camp. And in 2006, he was deployed to Fallujah, Iraq.

Then, it all went black.

A bomb exploded under the vehicle Josh was riding in. He woke up five days later to the realization that he had lost two friends and both of his legs in the blast. He spent two years of extensive rehabilitation recovering at Walter Reed Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. He currently has 32 pins in his hip and a 6-inch screw holding his pelvis together.

Corporal Josh Bleill is now a walking, talking, symbol of hope, using his story to motivate and inspire others. Even with all he’s been through, Josh doesn’t just believe in the American dream. He’s living it.

“It worked out. I’m not going to lie. I worked in the NFL with the Indianapolis Colts. I travel and do public speaking. The American dream is very possible. Even after something like this, so devastating that I thought things were over, it still worked out,” he said.
“In America, if you keep working and things do go wrong, if you have that drive, it’s well alive. It’s always a possibility.” Josh didn’t just survive. With the help of those around him, he found a way to thrive once again.

Josh shares his story here

More information about the WI SHRM State Conference can be found here
Follow the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference on Twitter and use the hashtag #wishrm17
Follow the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference on Facebook

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2017 WI SHRM State Conference Keynote Announced – Avish Parashar


The Wisconsin State SHRM Council is excited to welcome Avish Parashar as the next keynote speaker for the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference being held at the Kalahari Resort & Convention Center in the Wisconsin Dells, October 11-13.

Avish Parashar is a funny motivational keynote speaker whose programs are a unique blend of humor, content, and interaction that makes the information relevant, engaging, and memorable.

“Avish is that rare breed of speaker that is able to use personal material but craft it in a way that is relevant and has a powerful message for the audience. He’s the perfect balance of practical content and dynamic entertainment!”
-Chip Lutz, Conference Chair, AATH Annual Conference

As a motivational keynote speaker, Avish energizes, inspires, and entertains his audiences while giving them the tools to respond to three critical challenges:

  1. The world is changing faster than ever, and people often get “stuck in the past,” resisting and complaining about change instead of embracing it and moving forward.
  2. Workload increases while resources decrease, leading to the tremendous stress and overwhelm of constantly being asked to do more and more with less and less.
  3. Communicating with other people (customers, prospects, and other employees) who are difficult, different from us, or who respond to us in unexpected ways leads to stress, conflict, and missed opportunities.

Check out Avish in action here

Follow Avish on Twitter here
Connect With Avish on LinkedIn here
Follow Avish on Facebook here

More information about the WI SHRM State Conference can be found here
Follow the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference on Twitter and use the hashtag #wishrm17
Follow the 2017 WI SHRM State Conference on Facebook

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February Events 2017!

Its almost spring and tax time!  Check out some of the events around the state happening this month!



February 3 – Coffee and Conversations– Eau Claire, Chippewa Valley SHRM

February 3-CVSHRM-Eu Claire, Chippewa Valley SHRM

February 7-Three P’s of Successful Recruiting-New Richmond, SCVEA

February 8 – Legal Updates: New Developments, Trends and things you need to know – Beaver Dam, SHRM – Dodge County

February 8 – Best Practices in measuring and driving employment engagement– Oshkosh, Oshkosh Area SHRM

February 9 – Mentoring: Are you ready to grow people? – Wausau, West Central WI SHRM

February 14-Crisis Management and Planning. Is your Business prepared?-Beloit, Blackhawk HR Association

February 14 – Linked In for Recruiting and Careers in HR – Manitowoc, Jefferson Co HR Management

February 15 – Employee Engagement – La Crosse, La Crosse Area SHRM

February 15 –Pre-Employment Background Checks, the Fair Credit Reporting Act AND Active Shooter Response-Green Bay, Green Bay Area SHRM

February 16 – OSHA Update– Sheboygan, Sheboygan Area – SHRM


February 21 – Stragegies to help employers & employees cut costs in healthcare spending – Milwaukee, Metro Milwaukee SHRM

February 21- Annual Labor and Employment Law Update – Kimberly, Fox Valley SHRM

February 22-Monthly Meeting-Manitowoc, LAHRA

February 23- GMA Networking Night-Verona, GMA SHRM

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January 2017 Programming

Ready or not, 2017 is HERE!  Make your resolution to get involved in and attend your local SHRM chapter’s events.  Click on the program title below for details to events in your area.

Not sure which chapter is nearest you?  Take a look at WISHRM’s Local Chapters page for more information.

January 5 – Wage and Hour Quarterly Open Forum & Networking – Wausau, Central Wisconsin SHRM

January 10 – Diversity –  Janesville, Blackhawk HRA

January 11 – Health Care Reform & Employers– Oshkosh, Oshkosh Area SHRM

January 12 – Legal Updates – Wausau, Central Wisconsin SHRM

January 13 – January Monthly Member Meeting – Tomah, West Central WI SHRM

January 17 – Managing Change Management – Kimberly, Fox Valley SHRM

January 18 – Creative and Unique Compensation Strategies –  Green Bay, Green Bay Area SHRM

January 19 – Employee Benefit Plans / Reasonable Alternative Standards to Benefits/Wellness– Sheboygan, Sheboygan Area – SHRM

January 24 – Panel Discussion: Stump the Seniors– Eau Claire, Chippewa Valley SHRM

January 31 – Professional Development Summit –  Madison, Greater Madison Area SHRM



Don’t forget about DAY ON THE HILL!  Join WISHRM on January 17-18 in Madison!

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December 2016 Programming

Winter has arrived in WI!  Stay warm and out of the snow by attending one of WISHRM’s local chapter events.  Click on the program title below for details to events in your area.

Not sure which chapter is nearest you?  Take a look at WISHRM’s Local Chapters page for more information.

December 7 – Using Humor in the Workplace – Manitowoc, Lakeshore HRA

December 7 – Holiday Networking Event – Milwaukee, Metro Milwaukee SHRM

December 8 – FVSHRM Wine Tasting Event – Kimberly, Fox Valley SHRM

December 8 – December Monthly Meeting – Wausau, Central Wisconsin SHRM

December 9 – Member Social & Appreciation Event – Tomah, West Central WI SHRM

December 14 – Holiday Social – Plover,  Stevens Point Area HRA

December 14 – Self-Funded Health Care Plans – Beaver Dam, SHRM – Dodge County

December 14 – USERRA Workshop– Oshkosh, Oshkosh Area SHRM

December 14 – Mindfulness – The Gift of Being Present – La Crosse, La Crosse Area SHRM

December 15 – Training and Development / Holiday Event– Sheboygan, Sheboygan Area – SHRM

December 15 – Season of Giving Community Service Event– Eau Claire, Chippewa Valley SHRM

December 21 – HR Leader to Chief People Officer –  Green Bay, Green Bay Area SHRM

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Retention and Recruiting In A Tight Labor Market

By: Mike Previte- Human Resources Program Director- WCTC

In her article about the talent market, writer Anna Grace Nimke says that “we are approaching a time when the number of new entrants to the workforce (age 18-64) will be the lowest on record since the boom of baby boomers..” in the late 1940s, 50s and early 60s. Because this will create a need to adapt to this shortage of workers, it will “at least require a reallocation of resources”, in this case, an outstanding and industry competitive retention strategy!

She goes on to say that “there are some organizations that are ready…They believe the more satisfied and engaged their workforce is, the more successful they will be.” This was never more evident in the Western Electric-Bell Labs world of Lucent Technologies in 1996.

Lucent, under the leadership of Henry Schacht, who was brought in to oversee its transition from an arm of AT&T into an independent corporation (Wikipedia),  developed a winning formula for retention and outstanding customer service.  In fact, their first year of existence, Lucent won the Malcolm Baldridge Award for Quality.  How did they do it? A simple formula that read “Employee Satisfaction leads to Customer Satisfaction leads to Profitability and Shareholder Value!”

So it starts with the employees. How do you retain the good ones in such a competitive manufacturing state?  Nimke says it is done in “ a workplace that:

  • Acknowledges employees as the true assets
  • Rewards his or her contributions appropriately
  • Celebrates success
  • Treats applicants and candidates as well as it treats its customers.”

Especially in a tight labor market, executives must be ever-mindful about their reputations as employers, according to Sara Meaney, managing director at BVK, a Milwaukee-based brand development agency.

We as HR Managers must remember that the ROI on retention is positive.  The opposite is true for turnover. What would cause employees to be engaged in your company??


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GMA-SHRM Shakes Up Programming

Beginning January 2016, GMA-SHRM made a major change in their programming by offering a membership that includes free attendance to all programming events except the Human Capital Conference. The reason for this change was to provide more value to the members by making it easier for them to attend events. Members now only have to ask their employer once for the membership fee instead of asking for reimbursement for each programming fee. Dues did increase slightly, but there’s been extremely positive feedback and comments on how much easier it is to renew their membership and not have to pay for each event separately.

Along with the inclusive membership change, the programming structure was also modified.  Instead of monthly events, the summits and toolboxes were combined into quarterly Professional Development Summits (PDS).  Two educational sessions (PDS) are offered in one day four times per year, equaling eight educational programs. Members still receive just as much education but are only out of the office four mornings of the year instead of eight. GMA-SHRM plans to continue offering quality programming and recertification credits (both HRCI and SHRM) for all of these events. Interestingly, these changes have resulted in double the attendance at the events to date, which provides additional value by giving members a larger network of individuals to connect with at the event and giving our partners a wider audience.

GMA-SHRM also started offering monthly networking opportunities through a HR Advice Network Roundtable that replaced past roundtables and the solo HR practitioner Resource Group. These are also free events that are included in the new all-inclusive membership fee. They are offered as a resource for GMA SHRM HR professionals to get together and share information, seek advice, discuss best practices, and provide support to one another.  Some questions captured at these events are also posted on GMA-SHRM’s on-line Idea Exchange; another resource that allows members to connect and tap into each other’s knowledge and expertise.

If you’re interested in learning more about any of these changes or resources, please contact Melissa Chadwick, the current president, at

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BHRA Chapter Update

By: Steve Stenulson, BHRA President

BHRA has many things to be excited about! We are inching closer to reaching 200 members, and will be using Facebook posts to try to increase our membership even further this coming year. Some of the other things occurring are:

  • Coming up with a new BHRA logo
  • Establishing a partnership with Jr. Achievement of Wisconsin
  • Our 2nd SHRM Certification Study Group
  • Planning Networking Events separate of General Membership Meetings
  • Increased Sponsorships for Programming

We asked our membership what they wanted to learn about in programming this year, and feel we answered their requests. Our current programming for 2016-2017 is as follows:


As always, we are interested in hearing what great things are happening in other chapters, so we can learn from each other.


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Holy Toledo – What’s an HR Professional to Do?

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that the new Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) salary threshold of $47,476 goes into effect on December 1, 2016.  Or does it?  While the likelihood of any action derailing the freight train coming out of the Department of Labor (DOL) is small, here is some of the activity currently going on in opposition to the new regs intended to be effective December 1:

  • The House of Representatives passed H.R. 6094 on September 28 that would delay by six months the effective date of the new overtime regulations. A driver of the legislation was the argument by small businesses that they would be forced to implement layoffs. The University of Michigan has announced it is increasing tuition by 4% because of the new threshold.  The delayed effective date would be June 1, 2017.
  • The U.S. Chamber of Commerce filed a lawsuit on September 20 as part of a coalition of business groups. The lawsuit argues that the new salary threshold is “indefensibly high” by using methodology that has not been used before by the DOL, and that by tying inflation statistics to the three-year automatic update, the DOL acted outside its allowed constitutional powers under the FLSA.
  • Twenty-one state governments filed a lawsuit, also on September 20, led by the Texas and Nevada attorneys general. The suit argues that the DOL’s rule infringes upon state sovereignty and federalism by mandating state employees follow the federal compensation requirements.  The suit alleges states will be forced to cut back on public services if the rule goes into effect.  The states also argue that elevating the salary threshold over the duties test does not follow the intent of the FLSA, which historically treats both provisions equally.  From the suit: “One would think – as the statute indicates – that actually performing white-collar duties…would be the best indicator of white-collar exemption status.”  Yes, wouldn’t one? (editorial comment) The suit further states that the mandate of indexed adjustments to the salary threshold is unlawful.
  • Democrats in the House of Representatives introduced legislation (R. 5813, Overtime Reform and Enhancement Act) to phase in implementation of the new overtime rule. The proposed legislation would raise the new threshold incrementally over the next three years, beginning with a 50% increase in December 2016, to an annual salary of $35,984.  In subsequent years, the threshold would increase to $39,814 (2017), $43,645 (2018), and $47,476 (2019).  The bill also prohibits the automatic increases in the final rule.  The bill has strong bipartisan support.
  • The Protecting Workplace Advancement and Opportunity Act (S. 2707 and H.R. 4773) was introduced March 17 and would nullify the final rule, require a comprehensive economic analysis of the rule’s impact, prohibit automatic increases to the salary threshold, and require that any future changes to the duties test be subject to notice and comment periods.
  • Senate bill S. 3429 to delay implementation of the overtime rule.
  • Resolution 95 and S. Joint Resolution 34, providing for congressional disapproval of the new FLSA rule.

While most consulting firms and employment attorneys are recommending employers proceed with plans to accommodate the new regs, a few are suggesting a ‘wait-and-see’ attitude.  Clearly, the timeline is pretty tight for that.

Is your company prepared to act?

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