ASE's 17th Annual HR Conference

(March 12, 2020)

  • About
  • Agenda
  • Keynotes & Panel
  • Sessions
  • Directions
  • Register


Governor Whitmer held a press conference at 5:00 p.m. today and discussed how we have to make some tough choices. She stated the Health and Human Services Director is recommending “everyone avoid large gatherings of 100 people or more.” She stated that groups should make decisions to cancel conferences to keep the most people we can safe and slow the spread of the disease and save lives. The Health and Human services director stated, “Large gatherings and conferences should be cancelled or postponed.” 

Therefore, ASE is respecting the request of state leadership and has cancelled our Annual HR Conference scheduled for March 12. We apologize for the late notice; however, Governor Whitmer’s press conference did not occur until 5:00 p.m. on March 11 – after the close of business for most of our members. 

We are expecting to reschedule some or all of this event in the future, so watch for updates in the weeks or months to come. Thank you for understanding our decision to cancel at this late hour. We hope you agree with our decision and share our concern for everyone’s health. Please visit our Coronavirus Resources web page for daily updates. 


Mary E. Corrado
President & CEO ASE



Approved for 6 rectification credits. 

This program has been approved for  6 general credits hours toward PHR, SPHR and GPHR recertification through the HR Certification Institute (HRCI) as well as 6 recertification credit hours (PDC) toward SHRM-CP and SHRM-SCP through the Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM). The use of these seals is not an endorsement by HRCI or SHRM for the quality of the program . It means that this conference has met the HRCI's and SHRM's criteria to be pre-approved for recertification credit. 


Start End  Description
7:15 a.m. 8:00 a.m. Registration, Breakfast, Network & Visit Exhibitors
8:00 a.m. 9:15 a.m. Conference Welcome & Morning Keynote Presentation

Social Super Glue: How to Create Camaraderie in Your Workplace

Kris Boesch - CEO and Founder of Choose People


9:15 a.m. 9:30 a.m. Break, Network & Visit Exhibitors
9:30 a.m. 10:30 a.m. Morning Breakout Sessions
  1) 2020 Vision – Employment Law Updates, Trends and Pitfalls
  2) How to Embrace and Leverage Virtual Work
  3) Leveraging Compensation Strategy and Design to be a Strategic Partner and Drive Results
  4) Unwrap Your Map! Using Journey Mapping to Increase New Employee Engagement
10:30 a.m. 11:00 a.m. Break, Network & Visit Exhibitors
11:00 a.m. 12:00 p.m. More Morning Breakout Sessions
  5) Mobilizing Civility: Creating a Culture of Respect in the #MeToo Era
  6) High Value Succession Planning: 3 Impactful Things You Can Do
  7) Courageously Lead and Influence Change

8) Why Training Doesn’t Stick
12:00 p.m. 12:45 p.m. Lunch, Visit Exhibitors & Networking
 12:45 p.m. 1:45 p.m. HR Experts Panel
1:45 p.m. 2:45 p.m. Afternoon Breakout Sessions
  9) FMLA: How to Manage the Use and Abuse
  10) Drama Free Workplace – Avoiding the Self- Defeating Habits of Otherwise Brilliant People®
  11) Generating a Culture of Supportive Accountability
2:45 p.m. 3:00 p.m. Break, Visit Exhibitors & Networking
3:00 p.m. 4:00 p.m. Afternoon Keynote Presentation
    HOLY COW!® How to Create an Amazing Workplace that Steers Passion, Performance & Prosperity
Tracy Butz, Workplace Culture Expert, Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and founder of Think Impact Solutions
4:00 p.m. 4:15 p.m. Networking & Conclusion

AM Keynote

Social Super Glue: How to Create Camaraderie in Your Workplace

Kris Boesch, CEO and Founder of Choose People

In this highly interactive and energized presentation, Kris Boesch weaves valuable content, enlightening stories and tangible tools to improve your organization’s culture. Boesch who approaches workplace culture as the most paramount asset to a company’s financial success, empowers participants with specific tangible no-cost ways to create an extraordinary workplace culture – strategically shifting HR from a tactical transactional cost center to a transformational profit center. Whereas other programs miss the mark by only talking about employee “satisfaction” or “engagement,” Boesch takes workplace culture to a whole new level well beyond compensation, basic HR practices and “perks.” She’ll share the “social super glue” that’s critical to creating an extraordinary workplace culture and she’ll share how to leverage this “glue” to address common culture challenges such as gossip, entitlement and apathy. This results in culture where perseverance through tough times, inspiration to go the extra mile and retention of top talent is the norm, not the exception.

    HR Experts Panel

    ASE Case Studies in Leadership, Engagement, and Succession Planning - The Challenges and Results
    Kathleen Wheelihan, Consultant, Michigan Business Consultants
    Sid Wilson, Director of Partnerships & Field Sales, McLean & Company
    Jim Lewis, President, JLewis Consulting Group, LLC

    Through an interactive discussion, our panel of HR consultants will present case studies of real-life challenges faced by member organizations and strategies they used to deliver positive solutions. They will discuss results, outcomes, lessons learned, and provide insights on how to address challenges in the areas of leadership, employee engagement, and succession planning. Participants will be able to question experts on case studies as well as other HR topics of interest.

    PM Keynote

    HOLY COW!® How to Create an Amazing Workplace that Steers Passion, Performance & Prosperity

    Tracy Butz, Workplace Culture Expert, Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and founder of Think Impact Solutions

    Do employees bring passion, commitment, and skills to work every day? Do your leaders inspire teams to collaborate better and perform higher? Discover how to create an amazing culture—where people feel empowered to do their best work, trust and respect their leaders, and willingly collaborate and perform in highly effective ways. Attract the best talent and select the right individuals to inspire and lead productive teams. Alter workplace behaviors and performance—where negative conflict is controlled, accountability grows, and results are achieved. Inspire change in dysfunctional, under-performing silos to become motivated, accountable, and committed teams. Start influencing a transformation of your workplace culture to win in the workplace and prosper in the marketplace.



      ASE's Annual HR Conference will consist of two Keynote sessions and three sets of breakout sessions.  Attendees can attend one session in each set of breakouts. The breakout sessions have been grouped into four specialized tracks tailored to provide HR professionals with the tools and insights they need to succeed.

      Morning Breakout Sessions - 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.

      BK-1: 2020 Vision – Employment Law Updates, Trends and Pitfalls
      Tiffany Buckley-Norwood, Principal, Jackson Lewis P.C.

      Navigating the minefield of employment laws is becoming increasingly difficult when each year brings change and more change. In January, the new DOL salary thresholds went into effect, and employers must make sure the compensation of exempt employees meets these new levels. Federally, there is continued attention regarding pay equity and sexual harassment. In Michigan, the legalization of recreational marijuana and the Paid Medical Leave Act has brought new compliance challenges. Join us in this session to learn about the most significant developments in employment law for 2020.


      BK-2: How to Embrace and Leverage Virtual Work
      Thomas Bastin, Principal, Vision Quest, Facilitator for Team, Leadership and Organizational Development
      Karen DeCuir-DiNicola, Founder and Organizational Development Expert, kd3worx consulting and training

      It wasn’t too long ago that working remotely was considered an occasional perk. Today, the trend of allowing employees to work virtually on a regular basis is not only growing rapidly but is increasingly seen as a business imperative to recruiting and retaining top talent. In this session tips and tools will be shared to address the challenges all organizations face, including resistant supervisors, when adopting this paradigm. The role and effective use of technology will be discussed and demonstrated.

      BK-3: Leveraging Compensation Strategy and Design to be a Strategic Partner and Drive Results
      Russ Wakelin, Chief Experience Officer, Payfactors

      HR should be represented in the highest level of every organization, but let’s be honest — that’s not always the case. What we do is foundational. Every hiring and retention decision starts with HR. You can't build great companies without great people. So, it's in every organization's best interest to leverage HR in a strategic way. Effective compensation is a key strategy for organizational effectiveness. Asking questions like, "Are we paying this candidate fairly?" or "How do we incentivize best performance?" are integral to ensuring that HR leads in attracting and retaining talent. Join Payfactors’ Russ Wakelin as he outlines how HR can more effectively lead organizations in meaningful ways.

      BK-4: Unwrap Your Map! Using Journey Mapping to Increase New Employee Engagement

      Michael Glassco, PhD – Brand Specialist, Blue Cross Blue Shield

      New employee orientation is an opportunity to introduce and welcome employees to your company, culture, and values. But after their first day, many new employees are left more anxious than confident and more overwhelmed than informed. In this session we will provide you with a high-level overview of journey mapping and outline how to use the six steps of journey mapping. Discover how to set the right tone for new employee engagement and career investment, inspire confidence and enthusiasm for success with engaging content, and use content that aligns with employee needs and your company values and mission.

      Mid-Morning Breakout Sessions - 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.

      BK-5:Mobilizing Civility: Creating a Culture of Respect in the #MeToo Era
      Terry Bonnette, Partner, Nemeth Law PC

      After its internal messaging systems were flooded with debate over implicit sexism in the tech industry, Google issued new employee guidelines mandating that employees avoid disrupting the workday to have “a raging debate over politics or the latest news story.” Some men, who in an overabundance of caution, have decided that the best way to avoid being accused of sexual harassment is to refuse interactions with female colleagues. This session will explore, for better and worse, the impact of #MeToo on workplace civility and offer best practices for building a respectful and diverse work environment.

      BK-6: High Value Succession Planning: 3 Impactful Things You Can Do
      Laura Ribadeneira, Director, HR Research & Advisory Services, McLean & Company

      Succession Planning relies on many talent programs working together in tandem. Continuous innovation in talent management has provided HR professionals with a huge array of initiatives to choose from to improve their succession planning effectiveness. The challenge has now become identifying which initiatives will have the greatest impact, given limited HR resources. In this session, discover the top challenges with developing and managing succession planning, key findings from McLean & Company’s annual HR Trends report, and three areas to focus on for greater effectiveness.

      BK-7: Courageously Lead and Influence Change
      Tracy Butz, Workplace Culture Expert, Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker, and founder of Think Impact Solutions

      Weaken Resistance. Protect Productivity. Drive Positive Outcomes. Leading change efforts in the workplace can be daunting and difficult! And even with the best intentions, 70% of organizational change initiatives fail. Worse yet, the need to lead change is growing, but the ability to do it is shrinking. Instead of your next change effort exerting a heavy toll – both human and economic – discover how to influence a positive transformation in your organization. Apply an intentional approach with results-focused strategies to lead change toward a positive future, rather than merely avoiding a negative one.


      BK-8: Why Training Doesn’t Stick
      Josh Best, Director of Training, Quicken Loans

      After hundreds of years of training, we are still fighting to answer the question – why doesn’t training stick? The answer lies in the inability of training to create a real change in the work environment.  In this interactive session, we will explore the broken mindset, motivation, and deep-rooted habits of humans in order to facilitate behavior change and make training effective. Learn about the three types of employee personalities that attend your training programs: the prisoner, the vacationer, and the true learner.  Who are you spending your training dollars on?

      Afternoon Breakout Sessions - 1:45 p.m. - 2:45 p.m.

      BK-9: FMLA: How to Manage the Use and Abuse
      Anne-Marie Verycrusse Welch,Member, Clark Hill

      Despite years of grappling with FMLA compliance, employers still struggle with how to manage FMLA leave, particularly intermittent leave. Tracking intermittent leave can be confusing, and determining how to legally take action when there is suspected leave abuse is difficult. This session will review various methods to control leave and reduce abuse, including how to question those vague FMLA certifications that leave you wondering if the leave request is legitimate. Walk away with strategies and techniques to deal with some of your biggest FMLA challenges.

      BK-10: Drama Free Workplace – Avoiding the Self- Defeating Habits of Otherwise Brilliant People®
      Leslie Fiorenzo, Director, Employee Assistance Center (EAC)

      You’ve seen those self-defeating habits: talking about others instead of talking to them, rumors, negative speculation, factions, and lack of trust. Learn why negative assumptions gain momentum and spread, how to short-circuit destructive disagreement, extinguish incivility, and eliminate unconscious behaviors that spark toxic power struggles and cycles of mistrust amongst otherwise brilliant people.

      BK-11: Generating a Culture of Supportive Accountability
      Tom Willis & Brad Zimmerman, Co-Founders & Partners, Phoenix Performance Partners 

      Accountability is key to the success of any organization. But why is there a widespread absence of accountability? Accountability is often equated with blame when things go wrong. The good news is that there is a much more productive way to use accountability. Join us for a discussion on how to create a culture of supportive accountability. Walk away with new insights regarding how to utilize accountability to increase job satisfaction, why accountability is often seen as punitive, how to engender personal responsibility and ownership for results, and what must precede accountability (and yet is missing 90% of the time.)



      This year's event will be held at the

      located at 46100 Grand River Avenue, Novi, MI.  

      Suburban Collection Showplace can be accessed from I-96 at the Novi and Beck road exits.

      Click here for Google Map.




      Conference Pricing

      ASE Members: $259
      Nonmembers: $325


      If you are in need of a overnight hotel stay please contact Shamin Sanders, Reservations Manager at the Hyatt Place
       in Novi at or call 248-513-3532 and mention you are attending
       the ASE HR Conference on March 12th. 


      Contact Talent Development to receive group pricing for groups of 6 or more at 248.223.8041.

      2020 Keynotes

      Kris Boesch
      CEO and Founder of Choose People

      Tracy Butz
      Workplace Culture Expert, Best-Selling Author, Keynote Speaker and Founder of Think Impact Solutions

      View Keynote Sessions

      2020 Sponsors

      More sponsorship levels available. Click here for more information.

      Luncheon Sponsor

      Bag Sponsor

      Notebook Sponsor

      Breakfast Sponsor

      Refreshment Sponsors

      Supporting Sponsors


      Interested in sponsorship? Click here for more information.


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      American Society of Employers

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      Contact Us
      Phone: (248) 353-4500
      Fax: (248) 353-1224