ABI Board to Meet Next in March - Monday Memo 1/27/20

January 27, 2020

ABI Board to Meet March 11

ABI Chair Cindy Dietz (Collins Aerospace, Cedar Rapids) and members of the ABI Board of Directors will next meet on March 11th.  That day will see a full day of ABI meetings and events, as ABI's annual Iowa Business Day on the Hill program and other events will also take place.  

More information will come your way soon, but please mark your calendars now to join your ABI colleagues in Des Moines on March 11.  In the meantime, the ABI Executive Committee will hold its regular February teleconference in a little over two weeks. 

Annual Business Day on the Hill on March 11

Each year, ABI members from across Iowa (and even from outside the state) converge on the Statehouse to discuss pro-jobs policies with their legislators.  The event has grown in popularity every year and based on projections, a strong crowd will make the 2020 event even bigger. 

The 2020 Day on the Hill will be held on Wednesday, March 11.  This year's event is again being called Business Day on the Hill, because ABI is again working with a number of other organizations on its production.  By the way, March 11th is also the same day as the March meeting of the ABI Board of Directors, so you can conveniently attend both events. 

Day on the Hill begins at the ABI office at 8:30 a.m. Following an update with the very latest news from the Iowa General Assembly, DOTH participants will head to the Capitol.  There, you'll visit with legislators and hear from leading state officials.  Then, it's a return to ABI and the board meeting will occur that afternoon.  Finalize your plans now to participate in Business Day on the Hill and watch for registration information soon.  See you in Des Moines on March 11. 

Chrissy Viers Will End ABI Service

Last fall, you read that longtime ABI bookkeeper Chrissy (Blake) Viers would be leaving ABI.  Well, that day is upon us, as Chrissy will spend her final day at ABI tomorrow and complete her service this month. 

Chrissy is leaving ABI to join a firm in her hometown of Indianola, where she and her husband, Luke Viers, live with their two children, Lucas and Lyddi.  While you may not have had a lot of direct contact with Chrissy, I assure you she was a valued and important part of the ABI staff.  Her terrific attitude and warm personal style will be missed by all of us.  We send very best wishes to Chrissy and Luke and their family! 

Annual ABI Resource Guide Published

One of ABI’s most popular publications each year is the annual Business Resource Guide.  That is because the guide is packed full of information about ABI’s programs and services and other information that is useful to you and your employees.  A section of the guide is ABI’s membership directory and comes with detailed information about your fellow ABI members. 

The 2020 edition of the guide has been produced for ABI by one of the association’s founding members: Bankers Advertising/Tru Art.  Look for your beautiful copy of the guide to arrive in your office soon.  In the meantime, thank you to Immediate Past ABI Chair David Bywater (Bankers Advertising/Tru Art, Iowa City) and his employees for making the guide look so great! 

Listen to Episode 4 of the Iowa Business Report Radio Show

The ABI-supported Iowa Business Report radio show, produced by Jeff Stein and broadcast on radio stations all over Iowa, has now broadcast its fourth episode.  The latest episode is another terrific edition, with a number of great features and a fascinating interview with ABI member Rowena Crosbie (Tero International, Clive).

Remember, if you didn’t yet hear it on your local station, you may click here to listen for yourself: http://iowabusinessreport.buzzsprout.com/.  Simply scroll down to click on the latest episode.  Links can also be found on the ABI website at https://www.iowaabi.org/news/iowa-business-report/.  Thank you to Jeff Stein and all of you for making the show a reality. 

2020 ABI Conference Committee Members to Meet on Program

The upcoming annual ABI Taking Care of Business Conference, which will be held in Cedar Rapids June 9-11, is shaping up to be a fabulous event.  If you haven't already done so, you really need to plan now to attend this great meeting. 

Over two days later this week, conference committee members will be conducting interviews and working with potential speakers.  It will all lead to an awesome convention in Cedar Rapids.  Thank you to these ABI leaders for developing a fabulous program. 

Next ABI Connecting Statewide Leaders Forum in Muscatine on March 5

At the request of members and at the direction of the board of directors, ABI created the Connecting Statewide Leaders forums.  These series of high-value informational and networking events have been incredibly successful.  Events have been held all across Iowa and there are more to come. 

The next event in the series will be held March 5 in Muscatine.  A high-value panel and networking will all be a part of the program, which is focused on the future of manufacturing in Iowa.  Click here for more information and to register: http://www.cvent.com/events/connecting-statewide-leaders-muscatine/event-summary-9ee6723caeab463ca8f0ab008e989441.aspx.  

These programs are simply great ways to gain information and connect with your fellow ABI members, Leadership Iowa Class members, local business leaders, and others.  And we appreciate the reports we hear about sales/deals being made during these events, too.  

First Legislative Teleconference Friday; Next Teleconference on February 21

ABI’s public policy team is very busy this time of year.  This Friday, the team will hold the first ABI Members-Only Legislative Teleconference of the 2020 Session. 

It is not too late to register for this week’s call.  Go here to do so: https://www.iowaabi.org/events/detail/180-abi-members-only-legislative-conference-calls/.  And remember, the calls are free and open to ABI members only.  By the way, mark your calendars for the February legislative teleconference, which will be held on the 21st of next month. Thank you in advance for your participation in these events. 

Biennial ABI Pre-Employment Testing Process Program March 26 in Des Moines

Every other year, ABI presents a program on pre-employment testing processes.  This year’s program will be held March 26th at ABI in Des Moines.  Focused on issues, challenges, and best-practice sharing, this year’s event will provide high-value information to you and your HR team.  Find more information coming your way soon on the ABI events page. 

Remember: Elevate Again Offering Community College Scholarships

Each year, ABI’s Elevate Advanced Manufacturing initiative offers scholarships for Iowa high school students.  In 2020, Elevate is again offering 15 $500 scholarships to Iowa high school seniors interested in studying a manufacturing-related program of courses at one of Iowa’s community colleges.  One award is made per each of Iowa’s’ 15 community college regions.  

Go to the Elevate webpage at www.elevateiowa.com for more information.  Or simply reply to this message and I will get you more information at once.  

Watch for LeanWise and MarketWise Events on ABI Webpage

Two of ABI's newest programs are the MarketWise and LeanWise series.  Each of these series of events provides a forum for like-minded business people to come together to gain valuable information about LEAN processes or marketing concepts.  The networking and best-practice sharing that occurs has been rated highly by ABI members. 

Some of you have asked me about these events.  More events in the series will be coming in the future. Watch the ABI Events Page for more information or to register: http://www.iowaabi.org/events/.  

Andringa, Timmons Pen Great Register Essay

Company President Jason Andringa (Vermeer Corporation, Pella) and longtime ABI partner CEO Jay Timmons (National Association of Manufacturers, Washington, DC) wrote a column carried in today’s Des Moines Register.  The essay is terrific and it highlights the NAM’s 125th anniversary and a great vision for the future of manufacturing.  The key to the future is people.  Read the essay here: https://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/opinion/columnists/iowa-view/2020/01/27/manufacturing-change-but-always-rely-people-millions-jobs-to-fill/4566433002/.  Thank you to Jason and Jay for the thoughtful column.  

CBJ Speaker Indicates ABI Member Investment Not the Norm

Two great events held each January provide interesting insights into the economy.  The Des Moines Business Record and the Corridor Business Journal (eastern Iowa) both produce economic forums this month. 

The CBJ event was held last week in Coralville.  As an aside, I would note it was fun seeing ABI Chair Cindy Dietz (Collins Aerospace, Cedar Rapids) and ABI Board Member Casey Cason (Wells Fargo, Des Moines) at the event. 

The keynote speaker was RSM Deputy Chief Economist Kevin Depew.  Mr. Depew (and the panelists that followed) gave an interesting read on the economy and what can be expected in the coming quarters.  You’ll be glad to know that Mr. Depew predicts continued moderate growth. 

Also during his remarks, Mr. Depew commented that one issue with American businesses right now is the “very low” rate of investment.  What is most interesting about that is that it is the opposite of what ABI members are doing.  You’ll recall that in the last edition of ABI’s quarterly Iowa Business Survey, nearly 80 percent of respondents indicated they would be making capital expenditures/investments in 2020.  That’s great news for ABI and for Iowa. 

The Business of ABI: Value, Performance, Service

In his book, “Invested,” noted entrepreneur and business leader Charles Schwab of the Charles R. Schwab Company writes that three specific characteristics are the backbone of a successful company.  In his view, the three are value, performance, and service. 

We try to follow that mantra at ABI, too.  We better be providing ABI members with value, we better be performing at the top of our game, and we better be providing exceptional service.  Mr. Schwab wasn’t the first person to teach us that lesson, however.  You were – ABI members.  Thank you for your support and leadership that are the reason for ABI’s success.  Editor’s Note:  While I enjoyed Mr. Schwab’s book immensely, his company is not a member of ABI.  I recommend that if you want assistance with your investments, you should work with an investment firm that is an ABI member.  Contact us if you wish to see a list.