ABI Business Day in Des Moines a Month Away - Monday Memo 2/6/23

February 6, 2023

ABI Board Will Meet in March; Executive Committee Wednesday

The next ABI Board of Directors meeting will be held March 7th (following ABI Business Day in Des Moines; please see below).  In the meantime, the association’s Executive Committee will hold its regular monthly meeting by Zoom this week.  ABI Chair Kim Augspurger (Pigott, Des Moines) will convene the meeting at 10:00 Wednesday morning. 

ABI Business Day in Des Moines A Month Away

The first edition of ABI's newest event takes place four weeks from tomorrow.  Business Day in Des Moines, which has been created based on YOUR feedback and on a very successful event ABI hosted in 2021, will be held Tuesday, March 7.  

You’ll hear from invited guests Governor Reynolds, legislative leaders of both chambers and both parties (all four leaders are confirmed), you’ll hear a geopolitical update from popular ABI speaker/member Kavi Chawla (Baton Global, Des Moines), and more.  You’ll have the opportunity to interact with these leaders, with fellow ABI members, and you’ll hear the latest about ABI issues and programs.  You don’t want to miss it!  Click here for more information and to register: Summary - Business Day in Des Moines (cvent.com).  

As noted above, March 7 is also the day of the March meeting of the ABI Board of Directors.  On behalf of our ABI officers, thank you in advance for your participation in this year’s event. 

Legislative Update Friday

Every two weeks throughout the legislative session, ABI lobbyists host a Zoom update to give you the very latest information from the Statehouse.  Updates on bills, legislative proposals, state actions, and other matters are covered in each call.  Your specific questions about those topics are also very much welcomed. 

The next update will be held this Friday, February 10th, at 8:00 a.m., and you and your employees are encouraged to participate.  The members-only update is free as a part of your ABI membership, but please register by clicking on this link: Legislative Update (Members Only) | Iowa Association of Business and Industry (iowaabi.org).  

February Busy Month for ABI Events: Childcare, Employment Issues, Hiring, Cobots all on Tap

As you know and at your direction, ABI has greatly increased the number and type of events it hosts around Iowa each year.  The sole goal of that increase is to provide high quality programs that add value to your bottom line.  February is a particularly busy month for these programs. 

First up, tomorrow, ABI will host a free webinar with information about solutions related to challenges involving child care.  There is still time to register and you can do that at Meeting Registration - Zoom.  Then, this Thursday, ABI and member HRSimple will host a free webinar with information about handling U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission investigations and litigation.  You can register for that webinar here: Webinar Registration - Zoom

Later this month, on February 21st, ABI Executive Vice President Nicole Crain will lead a webinar focused on information about apprenticeships and work-based learning.  Senior Advisor to Governor Reynolds Linda Fandel and Kris Bryan of Iowa Workforce Development will provide the program.  Finally, on February 23rd, ABI is partnering with members Kinetic Technologies and Iowa Lakes Community College on a high-value cobot automation seminar.  The session will provide an informative and interactive program about brining automation to your company and it will be held at Iowa Lakes’ Algona campus.  Lunch will be served.  Click here for more information and to register: Summary - Cobot Automation Summit (cvent.com)

Thanks in advance for ABI members who have already registered for these informative programs.  Let us know what other topics you would like to see be covered fin future events. 

Leadership Iowa Program LI Connect Zoom February 15

As you know, the Leadership Iowa program is one of the nation’s oldest statewide leadership development programs.  LI Connect seeks to do just that, provide programming of value to connect and inform LI alumni.  

The latest event in the series will be held next week, when LI Connect focuses on serving on boards and commissions.  This is a great way for LI alums to be engaged in their community and their state and participation can be easy – once you know the system.  This free Zoom event begins at 8:30 a.m. on February 15.  To participate, click here: Meeting Registration - Zoom

Becky Coady Completes Service

Becky Coady has completed her service as Vice President, ABI Foundation.  We are grateful to Becky for her time and work for ABI and the foundation and wish her the very best. 

This provides an opportunity for ABI and the ABI Foundation to explore some new approaches to foundation and membership development, as well as other foundation support.  In that regard, ABI Executive Vice President Nicole Crain, ABI Foundation Programs Director Jessi McQuerrey, and I, along with some of you, have already begun to explore what some of those exciting opportunities might be.  First and foremost, this position has led in developing financial support for the ABI Foundation.  That will not change. 

Watch for more information soon. 

Advisory Council Meeting February 16

Members of the ABI Advisory Council provide leadership in many ways.  Certainly their financial support for ABI is important, but of even greater value are the people and information these great companies provide to ABI members.  

The council will hold its monthly meeting on February 16.  Please join me in thanking the members of the council.  They are Anthologic, Assured Partners, Bankers Trust, BCC Advisers, BrownWinick, CIRAS, CliftonLarsonAllen, EMC Insurance, Focus OneSource/G&A Partners, Fredrikson & Byron, HDH Advisors, Principal Midwest Business Center, The Iowa Clinic, Wellmark, and Wells Fargo.

Biennial ABI Workers Compensation Seminar March 28 in Des Moines

The association will host its biennial workers compensation seminar late in March.  This is the place to find the latest information about work comp and to learn the best practices utilized by other companies.  The seminar will be held at the ABI office on March 28 and you can find more information and register here: Workers' Compensation Seminar | Iowa Association of Business and Industry (iowaabi.org).  We look forward to seeing your HR, risk management, and compliance teams at ABI on March 28th. 

NAM Report: Inflation Slowing

Last week’s Monday Economic Report, published by the National Association of Manufacturers, had some positive news to share.  That is that the rate of inflation appears to be slowing.  

There was also other positive news, such as the U.S. economy growing at an average of three percent in the final two quarters of 2022.  Not all the news was positive, however, as the concern of a recession is still very much on the minds of many business leaders.  As always, should you wish to read the report for yourself, please contact me and I’ll get it to you at once. 

Mores Brothers Stop By

It was a pleasure Friday morning when two former longtime members of ABI stopped by for a visit.  Former ABI Board member Alan Mores (Harlan Newspapers, Harlan – ret.) and brother Steve Mores (Harlan Newspapers, Harlan-ret.) were in town for the annual Iowa Newspaper Association convention.  Alan and Steve (and their families) are doing great and it was wonderful to catch up with them.  Best wishes, Alan and Steve! 

Farr Pandemic Response Still Resonates

Back in the Monday Memo of December 14, 2020, I noted an article I had read in the Wall Street Journal.  In the article, which featured a study of corporate responses to the COVID-19 pandemic, the newspaper focused on ABI member Emerson as a success story.  In fact, the Journal highlighted the company’s CEO, David Farr, and his lessons learned as he managed through the pandemic.  While reviewing some files recently, the copy of the article again caught my eye.  Mr. Farr’s lessons seemed as sound now as they did in 2020, and not just related to pandemic recovery.  I thought they were worth sharing again. 

Here are Farr’s lessons for managing through a challenge: 1. Keep moving forward, 2. Don’t believe the conventional wisdom, 3. Break down problems into smaller choices, 4. Remote work has it limits, 5. Over-communicate and be more transparent, and 6. Pay attention to who came through for you in the crisis, and don’t forget it. 

Finally, I can’t mention Emerson without thanking ABI Board Member Josh Wilford (Emerson/Fisher, Marshalltown) for the company’s longtime support.  Emerson (Fisher Controls) is a founding member of ABI; thank you, Josh!