2019 RPI Experiene Conference logo

Conference Agenda

Schedule is subject to change.

Jump to: Tuesday | Wednesday | Thursday

Monday, April 8

9:00 am - 5:30 pm

CRP II: Creating a Recognition Culture

Creating a Recognition Culture
Vicki Hargrove, President, Hargrove Business Consulting, Inc.

This professional certification course focuses on the underpinning theories of motivation and appreciation, cultural consideration, landscape of the industry and recognition systems and trends. Participants gain exposure to roles of recognition, engagement linkage, regulatory things to know, and the ABC's of motivational theory; Participants also become familiar with corporate culture definitions, components, and theory, recognition system methodology, embedding recognition, and current trends including gamification and social recognition.

12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Lunch (For CRP Attendees)

2:00 pm - 8:00 pm

Board Meeting

Jump to: Wednesday | Thursday

Tuesday, April 9

8:00 am - 11:00 am

Board Meeting

8:30 am - 11:30 am

Recognition Fundamentals

Recognition Fundamentals
Barbara Ruddy, CRP, STARS - Staff Training & Recognition Services

Learn vital information with practical examples and tools for everyday use. This Recognition Fundamentals session is an overview course of Recognition Best Practices developed from years of implementation and research. This course will help you create awareness and better understand the important role of recognition in the workforce.

Recognition Fundamentals is an interactive course and perfect for:

  • "New to the industry” professionals who are starting their careers in recognition
  • Former CRP grads who need a quick refresher on highlighted material
  • Frontline Managers & Supervisors in any industry that need to learn more about rewards & recognition
  • Those recognition professionals who are thinking about pursuing their certification.

11:00 am - 12:30 pm


Noon - 12:30 pm

RPI Business Partner and Sponsor Discussion (invite only)

12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Lunch and Welcome

1:30 pm - 1:45 pm


1:45 pm - 2:45 pm

Opening Keynote Speaker – Dr. Brad Shuck
Driving Real Engagement Through Recognition: Applying the Core Principles of Behavioral Economics to Strategy Implementation

Few ideas have generated more excitement with leaders than employee engagement. Everyone wants more of it, yet application, measurement, and practice—not to mention results—vary widely across our industry. What seems to be missing from the conversation is a fundamental understanding of the science behind the engagement phenomenon, as well as a deeper understanding around how the practice of engagement is deeply connected to outcomes that matter every day, including our personal and work lives. Using the latest decision-science in behavioral economics, learn to focus on uncovering the psychology of employee engagement through recognition to build toward a workplace that promotes happier, committed, and healthier employees at all levels. This evidence-based, yet informal and relaxed Keynote is designed for leaders and professionals at all levels who hope to build a better place of work through sustainable, principle-based strategies focused on recognition and value – rather than prescribed, one-size fits all practices – that drive possibility and opportunity.

2:45 pm - 3:00 pm


3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Breakout Sessions 1


Sometimes it’s the little things. In this rapid-fire program, learn dozens of tips, resources and strategies to make recognition more relevant and impactful in your organization. Hosted by recognition specialist and acclaimed RPI speaker Jason Thomson, you’ll leave this session energized and ready to take recognition to the next level.

Recognition from the Big Guy
Tonda Ferguson, CRP, Southwest Airlines, Andrea Mathews, Southwest Airlines

Successful and effective recognition must start at the top. And we’re talking with the “Big Guy!” Learn how Southwest Airlines Chairman and CEO Gary Kelly leverages the various recognition and incentive programs to truly “walk the talk.” It’s a win-win when you tie recognition to your company’s goals and values. Employees want to be recognized and rewarded for their work behaviors, but they also want to be acknowledged for all their life events which happen during their work journey. From sharing powerful stories to acknowledging personal life events to celebrating company accomplishments, Gary Kelly embraces it all to ensure Southwest Employees feel valued, respected, and LUVed. Join us as we share these tactics from our “Big Guy.”

What can higher education teach your company about Recognition?
Brenda Naegel, Yale University, Iryna Leonova, University of Calgary, and Cori Champagne, MIT

Learn from three colleges how to build, promote, and measure a recognition program – and how to navigate the challenges along the way!  Panel presenters, Brenda Naegel (Yale University), Cori Champagne (MIT), and Iryna Leonova (University of Calgary) share their expertise on the Recognition “lifecycle” – from building a program in-house, to including a diverse workforce, measuring impact, and evaluating results.  For-profit companies and higher education professionals will find helpful information, best practices, and creative solutions in this upbeat panel discussion.

  • Increase participants’ awareness of ways to initiate a recognition program
  • Enhance understanding of including a diverse workforce
  • Illustrate ways that data analytics can reinforce program goals and create new outcomes.
  • Discover ways to evaluate program success and initiate changes.

4:00 pm - 4:15 pm


4:15 pm - 5:15 pm

Breakout Session 2

Elevating the Employee Experience
John O'Brien; Vicki Berkebile, HP

HPI took a mature program that was doing well and decided to step back and start squarely with the employee experience, making them feel both appreciated and recognized, at all touchpoints along their employee journey. This presentation will feature program results, trends and insights that HPI used to create strategies into how recognition in the future will drive inspiration for specifically Generations Y and Z.

Penn State Health Employees Put Their PAWS UP! with HALO Recognition
Jeffrey Fina, HALO Recognition; Vincent Greco, Penn State Health

During a panel session, Vincent Greco, Senior HR Consultant for Penn State Health, and Jeffrey Fina, Chief Customer Officer of HALO Recognition, will discuss employee engagement trends in healthcare and how these trends relate to employer branding and organizational culture. Vincent Greco will specifically address how Penn State Health's PAWS UP! Program has helped the multi-hospital health system build a culture of recognition to help drive employee engagement. This includes recognition program elements, performance to date, benefits, and the program's future outlook.

Tech Platform Fundamentals
Brian DoddsCRP, Workstride; Karen Gray, O.C. Tanner; and Paul HebertCreative Group, Inc.

What every program owner always wanted to understand about technology and the foundation role it plays in program success.
Industry IT leaders provide answers to your questions in an interactional panel format. Including topics like these often misunderstood areas.

  • What does integration mean?
  • What is an App vs. Mobile Responsive Design
  • What does SSO require
  • What is Saas vs. Non-Saas
  • How does an order translate to a shipment and what can I expect? (how is this different than consumer experiences)
  • What do I need to know about privacy and the new GDPR laws impact on our programs

5:15 pm - 7:00 pm

Reception & Business Partner Connection

Jump to: Tuesday | Thursday

Wednesday, April 10

*Buses will run from 7:30 am -11:30 am and 2:30 pm - 6:30 pm

7:30 am - 9:00am

Buses pick up for Delta Air Museum

8:45 am - 10:00 am

Breakfast and Keynote - Charisse Evans, Delta Air Lines
Our People, Our Culture, Our Climb

9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Silent Auction

10:00 am - 6:00 pm

Vendor Tables

10:00 am - 10:15 am


10:15 am - 11:00 am

Plenary Speaker - Dr. Rhonda A. Scott, PhD, RN, COO, Grady Health
For Richer, For Poorer, In Sickness and In Health: Recognizing Employees through a Major Transformation

11:00 am - 11:30 am


11:30 am - 12:15 pm

Plenary Speaker - Dr. Charles Scherbaum
Demonstrating and elevating the ROI of recognition programs

Most large organizations invest considerable resources into employee recognition programs, but a vast majority of these organizations underutilize their recognition programs as a strategic tool that can help elevate their performance. To make recognition a strategic tool, organizations need to apply recognition analytics to clearly understand their program’s ROI and how the ROI can be enhanced by developing managers and employees to be more effective at recognition.
Both new recognition professionals and seasoned recognition experts are invited to join Dr. Scherbaum as he discusses how recognition analytics can be used to link your employee recognition program data to your key business outcomes like employee engagement, customer experience, or sales to formulate your ROI. Using a case study, Dr. Scherbaum will outline the benefits of recognition analytics and recognition-focused managerial development for elevating the strategic value and ROI of your recognition programs. 

12:15 pm - 1:45 pm

Lunch, Awards, and Vertical Facilitation Table Discussion

1:45 pm - 2:00 pm


2:00 pm - 2:45 pm

Plenary Speaker - Jake Herway, Gallup
Strengths Recognition Ignites Performance

Behind every management and HR buzz word today – behind agility, ongoing conversations, coaching, inclusion, employee experience – behind all these paths to higher performance is people’s ability to do what they do best. Confidence crisis? Questioning your value? Wishing you could be more like the superstar of the day? These are moments of weakness that undermine performance. I know how to make this work. I know how to contribute. I know what will be of value. These are moments of strength that create performance. How do we have more moments of strength? It starts with recognition.

2:45 pm - 3:00 pm


3:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Ted Style Talks

Practicing Recognition: How to give meaningful recognition to people every day
Roy Saunderson, Rideau Recognition Solutions

Are you having trouble giving meaningful and effective recognition to employees? And if it's not you, what about getting your leaders, managers, and team members properly recognizing one another? Effective use of your recognition programs starts with how well you're personally practicing recognition each and every day.

Reimagining Culture and the Employee Experience
Gary Beckstrand, O.C. Tanner

With competition for talent at its peak, culture and the employee experience are the new black. Are your culture-building efforts creating an employee experience people love? Do they attract the right people and inspire them to achieve? In this session you will explore a research-based framework to evaluate culture effectiveness, inform strategy, and measure success. You will explore practices to build a more engaging culture based on six essential aspects of the employee experience most important to employees around the globe.

Spreading Contagious Enthusiasm - Creating a Culture of Kindness
Barbara Glanz, Barbara Glanz Communications, Inc.

As we become more technologically advanced, busier. and more stressed than ever before, we often don’t even notice the opportunities around us every day to be kind. Our workplaces, our cities, and our homes are in desperate need of more simple kindness and caring, and amazingly, research shows that every one act of kindness leads to four more.

Come and learn an acronym for KIND* to awaken you to those chances to make a small difference in someone’s day:

K = Kinesthetic
I = Imaginative
N = Neighborly
D = Deliberate

© Flasko & Glanz, 2017. All Rights Reserved.

From the CEO to the frontline worker, you will leave with many inspirational,concrete and simple ways to change your culture and your lives to ones of kindness and caring. Not only will it impact your organization’s bottom line, but it will also add more purpose and joy to each day of your life and the lives of others with whom you interact.

4:00 pm - 6:00 pm


5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

Buses pick up for hotel

Jump to: Tuesday | Wednesday

Thursday, April 11

8:00 am - 10:30 am

Wrap-Up Breakfast and ROI Workshop: How to Determine The ROI of Your Program

How to Determine The ROI of Your Program
Hosted by Jeff Ross, C.A. Short; Peter Hart, Rideau; Tina Weede, Peerless Performance; and other supporting staff TBA

Join industry leaders as they share with you their methods for determining ROI. Each of these leaders will bring their many years of experience to the table for an active workshop in which participants will be encouraged to bring along their data for real time ROI review.

You’ll receive the methodologies to measure your program and walk away with real templates and information to help you succeed.

This is a hands on workshop where examples will be shared. Here are some of the program types that will be covered:

  • Total Recognition
  • Years of Service
  • Safety
  • Wellness
  • Engagement

Enjoy a sponsored working breakfast as we dive into one of the most important pieces of your program and utilize all the time we have to help you find the best way to measure that works for YOU!

If you plan to stay and attend this workshop, on the last day, please be sure to select “Yes, I will attend” so that we may plan for the correct number of participants for both breakfast and the workshop.

10:30 am - 6:30 pm

CRP III: Building a Recognition Blueprint

Building a Recognition Blueprint
R. Scott Russell, CRP, Director of Client Success, C.A. Short Company

This professional certification course provides baseline assessment tools, alignment between organizational strategy and recognition strategy, components of management responsibility, and common recognition measurements. Participants will map their own current recognition practices and programs with a recognition-specific audit tool, assess the gaps, set goals to close the gaps through a strategic recognition plan, identify ways to ensure management responsibility, and set meaningful measurements. Participants will also gain exposure to several assessment tools, recent best practice case studies, and measurement tips.