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Join Us for the 2017 Annual RPI Conference!


All live CRP courses at the conference have been cancelled. All CRP courses are available 24/7 online here!

Sunday, April 30

8:00am - 5:00pm
Registration Desk Open

8:00am - 5:00pm
RPI Board Strategic Planning Meeting (invitation only)

3:45 - 5:45pm
Recognition Fundamentals ($75 separate fee)
Dee Hansford, CRP, Dee Hansford Consulting

6:00pm - 7:30pm

Welcome Reception with Tunes Provided by DJ Butta***

Entertainment Sponsored by C.A. Short Company

Monday, May 1

7:30am - 5:15pm
Registration Desk Open

8:15 - 9:15am
Continental Breakfast

9:15 - 10:00am
Plenary Presentation by Dondra Ritzenthaler
Senior Vice President of Sales at Celebrity Cruises

10:00 - 10:45am

Plenary Presentation by Charlotte Blank
Chief Behavioral Officer of Maritz 

Cash, Travel, and Neuroscience: Biometric science reveals new insights in motivation and rewards.

For decades, reward and incentive design has relied on surveys, interviews and focus groups to assess participant reward preferences. Until now, no one has used neuro-scientific and biometric techniques to understand the influence of the subconscious in reward preference. In 2016, the Maritz Institute and the IRF commissioned a study in which 42 sales and non-sales working professionals underwent biometric testing, including facial expression analysis, eye movement and heart rate monitoring, pupil dilation and Galvanic Skin Response (GSR). Subjects were immersed in realistic scenarios and presented a range of cash and non-cash rewards. Their intuitive reactions and ultimate choice of rewards might alter much of what you thought you knew about reward preference.

10:45 - 11:15am

11:15am - 12:15pm

Breakout Session A-Series

A1. The Science of Happiness (RPI Education Committee Sponsored Session)
With Vicki Hargrove, CRP, Hargrove Business Consulting

What motivates people to do the things that they do? Or fail to do? Why do some people perform beyond expectations and others below expectations? All of these actions are coordinated, controlled and regulated by an organ about the size of a small head of cauliflower--the brain. Join this session to learn how you can help your employees “rewire” their brains so that they are more positive about their work and their organization

A2. 35 Ways to Influence Corporate Culture and Increase Your Bottom Line
With Jeff Ross, CRP, C.A. Short Company; R Scott Russell, C.A. Short Company - Special Guest: Amy Hurley, OSU Wexner Medical Center

Studies have shown that companies with engaged employees have greater profitability, productivity, and quality, less turnover, absenteeism, and theft and fewer safety incidents. Join us as we share 35 ways to make an immediate impact on your corporate culture.

A3. Rebooting Your Service Anniversary Program
With Rhonda Sunnarborg, MotivAction, and Juliana Weyand, T-Mobile

Are you genuinely excited about your company’s service anniversary recognition? Do your colleagues complain and carp about how their last work anniversary was handled? We thought so. In this session, Rhonda Sunnarborg of MotivAction will take you through how service anniversaries have evolved over time and why they’re still relevant. Find out what you can do to maximize this critical touch point, which is often a wasted opportunity. Learn from the best practices of others.

A4. How Recognition Programs can encourage a Growth-Minded Culture at an Organization
With Charlotte Blank, Maritz, Inc. 

Research in social psychology suggests that the mindsets we embody determine much of the experiences and outcomes in our lives. This is as true in the workplace as it is in the home. How can company recognition programs encourage a growth mindset in corporate culture? Learn more about fixed vs. growth mindsets, and how to build a growth mindset culture in your organization.

12:15 - 12:30pm

12:30 - 1:45pm
RPI Awards Luncheon

1:45 - 2:00pm

2:00 - 3:00pm

Breakout Session B-Series

B1. Highlights from Blueprint (RPI Education Committee Sponsored
With Dee Hansford, CRP, Dee Hansford Consulting

If you are curious about the Certified Recognition Professional (CRP®) process, attend this informative session that offers an overview of the Building a Recognition Blueprint course. Join Dee Hansford, CRP, as she introduces you to the key elements of the course: assessments, strategy, management responsibility and measurement. You’ll learn about the Recognition Strategy Model and how each aspect of the RPI Planning Phase contributes to the successful implementation of the Best Practice Standards®.

B2. JumpStart the Joy!
With Cheri Lucas, CRP, Lucas Consulting & Development

Can you help your employees/organization feel more hopeful and enjoy life more fully? JumpStart the Joy! will equip you with a toolbox for connecting with people whose priorities and preferences differ from yours, empowering your mind and heart to help your employees/organization recognize, encounter and experience more joy. The goal? Connection! Creating effective Communication, Relationships and Teamwork! The deeper goal? Creating happier employees/team and you.

B3. Connecting with Virtual Workers Through Recognition & Rewards
With Paula Ambrozic, CRP, Inspirus, a Sodexo Company

Today’s employees want to work from everywhere and anywhere. The virtual workforce is growing by leaps and bounds. Approximately 20-25% of the workforce teleworks at some frequency. Fortune 1000 companies around the globe are revamping their workspace around the fact that employees are already mobile. Studies repeatedly show they are not at their desk 50-60% of the time. Some 3.7 million employees now work from home at least half-time. All this leaves HR professionals scratching their heads on how to engage, recognize and reward the virtual workforce. Join us for the information-packed session to learn how today’s companies recognize and engage their virtual workforce.

B4. Using Recognition Programs to Drive Company Culture During an Organizational Rebrand
With Jeffrey Fina, Michael C. Fina Recognition; Carol Battaglia, Northwell Health

In 2016, North Shore-LIJ rebranded itself as Northwell Health. As the largest private employer in NY with 61,000+ employees, it was critical to have a strategy to involve employees in the effort. As their recognition partner, Michael C. Fina helped Northwell Health ensure that the corporate culture stayed intact as they rebranded. This presentation will demonstrate how organizations can ensure employee engagement remains high during a major company initiative.

3:00 - 3:15pm

3:15 - 5:30pm

Spotlight Awards Reception with Special Musical Guest Traci Snowe

Entertainment Sponsored by C.A. Short Company

Tuesday, May 2

7:30am - 4:15pm
Registration Desk Open

8:15 - 9:15am

9:15 - 10:15am

Plenary Presentation by Rodd Wagner
New York Times Bestselling Author, Forbes Columnist, and Vice President of Employee Engagement Strategy at BI Worldwide

Inside the Mind of an Employee: The Good, the Bad and the Neurobiology

What doesn’t get recognized doesn’t get repeated,” Rodd Wagner wrote in his book, Widgets. But why isn’t fair compensation enough? Using neuroscience, Wagner will explain what happens in the brain when someone receives recognition – and when they don’t. Attendees will discover the neurobiology of recognition and its effects on day-to-day behavior. Insights will be gained by highlighting key differences between recognized employees versus those who feel they are in thankless jobs.

10:15 - 10:30am

10:30 - 11:30am

Breakout Session C-Series

C1. How To Make Positive Changes to Your Recognition Programs
With Roy Saunderson, CRP, (RPI Education Sponsored Session)

Too often leaders and program owners wipe their hands as if everything is done once their recognition programs are designed and launched. You and I know that launch date is simply the beginning for the evolution of change. Through regular reviews, feedback, focus groups and surveys, your recognition programs will always require ongoing changes, modifications and even total restructuring.

C2. Engaging Employees in a Virtual World
With Ashlee Green, CRP, Verizon Wireless and Rebecca Smith, Verizon Wireless

This session will focus on how to engage and recognize employees within the virtual world we work in today. The audience will learn how to incorporate virtual workgroups into their employee engagement programs and layer in gamification to engage and motivate people to drive employee performance.

C3. Honoring Performance-Strategic Programs to Recognize the Best of the Best
With Michael Kelleher, Kelleher Terryberry

This presentation will introduce the "Honor Club" and how to recognize employees and sales channel partners based on performance criteria. Organizations that use objective metrics for measuring teams and or individuals should do their best to identify and recognize the elite performers at the end of the year. We will review the proper way to design, communicate, measure and recognize these individuals. RPI Best Practice Standards should be incorporated when designing Honor Club programs.

C4. Refreshing, Revitalizing, Upgrading – the Next Generation of Employee Engagement at KeyBank
With Camie Miller, KeyBank and Kimberly Abel-Lanier, CultureNext

For several years, KeyBank, one of the nation’s largest bank-based financial services companies, maintained a portfolio of effective employee engagement and recognition programs for their 8,000+ corporate and branch employees. The results of these programs were positive and engagement was steady. However, KeyBank recognized that their employee engagement initiatives needed to grow and evolve with the changing workforce and engagement landscape. In early 2016, KeyBank upgraded the existing recognition and engagement platform to successfully roll out a new, refreshed and rebranded solution — resulting in a >30% increase in activity, participation and overall program engagement. This solution focused on an improved user experience, incorporating social sharing, optimizing for mobile devices and a suite of self-service administrative tools. This session will outline KeyBank’s journey through revitalizing their employee engagement program to ensure a future of success. The presenters will share key lessons learned and best practices for refreshing and updating existing initiatives. Attendees will leave with a better understanding of how to refresh their current engagement programs to achieve better results and take employee engagement to the next level.

11:30 - 11:45am

11:15am - 1:30pm
RPI Awards Luncheon & Annual Business Meeting

1:30 - 1:45pm

1:45 - 2:45pm

Breakout Session D-Series

D2. Kicking Tail and Taking Names: How Southwest Airlines Uses a Dual Recognition and Incentive Program to Align Company Values with Annual Goals and Rewards 
With Tonda Ferguson, CRP, Joanna Matthews, CRP and Monica Van Slate, CRP - Southwest Airlines

At Southwest Airlines, we believe that what gets recognized gets repeated. Our Kick Tail program is designed to align three company performance goals with the values that define how we behave and work each day. Join the FUN and learn how Southwest blends incentives with daily recognition that enable leaders, employees, AND our customers to appreciate our people for living the Southwest values. Take away ideas and practical tools to empower your entire workforce to “kick” some “tail” too!

D3. A Look Ahead: Designing and Launching an Employee Engagement Program
With Lucinda Donnelly, Consultant

Are you interested in improving your company’s culture for direct business impact? Effective Employee Engagement and Recognition programs are a key driver of a great culture. Here you’ll find some secrets to a smooth launch, and ideas for making sure your program not only recognizes employees, but motivates them to “look forward” and be a driver of the future success of the company!

D4. Less is More: 5 Things to Get Rid of for Stronger Results
With Erika Crocker-Moises, O.C. Tanner

Together we will explore common approaches that often sound right at first but actually get in the way of success. Once uncovered, we will review what simple changes can be made in response. The session will be interactive and provide immediate take-a-ways.

2:45 - 3:00pm

3:00 - 4:00pm

Breakout Session E-Series

E1. RFP Panel - From the Practitioner/Provider Standpoint
Lori Irvin, C.A. Short Company, Rachel Niebeling, MBA, CRP, E Group, Inc., Donna St. Louis, CRP, Boeing, and Gail Rawlinson, CRP, Alberta Health Services

You’ve probably heard the expression, “there are two sides to every story,” and this is no different than the two perspectives of a Request for Proposal (RFP) – the practitioner and business provider viewpoints. Practitioner Donna St. Louis will share her experience with researching, evaluating and selecting a business provider, and Rachel Niebeling and Lori Irvin will provide their insight on how to make a successful partnership work for all parties.

E2. What Motivates Me?
With Ira Ozer, Engagement Partners; Steve Gibbons, The Culture Works

Learn from the world's leading culture consulting and training company about how research of 850,000 people identified 23 specific motivators, grouped within 5 "identities" that help people understand what motivates them as individuals and how we as recognition practitioners can use this information to craft our recognition program structures, communications, coaching and rewards to optimize engagement and results. Each attendee will receive a free personal motivation assessment, valued at $45.

E3. Linking Learning and Recognition for Improved Employee Engagement
With Wendi Walker-Schmidt, Inspirus, Michelle Figurski, Pilot Thomas Logistics

The purpose of a rewards and recognition program is to motivate, recognize and reward work and behaviors that advance an organization. Foundationally, it is our responsibility to help employees live up to their highest potential. To do this, we must connect hearts and minds to create a culture of high performance. At Inspirus, we do this by integrating casual learning into our platform to drive engagement.

4:00 - 4:15pm

4:15 - 6:15pm

Closing Reception & Special Performance By Mark Collie  
Entertainment Sponsored by C.A. Short Company