Wednesday, 09 March 2016 20:02

2nd Annual HR Boot Camp a Big Success!

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Hanna Resource Group (HRG) was thrilled to have the opportunity to work in conjunction with the Kentucky Chamber on the second annual HR Boot Camp! This two day seminar took place January 13th and 14th at the Hilton Downtown Lexington, and a great time was had by the almost 30 attendees as well as the speakers!


The goal of the Boot Camp was threefold – to address hot topics in HR, continue ongoing HR development and education, and provide attendees with an opportunity to meet and ask questions of some of the most influential and forward-thinking HR professionals in Kentucky. Judging from the attendee feedback, we succeeded!


• “I appreciated the casual environment and openness to questions – interactive trainings are always more engaging.”


• “The content of the presentations was new, not your usual “bag of (same old) tricks – appreciate new ideas!”


If you weren’t able to attend the boot camp and want to learn a little more about the great topics and dynamic speakers, or if you did attend and just want a refresher, read on!


Lyle Hanna, President & CEO of HRG, kicked off the event with an energetic session about the future of HR. There has been a lot of talk recently about growing the role of HR beyond its administrative roots and becoming a strategic partner in organizations, but HR professionals can easily get frustrated when they don’t yet have a seat at the table. Lyle gave voice to those frustrations, and Brad Patrick, EVP/CHRO of Shearer’s Snacks, stepped in to defend HR and save the day!


Brad has a varied HR career, and through stories about his experience, Brad advised attendees to learn the ways their business creates value, define their role and build their brand on an individual level, and have a solid change vision and plan for stepping into a change leader role.


Susan Brewer, VP of HR and Information Technology at Gray Construction, also weighed in and discussed ways to make HR more of a business partner than just an HR partner, thus expanding the value of the function.


Once people were enthusiastic about what HR could be, Jeff Nally, President of Nally Group, stepped in to teach everyone about the Science of Leadership. The first session focused on Motivation and Goal Setting, and he discussed intrinsic factors that can help motivate you as well as help you motivate others. Identifying these factors will help you lead and set goals that drive actions, behaviors, and successful outcomes.


Jeff Nally’s second Science of Leadership session focused on Coaching as an HR Leader. Jeff taught attendees coaching conversation skills that use powerful questions to generate new ideas. He also discussed leading people through change without triggering defensive or unproductive behaviors.


Susan Rogers, Founder of the People Pinnacle, gave an exciting presentation on Changing the Way You Manage Change. In addition to discussing the overarching process (understanding, motivation, learning, application, and accountability), Susan delved into individual ‘change levers’ that include considerations such as resistance mitigation, sponsorship, and communication. Susan then presented attendees with sample change management plans and templates to help them craft their own transitional initiatives!


To wrap up day one, Ryan Lisk, Partner with Lisk Associates, gave an illuminating presentation on Dynamic Communication. Attendees were sent a link to a TriMetrix assessment in advance of the conference that provided insight into their behaviors, motivators, and communication style. Armed with the results from these assessments, Ryan talked attendees through interpreting, and then utilizing, this information so they can be aware of their blind spots and interact with others in a more meaningful way.


Throughout the second day of the seminar, no matter the topic or session, speakers and attendees alike were reminded that HR MATTERS!


Elizabeth Muyskens, an Associate with Stoll Keenon Ogden, talked us through some vital Legal Updates. These included guidance on handling social media issues, communicating candidate rejections, and a hilarious foray into dealing with workplace odors!


Elizabeth Muyskens, an Associate with Stoll Keenon Ogden, talked us through some vital Legal Updates. These included guidance on handling social media issues, communicating candidate rejections, and a hilarious foray into dealing with workplace odors!


Perry Sholes, SPHR, Sr. Vice President of Human Resources and Risk Management at Last Call Operating Co., presented on Business Ethics – Courage to Fight! Perry discussed the roles of the CEO and HR in ensuring compliance, as well as talked through the creation of a compliant culture. The biggest traps for compliance are ignorance, arrogance, and expedience, so it is necessary to be aware of these and work to avoid them.


Wrapping up the session was a fantastic panel discussion involving three movers and shakers in the HR world – Ralph Lee, Vice President of HR at Total Quality Logistics; Susan Simmons, SPHR, SHRM-SCP, Executive Vice President and HR Director at Central Bank; and Ken Johnson, who has a long and varied history in HR but was most recently the Interim Chief Human Resources Officer at Eastern Kentucky University. From diversity initiatives to succession planning to prioritizing an overwhelming to-do list, our panelists told stories, gave advice, and answered questions in an informal and fun session that focused on the human side of human resources.


HRG is so pleased to have been a part of such a wonderful seminar, and we want to give a great big thank you to all of those speakers, attendees, and the members of the KY Chamber that made it happen! We also hope that you will plan to reach out to get information about future events, updates on changes in the HR sphere, or just to say hello! You can reach us at:, or give us a call at (859) 514-7724.

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