National HR in Hospitality Conference & Expo REGISTER AGENDA
[ 2017 Program Materials & Attendee list ]
2017 Agenda At-A-Glance
7:30 - 8:30 a.m.
Continental Breakfast Sponsored by:
8:30 - 9:45 a.m.

Is The Hospitality Industry Innovative?
Anne Loehr Ted Teng, President & Chief Executive Officer, Leading Hotels of the World

How innovative can the hospitality industry actually be? What is our capacity to engage in out-of-the-box thinking? Is it possible to “push the envelope” or is the nature of our business relegating us solely to small incremental improvements? Mr. Teng will answer these questions and more as he shares his thoughts and experiences regarding innovation in our industry. Certain to be provocative, he'll discuss when it’s possible to innovate, what it will take, who needs to get involved, what type of leadership is required and more.

Session takeaways

Confirm the extent to which the industry can actually innovate
Identify the likely drivers or disruptions requiring change or innovation in our industry
Understand and leverage the concept of “scale” in innovation
9:45 - 10:30 a.m.
Refreshment Break in Expo Sponsored by:
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

The Ever Changing World of Workforce Technology: Where are We Going?
Anne Loehr Jason Averbook, Author, Analyst, Thought Leader, Keynote Speaker, Consultant

We live in a world characterized by continuous change. This is especially true when it comes to the ever-increasing pace that technology is being introduced into the work world. However, we often equip our guests with better technology than we provide our own workforces. Simply put, this pattern is unsustainable. To become or remain “employers of choice,” it is critical to understand the enabling role technology will likely play in the workplace of the future. Jason Averbook, a world renowned consultant, analyst and visionary, will walk you through what is important now and into the future, as we shape the role of HR and, importantly, technology as a valuable enabler.

Session takeaways

Thrive in the ever-changing “perfect storm” of new workers, new technologies and new demands on HR
Leverage technology to optimize the experience for employees, HR and the organization
Identify key skill areas that HR and organizations will need to thrive in the future, including design thinking, data management and storytelling

“Hospitality Included” – One Year In
Erin Moran, Chief Culture Officer, Union Square Hospitality Group
Sabato Sagaria, Chief Restaurant Officer, Union Square Hospitality Group
Carolyn D. Richmond, Co-Chair, Hospitality Practice, Fox Rothschild LLP
Moderator: J. Bruce Tracey, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration

Join Union Square Hospitality Group executives Erin Moran and Sabato Sagaria and Fox Rothschild attorney Carolyn Richmond for an in-depth look back at USHG's approach to no-tipping - "Hospitality Included" - one year post-implementation. The panel will review USHG's journey including administration challenges, stakeholder responses (e.g., employees, guests, and competitors), lessons learned and anticipated next steps. They'll also discuss how the industry and guests have reacted to the change and where "no tipping" is headed industry-wide.

11:45 a.m. - 1:15 p.m

Lunch Discussions in Expo Lunch Sponsored by:

Table 1 Using Fair Pay Laws to Narrow Pay Gap & Increase Retention
Table 2 Recruiting for the Hourly Workforce
Table 3 Strategizing Employee Engagement in a Diverse Workforce
Arthur J. Gallagher & Co.
Table 4 Visibility into Labor - How to Control One of Your Biggest Expenses
Table 5 Best Practices in Background Screening
Predictive Leadership Solutions, LLC
Table 6 What Makes a Great Candidate Experience?
Table 7 What the New Healthcare Landscape Means for You
Hospitality Benefits

1:15 - 2:30 p.m.

HR1 Reimagining the Guest Experience

Rick Garlick, Practice Lead, Global Travel and Hospitality, J.D. Power & Associates
Kimberly Rath, President and Co-Chairman, Talent Plus

A guest experience can be world-class regardless of price point. When you select individuals with a natural propensity for service, they care about guests and create loyalty. When individuals are in a job they love, led by an adept leader, they are not only great employees, but also great family and valuable community members. These seasoned team creators will explain how to pinpoint the measurable talents of employees who can create guest experiences that electrify customers, make CFOs happy and contribute well beyond organizational boundaries.

Session takeaways
Recognize the potential of your employees and scientifically measure their talents to align with business objectives
Build a culture of engagement that translates into phenomenal guest feedback, increased employee retention and profitability
Apply case studies of growing guest satisfaction to achieve significant business results

HR2 Cultivating a Culture That Loves to Innovate

Erin Moran, Chief Culture Officer, Union Square Hospitality Group

Innovation and growth do not have to come at the cost of an organization’s cultural integrity. Erin Moran will discuss the mindset shift that has allowed Danny Meyer’s renowned Union Square Hospitality Group to implement outside-of-the-box initiatives like Hospitality Included, which eliminates tipping, as a means of doubling down on corporate values and advancing the culture of Enlightened Hospitality with its focus on friendly, perk-filled service.

Session takeaways

Exhibit a commitment to social purpose to appeal to the young workforce
Develop an authentic culture of innovation that evolves in a thoughtful and systematic manner 
Apply lessons learned from successful initiatives currently under way at USHG

LAW1 Employment Law Update

Barry Hartstein, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson P.C.
Celeste Yeager, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson P.C.

It’s been a busy year for the EEOC with new procedures and cases involving transgender, sexual orientation and religious accommodation issues. HR professionals need to stay on top of recent developments and clearly understand the practical ramifications. Here’s your opportunity to get on top of these must-know developments, as two legal experts discuss the implications for your HR practices, policies and programs.

Session takeaways

Review the most recent accommodation cases
Understand the EEOC’s priorities regarding discrimination
Incorporate the latest holdings into your day-to-day operations

LAW2 The “Unconference”: FLSA Legal Think Tank

Carolyn D. Richmond, Co-Chair, Hospitality Practice, Fox Rothschild LLP
David Ritter, Partner, Barnes & Thornburg

You set the agenda for this lively, interactive session covering FLSA legal issues, case law and current requirements for hospitality employers. Two legal experts will facilitate discussions to give you the solutions you need when it comes to the latest on minimum wage, overtime pay, audit preparation and review, compliance and recordkeeping, and more.

Session takeaways

Understand the most relevant recent FLSA case law
Comply with current federal and state jurisdictional requirements
Implement the latest approaches for audit preparation and review
2:45 - 4 p.m.

HR3 Exploring Image Standards Through a Modern Lens

Jason Pruzansky, Davis & Gilbert LLP
Holly Lawson, Corporate Director, People & Culture, Pivot Hotels & Resorts

In the image-based hospitality industry, many HR professionals have taken a second look at their guidelines and grooming standards. Some of these considerations are driven by compliance; others by the changing expectations of the Millennial workforce. An attorney and an HR leader team up to tackle the issue from both sides, and address the issues surrounding how to ensure your image standards are upheld as you adjust to current trends and legislation.

Session takeaways

Understand current legislation that may impact your image and grooming policies
Implement best practices to accommodate protected employees
Identify the current workforce's views and preferences on image guidelines

Human Capital Investment Management and the Organizational Fingerprint as Distinctive Competitive Advantage

Dan Bienstock, Corporate Director, Risk Management, Sydell Group
Keith Friede, Area Vice President, Talent & Organization Development, North Central Region Practice Leader,
    Arthur J. Gallagher & Company

Improving your employment value proposition can help you more effectively attract, retain, engage and develop talent. While many organizations focus primarily or even exclusively on cost control, top-performing organizations focus more strategically on maximizing return on talent investment (ROTI) through an integrated process of assessment, targeted asset allocation, differentiation and personalization of the rewards package and performance-driven metrics. Learn how to adopt strategically-oriented human capital investment management, create an intentional and distinctive “organizational fingerprint” that gives you competitive advantage in hospitality talent markets, and optimize your ROTI.

Session takeaways

Employ the principles and process of human capital investment management
Align rewards with employee needs and preferences to design and implement a distinctive EVP that attracts, retains and engages talent
Move from a primarily rewards cost minimization approach to an ROTI approach

LAW3 The New Wage and Hour Regulations

Jeffrey Ruzal, Member of the Firm, Epstein Becker & Green
Carolyn D. Richmond, Co-Chair, Hospitality Practice, Fox Rothschild LLP

How are companies dealing with changes in the minimum salary for exempt employees? How are HR departments and managers working through the challenges of off-duty work like email and texts? How are companies setting up bonus structures, tracking hours and responding to flexible workweek requests? Our panel of hotel employment law experts will detail their successes and challenges related to these topics, and offer up valuable actionable insights for your company.

Session takeaways

Understand the latest legal advice on minimum wage rule changes
Navigate off-duty work challenges successfully
Implement flexible workweeks and compensation

LAW4 Grinding Along: The Continued Evolution of “Joint Employer”

Harry I. Johnson, III, Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
David Sherwyn, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration
Christian White, Counsel, Baker Hostetler

Joint employer issues continue to evolve. There are now class action wage and hour lawsuits against franchisors such as McDonalds, because employees incorrectly believed they worked for the franchisor. Moving forward, employers and franchisors must analyze joint employer issues when making any decisions regarding leased employees and/or franchisees. You'll learn if the franchise model can still work, whether it is still cost-effective to lease employees, and what the administrative agencies might do under the new president.

Session takeaways

Know the latest information on the current, fast-moving status of the joint employer doctrine
Identify how employers are specifically addressing the ever-changing doctrine
Understand where this doctrine is heading and what employers can do to prepare
4 - 5:30 p.m.
Networking Reception in Expo Sponsored by:
7:30 - 8:30 a.m.

Breakfast Session
Innovation through People: How Scientific Selection Can Bolster Your Bottom Line
Sponsored by: Talent Plus
Kimberly Rath Kimberly Rath, President and Co-Chairman, Talent Plus, Inc.

Understand the science behind selecting great service-minded people
Calculate the ROI that comes with identifying talented sales teams and lowering turnover
Investigate case studies of world-class companies who recognize the value of people
8:30 - 9:45 a.m.

Learning and Innovation Stories From Around the World: The Future for the Hospitality Industry
Kimo Kippen Kimo Kippen, VP of Global Workforce Initiatives, Hilton Worldwide

Learning and development leaders have chosen their field because they want to help people grow. Similarly, people have selected to work in the hospitality industry because they have a desire to satisfy the needs and wants of their guests. The two together comprise a workforce that wants to serve community with growth opportunities, passion and a sense of citizenship. No one knows this better than Kimo Kippen, former CLO and now VP of Global Workforce Initiatives for Hilton, who travels the world to discuss learning and innovation and to bring back stories of how new and different approaches to learning are changing the way we live. He'll share how to focus on your people to ensure they have the resources, support and confidence they need to achieve their career goals and company-wide objectives, plus make an impact in the communities where they live and work.

Session takeaways

Identify fundamental shifts, disruptions and emerging trends in learning
Leverage the over-connected employee, high potentials and frontline staff
Blend company objectives with employees’ personal goals
9:45 - 10:30 a.m. Refreshment Break in Expo    
10:30 - 11:45 a.m.

HR Tips and Trends
Ed Evans, Chief Human Resources Officer, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Holly Lawson, Corporate Director, People & Culture, Pivot Hotels & Resorts
Robert Mellwig, Senior Vice President, Really Cool People, Two Roads Hospitality

Moderator: J. Bruce Tracey, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration

In this fast-paced session, four respected industry leaders will provide expert guidance on HR strategy and process thought leadership in numerous areas, including staffing, performance management, leadership development, employee engagement, metrics, employment branding, culture, diversity, total rewards, organization design and service delivery models.

Session takeaways

Recognize current HR challenges posed by both internal and external forces
Implement overall approaches for devising solid human capital strategy
Design and implement impactful human capital programming
11:45 a.m. -
1 p.m.

Lunch Discussions in Expo

Table 1 Front Line Worker Engagement & Retention Strategies Increasing Customer Satisfaction
Table 2 Have HR Challenges? Ask Us Anything.
TriNet HR Corporation
Table 3 Great Employee Experiences Net Engaged Guests
Talent Plus
Table 4 Benefits of Building a Talent Community
Hospitality Online
Table 5 The Power of Digital HR & Mobile Today
Table 6 Reduce Turnover Through Surveys and Analytics - Guaranteed
SMD (Strategic Management Decisions)
Table 7 Retirement Savings for Your Front Line Workers
US Treasury - myRA

1 - 2:15 p.m.

HR5 Death of the Guess: Making Data-Based Decisions

Whitney Martin, Survey and Assessment Strategist, ProActive Consulting

Lurking beneath administratively burdensome systems that create an appearance of rigor, “hope,” “best guesses,” “gut feel” and other subjective criteria continue to weigh heavily in people decisions. However, business leaders are mandating that HR adopt more evidence-based approaches to decision-making. How can you infuse better data into key decisions throughout the employee lifecycle? And how can you measure the positive impact that HR is having on the metrics that matter most to the business? Explore how assessment tools can be used for everything from hiring to leadership development.

Session takeaways

Explain the benefits of evidence-based decision making
Leverage various types of assessment tools to provide more objective data
Apply data to improve onboarding, succession planning and team creation

HR6 The Latest and Greatest in HR Tech Solutions

Luke Fryer, Founder and CEO,
Nancy Kraselsky, Specialist Leader, Deloitte Consulting

Keeping up with advancements in HR technology can be a full-time job. Beyond simple awareness, understanding how to leverage HR technology in the hospitality sector, in particular, is a key ingredient and driver of business success. Hear about recent developments in HR technology, and identify ways to leverage the latest innovations for a wide array of business intelligence and functional decision making.

Session takeaways

Understand the latest HR technology trends in the hospitality industry
Identify how technological advancements can enable business processes and organizational success
Determine the appropriate technology for your specific HR purpose

LAW5 Arbitration After the “Epic” Decision

Jason Pruzansky, Davis & Gilbert LLP
Holly Lawson, Corporate Director, People & Culture, Pivot Hotels & Resorts
Robert Mellwig, Senior Vice President, Really Cool People, Two Roads Hospitality
Paul E. Wagner, Shareholder, Stokes Wagner

A former employee of Epic Systems Corp. recently won a second round in his lawsuit, contending the healthcare software maker improperly denied him and other workers overtime pay. The Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruling could make it easier for workers around the country to press claims for overtime. The court ruled that employers cannot require workers to agree to individual arbitration in disputes involving overtime pay. The decision, which contradicts decisions by other appellate courts, affects agreements that bar workers from participating in collective or class-action lawsuits for wage-and-hour claims. Four seasoned arbitration policy drafters will discuss what clauses, if any, will allow class action waivers to survive NLRB/judicial scrutiny.

Session takeaways

Explain the significance of the Seventh Circuit decision
Identify contradictory decisions by other appellant courts
Set forth how employers can still implement a class-action waiver

LAW6 You Know the Law — How Do You Put It on Paper?

Milet Lukey, Vice President of People Operations, SH Group Operations, LLC, Starwood Capital
Hayden Pace, Shareholder, Stokes Wagner
Celeste Yeager, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson P.C

Settlement agreements, arbitration policies, joint-employer avoidance and non-competes — making sure your documents say what you want them to and, more importantly, do what you want them to, is not always an easy task. Let these legal experts plot you a course through the maze of paper confusion to create documents that are structured, thorough and straightforward.

Session takeaways

Identify the documents that HR drafts and processes which have employment law consequences
Understand how changing laws are affecting legal documents
Bring back to your organization clear rules and templates for each type of document
2:15 - 2:30 p.m. Refreshment Break in Foyer
2:30 - 3:45 p.m.

HR7 Creating Culture as a Movement Empowered by the Chief Change Officers — Your HR Team

Gary Magenta, Senior Vice President, Root Inc.
Gina Valenti, Owner Services and Hampton Brand Culture & Internal Communications, Hilton Worldwide

The changes occurring in the hospitality industry are mind-blowing. The last decade brought shifting trends from competitors, consumers and technology alike. Yet, amidst that noise, Hampton by Hilton, in a 13-year partnership with Root Inc., achieved an unprecedented level of owner and team member engagement across its brand, in a primarily franchised environment. How? Together, they unleashed ‘Hamptonality’, the company’s differentiating culture and a crucial component in Hampton’s success. Hear how three primary ingredients — Culture, Empowerment and Authenticity — enabled this leading brand to create a customer-first culture, empower team members to act like owners and create authentic experiences.

Session takeaways

Create an employee-first culture to create customers for life
Build customers for life by using a simple three-step framework
Explain how your HR leaders can become culture champions

HR8 Labor and Employment Relations Under a Trump Administration

Richard Hurd, Associate Dean for External Relations, Professor of Industrial and Labor Relations,
    Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations
David Sherwyn, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration

Moderator: Professor Harry Katz, Dean, Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations

With a new administration and a new Congress, the administrative agencies that enforce labor and employment policy may not continue to be the drivers of policy and change. How will the change in administration affect the agencies? Will the NLRB continue to be the driver of labor law reform? Will the Department of Labor continue to push the joint employer doctrine? You'll get the answers to these and other questions during this lively panel discussion.

Session takeaways

Understand the impact that the DOL and NLRB have on your organization
Predict DOL and NLRB plans moving forward
Identify adjustments you can make to policies and procedures due to agency priorities

LAW7 Unions 2017: Recent Developments

Michael D’Angelo, Vice President, Labor Relations, Hyatt Company
David Rothfeld, Partner, Kane Kessler, P.C.
Steven Swirsky, Member of the Firm, Employment, Labor & Workforce Practice, Epstein Becker Green

New organizing efforts, tactics and law, and renewed emphasis on elections. For years, the hotel industry has been the “holy grail” of the union movement because “you can’t move all your hotels to Mexico.” Despite this fact, union density in the hotel industry hasn't grown even with the union’s successful 2006 negotiations. Employers argued that the union had nothing to sell, while unions argued the system was rigged. Now, the NLRB has changed the system. Elections are quicker, the law has become more union-friendly and income inequality has become regarded as a national problem. Hear how these most recent developments will impact the hotel industry and whether unionization will rise in the hotel industry.

Session takeaways

Identify what law changes have occurred and how they affect you
Describe how employers are reacting to the changes
Understand whether unionization is poised to increase or decrease in the hotel industry

LAW8 Individual Liability in Employment Law

Kalley Aman, Esq., Shareholder, Buchalter
Ruth L. Seroussi, Of Counsel, Buchalter
Monte Baier, General Counsel & SVP, International Development, Panda Restaurant Group

Are you and your managers personally liable for employment law violations? This is not a question that should arise after a violation. You and your company need a transparent and effective process that protects your managers before problems arise. Ms. Seroussi and Ms. Wanser will provide the answer and structure to clearly identify individual liability under the law.

Session takeaways

Understand the legal concepts of individual liability
Identify the day-to-day effects of individual liability on workers and companies
Avoid individual liability for supervisors
4 - 5:15 p.m.

50 Legal Tips in 50 Minutes
Kara Maciel, Chair, Labor Employment Practice, Conn Maciel Carey PLLC
David Sherwyn, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration
Paul E. Wagner, Shareholder, Stokes Wagner
Celeste Yeager, Shareholder, Littler Mendelson P.C.
Moderator: Professor Harry Katz, Dean, Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations

This much-anticipated attendee favorite returns!

Leading hospitality attorneys will take turns presenting concise, practical tips for HR professionals on critical employment and labor law issues such as class actions, wage and hour compliance, gender bias, social media, micro-bargaining, and more. Learn what you need to know to stay on top of the broad and ever-changing legal landscape — all in one high-energy session.

Session takeaways

Understand current and pending employment and labor laws, regulations and cases
Develop HR programs in reaction to current trends
Identify specific compliance strategies, tactics and alternative approaches to litigation
8 - 9 a.m. Continental Breakfast
9 - 10:15 a.m.

8th Annual Cornell University Executive Summit

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to witness and learn from the strategic and practical discussions that occur in boardrooms across the country. Our panel of top HR executives and veteran employment law attorneys will vigorously discuss and debate a handful of wide-reaching and relevant HR topics that hospitality companies face every day. This simulated executive meeting will probe the significant issues challenging the hospitality space, as well as the root causes of those challenges. You’ll leave with viable strategies, programming, tactics and tools.

Session takeaways

Explain how the challenges facing the hospitality industry present opportunities for HR
Describe specific strategies and HR programming employed by leading hospitality companies
Understand the high-level solutions and strategies being discussed now at your own organization

Participants Include:

Carolyn Clark, SVP, Talent & Culture, North & Central America, AccorHotels
Ed Evans, Chief Human Resources Officer, Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts
Rick Garlick, Practice Lead, Global Travel and Hospitality, J.D. Power & Associates
Professor Harry Katz, Dean, Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations
Kimo Kippen, Vice President of Global Workforce Initiatives, Hilton Worldwide
Holly Lawson, Corporate Director, People & Culture, Pivot Hotels & Resorts
Robert Mellwig, Senior Vice President, Really Cool People, Two Roads Hospitality
Paul E. Wagner, Shareholder, Stokes Wagner
Nancy Yaffe, Partner, Fox Rothschild LLP
Nigel Beck, Founder, When Labs, Inc.
Moderator: David Sherwyn, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration
Moderator: J. Bruce Tracey, Professor, Cornell University School of Hotel Administration
10:30 - 11:30 a.m.

LGBT Rights in Hospitality: Challenges and Opportunities
Cleve Jones, American AIDS and LGBT Activist
Tyronne Stoudemire, Vice President of Global Diversity and Inclusion, Hyatt
Moderator: Beth Livingston, Assistant Professor of Human Resource Management, Cornell University School of
    Industrial and Labor Relations; Member, Athlete Ally Advisory Board

This very important and timely session features a moderated conversation between nationally prominent gay rights activist Cleve Jones and Hyatt’s VP of Global Diversity and Inclusion, Tyronne Stoudemire. Jones, an associate of Harvey Milk, founder of UNITE-HERE’s Sleep With the Right People advocacy group, and the subject of a February 2017 ABC miniseries, and veteran diversity leader, Stoudemire will engage in a robust conversation focused on making the industry friendly for both LGBT employees and guests. This conversation will be sure to delve into areas of policy, process, organizational culture and more.

Session takeaways
Learn how to create and maintain an inclusive environment for LGBT employees to improve productivity and job satisfaction
Understand why conforming to Human Rights Campaign standards is a first step to successful LGBT Human Resource policies
Hear how UNITE-HERE’s Sleep With The Right People is poised to promote inclusive policies and to expose discriminatory practices

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