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APRIL 2017 April 4 Business Behind the Scenes

April 10

April 21

Sales Roundtable

Monthly Meeting

What are Your 7 Touches to Make A Sale or Appointment?

Washington Update : Congressman Glenn Grothman

Inside This Issue:









Networking matters

At AT&T, we know that making connections is critical to success. In Wisconsin and across the nation, we link businesses with their customers and the world through our wireless network with access to the nation’s largest Wi-fi network. It’s just another way we help our customers stay connected. AT&T is proud to support the Independent Business Association of Wisconsin.

© 2014 AT&T Intellectual Property. All rights reserved.

IBAW thanks AT&T for it’s continued sponsorship.

IBAW MEDIA LINK IBAW Meeting Gets TV Coverage _________________________________________________________

IBAW’s March meeting featuring The Corners Project brought Fox6 News out to cover the meeting. Biz Times Media also sent a reporter to cover the meeting. If you didn’t see it, click the link below to watch.

Executive Director Steve Kohlmann President Jim Leef ITU AbsorbTech Secretary Dan Hansen Waukesha State Bank President Elect 2016-17 Craig Coursin Stier Construction VP. State & National Programs Charles Fry Baird Treasurer Casey Malek Sikich

Click here to watch. Directors Ann Barry Hanneman Simandl Law Group S.C

Lawmakers Consider How to Get DOT In Line _________________________________________________________

John Weber Hypneumat Jeff Hoffman Boerke Co. Richard Blomquist Blomquist Benefits Lisa Mauer Rickert Industries Tom Boelkow BSI Design, Build, Furnish Robert Gross Gross Automation Scott Seroka Seroka Brand Development

To watch, click here. Video courtesy of MacIver Institute.

IBAW Mission: To advance business prosperity through insightful programming, executive networking and member-driven public policy and advocacy.

Independent Business Association of Wisconsin


April 21st Washington Update With the Trump administration making significant advancements for small business, this will be a perfect opportunity to hear what changes are likely to occur and, more importantly, give your input. Glenn Grothman is the congressman for Wisconsin’s 6th Congressional District. Grothman is currently serving his first term in Congress, having been elected in 2014. Grothman serves on the House Budget, Education and the Workforce and Oversight and Government Reform Committees, along with the Joint House and Senate Economic Committee. Grothman's time in office has been marked by his passionate advocacy for manufacturing, tax reform, welfare reform, education reform, immigration reform and pro-life causes. 

Glenn Grothman Congressman, 6th Congressional District

Before serving in Congress, Grothman served as the Assistant Majority Leader in the Wisconsin State Senate where he worked for economic growth legislation and tax reform. Prior to his election to the state senate, Grothman served as a representative to the Wisconsin State Assembly from 1993 through 2003.



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Matt Bucher HNI Insurance

10 Minutes With...Matt Bucher of HNI will give us an update on where the nation is on the latest healthcare options.



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Out Of The Comfort Zone Steve Kohlmann, IBAW Executive Director I’m out of my comfort zone on a house project. One of the reasons we bought our house 9 years ago was because it had a screen room. The house was built in 1979 and the owners hadn’t changed a thing (think green shag carpeting, Robin Egg blue paint on every wall, flowery wall paper, mustard color sinks, bath tub, and toilets and 40 watt light bulbs in every socket). But the house had a screen room and we fell in love with it. Sure it had neon blue indoor/outdoor carpeting but the thought of being able to be outside in the summer and not attacked by mosquitos was huge. While our neighbors take cover inside from the insect invasion on a nice summer night, we’re out enjoying cocktails, watching the fire flies and listening to the Brewer game. We use the screen room to its fullest. Morning coffee, evening cocktails, get togethers with friends and family, watch rainstorms that pass through, weekend naps, read books and magazines and watch the neighbors do their yard work. During usable months we just about live in the screen room and so do our cats (bird and chipmunk watching is a big deal). It’s our little piece of Shangri-La. But the screen room has been showing its age. The panels that make up the screens have peeling paint and there’s some wood rot. Many of the screens themselves had tears or were just gross from age. It was time for repairs and I decided to tackle it myself. Never mind the last time I used carpentry skills was when I was a Cub Scout and I supervised my dad building my Pinewood Derby car. It would be a perfect winter basement project - a panel every weekend was the schedule. And for the first three panels it was pretty easy, just scrape the wood, repaint, add screen, and reinstall. Start Saturday morning, end Sunday night. And then came a problem - Panel #4. Just about every piece of wood was rotted or weather worn and needed to be replaced. It seemed daunting but I decided to forge ahead. I had to go to the lumber yard and describe what I needed (the lumber yard foreman looked at me like I was speaking some strange Chinese dialect), I had to borrow a wood planer from my brother and learn how to use it. I bought and learned how to use and a Kreg Pocket Screw Jig , an air compressor, air nailers, a compound saw, and basics of a speed square. I made numerous trips to the home center, hardware store and watched dozens of YouTube “how to” videos. Two weeks later, panel #4 was complete. Still having all my fingers intact, I proudly muscled my rebuilt panel upstairs and reinstalled it. Only to didn’t fit. Turns out I built it too square. Years of hot and cold, humidity, snow and rain has twisted some posts that hold up the room out of square. (Insert expletive here.) So back down to the basement for sanding and tweaking. Hours of modification later, it was done -- and it fit. It won’t win any awards at the World Carpentry Finals, but it’s in. I don’t have a carpentry gene in my body and at times this project has been very frustrating and taken me totally out of my comfort zone. But, come to think of it, that’s the way life is. You have to learn a lot and roll with the unknown. You lay out some plans, start work, learn and adjust, hurl some expletives, adjust again and keep hammering until you cross the finish line. Or cut off a finger tip on the table saw of life. Panel #4 is now behind me and Panel #5 is in the workshop. There are more panels to go and there’s one coming up that is in worse shaped then Panel #4. It’s not going to be easy but I’ve learned a lot in the last few months and know what to be on the lookout for. I’m somewhat smarter than when I started this project. Good stuff. A few months from now, when it’s all done, I’ll be sitting in my screen room on a warm summer night watching fire flies with a Don Julio Margarita in my hand. I’ll have the satisfaction knowing that I rebuilt this room. And next time it needs to be repaired 35 years from will be somebody else’s problem. Cheers.

“Having a Wonderful Time... Wish IBAW Was Here.” MESSAGE FROM THE BOARD

Richard Blomquist Every so often it's good to step back and ask why you do something. I recently had the opportunity to do a major series of "asks" when my wife, Anna, persuaded me we should move our primary residence to Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, keeping a secondary residence in Milwaukee. Just about everything to which I had become accustomed was questioned; clothes, furniture, cars. What do we take? What do we leave? What about banking and insurance relationships? What organizations do you continue to be a part of and which ones do you step away from?  Well, south Florida is wonderful. It's hard to complain when the temperature is 78, the humidity is 61 and you have beautiful boats traveling up and down the Intercoastal past your home. Oh, and let's not forget the Atlantic and the beach a two block walk away.  The people are very nice, too. And smart. And creative. And the restaurants are really good.  But I have yet to find an organization that compares to the IBAW. One focused on small business issues. One that offers networking, education and political representation of small business issues and perspectives.  I miss being able to walk into a room of creative business people and learning what new and exciting things are happening. There is no newspaper, magazine or electronic media that can take the place of talking to the people that are making things happen.  Then while enjoying breakfast, we hear a resource speaker informing the group on a topic from which all can benefit. I have learned things at IBAW meetings that I simply would not have known about. And things that made me a better business owner, citizen, person and cocktail conversationalist. Try as we might the local, state and federal governments always seem to play a role in our business lives. Hopefully that role is in the wings but sometimes it takes center stage. To have allies to help navigate unfamiliar  territory is invaluable. Sometimes it's one of your fellow members. Sometimes reaching out to a known resource. Sometimes to an elected official who knows IBAW. The resource can save your business.  That same organization effectively represents small business issues and points of view to elected officials. This is one of IBAW's primary functions.  As a member of the IBAW Board of Directors for many years I have become familiar with the significant resource that the organization represents. I have loved being a part of the core of the organization and recommend it to all members.  However, not being in Milwaukee on a full time basis I feel that it is inappropriate for me to continue to hold a Board seat. I have been honored to be on the Board and resign with a great deal of reluctance and a saddened heart.  I will continue to be a member of IBAW and will attend as many meetings as possible. I will also continue to be a financial sponsor because this is an organization that deserves our financial support.  Together we, as business people, are better because of IBAW.  I look forward to seeing you soon and learning about your business. Together we will continue to change our world. 

Mining in Wisconsin - The Building Blocks for a Better Economy State Senator Tom Tiffany, District 12 It is time to open the doors of opportunity. Wisconsin’s unemployment rate is at an all-time low, but rural Wisconsin is still in need of good-paying, family supporting jobs. Mining in Wisconsin could provide this opportunity for rural towns in Northern Wisconsin, while helping manufacturers and mining equipment producers in Southeastern Wisconsin. I will be introducing legislation to remove Wisconsin’s mining moratorium and to modify metallic mining regulations. On average, every person in the United States uses 40,000 pounds of new minerals every year. A television requires 35 different minerals; 40 minerals are used to make telephones and 15 minerals are needed on average to make a car – one Toyota Prius alone requires 64 pounds of copper. It is easy to take these facts for granted and forget that these materials need to come from somewhere. Although investment in technology, training and equipment has made the U.S. mining industry the safest in the world, American manufacturers rely on foreign suppliers for more than half the minerals they use. It shouldn’t surprise people that Northern Wisconsin is home to some of the richest ore deposits in North America. A miner stands prominent on our state’s flag, however, the last metallic mine that operated in Wisconsin – the Flambeau Mine located near Ladysmith – closed in 1997. While only being active for a short period, and considered by some to be a relatively small mine, it produced $500 million worth of copper, zinc, gold, and silver. During mine construction, operation and reclamation, the Flambeau Mining Company employed approximately 300 employees – more than 80 percent of the mine employees were local residents from Rusk County – and contributed more than $27 million in taxes to state and local government. In 1998, one year after the Flambeau Mine closed, Wisconsin enacted a mining moratorium. This moratorium has prevented any mining company to even consider mining in Wisconsin and it has pushed the miner on our flag to the unemployment line. Northern Wisconsin is now sitting on the sidelines while our neighbors in Minnesota and Michigan are beginning to reap the economic benefits associated with mining. The U.S. Geological Survey recently reported Minnesota is the fifth largest mineral producer in the United States and mined $3.27 billion in minerals in the last year. Minnesota's mining industry contributed over $100 million to local communities in production tax, based on 2015 production. I understand the citizens of Wisconsin care deeply about our natural resources and environmental quality. Technology and techniques have changed dramatically over the nearly 20 years the moratorium has been in place. Minnesota and Michigan are proving that mining can be done in a safe and responsible manner just as the Flambeau Mine Company did in the 1990s. To be abundantly clear, analysis by the non-partisan Legislative Reference Bureau states the bill I plan to introduce does not make any changes to groundwater standards. I know we can balance our stringent environmental protections and provide economic opportunity. Wisconsin’s economy cannot fire on all cylinders without contribution from Northern Wisconsin. It’s time to give Northern Wisconsin a chance and provide the opportunity to put our state’s miner back to work.

UPCOMING EVENTS Business Behind the Scenes: Carmex Tuesday, April 4 2017 | Time: 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm | Location: 9750 S. Franklin Drive, Franklin, WI. Alfred Woelbing, like many people, suffered from cold sores. Unlike many people, he had an entrepreneurial spirit and a knack for kitchen chemistry. Alfred decided to solve his painful condition for himself, and concocted a remedy for his cold sores. In 1937, he began making Carmex® by hand, pouring the medicated lip balm into the familiar jars in his kitchen. His sales method: visiting pharmacies one by one. If they weren’t interested, he gave them a dozen jars for free—along with a postcard to reorder. In no time, the pharmacies sold the free samples and the reorder forms started coming in. Today, Alfred’s grandsons, Paul and Eric, run Carmex selling the product world wide. We’ll tour both the Carmex laboratory and production facility. Join us for an afternoon for a great Wisconsin success story, inspiration and true entrepreneurship. Cost: Free. Open only to IBAW members

Register now - Tour limited to 30 people!

Sales Roundtable: What Are Your 7 Touches to Make a Sale or Appointment? Monday, April 10th 2017 | Time: 7:30 am - 9:00 am | Location: CT Access, 740 Pilgrim Parkway, Elm Grove

What 7 – 13 "Touches" do you use to make a sale or get an appointment? Seven scintillating voice mails is NOT an acceptable answer. We (meaning you) will look at specific, practical approaches to our profession. We'll create a list of ideas you can use in the trenches every day. By signing up for this meeting you’ll walk out with a personal gift guaranteed to get your creative side working overtime! Presenter: Jerry Wick, Custom Data Too Mail

This event is open only to IBAW members. Registration is required. Click here.

I Screwed Up and I’m Sorry State Representative Adam Jarchow, R-Balsam Lake

I screwed up and I'm sorry. When's the last time you heard that from a politician? Let me say it again. I screwed up and I'm sorry. Last session, in his budget, Governor Walker proposed adding 102 new auditors to the Department of Revenue. I didn't like the proposal, nor did many of my colleagues in the Legislature. A number of us tried to remove it from the budget. When that failed, to our discredit, we went along with it. We shouldn't have. It didn't take me long to recognize the mistake I had made, and when I did, I authored a bill to begin to reverse it. Unfortunately, the bill went nowhere. As a result of this mistake, a number of Wisconsin's small businesses have been subjected to audits. For these small businesses, audits are terrifying, time consuming, and expensive. They are also the functional equivalent of a government shakedown. You see, most small businesses operate above-board. They do their best. But no one is perfect. This is particularly true when you have an awful tax code like ours. It's riddled with exemptions, credits, inconsistencies, and ambiguities. Even CPAs make mistakes. Nearly every time a business is audited, it's no surprise the auditor finds something and when they do, it's usually after wasting weeks of a small business' time and resources. After being put through this, the business owners just want it over. So even if they believe the auditor is wrong, they are unlikely to spend the time and significant resources on attorneys and CPAs necessary to fight the Instead of 46 new auditors at DOR government. Instead, they just pay. Amazingly, this surrender is what the government is counting on. The state budget actually depends on each new auditor bringing in significant revenue each year. I suspect that's part of the reason why the Governor's current budget proposes adding another 46 new auditors (combined with last session, this would amount to 148 total new auditors). It's estimated that each of the 46 new auditors would bring in around $695,000 each year of this biennium ($64M total). In my opinion, that's the wrong way to balance the budget.

to shake down hard-working small business owners, we should authorize 46 new auditors or inspectors general to audit every part of every state agency.

However, we can fix this. Instead of 46 new auditors at DOR to shake down hard-working small business owners, we should authorize 46 new auditors or inspectors general to audit every part of every state agency. As the DOT audit showed, incompetent agencies are wasting billions of dollars. So instead of harassing hard-working small business owners to generate revenue, we can find significantly more money by closely scrutinizing agency budgets. I will not repeat my past mistake. I will not vote for any budget that authorizes even a single new auditor and would be hard pressed to vote for one that doesn't begin to fix the mistake we made in the last budget. In the next few days, I will offer a budget motion to (i) delete the 102 auditors authorized in the last budget; and (ii) amend the current proposal so that the 46 auditors are hired to examine state agencies instead of small businesses.

The City of Milwaukee’s Vacant School Crisis Libby Sobic, Associate Council at Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty

With nearly 40 school buildings empty or operating at less than half capacity, the City of Milwaukee has a vacant school building crisis that is costing taxpayers millions of dollars and denying children the opportunity for a better school. The state legislature must step in to fix this problem once and for all. Student enrollment at Milwaukee Public Schools has declined by 18% in the last 10 years (due to parent choice and demographic changes). This has resulted in an abundance of empty school buildings and some that are operating at less than half capacity. Public charter schools and private schools in the Milwaukee Parental Choice Program (MPCP), however, are looking to expand and they would love to buy these vacant school buildings. But MPS and the City have almost always blocked their attempts, preferring to have buildings sit empty rather than to sell to a “competitor.” For example, St. Marcus, a high performing private school in MPCP, wanted to expand their successful program to an additional campus by purchasing one of three nearby vacant MPS buildings. In 2013, the City and MPS turned down St. Marcus’ offer to purchase Malcolm X School for over $1 million, claiming the building would be turned into retail and apartments (this never materialized). When St. Marcus offered to purchase Lee for $800,000 in 2014, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett countered by demanding that St. Marcus pay an additional $1.3 million because it was in the MPCP. Lee Elementary School

Years Vacant: 2009-2015, Nov. 2016 - present (6 years) Taxpayer Dollars Spent: $275,758

In 2015, Republicans had seen enough. Led by State Sen. Alberta Darling and Rep.

Dale Kooyenga, the state legislature passed the Surplus Property Law to force the City to sell its empty school buildings to private and charter schools. This was supposed to solve the problem. But it didn’t. A recent report by the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) explains how politicians and bureaucrats in the City are refusing to follow state law, protecting MPS and continuing the never-ending vacant school building problem. In the last 10 years, Milwaukee taxpayers have spent over $10.2 million on maintenance for empty buildings. The City’s refusal to follow state law is a scandal, by any definition. For example, the City refuses to list all of the vacant and underutilized school buildings for sale. According to its website, only 5 of the approximately 15 empty school buildings are listed for sale. And the City lists no buildings for sales that are underutilized even though there are 24 school buildings operating at less than half capacity. In addition, the City is still allowing MPS to decide which buildings qualify as vacant, by playing a “shell game” of classifying some vacant buildings as being for storage or future development (which then never happens) However, based on those classification the City does not list the building as being available for sale. The City also makes it as hard as possible to purchase buildings, by creating additional hurdles, unnecessary delays and ignoring state mandated deadlines. Consider Right Step, a Milwaukee Parental Choice Program school that predominately serves children expelled from MPS. By all accounts, Milwaukee needs more “Right Steps” – schools that give children one last chance for an education. But they were denied the ability to purchase Centro del Nino, an empty building, with the City coordinating with opponents of education reform to prevent Right Step from getting the building.

The only sale of a vacant school in the last two years was to Rocketship, an independent charter school seeking to expand. But there was a catch. In exchange for the ability to purchase the building from the City, the Common Council required the new Rocketship campus to be chartered by MPS (as opposed to UWM or other independent charterers. This type of leverage exerted by MPS (and permitted by the City) was not the intent of the Surplus Property Law. It is indisputable that Milwaukee has a struggling education system. According to the state report card, there are more than 23,000 children enrolled in 41 MPS failing schools. The overall graduation rate is 58.2 percent. MPS struggles with less than 14% of children proficient in reading and only 19% of children proficient in English. The City should be supporting the sale of these vacant school buildings to private and charter schools in order to give Milwaukee children more opportunities to attend a high performing school and relieve the unnecessary burden on Milwaukee taxpayers to maintain the vacant

Centro del Nino Years Vacant: 2006-2017 (11 years) Taxpayer Dollars Spent: $105,320.00

buildings. Fortunately, this issue has, once again, captured the attention of Republican legislators with State Senator Alberta Darling and Representative Dale Kooyenga announcing that they would try once again to solve this problem. Senator Darling lamented that: “Every day in Milwaukee, kids walk past taxpayer-funded empty school buildings or ride buses across town at great expense because these vacant schools remain unsold. It's not fair to taxpayers and it's certainly not fair to the children and parents." State Rep. Dale Kooyenga blasted City officials, calling the school buildings fiasco “an empty shrine to a bureaucratic disregard for children and taxpayers.” The business community should support these state legislators because children and taxpayers in Milwaukee deserve better than the status quo.

ABOUT Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty An old military adage calls for the cavalry to “ride to the sound of the guns.” As a tactic, it has both its strengths and weaknesses. As a sentiment, it is a call for courageous engagement. At the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty, we hope to answer that call. Through education, litigation, and participation in public discourse, we seek to advance the public interest in the rule of law, individual liberty, constitutional government, and a robust civil society. We strive to do so, moreover, in partnership with like-minded individuals and organizations – often our clients – who are committed to classical liberalism and constitutional government. We recognize that these ideals are neither Democratic nor Republican, but American. Our focus is primarily, if not exclusively, on Wisconsin – a state that has become one of the focal points of our ongoing debate about the proper role of the government within society and of the courts within government. As a non-profit and non-partisan organization, we litigate in the areas of property rights, the freedom to earn a living, voting rights, regulation, taxation, school choice, and religious freedom. As an educational organization, we strive to advance the debate concerning law and public policy in these and other areas.



The Repeal and Replace Debacle On Friday March 24, 2017 House Speaker Paul Ryan announced that the Republican American Health Care Act to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) was being pulled from consideration on the House floor due to a lack of votes. Unfortunately, this means that for the foreseeable future, Obamacare will continue to limp along as the law of the land. It will be 7 years ago, this November that Republicans retook control of the House of Representatives and made gains in the United States Senate on the promise of fighting a growing unchecked federal bureaucracy under President Obama and repealing and replacing Obamacare. At the same time, Republicans at the state level around the country were celebrating unprecedented wins in state houses and governorships as well. Despite President Obama winning a second term in 2012 and Senate Democrats expanding their majority, Republicans hung on to their majority in the House of Representatives. By 2014 Republicans made significant gains in the United States Senate and were firmly in control of both houses. What again led to those Republican victories in 2014? The promise of fighting the growth of an unchecked federal bureaucracy and repealing and replacing Obamacare. Then, the curious case of the 2016 elections happened. Trump wins, Ryan is still Speaker and although many thought the Senate was going to flip, Republicans managed to hang on to a razor thin majority, putting the GOP firmly in control of our federal government. What again was among the winning issues being touted by Republicans? Fighting an unchecked federal bureaucracy and repealing and replacing Obamacare!

Eric Searing, Special Consultant for the IBAW

So now, as a governing party, the GOP faced it’s first real opportunity to fulfill a major campaign promise that has been in the making for almost 7 years and it fell short. To say a lot of people are disappointed with this would be an understatement. In the aftermath of this debacle, many conservative and libertarian commentators are performing political autopsies of what just happened. Some are blaming Paul Ryan, some are blaming Trump, some are blaming both and that isn’t even touching on what is being said about the House Freedom Caucus, Republican moderates and Rand Paul. So, this begs the question on everyone’s mind who wants to see a full repeal of Obamacare, why does this have to be so hard? For the sake of brevity, I will touch on a couple of reasons. The first is that while Republicans appeared to be united in their opposition to Obamacare, they never seemed to really find any consensus on what should replace it. That is particularly frustrating when organizations like the Cato Institute, the Heritage Foundation and others having been offering up suggestions for years on what policy elements should be part of a future healthcare reform package. On top of this, there was the issue of what was going to be in the final version of the bill. With Speaker Ryan and President Trump trying to get a deal put together, there was a lot of confusion about which parts of the American Health Care Act were going to stand and which were not. I think most of us can recall Nancy Pelosi’s famous quote regarding the passage of Obamacare, “we have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it.” Well, Republican Congressman Chris Collins of New York said virtually the same thing about the American Health Care Act in an interview on MSNBC, “And once we get it done, and then we can have the chance to really explain it.” When you start sounding like Nancy Pelosi talking about Obamacare, you’ve failed at having a winning message. Lastly, this ain’t your Daddy’s GOP. As author Matt Lewis, has penned, “Republicans are in the midst of a decade-long identity crisis.” In terms of being a governing party at the federal level, I agree with him. The same Republican Party that is home to moderates like Maine Senator Susan Collins is also home to the House Freedom Caucus and Senators such as Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. In the end, even if this bill would have passed the House of Representatives, I am not sure that it would have survived the Senate. Where do they go from here? To be honest I’m not sure. The stakes are certainly higher now for the President and GOP leaders in Congress to get a major tax reform bill done next. I do think that if Republicans don’t take another shot at getting some form of health care reform legislation passed in the future, they might be getting repealed and replaced by the voters.

: S E L A S

2nd Monday of the Month SALES ROUNDTABLE 7:30 am - 9:00 am Free & open to IBAW members only Register at

Sales can be a tough road of ups, downs, potholes and a few bumps. But it can also be fast paced, exhilarating and rewarding. If you’re in sales, you know there are things only other sales people understand; the thrill of scoring the big account, the uncertainty of “let me think about that.”, the frustration of phone calls or emails that don’t get returned. IBAW’s Sales Roundtable is a support and knowledge resource for sales professionals, business owners, marketing and branding experts who are charged with driving sales. Join us to discuss the strategy, tactics, inspiration, and motivation to increase sales. It’s a FREE benefit of your membership! Who should attend: • Sales professionals of any level. • Business owners • Sales Managers • Marketing & P.R. Professionals

“For many years I ran sales meetings for as few as 3 and as many as 22 sales rep’s now I can go as a participant once a month to IBAW’s Sales Roundtable.

BONUS! Join the IBAW Sales Roundtable and get a compact disc with the BEST in Sales Survival Music. Play it to pump you up before that big meeting or to console you if you hit a sales slump. Guaranteed to make life better.

It’s a focused meeting and everyone wants the same thing – to be more effective at selling.” - Jerry Wick, CEO, Custom Data Too Mail

3rd Annual...

Sporting Clay Shoot

Get Your Team Together!

Location: Waukehsa Gun Club * More Fun! * More Prizes! * More Food! A Great Place To Network! Register at

MAY 12

11:30 am - 4:00 pm

The Issues Impacting Wisconsin Business One of the hallmarks of the IBAW is to keep business owners informed on important topics coming out of Madison in Washington D.C.. The IBAW has released topics we feel are important to you and give you the challenges and opportunities for each. Many of these issues can be complex. It’s IBAW’s job to distill down issues and present them in a manner that’s easy to understand and quick to read. Read these White Paper Issues at our website:


Durable Goods Report: Still Waiting for a Turnaround in Business Investment Raymond J. Keating, SBC Council, Washington D.C.

The February durable goods report offers a mixed, at best, story on private business investment. In fact, there are some key points that generate continued concerns. Read why the durable goods report is an important indicator for the economy here. The top line report from the U.S. Census Bureau was: “New orders for manufactured durable goods in February increased $3.9 billion or 1.7 percent to $235.4 billion… This increase, up two consecutive months, followed a 2.3 percent January increase. Excluding transportation, new orders increased 0.4 percent. Excluding defense, new orders increased 2.1 percent.” The numbers excluding transportation and defense are looked at because those areas tend to be very volatile. But there’s more to weigh. Non defense capital goods excluding aircraft is a noteworthy number because it provides a measure of private investment in equipment and software, which accounts for a significant share of private investment in the GDP report. Non defense capital goods excluding aircraft shipment numbers provide some information about output in the current quarter, and orders provide some indications for future investment. So, non defense capital goods excluding aircraft shipments in February were up 1.0 percent, after a decline of 0.3 percent in January. As for orders, they were down by 0.1 percent in February, and up by only 0.1 percent in January. These generally are not positive indicators for nonresidential fixed investment – that is, business investment – in the first quarter of 2017, or coming quarters. And keep in mind that for all of 2016, real nonresidential fixed investment actually declined by 0.5 percent. It was the first decline since the recession year of 2009. A return to sustained, robust economic growth requires strong private-sector investment. That has been lacking for a decade now, and some important data in the latest durable goods report do not point to a turnaround just yet. Of course, changes on the policy front – such as pro-investment, pro-growth tax and regulatory relief and reform – can change this outlook in a substantive way.  But substantial movement and action on these policies still need to occur to turn around these sluggish numbers. _______ Raymond J. Keating is chief economist for the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council. Keating’s latest book published by SBE Council is titled Unleashing Small Business Through IP:  The Role of Intellectual Property in Driving Entrepreneurship, Innovation and Investment and it is available free on SBE Council’s website here.

More information at


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If You Wish To Bond With Your Customers, Have a Story To Tell About Your Brand Scott Seroka, Seroka Brand Development and Consulting / Strategic Communications Everyone loves a good story. And if you happen to be an entrepreneur, you most certainly have an inspiring one to tell. Stories bond people together. Stories build trust, add credibility, they all have a message and teach us lessons. When you go to a party or an event, the person with the largest draw is usually the one telling a good story. And the number one way to captivate an audience during a speech or presentation is with, yes, you guessed it, a good story. Most importantly, stories move us. Whenever we win a new client, the first thing I do is ask the owner how s/he got into his or her business and how s/he started their company. Nearly all entrepreneurs started their business on a kitchen table or in their garage. But from there, I hear about the struggles, the defeats and of course, the triumphs. And in most cases, the struggles and defeats were many and dire enough that others may have succumbed to defeat and thrown in the towel. Building a business is not for the weak hearted or the thin skinned. Business ownership is about daily survival even when a business is enjoying record quarters. These are the reasons why each story I hear is one of inspiration, and I always learn something not only about how to grow and build a business, but also about the character, strength and mental toughness of the person telling his or her story to me. If I never asked the owner of the business to tell their story and just focused on what the company does, it’s unique value propositions and its mission, it would be impossible for me to understand the brand. We’ve all heard time and time again that people are emotional beings, and hence buy largely for emotional reasons. If you don’t tell your story, your brand has no emotion and no personality. If your brand has no personality, you won’t be able to truly bond with your customers. Will everyone who connects with your brand read your story? Of course not. However, what I can tell you is that more than half the people I meet have read my bio and ask about my experience at The Second City. That’s enough evidence for me.

Types of stories worth telling Aside from the story of how you started your company, consider sharing stories about: 1. How you came up with a winning idea or solution to a customer problem 2. The tough decisions you made as you built your business 3. Your fights / your darkest hours 4. Your triumphs / your brightest hours 5. Your failures – not only is it humbling, it makes you human and everyone can relate 6. How you succeeded when everyone said you would fail 7. How your products have changed people’s lives 8. The many ways your company and products benefit your customers’ customers 9. Lessons you’ve learned as a business owner 10. How you came up with your brand name 11. Anything else compelling you wish to tell

Brilliant Examples of Brand Stories TOMS Shoes was founded by Blake Mycoskie who witnessed the hardships faced by children growing up without shoes while traveling in Argentina in 2006. “Wanting to help, he created TOMS Shoes, a company that would match every pair of shoes purchased with a new pair of shoes for a child in need.” To date, Toms has given more than 50 million pairs of shoes to children in need. For the full story, click here. Ford Motor Company owns one of the greatest brand turnaround stories of our time. For nearly a century, Ford Motor Co. was synonymous with quality American manufacturing. However, complacency, competition and failing to adapt to the changing consumer almost killed it – that is, until Ford and its leaders righted the ship by making risky, bold, yet very necessary changes, such as trimming back its product line and placing a sharp focus on innovation. Yet, despite the progress Ford made, it suffered a loss of nearly $15 billion in the 2007 global financial meltdown. But in the end, Ford persevered and won the admiration of the country because, unlike GM and Chrysler, it didn’t take advantage of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) “bailout” funds. In 2010, the company roared past earnings forecasts and posted its best quarter since 1998. So, I ask you, what’s your story?




Human Resources: CEO Prescreens Applicants Mike Miller, Independent Journal Review

This story originally appeared in the Independent Journal Review website.

Kyle Reyes, CEO of The Silent Partner Marketing, a marketing consulting firm in Manchester, Connecticut, was tired of interviewing “whiney, complaining” job applicants. So he did what any ingenious CEO would do. Reyes developed a “snowflake test” designed to weed them out. The CEO told Fox Business Network anchor Stuart Varney that after he released a video taking on “whiney, complaining” college students, he was swamped with job applications, so he came up with the screening tool. “A snowflake is somebody who is going to whine and complain and come to the table with nothing but an entitled attitude and an inability to back their perspective. We used it to sort of weed out the people who were inundating us with resumes and didn’t even know what we do for work." Some of the questions, as reported by Lifezette: • What are your feelings about employees or clients carrying guns? • Should “trigger warnings” be issued before we release content for clients or the company that might be considered “controversial”? • How do you feel about police? • What are your thoughts on the current college environment as it pertains to a future workforce? • What does “faith” mean to you? • You see someone stepping on an American flag. What happens next? Reyes posted the entire Snowflake Test on his Facebook page, earlier this week - see next page. And how effective has it been, you ask? Reyes told Varney that 60 percent of interviewees have been eliminated by the process. As Reyes told Lifezette, he's “just here to make marketing great again!”

Here are the full Snow Flake Pre application Questions

1. Outside of standard benefits, what benefits should a company offer employees? 2. What should the national minimum wage be? 3. How many sick days should be given to employees? 4. How often should employees get raises? 5. How do you feel about guns? 6. What are your feelings about employees or clients carrying guns? 7. What are your feelings about safe spaces in challenging work environments? 8. In a creative environment like The Silent Partner Marketing, what do you envision work attire looking like? 9. Should “trigger warnings” be issued before we release content for clients or the company that might be considered “controversial”? 10. How do you feel about police? 11. If you owned the company and were to find out that a client is operating unethically but was a high paying client… how would you handle it? 12. When was the last time you cried and why? 13. You arrive at an event for work and there’s a major celebrity you’ve always wanted to meet. What happens next? 14. What’s your favorite kind of adult beverage? 15. What’s the best way to communicate with clients? 16. What’s your favorite thing to do in your free time? 17. What are your thoughts on the current college environment as it pertains to a future workforce? 18. What’s your typical breakfast? 19. What’s your favorite drink when you go to a coffeehouse? 20. How do you handle bullies? 21. How do you handle it when your ideas are shot down? 22. What do you do if a coworker comes to the table with an idea and it sucks? 23. What does the first amendment mean to you? 24. What does faith mean to you? 25. Who is your role model and why? 26. "You're in Starbucks with two friends. Someone runs in and says someone is coming in with a gun in 15 seconds to shoot patrons. They offer you a gun. Do you take it? What do you do next?" 27. What does America mean to you? 28. You see someone stepping on an American flag. What do you do? 29. What does “privilege” mean to you? 30. What’s more important? Book smarts or street smarts? Why?

IBAW is on an upward trend of growth and we are actively recruiting businesses just like yours to join! When you join IBAW your entire company is a member - anyone from your team can attend our fine educational and networking events. Help yourself, your business AND your Team Members. Come on in...we’re open for business!

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2017 Membership Committee welcomes Jeanie Brown, Katie Ross and Mike Poludniak as new committee members!

Craig Coursin Stier Construction

Scott Seroka Seroka Branding

Charles Fry Robert W. Baird

Mary Stark Waddell & Reed

Dan Hansen Waukesha State Bank

Legislative Fix Moving Ahead for Wisconsin’s New Manufacturing & Agricultural Credit Jim Brandenburg, CPA, MST - Sikich LLP

In IBAW meetings and publications in recent years we have introduced you to Wisconsin’s new tax incentive - the Wisconsin Manufacturing and Agriculture Credit (referred to as the “MAC”). The MAC came about in 2011 to provide an incentive for Wisconsin manufacturers and agricultural companies to remain and grow here, and also perhaps to have out-of-state companies move here.  It was scheduled to begin in 2013, and when fully phased-in by 2016 it would essentially exempt any Wisconsin manufacturing and agricultural income from Wisconsin income tax.  The MAC was championed by Representative Dale Kooyenga and Senator Glenn Grothman in the legislature. 

Magazine Content Needed Consider Submitting an Article!

The MAC, however, had some problems for individual taxpayers when it was drafted and this glitch was recently identified. Here is the issue in a nutshell: the MAC would reduce a taxpayer’s Wisconsin individual income tax, but then would trigger a Wisconsin minimum tax for nearly the same amount.  Thus, there may be little, if any, net savings for the MAC in 2013 (a “MAC Attack?”).  The legislature is trying to remedy this situation now so that taxpayers can realize the proper tax savings with the MAC on their 2013 Wisconsin individual tax returns. 

The IBAW magazine is in need of content, we rely on our members and sponsors to supply us informative articles. The digital magazine is sent out to over 650 contacts statewide and the magazine is parked on the web where, on average, it gets over 1100 views.

Legislative Update: It seems that all key legislative leaders are now on board to correct this issue.  It was approved by the legislature’s Joint Finance Committee last week.  The Senate and Assembly will be in session in March and voting on final passage for several bills, one of which is this tax bill with the MAC correction.  It looks like the legislative timetable will have the bill passed near the middle of the March, before going to the Governor.  Thus, a best guess now is that the bill would be enacted into law somewhere in the latter half of March, 2014.    MAC Attack Options:  For any of our individual taxpayers taking advantage of the MAC, this may present some filings logistics.  Here are the possibilities:

1. Best case scenario - in some cases the taxpayer’s share of the MAC for 2013 will be used and not result in a Wisconsin Minimum Tax. A taxpayer in this situation could go ahead and claim the MAC and file their 2013 Wisconsin individual return.  There would be no need to wait for the legislation to pass.  

Consider writing an article on a timely business related topic to your particular field of business. This is an outstanding opportunity for you and your company to gain exposure and increase your brand awareness to a statewide audience. There is no cost to submitting an article.

2. Next, a taxpayer has generated a MAC for 2013, but it will trigger a Wisconsin Minimum Tax. The taxpayer in this case could wait until the law is changed (and then wait a little for the WDR to update its computer processing systems) and then file their Wisconsin tax return and claim the MAC, and not incur the Wisconsin Minimum Tax.  This could present a tight timeline for the April 15 deadline, and you may need to file for an extension.

3. Similar case as #2, but this taxpayer could file their Wisconsin individual return with the MAC, but also incur and pay a Wisconsin Minimum Tax for 2013. Then, once the corrective law is enacted go back and file an amended 2013 Wisconsin tax return to obtain the proper tax benefit of the MAC.  You would not need extend, but you would need to amend. We’ll keep you posted as this legislation moves forward.  If you have any questions, please contact Jim Brandenburg or Brian Kelley at Sikich, LLP in Brookfield (262)754-9400.  

Contact Steve Kohlmann for details.

Articles submitted by our members & sponsors.

Welcome New IBAW Members!

Meeting Recaps 2014 Wisconsin Manufacturing Knowledge Summit

Power Test

On June 20, 2014 the IBAW partnered with the Tool, Die & Machining Association of Wisconsin (TDMAW) to offer Wisconsin manufacturers and their suppliers a unique look at trends within the industry and to also report on some of the challenges the industry faces in the next 5 years.

Power Test, Inc. is an industry leader in the design, manufacture and implementation of dynamometers and control systems.

Special thanks to the event sponsor, First Business Bank for their efforts in helping organize this event.

For more than 37 years, Power Test has provided specialized test equipment to manufacturers, rebuilding facilities and distributors globally. Our products can be found in use at these facilities in nearly 100 countries on six continents.

Chris Halaska

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Our headquarters and manufacturing operations are located in Sussex, WI with sales representatives worldwide. Our unparalleled customer service is well known throughout the industry. Power Test employs a dedicated staff of talented machinists, fabricators, electronic technicians, assemblers, designers, engineers, software developers, and administrative and customer service personnel. Our exceptional product life and excellent customer service is well known throughout the industry and has made us one of the industryleading dynamometer manufacturers. Our dedication to the customer and to the advances in powertrain component testing keep us there.

Power Test N60 W22700 Silver Spring Drive Sussex, WI 53089 Phone: 262-252-4301

4 Advanced Waste Services Advanced Waste Services is an environmental services company that provides wastewater recycling and other waste and risk elimination services to manufacturers in all industries.  Each day, AWS helps hundreds of businesses, both large and small, meet their community and environmental obligations.   Annually, we collect, treat and recycle more than 50 million gallons of contaminated wastewater into clean, reusable water and other valuable resources like fuel, steam and electricity.     AWS is constantly helping our clients manage, reinvent and improve their sustainability successes.   For example, we recently partnered with Forest County Advanced Waste Services Potawatomi Community to help Wisconsin food and beverage manufacturers convert 1126 South 76th Street food waste into clean, green renewable energy. Suite N408B   West Allis, WI 53214 Founded in 1993, AWS employs 55 people in the Milwaukee area and a total of 150   people companywide in 5 states.    414-847-7100

Photo Key 1: A full house in the main ballroom of the Wisconsin Club as IBAW & TDMAW members prepare to hear about the state of manufacturing and the challenges the industry faces in the workforce.


2: David Vetta of First Business Bank delivers opening remarks and highlights the importance of a strong relationship between banking and manufacturing working together for success. 3: New IBAW President, John Weber of Hypneumat addresses the change in IBAW Bylaws and calls for voting in new board officers. 4: Kent Lorenz of Acieta gives the main presentation on “Manufacturing Matters” pointing out the trends on manufacturing now and what to expect in the future. 5: Outgoing IBAW President, Steve Van Lieshout receives his award for his efforts as 2013 - 2014.

6 Photos courtesy of Tim Townsend.

6: IBAW Executive Director, Steve Kohlmann (Left) presents David Drumel with an award for his service on the IBAW board.

Spotlight on new members

Get Connected. Get Inspired. Get Informed.


Click on their name to visit their website.

AT&T ITU AbsorbTech Park Bank Blomquist Benefits Advantage + Bank Mutual Waddell & Reed Sikich Lauber CFO’s RW Baird von Briesen Vrakas Integrated Health Network of Wisconsin Simandl Law Group, S.C. Boerke Co. Hansen Reynolds Dickinson Crueger Rickert Industries BSI - Design, Build, Furnish Letterhead Press

MSI General Contractors BMO Harris Powertest Red Elephant Chocolate Wisconsin Lutheran College Reinhart, Boerner, Van Deuren, S.C. Hypneumat Mfg Sta Electric River Run Computers Lemberg Electric Sponsor support helps IBAW continue to bring insightful programming to small business owners. Help keep Wisconsin business strong! Ask about becoming a sponsor today!

Thank you to our Corporate Sponsors who make your IBAW programing possible. Click on their logo to visit their website. Senior Sponsors XXXX XXXX XXX XXXX

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As an advocate for small business, the IBAW offers intimate meetings on relevant topics such as Leadership, HR, Sales, and Political Issues. Business Leaders...Leading Business

Join us. “...the sales round table was very informative, Judson will be renewing our membership in the IBAW. Thank you and I look forward to more roundtables!”   Dominic Misasi, Judson and Associates s.c.

“ I almost always come away from an IBAW meeting with useable material that helps me with my business. Many times, a speaker will give me something that applies to ITU AbsorbTech. Other times, it is a conversation over breakfast that gives me value.” Jim Leef, President & CEO, ITU AbsorbTech

“Being involved with a business organization like the IBAW is critical for small business owners in Wisconsin for growth and to have a voice with government.” Rich Meeusen, CEO, Badger Meter.

Education • Networking • Political Advocacy BUSINESS LEADERS...LEADING BUSINESS / 262-844-0333 /


960 Timber Pass Brookfield, WI 53045 Office: 262-844-0333

Membership Application

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IBAW membership is based on the number of full time employees in your company.

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1 - 15 Employees ...............$300.00 16 - 25 Employees ...............$400.00 26 - 49 Employees.................$500.00 50 or more Employees...........$600.00 SPECIAL OPTION: Prepay breakfasts meetings. Get 12 for the price of 10!


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MEMBERSHIP BENEFITS apply to your entire team. • Monthly Sales Roundtable - free with membership • Monthly 5 Star Breakfast Program • C Level Peer to Peer Networking • Monthly Digital Statewide Magazine - free with membership • Informative workshops • Business Behind the Scenes Tour • Legislative Updates & Representation from Madison & Washington, D.C. ...AND MORE!

Paying By Check? Please make check payable to IBAW. Want to pay credit card? If you would like to pay by Visa, MasterCard or American Express, you can pay online at or by calling the IBAW office at 262-844-0333.

IBAW Business Magazine April 2017  

A publication by the IBAW for the small, independent business owners of Wisconsin.

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