Digital health and well-being to be addressed by keynote speaker at Macomb Business Awards

Sick of constantly checking your phone? Find yourself scrolling through Facebook only to see disturbing images and tragic news? Tried to enjoy a dinner with friends who stared at their screens the whole time? If you answered yes to those questions, you’ve probably experienced bursts of what Mark Ostach calls “i-Drenaline”— the 21st century neurotoxin that’s robbing us of the peace, joy and meaningful connections we all crave. Ostach will discuss this and ways to improve digital health at the upcoming Macomb Business Awards on Tuesday, April 23. As the event’s keynote speaker, he’ll help attendees defeat distractions and interruptions in order to become purposely connected to their work and the people around them.

MBA_Invite_2019_3

As background, Ostach works for Skidmore Studio, a creative agency in Detroit. He holds degrees in economics, psychology and technology. Through his speaking engagements, he has become a recognized leader in southeast Michigan – with accolades like recipient of Crain’s Detroit Business 20 in their 20s and Oakland County’s 40 under 40 awards. Ostach is also certified in mental health first aid, is a certified Denizon Consultant in workplace culture and is a past board member for several non-profits related to mental and emotional health. He has presented on these topics for Blue Cross Blue Shield, the University of Michigan, Cranbrook, Henry Ford Health System, the MEDC and TEDx Oakland University. And audience feedback is resoundingly positive:

  • “Packed with powerful insights and takeaways.”
  • “An inspiring message for our connected culture.”
  • “Thought-provoking and funny!”

If this is something you’re interested in experiencing, we ask that you make your reservation for the 7th annual Macomb Business Awards today! Entry is $30 per person and includes breakfast and networking opportunities with more than 400 regional leaders. The event, which will be held at the Sterling Inn Banquet and Conference Center from 8 a.m. – 10 a.m., will also feature Fox 2 Detroit’s Huel Perkins and Charlie Langton as emcees. County Executive Mark A. Hackel will present all of the awards to winners in the following categories:

  • Champion of Work / Life Integration (Sponsored by MetroParent magazine)
  • Corporate Citizen
  • Hidden Gem
  • Manufacturer of the Year
  • Model of OneMacomb
  • Trailblazer of Future Talent

We hope to see you there!

For more information on the Macomb Business Awards, visit www.macombbusiness.com.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

What you should do before, during and after the upcoming professional job fair in Macomb County

Are you looking for your next career opportunity? If you answered yes and you work in the engineering, design, IT/cybersecurity, procurement and project management fields, you might just be in luck – as Macomb County recently announced a professional job fair for individuals working in these areas. The event will take place on Friday, April 12 from noon to 3 p.m. at the Sterling Banquet and Conference Center (34911 Van Dyke, Sterling Heights). It will feature more than 25 companies and organizations that are actively hiring, including BAE Systems, General Dynamics Land Systems, MB Aerospace, R&E Automated Systems and Waltonen Engineering. Interested individuals are asked to register for the free event at www.macombgov.org and those that do so on or before April 8 will receive early bird admittance at 11 a.m.

HiringEvent_TVGraphic2 (1)

So – are you planning to attend? If you are, we found some tips on Monster.com that might help you land that new job:

Before the hiring event

  1. Develop a Strong Resume: Highlight your skills and accomplishments. Your resume should be error-free, concise and graphically pleasing. Don’t forget to make several copies, since you’ll probably visit with more than one employer.
  2. Get or Make Business Cards: You can buy blank business cards at stores like Office Depot, and then use a computer and laser printer to create some personalized cards. List your name, contact information, and perhaps the career you’d like to pursue or your key skills.
  3. Study the Organizations Attending the Fair: Nothing impresses an employer less than a prospective candidate asking, “So what do you guys do?” Instead, be one of the few attendees who know something about each of the companies. The more informed you are, the more likely you will be positively remembered.
  4. Develop a 30-Second Commercial: “Tell me a little about yourself.” You’re likely to get that invitation from many of the employers at the fair. So spend a little time beforehand figuring out your response. Think of your reply as a 30-second, self-promotional commercial you’ll deliver to each employer who asks.

During the hiring event

  1. Introduce Yourself and Shake Hands: In many ways, a career fair is a test of your social skills. While employers are almost always friendly and outgoing, they’ll expect the same of you. If you haven’t done much ice breaking before, practice in advance with a career counselor or friend.
  2. Dress Appropriately: In most cases, you’ll want to dress professionally to attend a career fair. Sometimes business casual is fine, but don’t go too casual. When in doubt, overdress.
  3. Ask Intelligent Questions: If you’ve studied up on the organizations, you’ll probably have some questions you’d like to ask. Not only will you get some answers, but you’ll also show yourself to be someone who does his research.
  4. Focus on What You Can Offer: You’ll be a refreshing change to most company representatives if you tell them what you can do for them and their organizations instead of asking what they can do for you.
  5. Leave Your Resume and Card with Each Representative: Then be sure to grab each representative’s card.

After the hiring event

  1. Take Notes: After the fair concludes, jot down notes about conversations you had with company representatives. If you wait too long, the conversations will start running together in your head, and you’ll forget what you said to whom.
  2. Follow Up on Promises: If, for example, a company representative expressed interest in looking at your Web site, make sure to email the URL like you said you would.
  3. Send Thank-You Notes: Write or email each of the people you met and thank them for their time. Reiterate your interest in the company and your relevant skills and experience. Most job seekers fail to take this simple step, often losing out in the end to those who did express their thanks.

If you have any questions about the upcoming hiring event in Macomb County, which is being hosted by Macomb County Planning and Economic Development, the Macomb County Chamber and Michigan Works!, contact Janice Loftis at jloftis@macomb-stclairworks.org or at 586-738-9034. Good luck!

**The above tips were pulled from an article on Monster.com here: https://www.monster.com/career-advice/article/learn-to-work-a-career-fair.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Panel to discuss recruiting talent in the cybersecurity industry

As we all know, cybercrime is a serious issue. Every day there seems to be another attack by hackers or some other entity looking to cause harm through scams, identity theft or assaults on computer systems. We are all at risk, so we must all be prepared and take preventative measures to secure ourselves. Larger entities like businesses and government institutions must do the same. In their case, building a team of cybersecurity professionals is paramount for protection. But how do these organizations find the right people to fill these roles? If you’ve ever asked yourself this question, we recommend attending the April 3 MADCAT panel discussion on recruiting cybersecurity talent. During the event, panelists will answer this and many other questions about the industry.

madcat

Experts include:

  • David Blaine, information security section manager, General Dynamics Land Systems – David Blaine is an information security section manager with General Dynamics Land Systems. Here he focuses on security design and architecture, server and application hardening, security and risk governance and regulatory compliance.
  • Justin Montalbano, cybersecurity lab tech technical manager, Aptiv – Justin Montalbano is a cybersecurity lab technical manager with experience in the medical, manufacturing and automotive industries. An ethical hacker since a young age, he is well-versed in various aspects of the internet, networking and mobile. He also has experience in managing testing teams, R&D, training, awareness, tool and process development.
  • Kristie Pfosi, senior manager, Automotive Cybersecurity, Mitsubishi Electric Automotive America – Kristie Pfosi is a well-respected policy maker and program manager with deep technology expertise. She has been a champion for best practices in cybersecurity for over a decade as a technical intelligence officer at the CIA and as an OEM employee, most notably helping FCA shore up their cybersecurity practice after one of their vehicles was infamously hacked. Her wide-ranging background in automotive also includes designing minivan seats, developing advanced service diagnostic tools and working on internal combustion engine technology at companies like Magna and MAHLE Powertrain. Today she is responsible for creating and implementing processes and methodologies for global incident responses, vulnerability management and risk assessments at Mitsubishi Electric Automotive America. Her work also involves developing and integrating cybersecurity protection into advanced vehicle electronics with a focus on defense-in-depth and next-generation security.
  • Brett Snellgrove, recruiter, Global Talent Acquisition, General Motors – Brett Snellgrove grew up in Metro Detroit and is a human resources and recruiting professional with over 15 years of experience working as both an executive search consultant for Accretive Solutions and a talent acquisition partner with General Motors. He possesses the knowledge and passion to help clients in all industries hire exceptional talent across a broad range of functions, including: information technology, engineering, marketing, human resources and executive leadership

The panel discussion will take place from 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m. during the NDIA Michigan Defense Expo (MDEX) at the Macomb Community College Sports and Expo Center (14500 E. 12 Mile Road, Warren). There is no cost to attend or to walk the expo hall, but pre-registration is encouraged. For more details on MDEX: http://www.ndia-mich.org/events/michigan-defense-expo. To register for the panel discussion, click here.

About MADCAT: The Michigan Automotive and Defense Cyber Awareness Team (MADCAT) was established in 2014 to promote our state as a world leader cybersecurity mobility through innovation, business growth, and talent development. http://www.madcat.org

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Nomination countdown: Categories to consider for the Macomb Business Awards

The deadline to submit your company — or a company you are familiar with — in the Macomb Business Awards is tomorrow (March 15) at 11:59 p.m. Have you entered yet? If you answered no, then I ask you to consider one of the following categories and get your nomination in!

MBA_NewLogo (1)

  • Champion of Work / Life Integration – offering innovative benefits that enable employees to balance work responsibilities with personal passions (Sponsored by MetroParent magazine).
  • Corporate Citizen – providing meaningful support to our community through service and/or philanthropy.
  • Hidden Gem – uncovering a unique Made-in-Macomb product or place that more people should know about.
  • Manufacturer of the Year – in recognition of a manufacturer of any size that is achieving success through its efforts to diversify its customer base, retain employees and/or implement new technologies or efficiencies.
  • Model of OneMacomb – cultivating an environment where diversity is valued as evidenced by inclusive practices.
  • Trailblazer of Future Talent – creating partnerships that provide opportunities for the next generation of our workforce to explore career possibilities and experience work-based learning.

Some categories have appeared in previous years of the Macomb Business Awards – but new this year are the Hidden Gem and Champion of Work/Life categories. As described above, the Hidden Gem showcases a unique Made-in-Macomb product or place that people may not be aware of. The Champion of Work/Life Integration (sponsored by MetroParent) focuses on different criteria – benefits that companies offer their employees that boost quality of life. For instance, some businesses provide family benefits like paid maternity or paternity leave or childcare services. Another benefit is flexible schedules. This allows an employee to work remotely or to set their own in-office hours. Whatever the benefits are, the ultimate goal is helping employees find balance between their personal lives and their work. And this category will recognize a business or organization that does just that.

DSC_0241

So – do any of these categories or the ones listed above fit your company or one you know? Visit our easy application and get started today. Simply fill out the forms, craft your descriptions and your business will be in the running! But remember, the cut off is Friday, March 15 at 11:59 p.m.!

For more information on the April 23 event, visit www.MacombBusiness.com/bizawards.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

How to craft a winning nomination for the Macomb Business Awards

The March 15 nomination deadline for the Macomb Business Awards is approaching quickly! So if you know of or work for a business that fits one of the award categories, we highly recommend submitting them for consideration! Categories include:

  • Champion of Work / Life Integration – offering innovative benefits that enable employees to balance work responsibilities with personal passions (Sponsored by MetroParent magazine).
  • Corporate Citizen – providing meaningful support to our community through service and/or philanthropy.
  • Hidden Gem – uncovering a unique Made-in-Macomb product or place that more people should know about.
  • Manufacturer of the Year – in recognition of a manufacturer of any size that is achieving success through its efforts to diversify its customer base, retain employees and/or implement new technologies or efficiencies.
  • Model of OneMacomb – cultivating an environment where diversity is valued as evidenced by inclusive practices.
  • Trailblazer of Future Talent – creating partnerships that provide opportunities for the next generation of our workforce to explore career possibilities and experience work-based learning.

MBA_NewLogo (1)

Now that you know the categories, you may be wondering how you go about creating and submitting a nomination. Which is why we put together a simple guide that will help you along the way! Here’s what you need to know:

Nomination evaluation

Incoming nominations are prepared for a panel of judges with a simple set of instructions for scoring each one:

  • Please rate each 300-word summary on a scale from one to five with five being the highest possible score:
    • 5 = Uses qualitative and quantitative evidence to succinctly describe how company accomplishments fit award criteria. Provides measurable and impressive results.  This company provides a summary that could serve as a “case study” or “blueprint” for others who might be inspired to accomplish similar goals.
    • 4 = Describes how accomplishments meet the criteria using both qualitative and quantitative examples. Results are measurable and admirable.
    • 3 = Provides a description of how company fits criteria but fails to include measurable results.
    • 2 = Provides anecdotal evidence of how company fits criteria. Actual results are unclear.
    • 1 = The summary, as provided, does not clearly communicate a match to the criteria.

Sample

As an example of a high-scoring nomination, the following 239-word summary was submitted by the company selected as the 2018 Model of OneMacomb:

When AGS opened a new facility in Sterling Heights, we invested in a building, a community and our employees. Back in the summer of 2013, we needed 150-200 employees to build bumper systems for General Motors trucks. We partnered with Michigan Staffing and Macomb Community College on hiring and training initiatives and were able to establish a diverse workforce that includes many Iraqi refugees. About 80-85% of our workforce is Iraqi or of Arabic descent. There is a strong sense of community at AGS and we feel blessed with this workforce. We want to develop long-lasting relationships because without these employees, we wouldn’t have a business. Since many of our employees do not speak English, AGS translates documents, offers English as a Second Language classes on-site and have hired a full time translator to work in the Human Resource Department.

Our organization strongly believes in promoting within. We are proud of the numerous employees that have moved up the ranks at AGS. All of them started as general laborers making minimum wage, and have developed into leaders within our organization – Team Leaders, Production Supervisors, Maintenance Technicians and Manufacturing Engineers. AGS also partners with the Judson Center’s Disability Service program which helps adults with intellectual and physical disabilities find independence and inclusion in the community by providing meaningful employment. We continue to invest in our core values of team work and cooperation, which will lead to continual success at AGS!

Why it worked

The company explained how they cultivate an environment where diversity is valued. They also offered specific information on their inclusive practices and how those deliver measurable results. They told a great story in less than 300 words.

DSC_5573

So now that you know how to submit a winning nomination, visit our easy application and get started today. Remember – March 15 is the deadline for 2019 submissions. Simply fill out the forms, craft your descriptions and your business will be in the running!

For more information on the April 23 event, visit www.MacombBusiness.com/bizawards.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

How the Macomb Business Awards helped land a local start up on the NBC Nightly News

There are many reasons to nominate your organization for a Macomb Business Award. Whether you are looking to celebrate an achievement with the community, hoping to network with other local businesses or wanting to exhibit your company’s expertise, the event can help your business achieve several promotional goals. There’s even a chance to be featured on local media outlets, and if you’re lucky, national ones as well. Bakes and Kropp, a 2016 Macomb Business Award winner, can attest to that.

MBA_NewLogo (1)

Bakes and Kropp is a custom cabinetry company that designs and manufactures luxury kitchens, vanities, libraries and closets. Their high-end cabinetry is built in a 30,000-square-foot production facility in Mount Clemens and sold at three showrooms in the New York area as well as through a dealer in Plymouth, Michigan.

According to co-founder Paul Kropp, a benefit of being located in Macomb County is the area’s talented workforce and solid work ethic. Traditionally an area dominated by automotive manufacturing, Kropp sees the excitement employees have when they get to work on something different. The presence of the auto industry also means that there is no shortage of experienced metalworkers for the company’s chrome plating or metal fabrication needs, allowing them to create truly unique wooden and metallic products.

At the end of 2015, Bakes and Kropp was nominated for the Macomb Business Awards in the ‘Startup Business to Watch’ category. As an organization that that had been operating for less than four years with more than two full-time employees, they fit the qualifications for the award, but they weren’t sure they’d win. Kropp said at the time that this uncertainty was driven by the other competing businesses, but when their company name was announced as the recipient, he was thrilled.

“I enjoyed the whole process,” he said. “The ceremony was well done, and it was a huge morale booster for the company.”

DSC_0380

Upon receiving the award, Bakes and Kropp was mentioned in several local newspaper articles and listed on MacombBusiness.com. This sparked the interest of an NBC Nightly News producer who was covering the 2016 presidential campaign in the Midwest. After researching Bakes and Kropp, the producer reached out and asked about hosting a televised roundtable at its Mount Clemens facility. Company leadership agreed to the opportunity and soon Lester Holt and the NBC news team descended on the Macomb County business. The crew got to experience the business first-hand while filming the special, which was eventually broadcast across the country. According to Kropp, it was exciting to meet a celebrity and receive exposure on a national level.

While there is no guarantee your company will be mentioned in national news, if you nominate your organization for the Macomb Business Awards you can count on a delicious breakfast, an inspirational guest speaker and the chance to take home one of six prestigious honors, including:

  • Trailblazer of Future Talent – creating partnerships that provide opportunities for the next generation of our workforce to explore career possibilities and experience work-based learning.
  • Corporate Citizen – providing meaningful support to our community through service and/or philanthropy.
  • Champion of Work / Life Integration – offering innovative benefits that enable employees to balance work responsibilities with personal passions (Sponsored by MetroParent magazine).
  • Model of OneMacomb – cultivating an environment where diversity is valued as evidenced by inclusive practices.
  • Hidden Gem – uncovering a unique Made-in-Macomb product or place that more people should know about.
  • Manufacturer of the Year – in recognition of a manufacturer of any size that is achieving success through its efforts to diversify its customer base, retain employees and/or implement new technologies or efficiencies.

March 15 is the deadline for nominations. Simply fill out our easy application and you’ll be in the running!

For more information on the April 23 event, visit www.MacombBusiness.com/bizawards.

*Parts of this story originally appeared in a Macomb Business blog from 2017.

Submit your nominations now for the 7th annual Macomb Business Awards

The annual Macomb Business Awards are undergoing a few changes this year – and that includes the date of the event. As part of a larger shift in plans, the awards will be held Tuesday, April 23, but at its core, the 7th annual program remains the same. The event will recognize organizations that are striving to build a capable workforce, tap new markets, cultivate a welcoming workplace or give back to the community.  A Macomb County Economic Development Partner of the Year will also be honored.

MBA_NewLogo (1)

Several new features, such as a new logo, a keynote speaker and new award categories have also been developed. Those categories include:

  • Trailblazer of Future Talent – creating partnerships that provide opportunities for the next generation of our workforce to explore career possibilities and experience work-based learning.
  • Corporate Citizen – providing meaningful support to our community through service and/or philanthropy.
  • Champion of Work / Life Integration – offering innovative benefits that enable employees to balance work responsibilities with personal passions (Sponsored by MetroParent magazine).
  • Model of OneMacomb – cultivating an environment where diversity is valued as evidenced by inclusive practices.
  • Hidden Gem – uncovering a unique Made-in-Macomb product or place that more people should know about.
  • Manufacturer of the Year – in recognition of a manufacturer of any size that is achieving success through its efforts to diversify its customer base, retain employees and/or implement new technologies or efficiencies.

Nominations for the Macomb Business Awards can be submitted through an online form now through Friday, March 15. A panel of judges will then review and select winners in each category. All nominated companies will receive two complimentary tickets to the breakfast, which will feature a celebrity emcee, keynote speaker and exceptional networking opportunities.  Last year, more than 400 regional leaders attended.

DSC_5573

Sponsorship opportunities for the Macomb Business Awards are still available. More information and a link to the sponsorship form is available at http://www.MacombBusiness.com/bizawards or by contacting Maria Zardis at maria.zardis@macombgov.org or (586) 469-5285.

 

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.