Business Leader Forum

An Exclusive Event for Business Leaders servicing the retail industry.

Join peers to exchange ideas, solve common problems, and explore best practices on topics relative to your day-to-day business. Engage industry experts on subjects including forecasting, talent recruiting, tax and tariff insights and more.

We guarantee you will return to your office invigorated and with ideas to improve your organization.

When: August 24, 2018

Where: Milwaukee Marriott Downtown

323 E Wisconsin Ave.

Milwaukee, Wisconsin, 53202

Agenda: Thursday, August 23

6:00 – 8:00 pm

Arrive. Cocktail Reception

Agenda: Friday, August 24

8:00 – 9:00 am

9:00 – 9:15 am



9:15 – 12:15 pm


Session 1

Alex Chausovsky, Senior Analyst, ITR Economics

You Have Data – Now What?

Mining Your Data For Future Success

One of the most popular speakers at the Shop! annual meeting, Alex Chausovsky will walk you through a method that uses your own data to gain valuable economic insights. Using rate-of-change calculations, Alex will teach you how to interpret the information to benefit your business strategy and make the right decisions at the right time.

You’ll walk away with:

  • Understanding of the hidden messages in your company’s rates-of-change
  • Knowing which phase of the business cycle your organization is currently in, where it’s headed, and what it all means
  • Being able to read the signals to determine the near-term (3-6 months into the future) directional trend for your business
  • Knowing how to incorporate future data as new numbers become available
  • Feeling empowered to leverage this method to improve your strategic decision

Speaker Bio

Alex Chausovsky is an accomplished Speaker and Consultant at ITR Economics. He is a highly experienced market researcher and analyst with more than a decade of expertise in subjects that include macroeconomics, industrial manufacturing, energy efficiency, automation, and advanced technology trends. He has consulted and advised companies throughout the U.S., Europe, Brazil, China and Japan for the last fifteen years.

10:30 am


12:15 – 1:30 pm


1:30 – 2:15 pm


Session 2

Melissa Hassett, VP Client Delivery ManpowerGroup Solutions RPO

Using Candidate Preferences to Drive Our Recruiting Process and Technologies

As the talent shortage grows, it is difficult to find candidates with the right skills. Companies need to think differently about their recruitment and workforce management strategies because job seekers with in-demand skills are making career choices based on lifestyle preferences and employer brand. In this session, we will discuss emerging candidate preferences, and what companies can do to attract the best talent in a best-in-class recruiting process, and which basic and innovative recruiting technologies are leading the way in today’s recruitment function.

You’ll walk away with:

  • A fresh perspective on candidate preferences
  • Immediately actionable tips on improving your candidate experience and recruitment process
  • Insights into which technologies are helping to engage candidates for all types of roles

Speaker Bio

Melissa is a strategic partner, skilled at orchestrating workforce solutions, operational processes and a large scale recruiting team. With 20+ years in Human Resources and Talent Acquisition, Melissa understands the entire employee life cycle including the initial employment branding, first contact with candidates, selection tools, onboarding, retention, employee relations, and separations.

Recently, Melissa has been the thought leader in collaborative hiring and talent pooling for seasonal and high volume hiring. Products she has engineered are changing the way her clients look at talent in the market. She has written publications and speaks on these topics in order to help all companies think differently about how we win this war on talent.

2:15 – 2:30 pm


2:30 – 3:15 pm


Session 3

Dawn Vogelsang, President, Hamacher Resource Group, Inc
Dave Wendland, Vice President – Strategic Relations, Hamacher Resource Group, Inc.

Producer Savings thru Efficient Rollout Practices

Fixtures and displays include many moving pieces. Retailers often rely on suppliers/producers to determine the best way to complete the implementation while minimizing loss of sales. Through data management and analysis and detailed project management, the coordination of the process from planogram, through manufacturing, to in-store execution can be streamlined for speed to market and labor savings.

You’ll walk away with:

  • Tactics and project management techniques that led to a 40% savings in labor
  • Data points to incorporate into your next project to increase the outcomes
  • Enhancements to a reset process that set your company apart
  • Ideas that reduce cost of damaged or misplaced goods during a roll-out

Presenter’s Bios

Dawn Vogelsang, President, Hamacher Resource Group, Inc

Dawn joined Hamacher Resource Group (HRG) in 1986. After the company was sold in 2000, she led the buy-back in 2001, and has since been the president and majority owner. She originally joined HRG to establish the IT department, and throughout her tenure has participated in product development and market expansion efforts. Her primary focus includes carrying out the corporate vision and directing the execution of strategies to meet those goals; overseeing the evolution of and advances in the company’s products and services; and steering its strong corporate culture. Her extensive leadership within the company and her technical savvy give her the strong foundation necessary to drive the organization to future growth.

Dave Wendland, Vice President – Strategic Relations, Hamacher Resource Group, Inc.

Dave Wendland is a 25+ year veteran of the consumer packaged goods industry and is passionate about optimizing results across the retail supply chain. A sought-after speaker and frequent editorial contributor, Dave always provides dynamic and thought-provoking presentations and idea-generating articles.

As vice president strategic relations and one of the co-owners of HRG, Dave has connected, counseled, and offered business-improvement solutions to a variety of manufacturers, distributors, retailers, and technology providers. With his bird’s-eye view of retail and fresh approaches to branding he is able to assess and offer creative ideas to help companies of all sizes whether they are market leaders or new to the industry.

Dave is an innovator who continuously challenges conventional wisdom. He brings to the table unique information, inspiration, energy, and turn insights into action.

3:15 – 4:00 pm


Session 4

David S. Luzi, International Tax Partner, RSM US LLP
Sara E. Neff, Senioe Manager, Tax Services, RSM US LLP

Tax Reform – The good, the bad, the (really) ugly

Late December 2017, the government passed the most significant piece of tax legislation since the 1986 tax reform. The changes impact all businesses and individuals. Unfortunately there is no “one size fits all” in analyzing the benefits and detriments of the current provisions. Attend this course to get a overview of the changes and how it will impact your business. Moreover, hear about potential solutions and opportunities that may save tax dollars that can be redeployed elsewhere in the business or personally.

Presenter’s Bios

David S. Luzi, International Tax Partner, RSM US LLP

Dave is a partner with RSM’s International Tax Services Group and leads the Great Lakes International Tax Group. He has been with RSM since 1992 and provides international tax consulting services to midsized manufacturing and wholesale distribution clients. A significant focus area within his practice is cross-border mergers and acquisition due diligence and planning for the firm’s private equity group clients.

Dave’s background includes expertise in structuring both inbound and outbound business expansion, tax treaty utilization, foreign tax credit maximization, individual expatriate tax services, maximizing export tax incentives, entity capitalization issues, withholding tax issues and transfer pricing services.

He has assisted clients with international acquisitions and expansions of their business operations. His focus includes consultation on structuring, financing, repatriation strategies, transfer pricing and foreign tax credit maximization as well as maximizing his clients’ ability to qualify under the various export tax incentive programs available. Dave earned a Master of Science degree in taxation from Chicago’s DePaul University and a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Eastern Illinois University.

Sara E. Neff, Senior Manager, Tax Services, RSM US LLP

Sara is in RSM’s Mergers and Acquisition Tax Practice and has nearly 20 years of experience advising Global 1000, Fortune 500, middle market and multinational companies with a variety of federal, state and international tax technical and operational issues. She specializes in advising clients on tax issues related to mergers and acquisitions, divestitures, joint ventures and IPO readiness as well as post-integration operations and risk management.

Sara has extensive experience in the areas of strategic federal tax planning, transaction structuring, tax due diligence, tax controversy, internal controls, ASC740 and ASC 740-10 (FIN 48). In addition, she has experience assisting clients with managing overall tax risk, transaction cost deductibility analysis, change in control attribute analysis, bankruptcy tax analysis and structuring, debt restructuring, and stock basis and earnings and profits studies.

Sara has earned a Juris Doctorate, Taxation, Loyola University of Chicago School of Law, and a Bachelor of Science, Economics and Political Science, University of Southern California.

4:00 pm

Closing remarks and end of day


Shop! Members $995
Non-Members $1,450

Milwaukee Marriott Downtown
323 E Wisconsin Ave.
Milwaukee, WI, US, 53202
Room Rate: $154 + tax 

For those who are arriving early or staying late there are local golf courses for you to enjoy.

Lake Park Golf Course (3 miles from the hotel)
3133 E Newberry Blvd, Milwaukee, WI 53211

Doyne Golf Course (4.7 miles from the hotel)
5300 W Wells St, Milwaukee, WI 53208
Phone: 414-257-3718

Hansen Park Golf Course (10 mins from hotel)
9800 Underwood Pkwy, Wauwatosa, WI 53226
Phone: 414-453-4454

Brown Deer Golf Course (28 mins from hotel)
7625 N Range Line Rd, Milwaukee, WI 53209
Phone: 414-352-8080