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Published by APG Media of Wisconsin, LLC, 2019-11-13 11:11:09

Business Leader | Winter 2018

Business Leader | Winter 2018

Keywords: business


Luring them in

Chippewa Valley employers up pay,
boost benefits to attract workers
in tight labor market

US Postage

Permit #203
Eau Claire, WI

You love your job. But there’s a part of your job – like everyone else’s – that eau claire | wausau
doesn’t qualify as “fun”. There are reasons you need to take action at visit our blogs at
times, and there is a firm that can help you with these times to ease the
stress and make a difficult process run smoothly. We’ve been in the 847429 1-29-18
employment law business for decades, so if you contact us today we
can help you when the time comes.

2 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018


4 8, 16 12STORY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PROFILES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
STORY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Party supply business grows globally.

Chippewa Valley employers raise pay, Apprenticeship program use jumps,
benefits to compete in tight labor market. L ingerie shop caters to all women. giving more students a taste of a career.


Jeff West . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 Andrew Dowd
Kate Noe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 [email protected]
BOOK REVIEW . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 @ADowd_LT
CALENDAR . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20-22 715-833-9204
BY THE NUMBERS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
DIRECTORY . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 GRAPHIC DESIGN & LAYOUT

John Balgaard


Edie Litzkow - [email protected]

EDITOR’S NOTE State and local surveys of business examine their wages, benefits and other
leaders last year showed that a worker workplace perks. For those that have fallen
Bemoaning the labor shortage is so shortage is a growing concern. behind the competition, they’ll need to
2017. do better to attract quality candidates.
So, what are they going to do about it?
This is the year that employers need Workers, especially those with high- The cover story of this issue explores
to act. demand skills or in fields that have grown what several Chippewa Valley employers
with the economy, have more options out are doing to step up to the challenge of a
A labor shortage has been forecast there. worker shortage.
for years by the simple demographic During the recession, the attitude that
fact that baby boomers are retiring and workers should just be happy to have Another article shows how
following generations aren’t as large. a job was passable. But those with that apprenticeships sow the seeds of a future
Unemployment has continued falling to mindset now are likely just happy to have workforce, while also providing some
historically low levels in Wisconsin. The any applicants apply for their openings. labor to local companies.
Great Recession is in the rear-view mirror It’s time for companies to seriously
and is fading from sight. Enjoy all that and more in the first
Business Leader of 2018.

Published four times per year by the Leader-Telegram advertising department. Copyright 2018 Eau Claire Press Co., 701 S. Farwell St., Eau Claire, WI 54701. All rights reserved. 800-236-7077.


Perking up

Staff photo by Steve Kinderman
Student Transit uses a school bus parked near the intersection of Clairemont Avenue and Menomonie Street to advertise

its search for drivers. The Eau Claire-based employer recently raised its starting pay for school bus drivers.

Employers learn it takes more than a “now hiring” sign to fill positions in a tight labor market

HBy Eric Lindquist, Leader-Telegram staff Department of Workforce Development.
utchinson Technology Inc. in Eau Claire One tried-and-true method of attracting workers is
recently raised its starting pay for production
positions. by raising pay.
TTM Technologies in Chippewa Falls added an on- “Employers are doing surveys and figuring out
site health center to cut workers’ health care costs.
where their wages need to be to attract workers,
Student Transit of Eau Claire transformed a big and because of that wages are going up,” said Steve
yellow school bus into a giant employee recruitment Blodgett, DWD’s area workforce development
billboard. director at the Eau Claire Regional Job Center.

Across the Chippewa Valley, employers are But other employers are trying different ways to
responding to an extremely tight labor market by make their workplaces appealing, Hodek said.
pulling out all the stops to attract new workers.
That can include offering flexible scheduling, more
With the November unemployment rate in the vacation time, better health care benefits, on-site day
Eau Claire metropolitan area at 2.5 percent — the care, shorter probation or benefits vesting periods,
lowest since 2000 — and the latest Eau Claire Area or even transportation or housing assistance, local
Economic Development Corp. survey revealing that workforce experts said.
85 percent of area employers report having difficulty
filling some positions, regional workforce officials “Businesses are trying to be as creative as they
agree the tight labor market represents a major can to make sure their work environment is
challenge for businesses hoping to grow. optimal for both the employee and the employer,”
said David Minor, president of the Eau Claire
“The competition for labor has become so much Area Chamber of Commerce. “The creativity
more fierce that a lot of companies are looking now is about employers doing what they can,
for new ways to attract talent,” said Scott Hodek, without giving away the ship, to make it easy for
regional labor market economist for the state employees to come over to them.”

4 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

Feeling the pressure and expanded its use of social media for recruiting.
The company is recruiting workers for production,
The tight labor market has affected temporary technician and engineer openings.
employment agencies in two distinct ways — they,
too, are finding it harder to recruit applicants and “We’re confident we can get the message out about
the opportunities we have available and meet the
yet more companies are seeking their help to fill job staffing needs for our growth,” Pautz said.
In mid-December, Manpower was recruiting for Healthy perk
well over 100 unfilled positions between its Eau Claire
and Chippewa Falls offices and for more than 1,000 TTM Technologies launched its employee health
open positions in western and central Wisconsin, said center in November.
Candi Geist, market leader for the two local branches.
“It is a difficult labor market. I hear about it on the
“That’s an extreme change from when I started with radio, I see it in the newspaper, I see signs posted
Manpower 8½ years ago,” Geist said, explaining that at all the businesses when I drive to work,” said
initially the offices always had more applicants than Sheridan Welch, general manager of TTM’s Chippewa
job orders, but now that situation is reversed. Falls plant. “At TTM we’re looking at differentiating
ourselves from everyone else by what we’re
She pointed out that applying at a temp agency is providing employees when they get here.”
an efficient way for workers in this market to fill out
one application and be considered for positions at The health center is the most visible step in that
several area employers. direction. 

Doherty Staffing Solutions in Eau Claire has The center offers its nearly 800 employees 45-minute
increased advertising and its use of social media appointments five days a week with a licensed nurse
and started cold-
calling people practitioner, a
and holding medical assistant
recruitment or a physical
events to grow its therapist and
applicant pool, allows all full-
said staffing and part-time
specialist Ancilla workers to
Walter. attend those
sessions during
“We’re basically their shifts. The
recruiting from facility offers
anywhere we preventative
can find people,” exams, sick care,
Walter said. physical therapy
and health
Aindcdenintgives “The feedback

we’ve gotten has
ivncmdiwtmtooiueHHBocoemnfmmerrfieTTtnfgkpyapeebIIedeoaldrerrrhasnenarieslwaasnydfsnotitsooddooiefcirttlnuhehhsapeyentcgakaxameTretnhsepipeDldognpairasg-faeKlnsatoidmihidbnymiulnipgepetmeeserOs-fsdooaoptCfcadwnrfrouootrfummolptporbipicblecaenroetifisenkitigtnee,dorosinRsenutnwo2srhfdtgre0intoosatcrec1asnigleyirmn6ni,Msiuedi.ngcs.isakgiaaehktkseyaimtpildesnsteoscendcnChai,anoKleniiotstafmwhtdrtneesMenpnfh,awfBrpiltoeoceehihoraartneePtrel,LstmkSedahCteeouli,evarnueitrszDmpu,ocinhtessnoeuaptvradrtuoeepauoafSWcrcnocrsnsrrhdcaauuheee’Aectdtpaniliutttcdihotripoirsehioennasoowcmngvr,snroKe”aectianornaesiWclncefktdfthoiowlaetlydeiTmnhclwlegietceTehtSnaimiahtmtlvMaaepttvfhiufsttprtefrephaaiiunahHlicenoeoiwTlnieditsIsntoypcgyoo,fbpoleeaoynnrnefnolheSktrasowpttriancereegtaaesnEeiarmmanncandmeupwtnddrglpoCoiNityaliazirltteilcwiodeheholrkaesetyesn.ate,loaieeytaoriarenklanvdscipdseIbcn too—thpooegna’nasancoensc’ettntaivjedoxanuplherirlttsgtspneramtpevteooivridsaeimnooepesonrdnmgeiltetttetfos.notoofso.coTndfttcaoeraehoaontlkseusf.eybtose.r
college campuses, implemented a program in which
employees can earn a bonus for referring new workers See page 6

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 5

from Page 5 “The biggest benefit is this place absolutely rocks,” Klukas
said. “It’s a great place to work and you get to have an
proud to call their employer. impact on young people.”
The plant, which builds printed circuit boards, also
Menards is another major local employer that recently
recently raised starting wages. offered incentives to attract workers. A recent classified ad
“You need to be competitive,” Welch said. in the Leader-Telegram listed a wage increase and $1,000
So far, the strategies appear to be working, as the sign-on bonus for some new production employees.

company has been able to fill open positions. It was “We hope that our highly competitive wages, profit
advertising for an additional 20 to 30 workers in December. sharing program, vacation pay, employee discounts,
weekend premiums and other benefits will continue to
Big banner draw people to Menards,” said company spokesman Jeff
Abbott. “We are expanding here in the Chippewa Valley and
Eau Claire-based Student Transit recently raised its have new, exciting career opportunities opening up that we
starting wage to $15 an hour to aid recruiting for new are filling reasonably well.”
school bus drivers and monitors — folks who accompany
children on early learning program routes and those with
medical or other special needs.

“We realize we’re going to be competing with
newcomers to the market for employees, so we figured it
was time,” said Marty Klukas, general manager. 

The company trumpeted the news with a large
banner attached to a yellow school bus parked near the
intersection of Clairemont Avenue and Menomonie Street.

“The sign on that bus is our main recruitment tool,”
Klukas said.

Student Transit also offers stipends for employees who
refer new workers, pays out bonuses for drivers based on
attendance, provides all training in-house and permits
drivers to bring their children on the bus with them.

Staff photo by Spencer Nickel
New hire Rodney Mikkelson logs on to the HTI website for his training at the Eau Claire plant.

More competition

Mary F. Rufledt - Broker/Owner Manpower’s Geist said some of the upward pressure
on wages and other recruitment and retention incentives
Licensed in WI/MN are in response to new employers entering the market and
SRES, ABR, RRS,GRI,CRS, REALTOR ratcheting up competition for workers.

Cell: 715-828-9347 “The Mills Fleet Farm distribution center has a lot of
Office: 715-830-1001 employers nervous right now,” she said. Company officials
[email protected] are expected to hire at least 239 full-time employees by September to work at the 1.1 million-square-foot distribution center in Chippewa Falls.

“Helping People Is What Real Estate is About!” Geist said she has talked to business leaders recently who
have made available flexible scheduling options, added
847366 1-19-18 retention and attendance bonuses, shortened waiting periods
for benefit eligibility and even offered employees who
6 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018 leave the opportunity to
reclaim their seniority,
compensation and benefit
levels if they return within
30 days.

“Right now,” she said, “is
a great time for anybody
looking for work or looking
to move up in a company.”

Contact: 715-833-9209, Hodek Minor
[email protected],
@ealscoop on Twitter

- Guest Article -



Employers today are struggling to fill vacant positions situations and hopefully provide a
that are needed to meet customer needs. The struggle workforce that can be dependable and
is a combination of finding potential employees with the skills available when needed in today’s busy
needed for the particular position and with the skills that make business climate.
a good worker, such as the ability to work in a team environment Employers are also spending more time
and use good communication skills and common courtesy toward others. It’s reviewing their employee handbook
not easy to find the right combination in a world where employment opportunities or personnel policies to ensure they
are plentiful and candidates are looking for employment that fits their personal are in full compliance with state and
needs and expectations. federal laws but more importantly that
the work policies being used by the
Employers need to first understand conferences or being available to attend Company serve as a selling point to
what the expectations are for many well-baby visits for a newborn child. Part attract new employees to the company.
candidates both young and old. of the recent tax law changes allows It is important for employers to spend
Applicants for positions are looking an employer to deduct the cost of the time explaining their benefits and
for work flexibility and a challenging providing paid family and medical leave the company policies that would apply
work environment with an opportunity for an employee in order to encourage to someone’s employment in a way
to grow in a position and have these types of family friendly policies that will show that the company is a
opportunities for challenges and that are attractive to employees of preferred place for employees to work.
job advancement. This means that all ages. While the business expense This includes reviewing maternity/
employers need to look at the jobs that deduction for this paid benefit is paternity leave policies and the level
they have created and make sure that limited, it does provide some return for of benefits that employees receive for
they have done everything possible to the business that wishes to provide a their commitment to the company.
provide both work flexibility and the limited paid benefit for its employees. An employee handbook that shows
chance for job growth in a challenging The business deduction starts at 12% a commitment to employees is an
environment. of the amount paid to the employee excellent tool that the company used to
for a limited amount of time off, but recruit employees to their workplace.
Employers also need to think about the represents a first step to encourage Businesses need to think outside the
benefits that they offer as part of an companies to provide some level of paid box to address their employment needs
employment package. There has to be leave benefit for its employees. going forward. Relying simply upon a
a balance between future job security, wage level without considering other
benefits for retirement, and work Other employers are working with benefits and needed flexibility in the
schedule flexibility to allow employees their employees to help employees workplace will place the employer
time off when needed. understand how to address family issues at a disadvantage when recruiting
by providing resources for employees
Another attraction that employers to consider such as different resources employees
must consider is developing and for caregiving services that can help to meet their
implementing family friendly policies in an employee address family situations. business needs.
the workplace. Family friendly policies Creating different resource groups in
are designed to support employees the work setting also provides ways Attorney Dean Dietrich,
when dealing with the pressures for businesses to help their employees Ruder Ware
of family life whether it be time off address day care and family care
for attending school parent-teacher 847427 01-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 7

COMMUNITY PROFILE Life of the party

Staff photos by Pamela Powers
Scott and Sherri Yukel, co-owners of Big Dot of Happiness in Menomonie, credit the digital
marketplace for the success of their custom party supply business that has grown to about 70 employees.

Big Dot of Happiness credits Amazon for taking the business out of the basement and around the globe

By Pamela Powers, Leader-Telegram staff Each room has a unique, humorous name, which is part of
the company’s branding designed to make it stand out from
MENOMONIE other manufacturers.

The Big Dot of Happiness wants to be the life of the Customer service is known as “the Expert, Experts.”
party. The printing room goes by “the Superheroes.”
From fiestas, to woodland creature-themed baby Assembly and warehouse areas are called “the Dotifiers.”
showers and birthday parties, to bashes celebrating Product development carries the moniker “the Designer of
the 1980s and 1990s, the Big Dot of Happiness is in the custom Dots.”
party supply business to help people enjoy life’s celebrations And the marketing people are nicknamed “the Fanatics.”
and make memories. Even the lunchroom has a special name, “the
Spunkitudinality Lounge.”
The Menomonie-based company was started in 1999 by The company has grown to 70 employees working two
co-owners Sherry Yukel and her husband, Scott, in their shifts to meet the growing demand for some 12,000 products
basement. Sherry designed a web page on her own to help the company produces.
sell the custom character towels she made. “It’s a good problem, a very good problem,” Scott said.

“It was terrible,” she said of the website. “I really just started Growing destinations
this because I was home and I wanted to have some spending In 2012 the company became an Amazon retailer. The
money.” unique party supplies go across America, Canada and the
United Kingdom. A new destination, Australia, is a market the
Big Dot of Happiness continued to grow, moving in 2008 company will start sending to in the first quarter of this year.
to its current 20,000-square-foot site in the Stout Technology

The building was designed with the atmosphere of a party
in mind and planning life’s special occasions.

Multicolored lights and brightly colored rooms are part of
the building.

8 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

Disco fever lives on in another line created by Big Dot The ’80s inspired another collection of party Nostalgia for the 1990s is a theme for one line of
of Happiness. decorations and trinkets that the business sells. party decorations and favors produced by the
Menomonie company.

Amazon really opened the doors to the online Brenda Knutson of Eau Claire has been with the
marketplace because the Big Dot of Happiness could company just over 10 years as the customer service
expand their markets. Amazon warehouses store additional manager.
products that are usually shipped within two days to
customers, Scott said. For Knutson’s 10–year anniversary Sherri hired the UW-
Stout band to play for Knutson to celebrate the milestone.
“We used to see orders Mondays through Fridays –
during the days when people were at work with their Knutson loves the family atmosphere of the business, but
computers,” Sherry said. “Now people can order from their also respects the mission.
mobile phones whenever they want.”
“We are not just about parties,” Knutson said. “We are
Scott credited the company’s growth to Amazon. making memories.”
“Without Amazon we wouldn’t be this size of company,”
he said, noting none of Big Dot of Happiness’s products are Chippewa Valley Home Builders Association’s
in storefronts. Yet over 95 percent of the products are made
in Menomonie. H40tOh AnMnuaEl &GARDENSHOW
From custom invitations to labels for wine, water bottles
or cupcakes, all types of party supplies are available Feb. 23rd, 24th & 25th
through Big Dot of Happiness. There are unique stock
items as well as options to have products customized. Eau Claire Indoor Sports Center
For the future, the couple plans to expand more into wall $6 through Feb 22nd / $8 at the Door
décor and sign-making, including lawn and business signs.
Children 12 & under are free
Celebrations at work
Getting into the party favors business just fit with the FRIDAY SATURDAY SUNDAY
Yukels’ belief in celebrating life.
1pm - 8pm 9am - 5pm 10am - 4pm
“It started because I was throwing friends baby
showers,” Sherri said. “We really like to go all out when it SENIOR DAY FAMILY DAY DIY DAY
comes to celebrating something special or someone special
that we care about. We like them to feel special. People Live MMusaiFckre&fidoiatrByapeue5nrr-ic/8gWhphamtinsoeeuat!vailable Tickets Available at: 847029 1-29-18
want their party to be different and to look different.” Festival Foods
Green Oasis
Because the company is owned by the Yukels, they are
able to talk to lead team members and make decisions ASHLEY
quickly to follow trends in parties, Sherri said.
“We are able to shift gears quicker,” she noted. “Our job
is to stay on top of the trends.” 715.271.6504

The employees are also a big part the company’s success. More Info: or 715-835-2526
Bev Merton of Boyceville has worked at Big Dot of
Happiness for six years in assembly.
“It is truly like a family,” she said.

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 9

CEO SPEAK Jeff West is the owner of Bear
Down (,
Accountability starts with yourself an executive and executive
team coaching company based
Start by finding the things you truly enjoy doing at your business in Eau Claire. He was a founder
and CEO of Silicon Logic
Engineering. He also chairs
Business Partners peer groups
in Northwestern Wisconsin.
West can be reached at:
715-559-2195 or
[email protected].

“Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from people who have a habit of making excuses.”


By Jeff West Do you do it for the money? Sure, money is important, but
Is accountability an issue in your business? what drives you?
Do you get frustrated when things don’t get done on time or
What’s your purpose? What fulfills you?
done correctly? Many times we find we’ve wrapped ourselves up in a web of
Are you tired of the excuses? responsibilities we don’t enjoy doing to the point we’ve left little
Accountability is one of the common themes with many of the time for doing the things that energize us. Which ironically are
usually the things we’re best at and why we were successful in
companies I work with. the first place.
When it surfaces as an issue, I ask my clients how they hold When you think about it though, unless you know what you
want and hold yourself accountable to your purpose for doing
themselves accountable first. what you do, it’s very hard to hold anyone else accountable.
The typical response is, “Accountable to what?” to which I
expertly reply, “Exactly.” So how do you get back to a life of fun and fulfillment?
Unless we know what we want from our business, what our First, stop doing the things you don’t like doing and get back to
doing the things you do.
purpose is, we have nothing to hold ourselves accountable to. It might be hard at first. Change usually is. We often won’t
That puts us on really weak footing when trying to hold others consider changing until the pain of doing the same thing over and
over again becomes unbearable.
accountable. Second, work with people you enjoy working with and create
••• a company that everyone cares about. Both take effort, but the
results are worth it.
I’ll often ask clients — hardworking people with a lot of Give some thought to the things you’re willing to do, the things
impressive skills — why they do what they do. The answers tend you want to do and the things you can do.
to be around the theme of wanting a better life for themselves, It’s at the intersection of these three things that fulfillment is
their family, employees, customers etc. found.

As their company grows though, they find their responsibilities •••
grow as well. At some point they often realize they’re working Hold yourself accountable to yourself. Don’t settle for anything
harder than ever and for some reason a lot of the fun has less than leading a fulfilling life.
disappeared. Dream big and get back to doing what you love to do!

They often have a lot of nice things to show for their hard work NATIONALLY
but find they have less and less time to enjoy it and the people RECOGNIZED
they care for.
Advanced Fiber
I actually had the founder of a successful company that’s been Network
in business for more than 25 years tell me that he hated it when
he turned the lights on in the morning. His work-life balance had 847808
turned into a joke, and his sense of fulfillment for his original idea 1-29-18
was nowhere to be found.

There’s an old line that speaks to this. It says, “You’ve changed
from a human being to a human doing.”

Does this sound at all familiar?
If it does, answer the following two simple yet powerful
1) What do I want out of life?
2) Is my business helping me get it or keeping me from it?

In his book, “Accountability,” author and businessman Greg
Bustin says it’s easy to describe what we do: CEO, CFO, GM,
engineer, HR, sales etc. However it’s much more difficult to
describe what we want to be.
So what do you want to be that causes you to do what you do?

10 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

- Guest Article -


It wasn’t that long ago that the entire country Their benefits benefit you. Staying healthy in a
was embroiled in the Great Recession. In early tight labor market.
2008 there was a sharp decline in economic Study after study reveals that employees are
activity and rural markets like Northern placing increasing value on health plan benefits. Face reality
Wisconsin were among those hit the hardest. And those companies winning the recruitment
Everywhere you looked it seemed companies and retention war are rethinking their approach We are in one of the tightest labor markets
were struggling financially. Layoffs were rampant to health care as an investment, rather than an Wisconsin has ever seen. Despite a growing
and unemployment began to rise. expense. labor pool, unemployment in some communities
is as low as 2.5 percent.
Fast forward to today, and, wow, how things In a recent Harvard Business Review article,
have changed. In November 2017, according researchers identified health care benefits as the Benefits matter
to U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, No.1 benefit of importance to employees, by a
unemployment for Wisconsin statewide was landslide. And we’re not just talking the over-50 Employees place great value on benefits when
only 3.2 percent. The labor pool has tightened set. Millennials place a huge value on health plan deciding to take a new job or stay in their current
dramatically and competition for employees is benefits and rank these benefits in a way that one. Health benefits are at the top of the list
fierce. Companies determined to take advantage mirrors the values of Boomers. employees value most.
of the economic boom are realizing that doing
so is difficult if you can’t find and keep good For companies looking to attract women to the Know your data
employees. workforce, females typically place a 30 percent
greater value on health benefits than males Take the time to not only understand your
Want to gain? You’ve got to retain. across all ages. current costs of providing benefits, but
understand which benefits actually improve
During the recession, companies found it easy to Get healthy. Get strategic. retention and recruitment for your company.
become lazy regarding labor market strategies Invest more in those.
because the supply of employees outstripped If you don’t offer health benefits, and many small
the need. Simply put, most companies could employers don’t, now is the time to re-evaluate Communicate, communicate,
afford to be picky. But now those days are the market and make a calculated trade-off communicate
gone. Today, retention is the new recruitment between the money you spend on taxable
strategy. And successful retention starts with wages and health benefits. All your efforts to provide a great benefits
understanding what matters most to your package are for naught if no one knows. Take
employees. If you offer health benefits, it might be time to the time to tell your employees the value of
evaluate how you can improve your benefit their health benefits in plain language and what
package, including taking a look at whether you’re doing to make a good benefit even better.
your health package is actually helping you be
competitive in a tight labor market. BLR-2314-10

846143 01-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 11


Staff photos by Spencer Nickel
Dylan Bush, 16, attaches a bit to a machine that will mill down a piece of metal. Machine Tool Camp has brought in three

apprentices since 2016, teaching them to use machinery and computer programs used in modern manufacturing.

Getting an early start

Apprenticeship program grows while employers deal with labor shortage

DBy Lauren French, Leader-Telegram staff
ylan Bush held a small electronics board in his hand in early January and
pointed out all its tiny, colorful knobs and wires.
With ease, he explained how the object — called an Arduino — can help tinkerers
build devices that interact with the physical world. It’s become a favored tool of his
throughout his work as a youth apprentice at Machine Tool Camp in Chippewa Falls.

At 16 years old, Bush is getting a firsthand look at how the manufacturing industry
operates. Where other high schoolers might be earning cash in retail or fast food, Bush
is learning computer coding and how to make 3D models.

He’s paid for his time, and he receives credits at Chippewa Falls High School, where
he is a junior.

“I thought it was a great idea,” Bush said as he sat on a chair over checkered floors at
Machine Tool Camp, where he works two to four evenings a week. “It’s a job, for one,
and they’re teaching me how to use real-world skills for future jobs.”

12 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

Bush is one of 407 students in the Chippewa “Tie that together with all the different incentives
Valley who participate in the Youth Apprenticeship we’ve had from Gov. (Scott) Walker,” Goodman said,
program. Hosted through Cooperative Educational “it’s been a no-brainer to participate because they’re
Service Agency 10, the program connects high school getting substantial dollars for these YA kids.”
students with area businesses to expose them to Industries struggling the most with workforce
working life after shortages in
graduation. the state are
As Wisconsin manufacturing
faces workforce and health care,
shortages Schraufnagel said.
across multiple The YA program
industries, Youth offers student
Apprenticeship apprenticeships
organizers hope in 11 industries:
the program helps agriculture, food
students get a and natural
jump-start on a resources;
career. architecture and
“People don’t construction;
realize that art, audio-visual
when baby technology and
boomers retire, communications;
they’re leaving finance;
a gap,” said health science;
John Goodman, hospitality,
Bush works on a 3D rendering at Machine Tool Camp in Chippewa Falls. The high school junior works a
few evenings a week through an apprenticeship at the company that makes industrial equipment.
Chippewa lodging and
Valley Youth tourism;
Apprenticeship coordinator. “If every one of our high information technology; manufacturing; marketing;
school kids graduated and went into the workplace, science, technology, engineering and mathematics
we still can’t completely replace the baby boomers” (STEM); and transportation, distribution and logistics.
Of those, the most popular are agriculture, health
Growth on the horizon science, manufacturing and hospitality, Schraufnagel
Started in 1991, the Youth Apprenticeship program said.
had not seen major spikes in participation until
the last three years, said Glen Schraufnagel, Youth ‘Everyone can win’
Apprenticeship consultant for the Chippewa Valley. Business owners find benefits in hosting youth
Compared to this year’s 407 student apprentices, apprentices, too.
last year drew 184 students, Schraufnagel said. The Mary Kauphusman, co-owner of Machine Tool
year before that, there were just 78. Camp, said she got her business involved in 2016
When he considers the reasons for the increase,
Schraufnagel points to word of the benefits spreading,
as well as schools placing more emphasis on career See page 14

planning in the wake of a statewide workforce
“Everyone can win,” Schraufnagel said of
apprenticeships. “The students win by getting out and
exploring some careers. The school wins financially.”
Schools get a $350 grant through CESA 10 for each
student apprentice they have.
Additionally, students who successfully
complete their apprenticeship program could earn
their district up to $1,000 each, Goodman said.
Successful completion of the program involves 450
apprenticeship hours for a one-year program; 900
hours for a two-year program; and two semesters of
related classroom instruction.
847585 1-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 13

from Page 13

because she thought it could land a couple more
employees for the business. She received more than
she expected.
“We kind of thought we were doing it to be a good
citizen of the community,” Kauphusman said. “It
actually turned out to be an amazing source. (The
students) are really contributing back. We were
pleasantly surprised.”
Machine Tool Camp, which manufactures industrial
equipment, has hosted three youth apprentices since
joining the program. Two are currently working there,
and the third has since graduated high school and is
still on board while he is attending his first year of
college, Kauphusman said.
While working at Machine Tool Camp, she said,
students have a chance to explore the mechanical side
to the business, as well as software, coding and 3D
“When they find their home within the company,
then we start to build off that,” she said. We train
them on everything that we have.”
Apprenticeships allow the business to cultivate the
labor it would like to see, Kauphusman added. 
“You have access to these kids before they go out
into the world,” she said.
For Bush, that ability to explore the industry is
making him second-guess his early aspiration to work
in video game coding, he said. His exposure to the
working world at Machine Tool Camp is making him
consider a career in that field, he said.
While on a shift at Machine Tool Camp, Bush
receives job assignments from Kauphusman and
learns how to use the equipment there. He also helps
visitors who pay to use the company’s equipment to
work on their own personal or professional projects.
“I would say, ‘Do it,’ “ Bush said of the YA time
commitment. “There’s no point not to.”
Bush said many students at Chippewa Falls High
School are unaware the YA program exists. But that’s
changing, said Laura Bushendorf, career and technical
education coordinator for the Chippewa Falls school
Like the YA program at large, the Chippewa
Falls school district has seen program participation
growth in its schools the last few years. That growth
is good for more than financial returns, Bushendorf

said — it’s about community connections, too.
“It’s one thing for our kids to leave and go across to
Minneapolis to work,” she said, “but it’s another to
have them work right here.”

Contact: 715-830-5828, [email protected],
@LaurenKFrench on Twitter

14 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

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847334 1-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 15


Fit for all women
Chippewa Falls native opens lingerie shop to serve a broad audience

By Chris Vetter, Leader-Telegram staff the location well and believed it was the perfect
place for her shop.
arissa “Lacey” Ashwell began dreaming of “The deciding factor is it’s in my hometown,”
opening her own lingerie boutique when she said. “Chippewa is the spot I had to be.”
she was in high school.
Ashwell, 29, has been a stay-at-home mom for Ashwell has distributors providing clothes not
the past three years and decided it was the time to only from across the country, but also England and
move forward. France. She boasts she has several lingerie lines
that won’t be found elsewhere nearby.
“I decided I had to pursue this dream,” she said.
“I wish I had done it sooner.” Fitting all women

Ashwell has opened her store, “Lacey’s On the wall of the shop are pictures of three
Lingerie,” at 101 N. Bridge St. in downtown family members who have died from cancer.
Chippewa Falls. She began renovating the
4,000-square-foot storefront in September and That helps drive her to one of the things her
officially opened for business Dec. 1. shop specializes in – serving women who have
undergone breast cancer surgery.
“It’s been awesome,” she said. “I’m glad I have
brought a unique business to downtown.” “I want them to feel like a woman while shopping
here and not like a patient,” she said. “I hated that
The building has sat empty for a couple of years. they didn’t feel they had as many options.”
Ashwell, a Chippewa Falls native who graduated
from Chippewa Falls High School in 2006, knew

16 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

Ashwell also wants to provide lingerie options for

women of all sizes and body types.

“We really want to promote body positivity, and we want

you to be comfortable with the skin you’re in,” she said. “I

want people to love their bodies.”

While shopping for clothes online has become trendy,

Ashwell believes women will still want to go to a store

to try on lingerie to make sure it fits. Lacey's Lingerie has

changing rooms that Ashwell had acquired and repurposed

from the defunct Kmart store in Eau Claire.

Chippewa Falls Main Street executive director Teri

Ouimette praised Ashwell for how she set up the shop.

“She is just so enthusiastic,” Ouimette said. “She’s more

than accommodating. And the cool part is she’s made her

store male-friendly. She is a bright, shiny, glittery girl.”

Staff photos by Chris Vetter Ouimette said she’s pleased the
Lacey’s Lingerie, 101 N. Bridge St.,
<Larissa “Lacey” Ashwell shows off clothing <Chippewa Falls, is open 10 a.m.-6 p.m. storefront, located at the entrance to
in her new shop, Lacey's Lingerie, which downtown, is now filled.
opened on Dec. 1.
“This is another great piece of the

puzzle,” Ouimette said.

Ashwell has long-term plans to hold

a fashion show next October, and she

Ashwell said among her goals is to provide clothing wants to create a “pinup” calendar with
options for women who have had a mastectomy, and need
specially-fitted bras that have pockets for prosthetic inserts. local women featured, with the proceeds
She is working to become a trained mastectomy fitter.
benefitting a local cancer survivor.

Contact: 715-723-0303, chris.vetter@ecpc. Ouimette

Better Business Checking



847043 1-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 17


Simple ways to boost Kate Noe, APMA®, CLTC®,
financial well-being in 2018 is a financial advisor and
managing partner at River
Prairie Wealth Partners, a
private wealth practice of
Ameriprise Financial Services,
Inc. The practice has its
office at 2423 Rivers Edge
Drive, Altoona.

By Kate Noe know about, such as supplemental life insurance, subsidies on
It’s that time of year again — time to make promises to gym memberships, etc.

yourself for what you’ll achieve in the new year. Ask your employer for a “statement of benefits” outlining
It isn’t surprising that improving financial well-being tops the what options are available to you.

list of new year’s resolutions each year. 5. Save half of every pay increase.
If you’ve ever tried to make and keep a new year’s resolution, Every time you receive a raise, take half and direct into your
savings. Because you’re used to a lower paycheck, you likely
it’s likely you fell short of success. Studies suggest 80 percent of won’t even notice, and your future self will thank you.
us ditch our resolutions by February. Perhaps we set our sights 6. Schedule automatic increases to retirement savings.
too high, jumped in too deep or simply lacked motivation. Ask your employer if they offer the option to automatically
increase your retirement savings by a certain percent each year.
Before we start making promises to ourselves we’re unlikely Start small — perhaps 1 percent per year.
to keep, it’s important to emphasize that the key to successful 7. Open an additional IRA or Roth.
change starts with getting to the root of why. Knowing our You may not be aware that you can fund a traditional IRA
values and what drives us at the core can help us stay focused on and/or a Roth IRA in addition to your employer retirement plan.
goals that will ultimately fulfill us on a much deeper level. In some cases, it may make sense to fund your employer plan
(401(k), 403(b), etc.) up to the employer match and direct the rest
After you’ve defined your goals and understand your why, of your retirement savings into a separate IRA plan. Doing so
you can focus on how. may allow you to have more control over contributions and in
most cases, offers infinitely more investment options.
Whether your goals are lofty or tiny, remember to take small 8. Try the 52-week savings plan.
steps and keep your values and purpose in focus. The first week of the new year, save $1, the following week
$2, then $3 a week later, until you get to 52 weeks. It’s simple,
Below are some simple and thoughtful ideas on improving doesn’t require much effort and you save $1,378 by the end of
your financial well-being in 2018. Good luck and cheers to the the year. This is a fantastic way to start an emergency, travel or
new year! Christmas fund.
9. Snowball your debt.
1. Gather your data and know what you have. List all your debts from smallest to largest and throw all your
Collect and inventory all things financial in your life including excess funds at the smallest balance, while making the minimum
your income, expenses, assets, retirement accounts, liabilities, payments on all your larger loans.
insurance policies, income tax returns, wills, trusts and other Once the smallest balance is paid off, start putting that extra
estate planning documents. money toward the next smallest debt until you pay that one off,
Web-based tools such as or Total View by Ameriprise and so on.
Financial help organize and aggregate your financial picture in Eliminating smaller balances will free up more dollars to throw
one location. at your larger debts and loans.
2. Get on the same page. 10. Attach your own oxygen mask before assisting others.
Over the last decade, I have found that most couples are not on While helping your children with their education is a noble
the same page financially speaking, and it’s now more common cause, it can be extremely damaging to your personal goals.
for couples to keep finances somewhat separate. Your children can take out loans for education, but you can’t
Make this the year that you sit down with your partner and lay do so for retirement. If helping foot the bill for higher education
everything out on the table. Get clarity on what your partner has is something you value, consider making a deal with your
in savings, investments and debt. Make sure you have common college-bound children: they take out their own student loans
goals and a consistent strategy. and when they graduate and become gainfully employed in their
3. Determine exactly how much you’re saving. field, you will help repay a part (or all) of their loans.
It’s common for even the most financially savvy to lack a This allows for them to have skin in the game and helps
clear understanding of how much they’re contributing to their motivate them to successfully complete their degree.
retirement plans and what their employer is matching as a
percent of their income.
Far too often, I meet with successful and intelligent clients
who are not taking full advantage of their employer match, and
in return, are leaving free money on the table. Make sure you’re
contributing at least up to the employer match.
4. Understand all your employer benefits.
You might have benefits and perks available you don’t even

18 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018


Manners in mind

Business newbies may benefit from etiquette
manual, but experienced people can skip this one

Title: “Excuse Me: The Survival Guide to Modern Business Etiquette.” Author: Rosanne J. Thomas. Pages: 269. Publisher: Amacom (c.2017).

By Terri Schlichenmeyer
The Bookworm

Please. Thank you. The first thing you need to know is this: “Excuse Me” is
Mom always called them “The Magic Words.” One not a bad book.
opens doors at the front of a request; the other leaves them It’s just not exactly about what you might think it’s about.
open at the end. Please. Thank you. Please and thank you are important, but this book is
If only life were so easy. more about getting a job, keeping a job, and dealing with
For sure, as you’ll see in “Excuse Me” by Rosanne J. problems you might encounter on the job. Yes, that can
Thomas, business is not. involve etiquette but the focus here seems to be lower on
“Do unto others as you would have others do unto you.” pleasantries and higher on personal job management.
Chances are, you grew up hearing those words so often Still, there’s no denying that author Thomas offers wise
that they’re tattooed on your soul, but that saying “falls advice. Her chapter-opening stories are worth reading,
short” in business today, Thomas writes. The prospective but they more resembled
taken in the Golden Rule is one of self. The new “Platinum those you’d find on an
Rule” – to treat people as they would like to be treated – HR-based, confess-all BUILDING
takes the view of others into consideration. website.
And therein lies the way to get along and to use Entertaining, yes. DREAMS…
etiquette in today’s workplace: by practicing civility,
respect, “esteem or deference.” Those things have Etiquette, not much.
become a necessity because business is no longer So what can a reader
1950s-homogenized; instead, your office may consist of come away with here? BUILDING
men and women from four different generations, single If you are in need of
and married, gay and straight, and of various ethnicities. some get-along basics, TRUST…
That, and technology has revolutionized the way this book has them.
businesses are run. Hiring processes may now be launched If you’re a new grad
online and include more than a dozen different interviews. or are re-entering the
Luddites should therefore learn to use the internet, at least workforce, it may please BUILDING
as much as they’ll need to land and keep a job – and that you.
includes the etiquette needed to communicate well online, For established FRIENDSHIPS.
Thomas writes.
Always be aware of your personal brand (yes, you businesspeople, though,
have one!). Keep a positive attitude and a “professional what’s in “Excuse Me”
presence.” Don’t exist in a bubble or treat security or may already be ingrained,
janitorial staff as though they’re “invisible.” Learn to thank you.
modify your voice to fit every situation you may encounter
in a business setting. Never email when you’re angry and Chris Becker
avoid “text-based” communication. Remember that social
media posts can come back to haunt you, so be careful. The Bookworm is Terri Schlichenmeyer. Terri has 715-308-4722
Know that business dining is “rife with risk” but that it been reading since she was 3 years old and never
comes with enormous opportunities. goes anywhere without a book. She lives on a hill
And finally, remember that you can live without your in Wisconsin with two dogs and 15,000 books.
smartphone. 847390 1-29-18

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 19

CALENDAR February - April

Feb. 2: Business ‘n Breakfast — Breaking Down the Feb. 10: Business Recordkeeping 101 class, 9 a.m.-noon,
New Tax Code, 7:15-8:30 a.m., The Fill Inn Station, 104 Western Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418
W. Columbia St., Chippewa Falls. Cost: $10 to Chippewa Wisconsin St. Cost: $29, discount available for income-
Falls Area Chamber of Commerce members, $20 for eligible people. Info/register:
nonmembers. Info/register:
Feb. 13: Microsoft Excel Basic class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.,
Feb. 6: Business QuickBooks (online version) class, 6-9 Room 100, CVTC Neillsville campus, 11 Tiff Ave.
p.m., Western Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418 Cost: $124. Info/register:
Wisconsin St. Cost: $99, discount available for income-
eligible people. Info/register: Feb. 13: Business Plan Basics class, 6-9 p.m., Western
Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418 Wisconsin St.
Feb. 7: Powerful Business Writing class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 Cost: $29, discount available for income-eligible people.
p.m., Room 204A, Chippewa Valley Technical College Info/register:
Applied Technology Center, 2322 Alpine Road. Cost: $119.
Info/register: Feb. 20: Building Employee Accountability - The Critical
Role of Leadership workshop, 1-4 p.m., Classroom 124,
Feb. 8: Capital Funding workshop on business plans, CVTC Manufacturing Education Center, 2320 Alpine Road.
noon-1 p.m., Western Dairyland Community Action Cost: $79. Info/register:
Agency, 418 Wisconsin St. Cost: $20, includes lunch. Info/
register: Feb. 20: Microsoft Excel Basic class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.,
Durand High School, 604 Seventh Ave. Cost: $124. Info/
Feb. 8: Safety Day conference with workshops on register:
regulatory expectations and best practices, 7:30 a.m.-3:30
p.m., commons room, CVTC’s Chippewa Falls campus, Feb. 21: Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce Sales
770 Scheidler Road. Cost: $74. Info/register: 715-874-4676, Conference, 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m., The Florian Gardens, 2340 Lorch Ave. Cost: $79 for chamber members, $109
nonmembers. Info/register:
Feb. 21: Creating an Online Sales Funnel workshop, 6-8
Federally insured by NCUA p.m., Western Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418
Wisconsin St. Cost: $29, discount available for income-
SBA Loans eligible people. Info/register:

WESTconsin Credit Union is proud to be a Feb. 22: Microsoft Excel Intermediate class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30
chosen SBA Express delegated lender by the p.m., Room 204A, CVTC Applied Technology Center, 2322
U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). Alpine Road. Cost: $124. Info/register:

Our local business loan professionals are Feb. 22: 10th Annual Downtown Eau Claire Awards
experienced, friendly, knowledgeable and reception and dinner, 5 p.m., The Halls at the Lismore
ready to serve you and your business needs. Hotel, 333 Gibson St. Cost: $35. Info/register:

Feb. 22-23: Supervisory Management: Compliance to
Commitment — Empowering Others to do Their Best, 8:30
a.m.-4 p.m. each day, Citizens State Bank, 375 Stageline
Road, Hudson. Cost: $600, includes meals, materials. Info/
register: 715-836-3636,

Feb. 27: Microsoft Excel Basic class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., St.
Croix Innovation Center, 1091 Sutherland Ave., River Falls.
Cost: $124. Info/register:

Feb. 28: Dealing with Difficult People class, 9 a.m.-noon,
Classroom 109, CVTC Neillsville campus, 11 Tiff Ave.
Cost: $49. Info/register:

(800) 924-0022 | 846823 See page 22

20 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018

- Guest Article -



By Brian Koopman, CFP®, CPA, Senior
Vice President,Wealth Management
Group,Trust Point, Inc.

John and Jane Smith are
60 years old and are the
owners of ABC Company,
which they started 30
years ago. They would
like to reduce their hours
in the business as they
contemplate retirement.

They have three children; two of which are in the business. They would like to keep the business in the family while
ensuring a secure retirement for them. They want to treat all of their children fairly in their estate plan.
This scenario is a fairly common one for family-owned businesses. The fact the Smiths’have started to discuss their goals
puts them ahead. Nevertheless, their work is only starting. They must consider a number of factors as they formulate and
implement their succession plan.

SCOTRNASTIDEGERIEESXIT Discussing the plan helps avoid uncertainty decision, there could be implications for the
surrounding the future of the business. Smiths’ estate plan. Both plans need to be
Even if their goal is to keep the business in In a number of situations, Trust Point, as coordinated if fairness is to be achieved.
the family, it will depend on whether any the family’s advisor, has assisted in the
of their children have the qualifications presentation and communication with ACODNVSISUOLRTSWITH
and desire to take it over. They also should these groups to help provide an objective
examine what the best exit strategy for the view. As the succession plan is being formulated,
family would be from a financial point of John and Jane need to bring their team of
view. This could mean selling to an outside CEOSTOARTDEIPNLAATNE NWIINTGH advisors into the planning process. Trust
party or to a group of key employees. Point’s team of experienced professionals
One of the key issues John and Jane need brings insights to a variety of wealth-related
TAX IMPLICATIONS to address is the transfer of assets to their issues. We have the ability to leverage
children. With respect to the company, resources and coordinate with outside
Without proper planning, ownership there are three basic options: 1) Transfer a advisors on the clients behalf. For over a
transfer of a business can have negative third of the voting stock to each child. 2) century our clients have experienced the
tax consequences. Losing 30% or more to Create non-voting stock to transfer to the confidence in knowing that their advisory
taxes can severely impact the Smiths’ desire child who isn’t involved in the business, and team is serving as their advocate. For more
of a secure retirement. It is important transfer voting stock to the other two. 3) information on how Trust Point can help
to analyze each exit strategy, along with Transfer liquid assets (now or at a later time) with your family’s financial goals, visit our
the type of transaction (outright sale, to the child not involved in the business. website at
installment sale, part gift/part sale, etc) to
obtain a tax-efficient result. The question John and Jane need to answer *This article was written for educational purposes only. The
is, are they trying to treat their children information contained is not legal, financial, or tax-advice.
COMMUNICATE fairly or to treat them equally? If the goal Please seek additional advice from qualified individuals or
is to treat the kids equally, voting stock visit for more information.
When developing a succession plan, should transfer to all three. If the goal is
communication with both family to treat them fairly, the last two options 847335 01-29-18
members and key employees is the surest deserve some thought. Regardless of the
way to avoid problems down the road.

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 21

from Page 20

March 1-2: Supervisory Management: Learning to Lead, 8:30 March 27: Business Tax Chat advice session on small business
a.m.-4 p.m. each day, Holiday Inn South, 4751 Owen Ayres tax preparation, 6-8 p.m., Western Dairyland Community
Court. Cost: $600, includes meals, materials. Info/register: 715- Action Agency, 418 Wisconsin St. Cost: $10. Info/register:

March 2: Junior Achievement Business Challenge April 3: Eau Claire Area Chamber of Commerce Human
competition for high school students mentored by business Resources Conference, 8 a.m.-3:30 p.m., The Florian Gardens,
professionals, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., CVTC Business Education Center, 2340 Lorch Ave. Cost: $89 for chamber members, $119
620 W. Clairemont Ave. Info/register: 715-835-5566, nonmembers. Info/register:
April 4: Cashing in on Your Potential: How to Make Money
March 8-9: Supervisory Management: Learning to Lead, 8:30 Doing What You Love workshop, 1-4 p.m., Black River Area
a.m.-4 p.m. each day, Citizens State Bank, 375 Stageline Road, Chamber of Commerce, 120 N. Water St., Black River Falls.
Hudson. Cost: $600, includes meals, materials. Info/register: Cost: $29, discount available for income-eligible people. Info/
715-836-3636, register:

March 10: Understanding Fundamental Business Financial April 5: Strengths-Based Leadership class, 8 a.m.-noon, St.
Statements class, 9 a.m.-noon, Western Dairyland Community Croix Innovation Center, 1091 Sutherland Ave., River Falls.
Action Agency, 418 Wisconsin St. Cost: $29, discount available Cost: $189. Info/register:
for income-eligible people. Info/register: SuccessfulBusiness.
org. April 5-6: Supervisory Management: Orientation, Time
Management and Delegation, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. each day,
March 13: Effective Writing for Technical Professionals class, Holiday Inn South, 4751 Owen Ayres Court. Cost: $600,
8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., St. Croix Innovation Center, 1091 Sutherland includes meals, materials. Info/register: 715-836-3636, ce.uwec.
Ave., River Falls. Cost: $119. Info/register: edu.

March 13: Lunch & Learn: Learn about the Chippewa/ April 12: Business QuickBooks (online version) class, 6-9 p.m.,
Coulee Wage Survey, noon-1 p.m., Eau Claire Area Chamber of Western Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418 Wisconsin
Commerce, 101 N. Farwell St. Cost: $20 for chamber members, St. Cost: $99, discount available for income-eligible people.
$40 nonmembers. Info/register: Info/register:

March 15: Business Plan Basics class, 6-9 p.m., Western April 17: Build Productive Teams Through DiSC Workplace
Dairyland Community Action Agency, 418 Wisconsin St. Cost: class, 1-4 p.m., Room 100A, CVTC Business Education Center,
$29, discount available for income-eligible people. Info/register: 620 W. Clairemont Ave. Cost: $99. Info/register:
April 18: Food Entrepreneurship Roundtable, noon-1 p.m.,
March 22-23: Supervisory Management: Emotional Forage, Suite 212, Building 13, Banbury Place, 930 Galloway St.
Intelligence and Empowerment, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. each day, Cost: $15, lunch included. Info/register:
Holiday Inn South, 4751 Owen Ayres Court. Cost: $600,
includes meals, materials. Info/register: 715-836-3636, ce.uwec. April 19-20: Supervisory Management: Orientation, Time
edu. Management and Delegation, 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. each day,
Citizens State Bank, 375 Stageline Road, Hudson. Cost: $600,
March 27: Microsoft Excel Advanced class, 8:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., includes meals, materials. Info/register: 715-836-3636,
Room 204A, CVTC Applied Technology Center, 2322 Alpine
Road. Cost: $124. Info/register:

847528 1-29-18

22 | BUSINESS LEADER • January 29, 2018


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Value of construction projects
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permits in 2017 in the city
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previous record set in 2009
by almost $100 million. Parties. Meetings. Gatherings. Buy • Sell • Trade • Appraisals
515 South Barstow St.
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sandwiches and soups, giant Eau Claire • WI • 54701
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Median household income in 715-832-4270
Eau Claire County according to EAU CLAIRE - CLAIREMONT AVE - 715-552-1111
the Census Bureau American EAU CLAIRE- EASTRIDGE CTNR 715-833-1111 [email protected]
Community Survey responses Store Fronts
from 2012-2016. That’s less MENOMONIE PHONE: 715-309-2800 Sidewalks
than a 1% increase on what CHIPPEWA FALLS PHONE: 715-720-2800 Dumpster Areas
households made in 2007-11 Awnings Graffiti
amid the Great Recession and OPEN 11AM-3AM DAILY Complete Exteriors
early recovery. Vehicle Fleets
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1-29-18 847166_1-29-18

823803 01-30-17

January 29, 2018 • BUSINESS LEADER | 23

We don’t leap
tall buildings.
But we’re fast,
and really,
really strong.












846141 1-29-18

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