April 2020
Board Member Spotlight:

This month's Board Member Spotlight is on Julie Henschel-Chase. Julie joined the board at the beginning of 2020. Julie is employed by IMAGEN Brands and has shared the following fun facts:

Q: At which store would you like to max-out your credit card? A: Ross Dress for Less

Q: What was your favorite TV show when growing up?
A: The Walton’s and Little House on the Prairie

Q: What was your favorite toy as a kid ?
A: Weeble Wobbles and Operation

Q: What, if anything, have you ever re-gifted?
A: A touch lamp. My husband won it at a raffle and his son thought it was the ugliest thing so for graduation we gifted it to him, needless to say he re-gifted back to us at Christmas and we still have it.

Q: What was your childhood nickname?
A: Julio and Jules

Q: Do you have any strange phobias?
A: Driving under an overpass and long bridges over water

Q: What are three things still left on your bucket list?
A: Vacation in Belize, Grand Canyon and owning a restored 1968 GTO

Q: If you could have any one superpower, which would you choose?
A: Superhuman Endurance
PPAMidwest News
PPAMidwest Member Update
Due to the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, PPAMidwest has created a temporary page on our website to help educate & update our community. This is a public forum for our local promotional products community ( both PPAMidwest members & non-members alike ) to post about their company's current operational status as well as obtain up-to-date information. This page contains links with a wealth of information about the virus and how it is affecting our industry.
PPAMidwest is saddened to share the
news of the passing of John Bennis
It Our industry has lost an icon,someone who has mentored hundreds of people - distributors, suppliers
and other multi line reps. He was loved by so many in
our industry. It is a void that cannot be filled.  

Predeceased by his beloved son Max, he is survived by
his beloved wife Gina and daughter Dana. He will be cremated and put to eternal rest along with Max. 
Memorial services will be announced at a later date.
ASB Packs 575 Meals for Children in Need During COVID Pandemic
GLENWOOD, MN  - American Solutions for Business recently packed meals for local children through the United Way's Backpack attack program. 

A team of about 15 home office employees (including Founder, CEO, Larry Zavadil) took turns coming into the office over the course of a week to pack 575 meals. Typically, this program provides meals over the weekend for children, who would otherwise not have food to eat. Now during the pandemic, there is a much greater need due to temporary closures of businesses, unemployment and struggles for parents to make ends meet. 

"I'm proud that despite everything going on, we can still contribute to making our community a better place," shared Larry Zavadil. "It was empowering to participate and give back with the team I miss seeing every day." 

With students learning from home, the bags will be delivered via the school buses to the children to ensure they're getting proper nutrition. The bags packed this last week will help provide meals to these students for the remainder of the school season.

"Many families have been faced with changes to their employment and income and this program can provide supplemental food for children over the weekend to allow families to continue to ensure that basic needs are met and stretch their dollars and maintain their financial stability," said Jen Jabas, Executive Director of the United Way Douglas & Pope Counties. "We're grateful for the team at American Solutions for Business for coming together in times of need to support our community through the Backpack Attack program." 

"It's wonderful to see the number of volunteers interested in helping such a wonderful cause!" said Katie Hallstrom, Director of Human Resources at ASB. "Throughout the packing event, we helped to ensure the safety of our employees with everything set up with appropriate distances between food stations to practice social distancing. We only had 3-4 employees pack at any one time and ensured continuous hand washing and use of hand sanitizers. We're glad we could make an impact while also keeping our team safe!" 
PPAMidwest Virtual Happy Hour
It was great seeing everyone at last week's PPAMidwest Virtual Happy Hour! It was wonderful to connect and support each other and all who attended loved it! 

Watch your email for the next virtual happy hour time/date!
Do you have news you would like to share
with the PPAMidwest Community?

Would you like to have a profile published? Got an amusing or interesting industry story to share? Send it to: admin@ppam.org

PPAMidwest Members.....
Are you taking advantage of your membership benefits?
With our coupon book and affiliate programs, PPAMidwest Members easily save the amount of their dues several times over each year. 

Make sure to maximize your membership by taking advantage of your member only discounts!
Wild Wednesday Webinars - Lunch and Learn at your desk!
“Work at Home Technology"
Wed, April 15, 2020 11:30 AM - 12:30 PM CST

In the blink of an eye our world has changed. With over 80 million people moved to working from home in just one week, the landscape of how we conduct business is ever changing. Working remotely has its benefits and drawbacks. Learn how to navigate the new normal by using key platforms and technology. Jenny will use her years of experience working and hosting virtual training to help you excel at home. She will show you programs like Asana, Slack, Zoom, Facebook Groups, 15Five, Google Sheets, and more. Jenny will also share best practices when working with video conferencing and ways to stay connected with your clients.

Learning Outcomes:
  • Become aware of key online platforms that help you manage working from home.
  • Learn how to stay connected to your teammates and customers.
  • Hear best practices on how to engage people while on a video conference call. 

 1 CAS Credit when you submit your PPAI Pin Number with your survey.

Did You Know that 
PPAI Online Education
offers live webinars
throughout the year?

Click here to learn more or
register for an upcoming webinar
Industry News
PPB Rising Stars
Deadline: 4/23/20
PPB Now Taking Nominations For Its 2020 Rising Stars

Nominations are now open for PPB's annual Rising Stars recognition program. Even in these uncertain times, up-and-coming young leaders are continuing to make their mark on their companies and communities. Let the magazine know about those exceptional young leaders who are stepping up to help light the way for the future of our industry. Nominees selected for this year's honor will be profiled in an upcoming issue of PPB magazine. Click here to provide specific details and examples about your nominee to help the judges evaluate true star quality. All nominees must work for a PPAI member company. Previous honorees are not eligible. The deadline for nominations is 4/23/20.
Industry Town Hall
Presented by PPAI and ASI: 4/23/20
In case you missed this month's Industry Town Hall with Paul Bellantone, PPAI and Tim Andrews, ASI, you can listen to a recording of the webinar here

This podcast addresses what each organization is doing now to assist members, the $2 trillion stimulus package, advice on what small businesses can do now to survive and even thrive, and outline action plans and forecasts for the coming months.
10 How to Manage During A Crisis: Sort Everything Into "Now, Next, or Later"
Brad Becker  Guest Writer CTO and Chief Product Officer, Grace Hill

Focus on what's needed today, rather than obsessing over what you can't predict tomorrow.

One of the first lessons from the coronavirus, even at this early stage of the pandemic, is that you can never plan for everything.

The follow-up lesson, however, should give us all some hope. We can at least be more resilient when major, unexpected disruptions occur, as they inevitably will.

I'm seeing this first-hand. I was once the chief design officer for IBM Watson, and am now working in the property management sector. As public officials have issued shelter-in-place orders, the situation has upped the pressure on landlords and depressed traffic in commercial sites, which has led us to think hard about how to be more resilient.

Our conclusion is that we should stop wasting time planning ahead. Instead, we've adopted a "now, next, later" framework for decision making during crises. Today, despite the pandemic, we're efficiently making progress in matters where we have control, and we're gaining precious time to gird for changes that may or might not happen in the near future.  Read More
Free Ways To Expand Your Sales Knowledge
Online Courses
Courses To Help You Sell During Unusual Times 
Whether How do you sell right now? During this time, more than ever, Paul Petrone, head of academic and government marketing at LinkedIn Learning, says it's critical to understand the needs of your customers and prospects. It's about asking thoughtful questions and actively listening, so you deeply understand their pain points and needs-which have likely changed.
Petrone says it's also an opportunity to go deeper with existing customers and multi-thread throughout the organization to gain a more comprehensive view. The more helpful you can be here, the stronger and more meaningful those relationships will become. Explore these courses to learn how to empathize with your buyers and then co-create value with them.