Federal Workplace Training & Expo April 8 - 10, 2015 REGISTER AGENDA
 
Agenda At-A-Glance  
Workshop Tracks
ADR EEO HLE EXEC ATY
Alternative Dispute Resolution Equal Employment
Opportunity
HR/LR/ER Executive Perspectives Attorney/Legal
7 – 8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. - 12 p.m.

ADR-P1 Why Didn’t That Work? A Fresh Look at Communication Skills

Tracey Cairnie, President, CoreVision LLC
John Settle
, SETTLEment Associates, LLC


For years, organizations have been trying to enhance managers’ skills in communication, conflict management, team-building and trust-building, but it just hasn’t worked. It’s time for a fresh perspective. Using an interactive analysis of common workplace scenarios, Ms. Cairnie and Mr. Settle will provide you with new insights and skills. By participating in realistic scenarios, you’ll learn how to be a more effective communicator, coach/ mentor, conflict manager and team leader.

Workshop takeaways
Apply new perspectives on “active listening” techniques to communicate more effectively
Improve accountability and conflict management through a deeper understanding of negotiation, persuasion and trust-building
Integrate best practices in communication with personal coaching and mentoring
Encourage better communication by others

ATY-P2 MSPB Mock Hearing

Michael Bogdanow, Legal Liaison, Office of Regional Operations, Merit Systems Protection Board
Deborah Miron, Director of Regional Operations, Chief Administrative Judge,
     Merit Systems Protection Board
Julie H. Perkins, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C.
Representatives from the Merit Systems Protection Board, Denver Office
Annual
favorite!
A Merit Systems Protection Board hearing is not a place you want to find yourself unprepared. This informative and realistic mock hearing — conducted by MSPB officials — will give you the full picture of the process. Background and evidentiary information for the scenario being played out will be shared as handouts, giving you insight into how to take supportable actions. You’ll witness the practical aspects of the hearing, including objections, AJ rulings, direct and cross-examination, and findings.

Workshop takeaways
Understand the hearing stages in the MSPB process  
Ask relevant questions at the hearing  
Prepare a concise and focused closing argument that emphasizes key points  

EEO-P3 The Bigger Picture: A Management Approach to Accommodation Solutions

Dinah Cohen, President, Dinah F. Cohen Consulting, LLC
Jo Linda Johnson, Director of Civil Rights, Diversity & Inclusion Division, Transportation Security Administration


The reasonable accommodation process is a key factor to a successful employment program for individuals with disabilities and returning wounded, ill, and injured service members. This workshop will address the factors that could lead to the development of policies, cultural change, and successful employment outcomes.

Workshop takeaways

Know the steps in the reasonable accommodation process
Develop policies and programs to optimize hiring and retention of employees with disabilities
8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

EEO-P4 Putting Our Best Foot Forward: A Refresher for EEO Counselors and Investigators

Oliver Allen, EEO Officer, Department of Justice/Drug Enforcement Administration
Roslyn D. Brown, Strategic Human Capital and Public Policy Consultant


So you need to get your refresher training? Why not get it at one of the most buzzed-about FDR sessions? Mr. Allen and Ms. Brown use role play and interactive exercises to make sure you have all the tools you need to address the most challenging EEO situations. They will review the latest case law and walk you through EEOC’s case processing regulations. You’ll also have a chance to raise issues from your own experiences in an open forum segment.

Workshop takeaways
Identify the bases of protection under Title VII
Determine what types of questions to ask in various situations
Read body language and apply other strategies for working with difficult people
Recognize your own perceptions and stereotypes, and those of others

HLE-P5 Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Labor Relations

Steve Muir, Former Director, Labor and Employee Relations, Office of Comptroller of the Currency
Don Rider, Senior Associate, RGS, Inc.
Steve Sharfstein, Chief of Labor Relations, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences


Three legends in federal labor relations will take you through a brief history of the discipline, examine the latest case law as well as explain changes in policy. This popular workshop is ideal whether you are relatively new to the labor relations field or are just looking to gain solid knowledge on labor relations to develop your career further.

Workshop takeaways
Explain the roles of the FLRA, FMCS, arbitrators and district courts of appeal
Identify rights of the employee, management and union
Determine what issues are negotiable
Define and identify the different types of unfair labor practices
Understand the arbitration process

HLE-P6 Managing Conduct and Performance Issues

Barbara Haga, ER/LR Consultant; President, Federal HR Services Inc.

Ms. Haga will provide an in-depth review of the tools available to deal with performance and conduct deficiencies. First, she’ll focus on performance processes, requirements for performance plans, and procedures for dealing with minimally successful and unacceptable performance. Then, you’ll learn about disciplinary tools, Douglas factors, tables of penalties as well as common disciplinary infractions and what is required to prove them.

Workshop takeaways
Identify the tools available to deal with performance and conduct deficiencies
Advise managers on the best tool to use for a particular performance or conduct issue
Satisfy procedural requirements for initiating and effecting performance and conduct-based actions
Recognize differences in how conduct and performance actions are reviewed by the MSPB
10 – 10:30 a.m. Refreshment Break
12 – 1:30 p.m. Lunch on Your Own
1:30 – 5 p.m.

ADR-P7 Creating a Culture of Civility for Greater Productivity, Retention and Satisfaction

Megan Johnston, Executive Director, Northern Virginia Mediation Service
Nathalie Thompson, Owner, 5 Fold Consulting, Inc.


Incivility, rudeness and lack of respect thwart productive communication and destroy workplace relationships. More than 40 percent of American workers have experienced workplace incivility in the last five years, costing organizations big in terms of lost work time and productivity, high turnover, increased health costs due to stress and increased legal costs due to litigation. Ms. Johnston and Ms. Thompson will discuss the pyramid of behavior escalation and other markers of incivility and provide you with a road map to create a culture of civility in your workplace.

Workshop takeaways
Identify what makes behavior be perceived as civil or uncivil
Learn strategies to foster civility to improve employee productivity, retention and satisfaction
Develop guidelines to use in reviewing organizational policies, procedures and consequences to ensure they effectively address uncivil workplace behavior

ATY-P8 EEO Mock Hearing

Dwight Lewis, Chief Administrative Judge, Dallas Office, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Donald J. Names, Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy
Julie H. Perkins, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C.
Robert Woods, Assistant General Counsel (Manpower and Reserve Affairs), Department of the Navy
Annual
favorite!
This fast-paced workshop will give you an insider’s perspective of the EEO hearing process through demonstrations of opening statements, direct and cross-examinations, objections, the introduction of evidence, closing arguments, and more. You’ll get expert guidance on each step of the process, along with practical tips to sharpen your skills and avoid mistakes.

Workshop takeaways
Underst and the purpose of each stage of the hearing process, from the request for a hearing to the decision  
Learn the key aspects of each stage and how to avoid mistakes  
Improve your role in the EEO process  
3 – 3:30 p.m. Refreshment Break
5 - 6 p.m. 30th Anniversary Celebration
Session Tracks
ADR EEO HLE EXEC ATY
Alternative Dispute Resolution Equal Employment
Opportunity
HR/LR/ER Executive Perspectives Attorney/Legal
7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 – 10 a.m.

Opening Plenary
Back to the Basics: Restoring Integrity in an Organization
Michael T. McGuire  

Maj. Gen. Michael T. McGuire, Adjutant General, Arizona National Guard
The loss of public confidence in federal agencies due to internal scandals is real. Such scandals reflect failures of leadership and the abandonment of the basic tenets of public service. During his 30-plus year military career, Maj. Gen. McGuire, a decorated fighter pilot, has developed a simple yet dynamic approach to leadership. He requires every individual under his command to: (1) tell the truth and (2) give his or her best effort. While these principles sound simple, enforcing them in the context of a large and diverse organization can be complex. Maj. Gen. McGuire will share the success of his philosophy and discuss how you can use his approach to make institutional and organizational change.
10 – 10:30 a.m. Refreshment Break
10:30 – 11:30 a.m.

EXEC1 Town Hall Conversation With Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner

Carolyn Lerner, Special Counsel, Office of Special Counsel (invited)
Moderator: Debra L. Roth, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C.


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.
10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

ADR1 Communication and Trust – The Essentials for a Successful Workplace

Joseph Swerdzewski, Managing Member, Joseph Swerdzewski & Associates

Don’t let a lack of trust derail you and your staff from your agency mission or stifle labor-management relations. The key to trust is good communication, and Mr. Swerdzewski will share how you can improve both. You’ll learn the essential elements of effective workplace communication and how to use the appropriate skills in meetings, counseling and problem-solving, as well as in a virtual workplace.

Session takeaways
Understand the importance of counseling early on in the process
Identify and overcome the barriers to trust
Regain lost trust

ATY1   EEO1 EEO Case Law Update

Donald J. Names, Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy

One of FDR attendees’ favorite speakers helms this session — a must for all EEO professionals, agency counsel and HR practitioners. Mr. Names will review all the critical cases over the past year, including attendance as an essential function, accommodation, retaliation, sex-based discrimination and more. You’ll leave with a thorough understanding of the most relevant cases, as well as numerous other cases of interest.

Session takeaways
Identify trends in federal EEO litigation
Understand how Supreme Court and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission decisions can impact agency employment and EEO practices
Apply the lessons learned from recent disability decisions

HLE1 Employing Veterans: Did You Follow the Rules?

James M. Read, Director, Policy & Evaluation, Merit Systems Protection Board

There are a plethora of authorities for hiring veterans, and veteran hiring is on the rise. But the rules are not always simple, and denying a veteran his or her rights can lead to litigation under the Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA) or Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA). Find out what an agency must do, may do and cannot do when making personnel decisions involving veterans. Whether you make decisions about recruitment or removal actions, or have the responsibility to defend such actions, you need to know your agency’s obligations.

Session takeaways
Know the different hiring authorities and recognize how they impact veterans
Understand the consequences when you make decisions that restrict who gets hired
Recognize your obligations to veterans who work for you

HLE2 What Do You Want to Know About ULPs?

Joshua Brown, Acting Senior Attorney to the Chairman, Federal Labor Relations Authority
Philip Roberts, Regional Director, Boston Office, Federal Labor Relations Authority
Kurt Rumsfeld, Assistant General Counsel for Operations and Legal Policy, Federal Labor Relations Authority


Is an EEO investigation a formal discussion? Is a written response to questions a Weingarten meeting? Is membership in a fitness center a condition of employment? A team of experts from the FLRA is prepared to answer these and any other oddball questions you can throw at them as you get the opportunity to drive the agenda. Maybe you’ll discover that your question wasn’t so odd after all.

Session takeaways
Determine what constitutes an unfair labor practice
Learn about the nuances of ULPs
Identify the jurisdiction of ULPs
12 – 1:30 p.m. Lunch on Your Own
1:30 - 3 p.m.

ADR2 You’ve Reached Agreement, Now Comes the Hard Part

Andrew Pizzi, Conflict Resolution Practitioner
Michael Wolf, Director, Collaboration & ADR Office, Federal Labor Relations Authority


The goal of any mediation is to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution to a dispute. The vast majority of resolutions result in written agreements that are binding, which makes the terms of agreements and how they are recorded critical. Mr. Pizzi and Mr. Wolf will take you through an exercise in drafting an agreement, showing you why a written agreement is often necessary in mediation, the importance of understanding and evaluating valid information, language to avoid, and the proper protocol to finalizing the agreement.

Session takeaways
Apply the guidelines as to what goes into an agreement
Understand what the mediator can and cannot do when drafting the agreement
Comply with the legal requirements for written agreements

ATY2 Mixed Cases: Learning From Alvara

Michael Bogdanow, Legal Liaison, Office of Regional Operations, Merit Systems Protection Board
Donald J. Names, Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy


Mixed cases have always been problematic for practitioners. Since a mixed case involves both an adverse action appealable to the Merit Systems Protection Board and an EEO complaint appealable to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, practitioners must ask themselves: Where do I go, what do I file and when should I file it? And when does the Special Panel get involved? The Panel’s recent Alvara decision provides a timely case for Mr. Bogdanow and Mr. Names to walk you through this complicated process.

Session takeaways
Identify when a case falls under both EEOC and MSPB jurisdiction
Know the steps in the mixed case appeal process
Describe the roles of the MSPB, EEOC and Special Panel

EEO2 Hidden Disabilities? Halt the Monday Morning Quarterbacking

Jo Linda Johnson, Director of Civil Rights, Diversity & Inclusion Division, Transportation Security Administration
Beth Loy, Principal Consultant, Job Accommodation Network


Revamp your playbook when it comes to accommodating employees with hidden disabilities. While complying with the law can be complex, having a better understanding of the intricacies of the Rehabilitation Act and the ADAAA will help you make sound decisions. Combine this legal framework with guidance on how to resolve job accommodation issues and you’ll have the practical guidance and strategies you need to respond confidently to hidden disability issues and to provide appropriate reasonable accommodations. Real-life accommodation situations and solutions will be interspersed throughout this interactive session.

Session takeaways
Determine if an employee with a hidden disability is covered
Identify types of reasonable accommodations that are possible for hidden disabilities
Properly request documentation to support a request for the accommodation of a hidden disability

EEO3 Writing Your Best ROI Summary

Amy Risley, President, Resolution Services, LLC

A critical part of any investigation is the Report of Investigation summary.  This is the opportunity to present the whole picture to the trier of fact in a coherent and succinct manner. A poorly written summary can reflect negatively on the entire Report of Investigation. Ms. Risley will discuss how to organize the summary, what facts to put in and what to leave out, and the nuts and bolts of effective writing skills.

Session takeaways
Write an organized ROI summary, particularly for complicated multi-issue claims
Write effectively and clearly
Anticipate and address all critical questions the adjudicator may have

HLE3 FMLA: A Scenario-based Approach

Barbara Haga, ER/LR Consultant; President, Federal HR Services Inc.

This session is designed for practitioners with experience in administering FMLA. Using a series of scenarios, Ms. Haga will cover important aspects of Title II of FMLA — from coverage to the content of medical certification, from what is to what isn’t a serious health condition, from provisional FMLA to when FMLA may be denied and much more. This leave expert will also provide illustrations related to substitution of paid leave and scenarios based on disciplinary-related FMLA cases decided by the MSPB. You’ll leave with the tools necessary to advise employees and managers on requirements for medical certification, provisional leave and recertification requirements.

Session takeaways
Apply FMLA provisions to specific workplace situations
Explain how the substitution of paid leave works for employees’ own serious health conditions
Advise managers properly in cases where FMLA may be denied and where discipline for leave tied to FMLA is warranted

HLE4 Social Media and the Nexus Connection

Robert Grant, President/CEO, The Grant Group

Twitter, Facebook and numerous other social media platforms continue to transform how government communicates with its constituents. While the rules of engagement for on-duty use of social media are generally well-publicized and followed, off-duty use presents the greatest challenge. Learn what constitutes off-duty misconduct in the social media arena and the appropriate remedies for correcting the issue.

Session takeaways
Know the dos and don’ts of social media away from the workplace
Identify the ways MSPB recognizes a nexus between off-duty misconduct and the efficiency of the service
Evaluate appropriate corrective actions for off-duty misconduct
2 – 3 p.m.

EXEC2 Town Hall Conversation With FLRA Chair Carol Waller Pope

Carol Waller Pope, Chair, Federal Labor Relations Authority
Moderator: Jeffrey Neal, Senior Vice President, ICF International; Publisher, ChiefHRO.com


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.
3 – 3:45 p.m. Refreshment Break
3:30 – 4 p.m. cyberFEDS® Exhibitor Showcase
3:45 - 4:45 p.m.

ATY3   HLE5 FLRA Case Law Update

Steve Sharfstein, Chief of Labor Relations, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences

The Federal Labor Relations Authority is once again an active board. Mr. Sharfstein will review the FLRA’s most critical cases over the past year, including decisions on negotiability, representation, unfair labor practices and arbitration exceptions. You’ll also learn valuable lessons that can be gleaned from recent Federal Service Impasses Panel decisions.

Session takeaways
Use recent FLRA decisions to evaluate your workplace policies for compliance
Apply recent case law to determine your actions
Identify trends in federal labor relations litigation

EEO4 Ready, Set, Ask the EEO Experts

Take some time to talk with the top FDR speakers on the most challenging issues of the day. Our experts will each command their own table and their own topic. Come hear the discussion and ask a question.

Topics and participants:
EEO Counseling/Investigating: Oliver Allen, EEO Officer, Department of Justice/Drug Enforcement Administration; Roslyn Brown, Strategic Human Capital and Public Policy Consultant
EEO Case Law: Joel Kravetz, Civil Rights Program Manager, Nuclear Regulatory Commission; Don Names, Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy
Harassment and Retaliation: Kelly Goode, EEO Officer, National Gallery of Art; Delia Johnson, Retired, Former President, Council of Federal EEO and Civil Rights Executives
LGBT Issues: Louis Lopez, Associate Special Counsel, Investigation and Prosecution – Headquarters, Office of Special Counsel; Daniel Vail, Special Assistant/Attorney Advisor to the General Counsel, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Reasonable Accommodation: Dinah Cohen, President, Dinah F. Cohen Consulting, LLC; Jo Linda Johnson, Director of Civil Rights, Diversity & Inclusion Division, Transportation Security Administration

EXEC3 Town Hall Conversation With MSPB Chair Susan Tsui Grundmann

Susan Tsui Grundmann, Chair, Merit Systems Protection Board
Moderator: Debra L. Roth, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C.


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.
Session Tracks
ADR EEO HLE EXEC ATY BONUS
Alternative Dispute
Resolution
Equal Employment
Opportunity
HR/LR/ER Executive
Perspectives
Attorney/Legal
7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. – 10 a.m.

ADR2-R You’ve Reached Agreement, Now Comes the Hard Part (R)

Andrew Pizzi, Conflict Resolution Practitioner
Michael Wolf, Director, Collaboration & ADR Office, Federal Labor Relations Authority


The goal of any mediation is to reach a mutually satisfactory resolution to a dispute. The vast majority of resolutions result in written agreements that are binding, which makes the terms of agreements and how they are recorded critical. Mr. Pizzi and Mr. Wolf will take you through an exercise in drafting an agreement, showing you why a written agreement is often necessary in mediation, the importance of understanding and evaluating valid information, language to avoid, and the proper protocol to finalizing the agreement.

Session takeaways
Apply the guidelines as to what goes into an agreement
Understand what the mediator can and cannot do when drafting the agreement
Comply with the legal requirements for written agreements

ATY4   HLE6 MSPB Case Law Update

Sam Vitaro, Labor Arbitrator; Mediator; Fact-Finder; Consultant

Mr. Vitaro, author of numerous tomes on federal employment law, will review the most significant rulings by the MSPB and Federal Circuit over the past 12 months. Find out how the board is ruling on unacceptable performance, indefinite suspensions and security clearances.

Session takeaways
Be better prepared to defend your actions
Identify trends in federal workplace litigation
Avoid employment decisions that land your agency in front of the MSPB

EEO2-R Hidden Disabilities? Halt the Monday Morning Quarterbacking (R)

Jo Linda Johnson, Director of Civil Rights, Diversity & Inclusion Division, Transportation Security Administration
Beth Loy, Principal Consultant, Job Accommodation Network


Revamp your playbook when it comes to accommodating employees with hidden disabilities. While complying with the law can be complex, having a better understanding of the intricacies of the Rehabilitation Act and the ADAAA will help you make sound decisions. Combine this legal framework with guidance on how to resolve job accommodation issues and you’ll have the practical guidance and strategies you need to respond confidently to hidden disability issues and to provide appropriate reasonable accommodations. Real-life accommodation situations and solutions will be interspersed throughout this interactive session.

Session takeaways
Determine if an employee with a hidden disability is covered
Identify types of reasonable accommodations that are possible for hidden disabilities
Properly request documentation to support a request for the accommodation of a hidden disability

EEO5 Retaliation Dos and Don’ts: Practical Advice to Curb Reprisal Claims

Kelly Goode, EEO Officer, National Gallery of Art
Delia Johnson, Retired, Former President, Council of Federal EEO and Civil Rights Executives


Retaliation remains the number one allegation in federal EEO complaints, and it seems to happen so easily. Do you have frustrated and angry management officials acting badly, leading to new EEO claims and destroying relationships? How can EEO professionals manage retaliation claims when processing complaints? Ms. Goode and Ms. Johnson will provide practical information about how retaliation happens even when supervisors act with the best of intentions, how to treat retaliation claims that arise during complaint processing, and steps to minimize retaliation from happening in the first place.

Session takeaways
Understand what motivates retaliation and respond to those behaviors
Address retaliation claims in the EEO process
Share practical advice with managers and supervisors about avoiding retaliation claims

EEO6 Federal EEO Complaints: Know When to Hold Them and When to Dismiss Them

Joel A. Kravetz, Civil Rights Program Manager, Nuclear Regulatory Commission

The EEOC has made it clear: Agencies are failing to appropriately apply the grounds for dismissals. The result? EEO complaints are getting reversed by large percentages. Mr. Kravetz will explain, through case study, how to avoid mistakes in dismissing EEO complaints and how to use best practices to frame and develop effective acceptance and dismissal letters.

Session takeaways
Analyze the facts to ensure claims are properly framed
Build a record to justify either acceptance or dismissal of EEO claims
Craft effective letters of acceptance and dismissal

HLE3-R FMLA: A Scenario-based Approach (R)

Barbara Haga, ER/LR Consultant; President, Federal HR Services Inc.

This session is designed for practitioners with experience in administering FMLA. Using a series of scenarios, Ms. Haga will cover important aspects of Title II of FMLA — from coverage to the content of medical certification, from what is to what isn’t a serious health condition, from provisional FMLA to when FMLA may be denied and much more. This leave expert will also provide illustrations related to substitution of paid leave and scenarios based on disciplinary-related FMLA cases decided by the MSPB. You’ll leave with the tools necessary to advise employees and managers on requirements for medical certification, provisional leave and recertification requirements.

Session takeaways
Apply FMLA provisions to specific workplace situations
Explain how the substitution of paid leave works for employees’ own serious health conditions
Advise managers properly in cases where FMLA may be denied and where discipline for leave tied to FMLA is warranted

HLE7 Who’s in the Bargaining Unit and Who’s Out?

Steve Muir, Former Director, Labor and Employee Relations, Office of Comptroller of the Currency
Don Rider, Senior Associate, RGS, Inc.


The bargaining unit is the basic building block in the union-management relationship.  A person’s status — in or out of the bargaining unit — determines whether they are covered by the collective bargaining agreement, whether they can file under the negotiated grievance procedure, and their ability to be represented by the union at certain types of meetings. In this interactive session, Mr. Muir and Mr. Rider will look at the major categories of bargaining unit exclusions: supervisors, management officials and confidential employees.  With many major reorganizations and consolidations taking place within agencies and departments, this session will allow you to ensure your organization has accurate designations for all employees and positions.

Session takeaways
Recognize the criteria for including and excluding specific types of positions from the bargaining unit
Distinguish the ways in which classifiers and labor relations specialists may be bound by different guidelines in deciding an individual’s bargaining unit status
Identify the type of evidence you will need in contesting the unit status of a position at your agency
10 – 10:30 a.m. Refreshment Break
10:30 a.m. – 12 p.m.

ADR3 Dealing With Difficult Situations When Using Technology

Julia Morelli, President, George Mason University Instructional Foundation, Inc.
Dan Rainey, Chief of Staff, National Mediation Board
Izabela Solosi, Training Program Manager, Northern Virginia Mediation Service


Handling challenging situations can become even more difficult when people are communicating through technology. How do you ensure that the same message is being received when it’s being filtered through technology? This session explores the challenges that may arise and that can create conflict. You’ll hear experience-based tips and practical techniques on how to hold difficult conversations effectively, whether over the phone, the computer or using other technology.

Session takeaways
Recognize the elements of a difficult conversation
Identify potential pitfalls and apply best practices when using technology-based communication
Prepare to hold a difficult conversation

ATY1-R   EEO1-R EEO Case Law Update (R)

Donald J. Names, Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy

One of FDR attendees’ favorite speakers helms this session — a must for all EEO professionals, agency counsel and HR practitioners. Mr. Names will review all the critical cases over the past year, including attendance as an essential function, accommodation, retaliation, sex-based discrimination and more. You’ll leave with a thorough understanding of the most relevant cases, as well as numerous other cases of interest.

Session takeaways
Identify trends in federal EEO litigation
Understand how Supreme Court and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission decisions can impact agency employment and EEO practices
Apply the lessons learned from recent disability decisions

EEO7 Leave, Telework, and Reasonable Accommodation

Joseph Kaplan, Managing Partner, Founding Principal, Attorney, Passman & Kaplan

Leave and telework are complex forms of accommodation that cause a lot of agency confusion. The result is an increasing number of EEOC decisions favoring the employee. Attorney Joseph Kaplan will help you ensure that employees with disabilities realize their potential and keep your agency from running afoul of the Rehabilitation Act.

Session takeaways
Identify the circumstances under which an agency must grant leave as an accommodation
Determine whether regular attendance is an essential job function
Compare telework with other effective accommodations

HLE4-R Social Media and the Nexus Connection (R)

Robert Grant, President/CEO, The Grant Group

Twitter, Facebook and numerous other social media platforms continue to transform how government communicates with its constituents. While the rules of engagement for on-duty use of social media are generally well-publicized and followed, off-duty use presents the greatest challenge.  Learn what constitutes off-duty misconduct in the social media arena and the appropriate remedies for correcting the issue.

Session takeaways
Know the dos and don’ts of social media away from the workplace
Identify the ways MSPB recognizes a nexus between off-duty misconduct and the efficiency of the service
Evaluate appropriate corrective actions for off-duty misconduct

HLE8 Know Your Douglas Factors

Robert Erbe, Deputy Chief, Labor and Employment Law Division, Immigration and Customs Enforcement

Determining the appropriate penalty is often the most difficult decision in an adverse action. The 12 Douglas factors are key to making a correct decision. Mr. Erbe will walk you through the Douglas minefield and review recent MSPB case law involving penalty determination. You’ll leave with a full understanding of the Douglas factors and, more specifically, how the MSPB determines whether a penalty is reasonable.

Session takeaways
Determine the appropriate penalty that will withstand third-party review
Apply recent Board decisions when making penalty determinations
Address mitigating factors appropriately and effectively

BONUS Bonus Session: Legislative Update

Jessica Klement, Legislative Director, National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association

It’s been a tumultuous few years for federal employees, and the future is no more secure. Since the last midterm elections, there has been a lot of hand-wringing over the impact of the new Congress on the federal workplace. And don’t forget the possibility of sequestration. What’s on the horizon?  What workplace-related bills are being discussed? Ms. Klement will bring you the latest on what’s been proposed, what is expected to be proposed and the likelihood that any of it will pass.
12 – 1:30 p.m.

Luncheon Plenary
Transform Adversity Into Action
Steve Pemberton  

Steve Pemberton, Chief Diversity Officer, Walgreens, Author of A Chance in the World
Steve Pemberton’s story is one of overcoming seemingly insurmountable odds. Taken from his mother at the age of three, he was shuttled from home to home, misunderstood and often abused by his foster families. One babysitter wrote in her diary of Steve: “He doesn’t have a chance in the world.” Steve will explain how he overcame this troubling childhood to become a trailblazing Forbes 50 executive. Steve’s story will inspire you to move past extreme adversity to achieve the success you deserve.
1:30 - 2 p.m. Dessert Break
2 - 3 p.m.

EXEC4 Town Hall Conversation With EEOC Chair Jenny Yang

Jenny Yang, Chair, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
Moderator: Jo Linda Johnson, Director, Director of Civil Rights, Diversity & Inclusion Division,
    Transportation Security Administration


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.
2 – 3:30 p.m.

ADR4 Effectively Dealing With Mystifying Behaviors

Ramona Buck, Commissioner, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service
Eileen Hoffman, Commissioner/Project Director, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service
Denise McKenney, EEO Director, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service


Learn how not to be thrown by others’ challenging and mystifying behaviors. Three mediation experts will share their strategies for responding to — and making changes to — the conduct of difficult persons. And you’ll see firsthand demonstrations of how to put these strategies into action most effectively.

Session takeaways
Analyze the difficult behaviors of others
Understand how to deal with challenging individuals
Identify specific tools you can use to respond to mystifying behavior

ADR5 Accountability at Work: Skills for Resolving Unmet Expectations

David Maxfield, Bestselling Author; Vice President of Research, VitalSmarts

One of the most prevalent and costly workplace issues is the inability to effectively hold others accountable for unmet expectations and bad behavior.  When people aren’t held accountable, they aren’t able to contribute fully to the strategic goals and success of the organization — and everyone suffers. With the use of entertaining videos and case studies, Mr. Maxfield will share how you can candidly and respectfully hold others accountable to resolve concerns while maintaining good relationships.

Session takeaways
Create a culture where employees hold everyone accountable regardless of power or position
Master performance discussions to get positive results and maintain good relationships
Motivate others to change behavior and permanently resolve issues

ATY5   HLE9 Indefinite Suspensions and Security Clearances

Stephanie A. Polk, Senior Associate Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy
Representative from the Merit Systems Protection Board


Recent Merit Systems Protection Board decisions regarding security clearances and indefinite suspensions mark a drastic departure from past practice. Ms. Polk and an MSPB representative will review and lead a discussion of how these decisions should impact your agency procedures. You’ll also examine the Federal Circuit’s ruling on this issue and what it means for future MSPB indefinite suspension determinations.

Session takeaways
Avoid making decisions that would be reversed by the MSPB
Identify the key case law regarding security clearances and indefinite suspension
Apply due process standards

ATY6 Whistleblower Disclosures: Rights and Responsibilities of Agencies and Employees

Karen Gorman, Deputy Chief, Disclosure Unit, Office of Special Counsel
Catherine McMullen, Chief, Disclosure Unit, Office of Special Counsel


What does a federal employee do when he or she discovers that coworkers are breaking the law at work? What if the employee is afraid to tell someone for fear of losing his job? Is there any safe way to “blow the whistle,” and what are the implications for the agency? Come learn about the secure channel, provided by federal statute, for the reporting of wrongdoing outside of the agency in which it is occurring.

Session takeaways
Identify the avenues available to federal employees for reporting wrong doing
Explain the OSC process for investigation and public reporting of whistleblower allegations
Analyze different types of disclosures and appropriate agency actions to address wrongdoing

HLE1-R Employing Veterans: Did You Follow the Rules? (R)

James M. Read, Director, Policy & Evaluation, Merit Systems Protection Board

There are a plethora of authorities for hiring veterans, and veteran hiring is on the rise. But the rules are not always simple, and denying a veteran his or her rights can lead to litigation under the Veterans Employment Opportunities Act of 1998 (VEOA) or Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA). Find out what an agency must do, may do and cannot do when making personnel decisions involving veterans. Whether you make decisions about recruitment or removal actions, or have the responsibility to defend such actions, you need to know your agency’s obligations.

Session takeaways
Know the different hiring authorities and recognize how they impact veterans
Understand the consequences when you make decisions that restrict who gets hired
Recognize your obligations to veterans who work for you
3:45 – 4:45 p.m.

EEO8 What Can We Do About Harassment?

Stephanie A. Polk, Senior Associate Counsel, Office of the General Counsel, Department of the Navy

Harassment claims continue to flood the EEOC. But it’s hard to stop harassment, if you don’t know what it is. Is it a petty slight or comment? Is it someone who is continually left out of everyone else’s lunch plans? Is it the use of derogatory terms to describe coworkers? Ms. Polk will explain what makes harassment illegal. You’ll leave with practical tools to recognize, prevent and respond to harassment claims, saving your agency significant sums of money otherwise spent on complaint processing.

Session takeaways
Identify the factors that contribute to a hostile environment
Adopt best practices to stop and correct harassment
Apply lessons learned from harassment case law

EEO9 Emerging Issues in Protection for the LGBT Workforce

Louis Lopez, Associate Special Counsel, Investigation and Prosecution – Headquarters, Office of Special Counsel
Daniel Vail, Special Assistant/Attorney Advisor to the General Counsel, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission


Although Congress has yet to pass a law specifically protecting LGBT employees from discrimination, LGBT employees are protected through a variety of measures government-wide and at individual agencies. Mr. Lopez and Mr. Vail will get you current on how the existing prohibition of sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 may cover claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. They’ll also discuss how civil service laws provide protections for LGBT federal workers. You’ll learn about recent legal developments through real cases, as well as best practices to create a diverse, productive and inclusive work environment.

Session takeaways
Understand the existing protections for LGBT federal workers
Navigate various enforcement schemes at federal agencies to protect against employment discrimination
Identify specific ways federal agencies can address common work issues involving LGBT people

EXEC5 Town Hall Conversation With FMCS Acting Director Allison Beck

Allison Beck, Acting Director, Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service
Moderator: Denise McKenney, EEO Director, Federal Mediation & Conciliation Service


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.

HLE10 Ready, Set, Ask the HLE Experts

Determining the appropriate penalty is often the most difficult decision in an adverse action. The 12 Douglas factors are key to making a correct decision. Mr. Erbe will walk you through the Douglas minefield and review recent MSPB case law involving penalty determination. You’ll leave with a full understanding of the Douglas factors and, more specifically, how the MSPB determines whether a penalty is reasonable.

Topics and participants:
MSPB Case Law: Sam Vitaro, Labor Arbitrator; Mediator; Fact-Finder; Consultant
Conduct/Performance: Robert Erbe, Deputy Chief, Labor and Employment Law Division, Immigration and Customs Enforcement; Bob Grant, President/CEO, The Grant Group
Labor Relations: Steve Muir, Former Director, Labor and Employee Relations, Office of Comptroller of the Currency; Don Rider, Senior Associate, RGS, Inc.
Leave: Barbara Haga, ER/LR Consultant; President, Federal HR Services Inc.

BONUS Bonus Session: Myth vs. Reality: The Story Behind the Headlines

Jessica Klement, Legislative Director, National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association
Jeffrey Neal, Senior Vice President, ICF International; Publisher, ChiefHRO.com
Debra L. Roth, Partner, Shaw Bransford & Roth P.C.
Representative from the Merit Systems Protection Board


Administrative leave, telework, terminations and the agency scandal du jour. These topics make for great headlines. However, the general press tends to leave out a big chunk of the story, often to the detriment of the federal employee or agency. Our panel will go beyond the surface of these sensational stories to put them in the appropriate context.
Session Tracks
ADR EEO HLE EXEC ATY BONUS
Alternative Dispute
Resolution
Equal Employment
Opportunity
HR/LR/ER Executive
Perspectives
Attorney/Legal
7:30 – 8:30 a.m. Continental Breakfast
8:30 a.m. – 9:45

EXEC6 Town Hall Conversation With OPM Director Katherine Archuleta

Katherine Archuleta, Director, Office of Personnel Management
Moderator Jeffrey Neal, Senior Vice President, ICF International; Publisher, ChiefHRO.com


FDR gives you the opportunity to hear from, and speak directly with, the leaders of the major dispute resolution agencies. In the Town Hall Conversations, our experienced and widely respected moderators will direct the conversation as the leaders take questions directly from you live and via text, as well as questions solicited before the event. These are rare opportunities to gain vital insights about the agencies’ goals and agendas for the upcoming year.
10 – 11 a.m.

ATY7-A How to Conduct an Arbitration, Part I

Peter Broida, Attorney; Publisher
Sam Vitaro, Labor Arbitrator; Mediator; Fact-Finder; Consultant


Two experts will teach you how to conduct an arbitration, and then you’ll get to watch one. Mr. Broida and Mr. Vitaro will cover everything from researching your case to making the closing argument. The simulation will be a fast-paced, realistic federal arbitration hearing, with an arbitrator, two advocates and several witnesses. The hypothetical, but realistic, scenario will provide you with an opportunity to see effective opening statements, direct and cross examination of witnesses (with opportunities to make objections), and closing arguments.

Session takeaways
Identify the statutory limitations on grievance arbitration
Explain the critical steps in preparing for the hearing
Use best practices for various aspects of the hearing

EEO9-R Emerging Issues in Protection for the LGBT Workforce (R)

Louis Lopez, Associate Special Counsel, Investigation and Prosecution – Headquarters, Office of Special Counsel
Daniel Vail, Special Assistant/Attorney Advisor to the General Counsel, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission


Although Congress has yet to pass a law specifically protecting LGBT employees from discrimination, LGBT employees are protected through a variety of measures government-wide and at individual agencies. Mr. Lopez and Mr. Vail will get you current on how the existing prohibition of sex discrimination under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 may cover claims of discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. They’ll also discuss how civil service laws provide protections for LGBT federal workers. You’ll learn about recent legal developments through real cases, as well as best practices to create a diverse, productive and inclusive work environment.

Session takeaways
Understand the existing protections for LGBT federal workers
Navigate various enforcement schemes at federal agencies to protect against employment discrimination
Identify specific ways federal agencies can address common work issues involving LGBT people

EE0-10 MD-110 Revisions

Victor Voloshin, Chief Mediation Officer, Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

The EEOC is expected to release the first major revision of Management Directive 110 in nearly 15 years. Mr. Voloshin will provide a detailed look at these long-awaited changes, many of which seek to prevent conflicts of interest in the EEO process.

Session takeaways
Explain the possible changes to MD-110
Discuss the role of the agency representative in the EEO process
Learn the best ADR practices for the federal EEO process
11 – 11:15 a.m. Refreshment Break
11:15 – 12:45

ADR3-R Dealing With Difficult Situations When Using Technology (R)

Julia Morelli, President, George Mason University Instructional Foundation, Inc.
Dan Rainey, Chief of Staff, National Mediation Board
Izabela Solosi, Training Program Manager, Northern Virginia Mediation Service


Handling challenging situations can become even more difficult when people are communicating through technology. How do you ensure that the same message is being received when it’s being filtered through technology? This session explores the challenges that may arise and that can create conflict. You’ll hear experience-based tips and practical techniques on how to hold difficult conversations effectively, whether over the phone, the computer or using other technology.

Session takeaways
Recognize the elements of a difficult conversation
Identify potential pitfalls and apply best practices when using technology-based communication
Prepare to hold a difficult conversation

ATY7-B How to Conduct an Arbitration, Part II

Peter Broida, Attorney; Publisher
Sam Vitaro, Labor Arbitrator; Mediator; Fact-Finder; Consultant


Two experts will teach you how to conduct an arbitration, and then you’ll get to watch one. Mr. Broida and Mr. Vitaro will cover everything from researching your case to making the closing argument. The simulation will be a fast-paced, realistic federal arbitration hearing, with an arbitrator, two advocates and several witnesses. The hypothetical, but realistic, scenario will provide you with an opportunity to see effective opening statements, direct and cross examination of witnesses (with opportunities to make objections), and closing arguments.

Session takeaways
Identify the statutory limitations on grievance arbitration
Explain the critical steps in preparing for the hearing
Use best practices for various aspects of the hearing

EEO7-R Leave, Telework, and Reasonable Accommodation (R)

Joseph Kaplan, Managing Partner, Founding Principal, Attorney, Passman & Kaplan

Leave and telework are complex forms of accommodation that cause a lot of agency confusion. The result is an increasing number of EEOC decisions favoring the employee. Attorney Joseph Kaplan will help you ensure that employees with disabilities realize their potential and keep your agency from running afoul of the Rehabilitation Act.

Session takeaways
Identify the circumstances under which an agency must grant leave as an accommodation
Determine whether regular attendance is an essential job function
Compare telework with other effective accommodations

BONUS Bonus Session: Being a Woman, Being Successful, Learning the Game

Oliver Allen, EEO Officer, Department of Justice/Drug Enforcement Administration
Roslyn D. Brown, Strategic Human Capital and Public Policy Consultant


This dynamic, strategy-filled and sometimes humorous session will teach women how to equalize their positions in today’s and tomorrow’s workforce. Using case studies, interactive dialogue, and numerous resources, women who attend will learn how to succeed in a male-dominated work environment, and increase their prominence and effectiveness in the reality of an ever-evolving workplace. You’ll learn the unwritten rules that govern an organizational culture of work, the importance of visibility and how to say the right thing the first time — and leave with an awareness of the differences that can occur between what women communicate and how men interpret it.
11:15 a.m. – 1:15 p.m.

ATY8 Legal Ethics Training

Maxanne R. Witkin, Director, Office of Employment Discrimination and
   Complaint Adjudication, Department of Veterans Affairs
This session meets most states’ legal ethics training requirements.
As a government attorney, it can be difficult to determine who your client is, how the attorney-client and work product privileges apply in your practice, and what your ethical responsibilities are if you leave government. Ms. Witkin will cover all of these topics during this two-hour session, using the American Bar Association’s rules as a backdrop.

Session takeaways
Know how much you can communicate with pro se parties  
Identify the myriad ethics pitfalls involving social media and attorney ethics  
Explain American Bar Association rules for communications with individuals other than clients  
 

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