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Speakers announced for upcoming Workforce Summit

Guest speakers have been announced for the upcoming Grow Workforce Employer and Jobseeker Summit. This unique summit will empower and support employers and their manager-level staff members through a combination of best practice sharing, resources, training, programs, and the incentives available to build a talent pipeline.

The two-day event kicks-off April 20 with training and resources for businesses, followed by two very different job fairs on April 27. These events will take place at the Great Bend Events Center with businesses from across the state invited to participate. Registration is live at

Grow Workforce speakers will be engaging attendees on April 20 through several intentional and thought-provoking sessions.

Minneapolis, Minn.-based Twin Cities Rise will lead discussions titled “Change Management,” “Employing a Different Worker and the Benefits to the Employer,” and “A New Age in Workforce and How to Adapt.” Visit for a deeper dive on each session.

Jacquelyn Carpenter, vice president of Twin Cities RISE’S Workforce Development and Empowerment Institute, joined Twin Cities RISE in 2017. In this role, Carpenter is responsible for engaging new employers for pathways partnerships, internships and job placements for program participants, as well as expanding the Empowerment Institute and its customer base across the U.S. With over 20 years of strategic employment leadership at Manpower Group, she successfully operated a tri-state regional territory. Carpenter has already seen success in expanding partnerships and opportunities for participants while increasing earned income.

Attendees will also enjoy keynote speaker Dr. Nels Lindberg during the catered lunch. This local businessman will talk about his newly launched book, “The Ultimate Real World Guide to Hiring and Firing.” Dr. Lindberg is a KSU alumni and is known for his expertise consulting for the beef and cattle industries. The veterinary practice he is the senior partner in, Animal Medical Center, is based in Great Bend with five veterinarians and a team of professionals that care for pets, cattle, and equine patients from all over central Kansas. In addition to building a reputation as a leader in the veterinary industry, Dr. Lindberg is a sought-after public speaker on business, life, and leadership, and a leadership and business coach. He coaches entrepreneurs and multiple organizations beyond feedyards and veterinary practices, from farming operations to municipalities.  He is also a founding partner in multiple other businesses working to provide his people growth and development skills, leadership practices and development, as well as tactical and strategic thought processes to those partnerships. Visit to learn more or to sign up for his blog. Employers facing a strained workforce are encouraged to attend both days’ events with their leadership team ensuring an aligned team ready to push forward in a competitive market. Sponsorship packages as well as a la carte options are available.  

A new spin 

on job fairs

April 27 will deliver up a traditional Job Fair from 3-6 p.m. and a “Reverse Job Fair” from 1-3 p.m. At a reverse job fair, employers will be able to meet with pre-screened applicants from the reverse side of the table and visit with jobseekers whose skills and abilities meet their needs. Businesses should bring job descriptions of open positions.

Employers are signing up but there’s still time to register. Appearing as a Platinum Sponsor is Superior Essex. Gold sponsors include KMW Loaders, KanEquip Inc. and Hess Services Inc. Standard sponsors include the City of Great Bend, Fuller Industries Inc., Ellsworth Correctional Facility, Amerine Utilities Construction, First Kansas Bank, and Adams Brown.

Visit for a complete itinerary and registration information. Barton County businesses that call Great Bend Economic Development will receive a 25% discount code to use when registering.

The Grow Workforce Employer and Jobseeker Summit is being brought to businesses thanks to these Grow Workforce Partners: Great Bend Economic Development, Great Bend Chamber of Commerce, KansasWorks, Great Bend USD 428, JAG-K and Barton Community College. Special thanks to additional sponsors: Great Bend Coffee, Dillons, Office Products Inc. and Nex-Tech.

About the Sessions:

Change Management

Change! It’s happening rapidly in the world of workforce. In this session we will provide resources, concepts, and methods to:

• Adapt your behavior in new ways

• Learn the power of your thoughts

• Take control of your mindset

• Alleviate the negative myths of change.

Being able to adapt to change is crucial to a strong workplace culture.

Employing a Different Worker and the Benefits to the Employer

Employers have unique and serious challenges and meeting their workforce needs. They are faced with a dwindling supply of workers due to many changing workforce factors. It is time to look to untapped talent pools to fulfill their workforce needs. In this session, we’ll teach you how to access the untapped pool that is individuals with criminal records, while keeping your company’s bottom line in mind. Looking ahead, traditional recruiting efforts and hiring practices will no longer yield the necessary amount of talent to meet employment demands.

A New Age in Workforce and How to Adapt

As a new generation takes the majority role in the workforce market, employers are faced with adapting to a new mindset. This new age in workforce is hyper focused on equality, work-life balance, and positive work culture. Through emotional intelligence, we will provide resources to help employers adapt, challenge, and build on ideas and belief systems. This workshop will share methods to seek understanding, strengthened connections to others, and provide ideas about how to stretch and adapt to be competitive in recruiting and retaining employees.

Hiring and Firing

Join local businessman, Dr. Nels Lindberg, for a keynote lunch based on his new book “The Ultimate Real World Guide to Hiring and Firing.” In this presentation, you can expect to hear real-life, practical, and everyday hiring wisdom from over 15 years in the trenches, and a lifetime of observations.