THU AM News: Managing millennials, developing pod travel and delivering cheese curds

Exclusively for WisBusiness Subscribers

Access the mobile version of the News Summary:

University Research Park Ad
University Research Park

From …

— Two MMAC panelists disagreed on how important it is to cater to what millennial workers want, addressing a key issue of how to attract and retain talent in Wisconsin.

Mill Mielke, CEO of the engineering firm Ruekert & Mielke, noted older employees are “more stable, more content, more easy-going,” looking for benefits such as profit sharing and 401k’s. Young people, meanwhile, are “more impatient [and] not overly interested in pensions.”

Mielke, then, created a system of “immediate gratification” in which managers give out poker chips to employees who are doing a good job.

“When was the last time someone told you you were doing a good job? We’re not really doing it as much as we should,” Mielke said. “When a person gets 10 chips they can turn it in for a gift card, but that is insignificant for the praise they receive. As dumb as that program sounds it does something to recognize their hard work.”

But Power Test CEO Alan Petelinsek said managers need to be leaders instead of adapting to what the younger generation wants.

“We have lots of young people working for us, and it’s our job to lead them,” Petelinsek said. “Their parents may not have told them to save for their future, so we talk about retirement money. We’re in front of our employees all the time, leading them and encouraging them to plan for their future.”

See more on the panel:

— A UW-Madison team of undergraduate engineering students took third place at a competition led by Tesla Motors co-founder Elon Musk.

Musk’s SpaceX Hyperloop idea would allow people to travel in pods with speeds of up to 760 mph. The UW-Madison BadgerLoop team beat out many teams with a model that used magnets to levitate the pods.

The team will head to California this summer to try out their model on human-size pods.

See more:

— A Madison startup is delivering cheese curds to nostalgic Wisconsinites.

Curds on the Whey, founded last year, partners with local cheesemakers to send packages anywhere in the U.S. The packages, which cost anywhere from $15 to $25, come with reusable ice packs and might in the future include a fried curds recipe.

See more from Madison Startups:


**REGISTER NOW Thursday Feb. 18: State Budget Director Michael Heifetz**

Michael Heifetz serves as the Division of Executive Budget and Finance administrator, as well as state budget director. Prior to his appointment as Administrator, Michael served as vice president of governmental affairs at Dean Clinic and SSM Health Care of Wisconsin for the past 11 years. Before that, he was a top legislative aide.

Heifetz will discuss the Walker administration’s priorities as the legislative session winds down.

Check-in begins at 11:30 a.m. at The Madison Club, 5 E. Wilson St., Madison. Event ends at 1 p.m. Parking available at a nearby city ramp, Monona Terrace or the Hilton Hotel garage next door.

$19 for program and buffet luncheon.

Pre-registration required: Contact The Madison Club at [email protected]

Sponsors: Whyte Hirschboeck Dudek, American Family Insurance, University Research Park, Walmart, and Xcel Energy.



Ariens Co. fires 7 Muslim employees over breaks

After Molinaroli pitch, Johnson Controls exec buys into Ponzi

Rexnord cuts expenses to post net profit in 4Q as sales decline setting up delivery station in Milwaukee, filling Stadium Business Park

ManpowerGroup reports higher profit but less revenue

Profits rise for Middleton-based Spectrum Brands

WisBusiness sponsors

Office of Corporate Relations logo
UW-Madison Office of Corporate Relations
MGE logo
Madison Gas & Electric
Tech Council logo
Wisconsin Technology Council
URP logo
University Research Park



– Digital marketing agency finds success by specializing in paid online searches


– Von Ruden Re-Elected President of Wisconsin Farmers Union


– Monona State Bank invests $750,000 in ‘Putting Dreams to Work’ loan fund

– Associated Bank to leap into Super Bowl ad fray with new TV spot


– Milwaukee affordable-housing projects compete for needed tax credits

– Milwaukee apartment construction shows no signs of slowing down

– Developer proposes 56-unit apartment building in Walker’s Point

– Wausau Center mall inches toward $4.1M facelift

– Wauwatosa approves $54 million for Mayfair Collection expansion

– Seventh expansion planned for Brookfield Square


– Madison ranks 4th on ‘growing cities’ list


– UWM’s Mark Mone strikes upbeat tone, touts research as core mission

– Harvard researcher uses Milwaukee as lab for work on poverty and eviction

– UW anthropologist helps to unlock mystery of Homo naledi


– DNR had 161 high-cap well applications as of December


– A-B InBev-SABMiller tie-up gets OK in India


– Union Grove company buys two Oshkosh manufacturers

– BRP plans to add training center at its Sturtevant facility

MEDIA ^top^

– Aaron Rodgers first guest on Adidas-sponsored podcast where sports, business intersect

– Milwaukee Brat House featured on Food Network’s “Top 5 Restaurants”


– Opponents decry water utility privatization bill

– Counties ask for wind farm health study


– Mitchell Leather building sold to apartment developer

– Wausau annexes properties, sues Maine

– 13-story apartment, office building proposed on Farwell Avenue in Milwaukee

– Apartments, retail proposed along National Avenue in Milwaukee

RETAIL ^top^

– Pick ‘n Save parent Kroger plans controversial change to how it sells wine and beer

– Hancock Fabrics closing 70 stores, including one in Wisconsin, after filing for bankruptcy

– Home Depot hiring hundreds for Milwaukee-area stores


– Fiserv capped year with strong 4th quarter


– Quarterly revenues dip at Roadrunner Transportation Systems Inc.


– Alliant Energy offers more utilities power from the proposed Riverside power plant addition


See these and other press releases:

Alliant Energy: Extends ownership options for Riverside modernization project

Associated Bank: To serve up humorous new ad at Sunday’s big game

Independent Insurance Agents of Wisconsin: Banaszynski named to Insurance Business America’s Hot 100

Lawrence University: Geologist named Fellow of the Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters

ManpowerGroup: John “Jack” T. McGinnis appointed ManpowerGroup CFO; Michael Van Handel named senior executive vice president ManpowerGroup, both effective February 15, 2016

ManpowerGroup: Reports 4th quarter and full year 2015 results

Modine: Reports third quarter fiscal 2016 results

UW Carbone Center: Global access to medical opioids for severe pain still lacking

UW Stout: Annual Red Cedar Watershed Conference scheduled March 10

UW-Madison: Events highlight impact of Alzheimer’s disease on African-Americans

UW-Madison: Fifth-year indoor cycling event set to raise money for research on blinding disease

Wisconsin Department of Health Services: After a slow start, flu cases are increasing in Wisconsin