GROWING CONNECTIONS IN THE TOTAL REWARDS COMMUNITY.

     October 2022 - Meet Tiffany Herron


We would like to spotlight a long-time RMTRA member Tiffany Herron. Tiffany is the Director of Total Rewards & Corporate Support for Flatiron Construction. She oversees compensation, benefits, retirement, and the administrative function within HR for Flatiron Construction. Flatiron Construction is a heavy civil construction company with operations throughout the US and Canada. Tiffany joined RMTRA (then RMCA) back in 2001 when she was just getting started in her HR career. She wanted to learn about the HR job family and somehow, even then, she understood the importance of networking, professional development, and giving back to the community.

Having been a member, as well as a board member of RMTRA for over two decades, she has watched it grow and evolve as the Total Rewards function has evolved. Tiffany sees the benefits of membership for herself, but she also really enjoys “watching from the sidelines” to see where each new board takes the association. We asked Tiffany if she would recommend RMTRA to someone and why. Her response was absolutely! She has recommended it to colleagues and those newer to the Human Resources and Total Rewards arena. The value of membership in her mind revolves mostly around networking and continuing education.

We wanted to know what has been the biggest change in Total Rewards that she personally has seen. She said, “The biggest change that I have seen in Total Rewards is simply its prevalence. When I first started in HR, the concept of a holistic, multi-faceted approach to rewards was just coming onto the horizon. Now the number of jobs supporting Total Rewards has sky rocketed! Companies are realizing that its rewards program must be broad-based and comprehensive, expansive, but inclusive, all at the same time. Years ago, it was just compensation and benefits. That landscape has definitely changed for good!”

We asked Tiffany what she thought the future of Total Rewards would be and where it is going. She thinks the future of Total Rewards will incorporate the principles of Diversity Equity & Inclusion. She believes companies will have to offer benefits that meet people where they are at in their life and family situation. In order to do that, Total Rewards professionals will have to get creative with the types of benefits they are offering, as well as number of offerings. Unique, lifestyle benefits (e.g., student loan forgiveness) will need to be included amongst the core offerings to make employers competitive in the current and future labor markets.

Thank you Tiffany for being a long-time RMTRA member and supporter. We look forward to seeing you at future RMTRA events.

Who is going to be our November spotlight member? Stay tuned for next month’s reveal and find out. Have a safe and fun Halloween everyone!


     September 2022 - Meet Denise Liebetrau

We would like to spotlight a long-time RMTRA member Denise Liebetrau. Denise is the Founder & Principal HR/Compensation Consultant at Prosper Consulting LLC. Denise and her team maximize profit and impact for employers as trusted advisors on HR and compensation issues. Denise also coaches high performers, so they get paid what they are worth and have careers aligned to their values. As a speaker and trainer, she focuses on topics like how to have difficult conversations, maximizing pay through effective negotiation, pay transparency, workplace equity, emotional intelligence, and executive presence.

Denise joined RMTRA many years ago to network and to learn more about total rewards. Denise served on the board and has enjoyed getting to know and networking with many of our members. Denise believes the Total Reward profession is constantly changing, and the education and networking opportunities offered by RMTRA are truly valuable. She cannot imagine not being a member of the organization.

We ask her if she would recommend joining RMTRA to others. Yes, absolutely she said and if you are not a member, attend as many events as you can. You will find people you can learn from, and it is a great way to share your knowledge with others. You may even find your next job through a contact within the organization.

Being a Total Rewards professional, Denise believes we have so much more data accessible to use now. Whether it is external market data from surveys, or it is internal data from HCM systems, we need to be great at turning data into stories that drive good business decisions. Too often, we have data that is not shared in a way that supports better business decision making.

The complexity of total rewards will continue to increase. The laws and regulations at a local level as well as federal will continue to evolve and cause us to need to be flexible. The push for more pay transparency and workplace pay equity will continue. Employees will continue to share their rewards with each other, and disparities will be highlighted in these conversations. We must get in front of this by being proactive. In addition, we must become better at recognizing which employees are the most productive so we can manage labor costs. We must get better at difficult performance conversations, and be more decisive around who needs to stay or go. Denise believes there are tremendous opportunities to make a difference, but prioritization on the right things continues to be a challenge for many employers.

Thank you Denise for being a long-time RMTRA member. We look forward to seeing you at future RMTRA events.


     August 2022 - Meet Alex Anderson

Everyone...meet Alex! Alex enables organizational efforts in the design & execution of strategies involving employee benefits, compensation, and engagement solutions, including the assessment & mitigation of associated risk.

He works as a direct extension of HR, Finance, and Senior Leadership teams, his role revolves around developing Total Rewards programs & processes built to;

• Achieve financial efficiency & fund growth projects;

• Strengthen employee value propositions & workplace experiences;

• Decrease administrative burdens.

His only objective is to bring as much value to his client’s table as possible; much of that value stems from evaluation, negotiation, and proactive problem solving, but companies & employees are unique and should be treated as such – everything depends on the goals, priorities, and specific situation of each partner.

So, above all – asking questions and listening – is far & away the most important part of his professional duties.

Alex joined RMTRA for the learning and networking opportunities. He has been in the industry a long time, but is relatively new to the broker world. He was looking for ways to connect with professionals in the field and acquire new insights to help improve his ability to service clients.

Alex said that networking has never been his strong suit and something historically he has always avoided; in many ways, so Alex joined RMTRA to get out of his comfort zone and gain perspectives from top-caliber leaders.

Alex has been a member for over ten years and continues his membership because he has been to several HR/business associations & conferences, and while most are enjoyable & worthwhile he wants to learn more. The content covered at RMTRA events cuts the fluff and is specific enough for a legitimately productive discussion.

For Alex, the key is choice; some topics are more applicable than others, depending on your role, but the structure at RMTRA promotes curiosity & makes it easy for one to dive into whatever looks interesting. The subject matter experts & overall level of professionalism always impress him. With a wide range of tenure, roles, and industries, he always takes away insights that fill knowledge gaps & improves his overall awareness.

One aspect that he has especially enjoyed is the genuine passion from RMTRA members. Alex said, “It’s abundantly clear that they’re people who care & are actively striving to make a difference in their respective organizations. Total Rewards is a crazy, complex world & we are all in it together. If your job involves winning the war on talent or equipping humans with resources - Rocky Mountain Total Rewards is the Association for you.”

While he loves being part of total rewards however, insurance is an objectively change-averse industry that has largely operated with the same approach, mindset, and solution offerings since the sixties. Thanks to COVID and given recent staffing & cash flow pressures, he believes client needs are evolving at a greater pace & degree than at any time in history. Insurance carriers, brokers, consultants, and tech vendors must adapt to everything to keep up.

While every company is unique, there’s one universal commonality that he feels best represents the future of Total Rewards, and that's » time-value.

Alex believes we will undoubtedly see a ‘focus shift’ that prioritizes the development of efficient internal processes built for continuous improvement. Total Rewards encompasses the top two corporate expenditures, making the associated financial, administrative, and workforce strategies of utmost importance. Alex said,

• “Time is our most valuable commodity; it’s a sunk cost that cannot be recovered. More time means more money + more capacity for operational teams to achieve other, more productive work/life objectives (less time = less opportunity).”

The time-value impact of Total Rewards will cause companies to place more weight on individuality and customization. Flexibility is rightfully gaining steam in talent strategies, but for business priority areas like automation, streamlining workflow, and establishing frameworks for effective task management will only become more prevalent; digitization, internal mobility, and modernizing outdated methods all play major parts as well.

A personal point of pride for Alex, is helping free up capacity for HR teams; the workload & sheer volume of tasks that HR deals with day-to-day is overwhelming, but there are many ways to make their lives easier. Regardless of your goal, whether it relates to approach, mindset, or solutions, the rise of Total Rewards has created a completely new realm of interesting possibilities to explore. Employee experience is everything, and its improvement starts & ends with People Operations.

Thank you Alex for being a  RMTRA member. We look forward to seeing you at future RMTRA events.

Who is going to be our September spotlight member? Stay tuned for next month’s newsletter and find out. Even better, join us for the RMTRA Annual Conference September 22, 2022. We cannot wait to see you there!


July 2022 - Meet Joann Nelson

We would like to spotlight a long-time RMTRA member Joann Nelson. Joann has her own consulting company, Rooted Resolve, where she conducts business as a Compensation Consultant. After working in-house for the first 15 years of her career, she has spent the last 7 years as an external compensation consultant. Joann collaborates with organizations to develop internally equitable and externally competitive pay practices. She first became a member of RMTRA in the spring of 2003. She was new to Compensation, and joined as a way to learn and grow in the profession.

Joann continues to be a member because of the people, the informative and learning events, taking CCP classes, and she previously served as a member of the RMTRA Board. She has made meaningful and lasting connections with others in the field and has developed an extensive networking community. She would recommend RMTRA to total rewards professionals at any stage of their career. RMTRA provides opportunities to learn, network and share knowledge with other total rewards professionals facing similar challenges. The challenges Compensation Professionals are facing today are changing more now than ever.

One big change that she has seen has been greater pay transparency (“the degree to which employers are open about what, why, how and how much employees are compensated”). In her early compensation days, pay practices were more secretive – more of a "black box" approach. Over the years, she has seen an increase in pay transparency. It was already becoming more of a priority, and then the passage of Colorado’s Equal Pay for Equal Work Act really accelerated things. Joann believes the future of total rewards will be an increased focus on pay equity - making sure compensation decisions are fair and unbiased”.

Thank you Joann for being a long-time RMTRA member and previous board member. We look forward to seeing you at future RMTRA events.



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