Getting In Succeeding Influencing Others Insights


Mara Weissmann, Esq., Co-Founder, Chief Executive Officer, Principal Trainer

Mara spent 18 years at the international law firm of White & Case LLP, where she was Counsel to the Firm and practiced employment law.  At White & Case, Mara was actively involved in recruiting, Equal Employment Opportunity and Diversity programs, and was a member of the firm’s Women Lawyers’ Network Committee. Mara’s Human Resources operational experience included Deloitte Services LP where she was Chief of Staff to the National Director of Human Resources and Chief Operating Officer for the Retention and Advancement of Women. In addition, she held senior positions at Starwood Capital Group, a world-wide real estate private equity company, and KSL Media, Inc., an independent media agency, where she served as full-time consultant acting as Human Resources Director.  In April 2009, in response to the economic downturn, Mara formed WISE HR Strategies LLC in order to provide big institutional firm quality services at one-third the cost to clients needing strategic and operational Human Resources and employment law advice.  WISE HR Strategies’ clients include for-profit and not-for profit institutions and senior level executives.  Mara is admitted to practice law in the State of New York, is a member of the New York State Bar Association, and is a member of SHRM.

Mara also sits on several advisory boards. She is a member of the Board of Observers of Muhlenberg College where she is charged with analyzing certain operations of the College and advising the President and Board of Trustees on areas for improvement and a member of the Director’s Advisory Council of the Dartmouth-Hitchcock Norris Cotton Cancer Center, where she advises the Director of the Cancer Center across the range of the Director’s responsibilities in the areas of operational and strategic matters.  Mara is also a board member of the New Castle Community Media Center.

Mara has had several entrepreneurial endeavors that include founding an organization, Second Shift® in 1998. Second Shift’s® mission is to provide a forum and resource center for career women who devote themselves to their careers and the care of their and families and the employers who employ them.  The forum and resource center provide opportunities for networking, education, socializing and sharing ideas and strategies toward finding and maintaining a balance between family and work obligations.

Second Shift® has had over 600 participants who are career women from all industries with children of all ages.  The organization sponsored live educational events featuring distinguished guest speakers on topics relevant to career moms and moms seeking re-entry into the work-force and live networking events to further their business and community contacts and opportunities.

Mara graduated from Muhlenberg College with a B.A. in Industrial and Organizational Behavior and she received her J.D. from Fordham University School of Law.

Harvey Robbins, PhDCo-Founder, President, Principal Trainer

Harvey Robbins, president of Robbins & Robbins, Inc. located in Minnetonka, Minnesota, has been a practicing business psychologist since 1974. His broad experience provides his clients with training in leadership skills, management skills, team leadership skills, high performance team building as well as consulting in leadership effectiveness, teams effectiveness, change management and executive coaching.

Harvey has provided international consulting services to numerous corporations and federal and state agencies including the U.S. Treasury ATF, American Express, AT&T, Allied Signal, FMC, General Dynamics, Honeywell, 3M, IRS, International Multifoods, Johnson & Johnson, Southern Company, Target Stores, Toro, US West, Winnebago, Upsher-Smith Laboratories, U.S. Secret Service, and U.S. Customs. He has also presented at many national and international conferences.

Prior to 1982, Robbins worked as a personnel research psychologist for the psychological services branch of the intergovernmental personnel programs division of the U.S. Civil Service Commission (CIA), manager of personnel development and research for Burlington Northern, Inc., and corporate manager of organization development for Honeywell.

Harvey currently is a Fellow of Executive Education at the Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.

Harvey, a native of New York City, received his doctorate in clinical psychology from Texas A&M. He is the author of seven books – TURF WARS: Moving from Competition to Collaboration, HOW TO SPEAK AND LISTEN EFFECTIVELY; and WHY TEAMS DON’T WORK, co-authored with newspaper business columnist Michael Finley. This treatise on teams received the 1995 Financial Times / Booz Allen & Hamilton Global Business Book Award. He also released a book titled WHY CHANGE DOESN’T WORK in late 1996. Another work with Mike Finley, TRANSCOMPETITION, was published as a lead book with McGraw-Hill’s new Business Week Books division in 1998. In October, 2000, Harvey published a completely rewritten update of his award winning teams book, now named THE NEW WHY TEAMS DON’T WORK and a newly released book entitled THE ACCIDENTAL LEADER. He is currently working on a book tentatively titled The Art of Dangerous Coaching.

Matthew McComb, Chief of Animation, Branding, and Marketing

Matt McComb is a media specialist from North Canton, Ohio, where he owns Ironfuzz Design L.L.C. and is a college instructor at Stark State University. He has worked in the marketing and design industry for 13 years, dealing with national clients such as Honda, Cadillac, General Tire, and Dixie Chopper Lawnmowers.

After college, Matt got his foothold in the design world developing catalogs and posters for G2 Media Group, a marketing company in Canton, OH.  Clients quickly began asking for more than just print designs, so when the opportunity to do motion graphics and animation presented itself, Matt was more than eager to meet the demand. One of his most exciting challenges, from 2005-2009, was to help re-brand Dixie Chopper Lawnmowers significantly increase its sales and web traffic.

Matt’s teaching career started in 2008, when he was hired at Stark State College to develop a 3D Graphics and Animation program.  There, he has developed and currently teaches ten different courses related to 3D design and motion graphics. He is also an active member of the sustainability committee and hosts the annual Spartan Media Awards, a student award ceremony to honor quality performance in digital art.

Matt currently is focusing on his design business, with an emphasis on branding and 3D motion graphics, where he creates and is animating a 3D train wreck sequence for a documentary that is slated to air on the History Channel in late 2013.