Friday, September 6, 2013

Well Said Mythbusters' Adam Savage

This message is really starting to get out.  It's time for us to learn how to work again!


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Our Candidates Continue to Address this Problem

While I disagree with the statement that there isn't a current skills shortage (we have plenty of local evidence to prove the contrary), this article continues to point to a major issue coming in the future:

U.S. Skills Gap

I am proud of the graduates from our training program for the CNC and Die / Mold industry.  92% of them are sticking with the jobs they acquired through the program.  The feedback has been great.  They have recognized the opportunity that skilled manufacturing offers them and they are building strong, long-term careers.

When we take the time to educate people about the REALITIES of skilled trades, and don't allow misinformation to persist, the problem can be solved.  Our graduates are living proof.


Friday, August 23, 2013

Someone Needs to Tell High School Counselors Something...

They need to be told that this is the sound of opportunity knocking!

Manufacturers Could Add 5 Million Jobs by 2020

Will they listen?


Monday, August 19, 2013

Mike Rowe Poster Just Arrived!

I just received my new Mike Rowe Poster (Below) to hang in my classroom.  This guy just keeps working harder and harder to help us out in the skilled trades!


If you can, check out his website and buy a poster!

We're still working hard over here getting people into the trades.  More coming soon!


Friday, September 28, 2012

Blue Collar Revolution

I teach a class called "Shop Floor Culture & Expectations" to all entry-level CNC machinists, mold and die makers that come through my program.  A major portion of that class is designed to educate the learner about the value and dignity of choosing a career in the skilled trades.  We talk basic economics in the class, such as: what comes first, the banker or the tradesman?  This isn't exactly a chicken or the egg discussion here! Obviously, it's the tradesman! If we don't have people making things, we have no need for bankers and a whole host of other professions.  Why then has our society placed so much more value on service professions than the professions that they serve?

I am seeing something develop in the people that I am teaching.  There are signs of an awakening in the human heart.  People are starting to recognize the truth.  People are starting to see that their high school counselor's were wrong - you don't have to go to college to be successful.  I believe we're on the cusp of a Blue Collar Revolution (yes, I think I just coined a new phrase).  This revolution will begin the process of properly valuing people and the careers they are called to do.  There will be a new respect and appreciation for those willing and able to work with their hands; because the masses will know that we have nothing without them. 

This is an exciting time that is being driven by extreme need...and the people will answer.  Will you be part of the revolution? Will you encourage others to join you?


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

A Fresh Start in Skilled Trades

Today I interviewed a gentleman for an entry level Tool & Die job I am trying to fill.  It didn’t take me long to deduce that life had kicked this guy around a lot recently.  I could tell he was very nervous about the interview.  I asked him why he was so nervous.  He told me that he knew what a great opportunity it was to get into skilled trades and that he was terrified that we was going to screw it up.  He had experienced several job losses due to unpredictable injuries and uncontrollable personal situations.  He hadn’t been able to find a job in two years that had any type of a future.  

I have heard a lot of “excuses” in job interviews – but these were not excuses. This was a guy trying to pull himself out of a bad situation and life just didn’t seem to be letting him.  But this time was going to be different.  I could see a conviction in his eyes that told me he wanted this job more than anything.  But there was one last step; we require some standard testing to be eligible for employment. He needed to be able to pass two tests for me to be able to offer him a position.  I gave him the tests and not only did he pass them, he attained the highest scores yet.  

When I told him that he was going to be offered a position, he cried.  How much does a job mean to a man? How much does a second chance; a fresh start mean? He left with his head held high knowing that he had his chance to learn a meaningful trade.  He had fought and clawed for years to get this chance, and now he had it.  A good job with a bright future has more value than it will ever pay in wages and benefits.  A good job will restore and sustain a person with confidence in themselves, which will spread like wildfire through their friends and family.  

One more great man headed for a great job in a great industry. I love my job.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Where have I been for the last year?

Where have I been for the last year?

That’s a great question! And isn’t it strange that I should be prompted to start posting on CTP just one-day to the year since my last entry? I find it strange.  I find it even stranger that it was a dream that “reminded” me of the importance of this blog.  But that’s going to be a different posting altogether.  Let’s get back to the question: Where have I been for the last year?  Let’s just say BUSY. I know that’s more of a ‘what’ or ‘how’ answer, but somehow it is the best way to describe why I haven’t posted in such a long time.  

You see, I am in the business of training people for the manufacturing industry.  And as most of my readers know, manufacturing has been experiencing something of a renaissance as of late. Which means people need to be trained; yet the biggest challenge and threat to this manufacturing rebirth is the lack of people. So in response to this challenge, we’ve altered our business model from exclusively offering training resources (online courses, on-site training, etc.) to also helping to recruit and train new people for the industry.  And this is why I am so BUSY!

By the end of this month, we will have recruited, trained and placed almost 40 new people for the skilled CNC & Die / Mold industry – in about 12 months time.  We will have placed all of them, with a 95% retention rate as of today.  But the story isn’t the work that my team and I are doing, the story is the work those 40 new people have been doing.  You see, the American worker (the worker that built the greatest nation that has ever existed) is still alive and well.  S/he just seems to be waiting for the opportunity to show what s/he can do.  

If we provide the structure and the avenue to get people into the trades, they will join.  Solving the skill crisis is possible – we are proving it today.  Young men and women are willing to work and willing to offer their talents to better our businesses, this country and themselves.  So that’s what Change the Perception is going to be about moving forward for the foreseeable future: their stories. We will prove to the next generation of workers that real people, just like them, are finding long-term careers and actual fulfillment in skilled manufacturing (and the other trades).  Please, feel free to share your stories, or the stories of the people you know, that have found a home in working with their hands.