Thursday, February 21, 2019

Modcoach Article About Skilled Labor Brings Surprising Response

Yesterday I wrote about modular home factories seeing their older workers retiring and having a tough time finding people to replace them on the production lines where plumbers, electricians, finish carpenters and framers are needed. Today I received this from Kristen Berman, CEO of MADE, a business creating unique solutions for today’s complex marketing.


Hey Coach,

Each time I see your posts about the shortage of skilled labor, I ask myself "what are these factories actually doing about this?"

This past Fall we were hired by Mercy Career and Technical High School (Mercy CTE) here in Philadelphia. Together, we built a strategy of career & technical education (CTE) being where young people go to fulfill their passions. This was because passion is what emanates through the halls Mercy CTE. Even though these students are growing up in poverty, they are getting the education, certifications, and connections needed to leap into a shrinking middle class. These students are driven for success and know that being a skilled laborer will pull them and their families into a new way of life.


Our work culminated the delivery of an 8-part video series (6min overview and 60-90 sec trade specific) with three target audiences in mind: potential new students, benefactors, and corporations. Corporations that are willing to make a commitment to training the young people soon to step into the labor market with the skills and certifications needed. The types of corporations that want to make an impact on the education and skills these students are being taught. This is where factories need to invest in the future.


Whether it be Mercy CTE or a "close-to-home" trade school, we want factories to know that young people are there, wanting to secure a place for themselves and their future. They only know what they know, and are only taught what their educators will teach. Mercy CTE is committed to innovating for their students. Providing interdisciplinary education, access to new technology, and implementing design thinking methodology is at the heart of this school.

February is career and technical education month and I invite you to share with your readers about the importance of CTE and encourage them to find ways to get involved in the curriculum development with educators. Like you said "skilled trade positions are plentiful. Less plentiful are the men and women with the qualifications to fill them."

Thank you and have a great day!

Kristen Berman, CEO




1 comment:

Tom Starrett said...

As a graduate of Mercy, i am grateful to them and to my first employer. I started working full time in the fall after graduating.

I have seen this ‘shortage’ firsthand. This is a two way street, with younger workers raised in a world of instant gratification, they don’t know or understand working your way up the ladder. In my experience, they aren’t prepared to do apprentice-type tasks, and instead expect to be treated like they aren’t ‘kids’ anymore in this work atmosphere.

The two way street is having younger workers knowing they need to put time in, learn, and experience before promoting. And an employer willing to train and not just hire young, inexperienced help.

Taking longer to complete a job, but also training an employee will benefit greatly in the long run. Far too often are younger employees uninterested once they realize they aren’t being taught very much.

My advice to anyone younger: soak in all of the experience you can. Whether watching, doing, or researching. Seeing things done and really paying attention can also give you tons of experience.