Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous, and to be ready to communicate (1 Timothy 6:18)
I find it both disturbing and unacceptable that this country has 600k (yes, 600 thousand) manufacturing jobs that are not filled in this current economic season. I spend a lot of time in small-to-mid-sized shops and often hear business owners and operations managers say that they cannot find good talent to fill open positions. At the same time, I spend a lot of time in low-to-moderate income communities and often hear people complain that they cannot find good paying jobs. If the jobs are available and the people who desire to work exist, where is the disconnect? My theory is that there is a lack of awareness about manufacturing and career opportunities for non-traditional employees.
When I first started Latrobe, one of my goals was to increase consciousness among women and girls about the potential careers in manufacturing. As I have spent time in the field, my vision has broadened as I realized that parents, as well as young people in general, could benefit from knowing more about 21st century manufacturing, the cultural expectations of working in an industrial environment, and the work ethic required to be successful. As a result, our team developed a training and education program on workforce readiness in manufacturing.
What is workforce readiness? Our working hypothesis is to address how we can help to equip and prepare potential employees to be productive in a manufacturing environment. Employers are looking for more than just skilled workers with technical competencies. Most companies have on-the-job-training programs and procedures specific to their operations. Our workforce readiness training focuses on the critical skills required to be successful in industrial manufacturing environments, which differs from working in a service or retail organization. Interactive training and assessment includes the following:
 1.      The four career pathways of manufacturing
2.      Manufacturing 101
(safety, basic shop math, gauging and measuring, and problem solving)
3.      Industrial Environment
(employer expectations, personal attitude and behavior, work ethic)
4.      Communication
(verbal, written, listening, social media, and networking)
5.      Life Management Skills
(time balancing, conflict resolution, and decision making)
6.      Financial Literacy
(job vs. career and the difference in lifetime earning potential)
7.     Prepare for Success
(resume writing, interviewing etiquette, proper dress/attire/hygiene)
8.      Onboarding
(matching prospective industrial employers with qualified entry-level employees)

I have to admit, that none of this training is rocket science. In fact, much of it feels like topics that should have been taught in high school. Employers expect young people to arrive with a core set of basic knowledge and the ability to apply those critical thinking skills in the workforce – but the reality is not matching the expectation. I know that not every young person will develop an interest and passion for manufacturing, so this training also serves to give those participants who successfully complete the program a confidence booster that they can succeed in this sometimes challenging environment. As parents, we have a requirement to make sure that our kids are ready for the good works available for them today and to prepare them for the future. My purposed work is to educate and inform about potential careers in manufacturing. What’s yours? Feel free to comment, or, send me an email at latanyua.robinson@gmail.com. If you like this post and want to catch up on some of my previous discussions, please visit the full Purposed Work blog at http://ltr-latrobe-mfg.blogspot.com/.

Instruct them to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous, and to be ready to communicate (1 Timothy 6:18)
I find it both disturbing and unacceptable that this country has 600k (yes, 600 thousand) manufacturing jobs that are not filled in this current economic season. I spend a lot of time in small-to-mid-sized shops and often hear business owners and operations managers say that they cannot find good talent to fill open positions. At the same time, I spend a lot of time in low-to-moderate income communities and often hear people complain that they cannot find good paying jobs. If the jobs are available and the people who desire to work exist, where is the disconnect? My theory is that there is a lack of awareness about manufacturing and career opportunities for non-traditional employees.
When I first started Latrobe, one of my goals was to increase consciousness among women and girls about the potential careers in manufacturing. As I have spent time in the field, my vision has broadened as I realized that parents, as well as young people in general, could benefit from knowing more about 21st century manufacturing, the cultural expectations of working in an industrial environment, and the work ethic required to be successful. As a result, our team developed a training and education program on workforce readiness in manufacturing.
What is workforce readiness? Our working hypothesis is to address how we can help to equip and prepare potential employees to be productive in a manufacturing environment. Employers are looking for more than just skilled workers with technical competencies. Most companies have on-the-job-training programs and procedures specific to their operations. Our workforce readiness training focuses on the critical skills required to be successful in industrial manufacturing environments, which differs from working in a service or retail organization. Interactive training and assessment includes the following:
 1.      The four career pathways of manufacturing
2.      Manufacturing 101
(safety, basic shop math, gauging and measuring, and problem solving)
3.      Industrial Environment
(employer expectations, personal attitude and behavior, work ethic)
4.      Communication
(verbal, written, listening, social media, and networking)
5.      Life Management Skills
(time balancing, conflict resolution, and decision making)
6.      Financial Literacy
(job vs. career and the difference in lifetime earning potential)
7.     Prepare for Success
(resume writing, interviewing etiquette, proper dress/attire/hygiene)
8.      Onboarding
(matching prospective industrial employers with qualified entry-level employees)

I have to admit, that none of this training is rocket science. In fact, much of it feels like topics that should have been taught in high school. Employers expect young people to arrive with a core set of basic knowledge and the ability to apply those critical thinking skills in the workforce – but the reality is not matching the expectation. I know that not every young person will develop an interest and passion for manufacturing, so this training also serves to give those participants who successfully complete the program a confidence booster that they can succeed in this sometimes challenging environment. As parents, we have a requirement to make sure that our kids are ready for the good works available for them today and to prepare them for the future. My purposed work is to educate and inform about potential careers in manufacturing. What’s yours? Feel free to comment, or, send me an email at latanyua.robinson@gmail.com. If you like this post and want to catch up on some of my previous discussions, please visit the full Purposed Work blog at http://ltr-latrobe-mfg.blogspot.com/.