AGC Houston recently had the privilege of hosting the meetings for two outstanding organizations whose sole missions are to grow and sustain a skilled workforce.
The Construction Career Collaborative (C3) launched 2019 with a strategic planning session that focused on finding the “tipping point” for commercial construction and its “all in” commitment to a sustainable and skilled industry. A healthy portion of the inaugural 2019 meeting of the Construction Sector of UpSkill Houston centered on the overview of the good work being done in training the workforce, both individually and collaboratively, by local businesses, community-based organizations and educators. A major takeaway from the meeting was the need to create documentation to assist other interested entities in the “how-to” of attracting, training, placing and retaining a skilled workforce.
Listening to the robust discussion and debate about how to further grow and achieve the mission of each organization, I was reminded of an article I read several years ago in the Wall Street Journal. In a piece written prior to Labor Day 2013, Peggy Noonan wrote in part the following about work and the workforce:
A job isn’t only a means to a paycheck, it’s more. “To work is to pray,” the old priests used to say. God made us as many things, including as workers. When you work you serve and take part. To work is to be integrated into the daily life of the nation. There is pride and satisfaction in doing work well, in working with others and learning a discipline or a craft or an art. To work is to grow and to find out who you are.
In return for performing your duties, whatever they are, you receive money that you can use freely and in accordance with your highest desire. A job allows you the satisfaction of supporting yourself or your family, or starting a family. Work allows you to renew your life, which is part of the renewing of civilization.
Work gives us purpose, stability, integration, shared mission. And so to be unable to work – unable to find or hold a job – is a kind of catastrophe for a human being.
Ask the leaders of a successful company to what they attribute their success, and more times than not, they will say it is their people. If long-term growth projections for this region are to be believed, over the next 10 to 15 years companies will need significantly more of those employees who seek to build a successful career and improve their livelihood. As C3 and UpSkill Houston create the momentum to address the workforce shortage, and if you are not already engaged, please consider signing on to be part of their mission.