Category Archives: Jean Floten

“Building a New Work Force for the New Economy”

The panel on the right featured a pick-up truck collecting day laborers — in the

"O.K., I'm good for I.T.—how about spreadsheets, anybody here good at spread sheets?parking lot of an Office Depot. The unemployed laborers, wearing slacks and ties, raised their hands, eager to hop into the pickup bed en route to paying work.
I asked CEOs attending the CEOtoCEO Breakfast, “Building a New Work Force for the  New Economy”, why not all of the laborers in the panel would find paying work?  Answer some don’t have the job skills employers are looking for.  As a matter of fact in 2009 25% of Washington State companies had difficulties finding qualified job applicants with the critical skills they needed.
Jean Floten, Chancellor of Washington Governors University and breakfast speaker,  presented new innovative programs that offers employers and employees flexible, affordable access to quality higher education.  Knowing of Jean’s reputation of a recognized leader in higher education I would encourage employers and employees to investigate this new education model.
A significant portion of the CEO table discussions revolved around the frustration of employers to find employees that are skilled in the areas of communication, problem solving, and collaborating with others.
With the economy improving and baby boomers starting to leave the workforce the skills gap for qualified workers is expected to grow.  What are you doing to attract and keep skilled workers in your organization?