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IF YOU’VE BEEN FOLLOWING the local business news, you may have heard that the Talent 2.0 Regional Workforce Strategy Report has now been released for northern Colorado.

If you have employees, or need employees, there’s some very sobering news. Read the rest of this entry »

interview-1018333_960_720THIS LAST WEEK I had a chance to help out some high school kids in a very special way. Every semester for the last few years they’ve held “mock interviews” for some of the students, giving them a chance to find out what a job interview is really like.

Some of them are terrified.

But of course you’d expect that.  They’ve heard all the scare stories, a grade is on the line, and they’re putting themselves out into totally unfamiliar territory.

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FARNSWORTH GROUP is a very special kind of company.

A few months ago, they were recognized as a Great Place To Work, an award that isn’t at all easy to obtain.  But in a very real way, it’s something they’ve been working on for their entire history, over 110 years.

Many people equate a great place to work with the high-tech snazziness of foosball tables and idealistic millennials.  But here we have an engineering and architectural company with an honored history spanning multiple generations.  Their focused innovation is inspiring.

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EmployeeYOU CAN TRY TO FIND GREAT PEOPLE for your jobs, or you can attract those who will really be energized to work in your business.

I’ve talked about this before.

The problem is that our standard approach to finding employees is to describe the technical skills that are needed, the great benefits package, and … that’s about it.  Potential employees really don’t know much about you and how you’re out to change the world.

You need to shift your thinking and change the messaging.

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Liz RyanLIZ RYAN runs a consultancy named Human Workplace.  They have a whole bunch of fresh and powerful thinking about seeking employment in the job market.

One of her primary messages is around self-respect and empowerment on the job seeker’s part, so I really love her thoughtful blog posts.  And her illustrations too!

She really understands the mindset of Millennials and other fresh thinkers.

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HOW HARD IS IT to find great workers?

I’m hearing this complaint a lot this year, and it’s been steadily growing over the course of 2015.  With a local unemployment rate at 3.8%, the tide has definitely shifted in favor of job seekers.

Just notice all the “Now Hiring” signs as you drive around town.

But this is a challenging time for employers.  It’s harder to find great people, engage them in their work, and keep them productive over the long term.

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THERE’S a common complaint that I’ve talked with people about this week:  It’s so tough to find and hire employees who will have the right attitude in their work!  It’s relatively easy to judge whether someone has the skills and experience necessary, but how do you know whether they’ll fit in?

The answer is insanely straightforward:

  1. Identify the attitudes you’re looking for
  2. Interview around those attitudes
  3. Select based on attitudes more than the technical skills

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THE MootHouseMOOT HOUSE is a Fort Collins landmark: serving the community since the 1970s, and a flagship of the Hot Corner Concepts group for 25 years.  They’re known for their top-notch food and fantastic people.  A superb date night out.

There’s more to the story, though.

We all know that restaurants are one of the toughest businesses to be in – hard-to-please customers and tight margins.  Especially when you market yourself with high standards.

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