NOV. 3, 2017 - VOL. 54 No. 2

Chair's Column
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Chair´s Column

Message from the Chair

By Steve Van Buskirk
2017-18 Chair of the Board

Steve Van Buskirk
Steve Van Buskirk
2017-18 Chair of the Board

A critical concern for nearly all of us is workforce development. Where will we find people with the abilities, training and interest in the work we have available in Sioux Falls? The Chamber recognizes that in order to tackle this issue we need to make sure that we are including everyone in our community in the effort. We might have differences in race, gender, age or any number of other factors, but it is imperative that we welcome all individuals who want to contribute to growing our workforce and our economy.

As a Chamber, part of our job is to listen to and share the success stories within our community. This will help us learn from each other as we work towards adopting policies and practices within our individual organizations that support our employment goals. We believe that this is an area that the Chamber can inform and assist our members as you prepare for the dynamic shift in the workforce of the future.

Finding a way to integrate a new constituency into your workforce will take extra effort and training, but success in this endeavor can benefit your firm for years. Recently, I read about a company that has been developing management practices to appeal to military veterans. They realized that the vets have unique and specialized training that was helpful for their organization, but they needed a way to recruit and retain those vets. So, by investing in networking, mentoring and leadership training they eased the transition of vets into their workforce and improved recruitment efforts.

This is an interesting story, and examples such as these inspire the work being done by the Chamber's Workforce and Education Committee. There are a lot of fresh ideas and energy coming out of this important committee, and we look to this group to serve as a conduit to share best practices on inclusivity from one member organization to another. We believe that this will provide value to our members through education and training.

I'd also like to recognize the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee, a group that has been working for decades to honor the sacrifice and dedication of our veterans. Every member of our Chamber is thankful for the commitment to freedom of our armed forces, and the Military and Veterans Affairs Committee has done a wonderful job of expressing our appreciation. I invite you to join in honoring our local veterans at the Veterans Day program on Nov. 11. More information on that event can be found on page 29 of this issue.

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