The 2019 CHESS conference Building for the Future…New Leaders, New Markets, will present nine information-packed presentations by experts in many fields. On September 25, following two fact-filled sessions on current retail trends and the latest regulatory issues in international trade policy, David DeLong will bring attendees back to topics close to home.
As president of Smart Workforce Strategies, DeLong helps leaders implement practical solutions to address critical skill shortages created by major changes in workforce demographics, shifts in generational values and new technologies. Based near Boston, DeLong advises organizations in many sectors: manufacturing, healthcare, financial services, education, utilities, industry and technology. His client list includes giants such as Dow, BankAmerica and Microsoft, as well as regional economic development agencies. He specializes in helping small and medium-sized organizations solve their unique workforce and leadership development problems.
National Workforce Issues Impact Every Region
We spoke with DeLong as he prepared for a program in northern Illinois for a multi-employer collaborative joining manufacturing executives and community colleges to address regional workforce issues. He noted that employers across the country struggle to select and retain qualified, skilled staff and that managers must become more creative in solving workforce challenges. “Organizations must think strategically about the intergenerational labor force,” he said. “Business leaders should look beyond recruitment to also consider retention and knowledge transfer as they plan future workforce capabilities.”
Top executives must become more proactive when it comes to recruiting, developing and retaining high potential employees and future leaders. Organizations rely on systems in every function of their business. The explosion of knowledge in all fields also means that “once an organization has reached a level of performance, that level of performance cannot be sustained unless there is a system for retaining the human, social and structural knowledge that has been developed,” DeLong warns.
Create Workplaces that Engage Millennials and Gen-Zs, as well as Veteran Employees
Lifetime employment is a thing of the past, DeLong said. Young employees expect to move often and recent college graduates assess the ROI of their educational costs. “Strategies should be in place to encourage staff 25 or 35 years of age to stay,” he says. “When companies invest in quality mentoring skills and training programs, they can stretch a two-or-three-year tenure to five-to-seven years. That’s a win.”
During his CHESS presentation, DeLong will address solutions for workforce issues such as
- Entry level jobs. Employers nationwide report that they can’t find people to pass a drug test, show up and work for decent wages.
- Professional roles. Employers need sophisticated engineers, operations managers and salespeople with relevant experience. There is shortage of skills in every sector, especially in manufacturing and health care.
- Skills shortages in areas such as energy, cybersecurity, advanced technology, automation, IT, and supply chain management.
- Roles requiring specialized education. As veterans with experience in unique products and customer sets retire, employers lose their knowledge and relationships.
IHA members range in company size, span many product categories and operate in diverse geographic locations; talent issues vary considerably. DeLong crafts his presentations to offer practical, proactive solutions and give attendees examples of best practices to sustain and grow their human resources. Learn how to develop talent to assure continuity in your workforce by attending David DeLong’s session at CHESS 2019. Learn more about David DeLong at https://www.smartworkforcestrategies.com/
CHESS 2019: Building for the Future…New Leaders, New Markets
September 24-25, 2019
The Hyatt Lodge at McDonald’s Campus
Oak Brook, Illinois
CHESS—Chief Housewares Executive SuperSession—is IHA’s annual senior-level conference for industry leaders. This strategic education and networking event of the year allows attendees to access high-profile industry experts directly and share information and ideas with other housewares and home goods decision-makers. Held every fall, CHESS attracts the chief officers of IHA’s most prominent member companies. The program includes keynote speakers, panel discussions, general sessions and networking opportunities—the most valuable part of the 2-day event according to past participants.
Register today! Click here.