Thursday, April 23, 2015

Working with Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana: Unity of Purpose

Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana is working for job-seekers searching for economic security and long-term careers.  They are also working for employers seeking qualified, prepared and developing workers!  Progress Strategies+ is working for Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana!  See how this works?

The Progress Strategies+ Diversity and Inclusion Team is pleased to have Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana as a client.  Specifically, we enjoy the creation and coordination of employee diversity and cultural competency training to 52 employees in order to develop and strengthen their understanding of intercultural sensitivity, cultural understanding and conflict management in situations with co-workers and job-seekers of different backgrounds.

One of the five business project areas of Progress Strategies+ is diversity and inclusion with Track One (Diversity and Inclusion Training) and/or Track Two (Diversity and Inclusion policies, practices or program creation) that we focus on for corporations, businesses and non-profits.  The Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana Unity of Purpose:  Facilitating Intercultural and Inclusion Development training sessions have been specially formed to help their dedicated employees learn and use intercultural development skills, change opportunity strategies to learn from cultural misunderstandings and other methods to identify---and solve---barriers to inclusion within the workplace.

Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana serves residents of its area through an innovative approach to employment for highly qualified and developing skilled workers.  From job training to assistance in preparing and placing displaced workers for new jobs, they help Michigan’s economic future.

A variety of career development, administrative staff and community specialists also provide important staffing and recruitment for organizations.  As those organizations and businesses search for employees for the state’s new economy, Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana develops training programs for workers at every skill level in order to fulfill the needs of those job providers.

As a social entrepreneur who works daily to ensure that everyone can enjoy wealth and economic opportunity, I love what this team does for people:

-The single mother with two children who knew that she could have more opportunities moving from a displaced home health care worker to a Pharmacist.  After episodic job placements and setbacks from job loss, Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana prepared her for the Pharmacy Certification Program.  She received free training from the staff to prepare her for the first career change driven by her desire “to do more.”  She is now a Pharmacy Technician.  Her children are proud of her drive, new income and goal to become a Pharmacist. 

There are many more narratives of job-seekers from the full-range of diverse backgrounds served by Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana's attention, time and outreach who are moving from job displacement to a career.  Progress Strategies+ has helped this group of staff members improve in the cultural diversity and inclusion skills needed to work with a growing group of job-seekers---and the companies who accept the business case of inclusion---representing a changing workforce.  

I look forward to sharing more.  Today I wanted to provide an introduction to these great people at Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana as they expand and enhance their understanding of diversity, cultural competency, and systems of equity that will lead to innovative inclusion practices allowing everyone to perform and prosper in our global community.
More to share on Michigan Works! Muskegon-Oceana in future blog posts.  For now, back to work!

Eric K. Foster is President and Principal of Progress Strategies+, a project management firm working with corporations, businesses, organizations and non-profits in five areas---Diversity and Inclusion, Grant Writing and Project Management, Community Engagement Strategies, Public Policy and Advocacy and Corporate Social Responsibility.  Eric is also the lead of its Diversity and Inclusion Team.  He enjoys creating economic opportunity and income equality for all people through helping develop environments of inclusion.