Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Interesting news for middle-skill jobs

The National Skills Coalition’s newly updated middle-skill facts sheets clearly show that demand for middle-skill jobs continues to remain strong in the nation. Middle-skill jobs, which require education or training beyond high school but not a bachelor’s degree, make up the largest share of the labor market in the United States overall, and in every state. Read the full blog here.

To see information specifically on Pennslyvania here.  Interesting to see that middle-skill jobs are 54%!

In the beginning of March, the National Skills Coalition held a webinar Skills Equity Policies in the States,  where state policy experts and NSC staff discussed policies that expand equitable access to middle-skill training, credentials, and careers, particularly for those who have faced barriers to economic opportunity.

Does your company have a workforce gap in middle-skill jobs area?  Please tell me more, contact me personally at 
Nancy Dischinat
Executive Director
Lehigh Valley Workforce Development Board
555 Union Boulevard, Allentown, PA 18109

Phone: 610-841-1122 Cell: 610-390-7571 ndischinat@lvwib.org

Monday, March 27, 2017

Chamber CEO Tony Iannelli honored at LVEDC Annual Meeting

Lehigh Valley, PA – March 27, 2017:  The President and CEO of The Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce, Tony Iannelli, was awarded a Special Recognition for Regional Leadership this evening at the 2017 Lehigh Valley Economic Development Corporation Annual Meeting. The award recognizes Tony’s vision and hard work, during the last 20 years, spearheading and organizing the regionalization of the Valley’s business community and the role he has played in advancing economic growth in the Lehigh Valley.

During Iannelli’s 20 year career at The Chamber, he has overseen the regionalization of more than 30 local chambers, business councils and policy committees from across the Lehigh Valley, creating the largest chamber organization Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Don Cunningham, the CEO of LVEDC recognized Tony Iannelli, president and CEO of the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber of Commerce with a first special recognition award for regionalism.

Cunningham noted that Iannelli, in his 20th year at the helm of the chamber, built what was a patchwork of small organizations into one of the 10 largest chambers in America.

"He is the dean of regional leadership," said Cunningham. Recalling when he was Bethlehem's mayor, Cunningham said Iannelli, who then headed the Allentown Chamber, began its growth by merging with the Christmas City's Chamber.  Today, the Greater Lehigh Valley Chamber extends from Carbon County to Warren County, N.J., and is the seventh-largest business-boosting group in the country.

“It’s been a wonderful run …,” Iannelli told the audience, “and it’s because of all of you.”

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Carbon County Young Professionals Council

Alice Wanamaker, The Chamber, Carbon County Member Relations Director

When you hear about the Carbon Young Professionals Council, what do you think? Do you envision young people in suits standing around talking about their business endeavors? Or do you envision a group of motivated, passionate young people eager for an opportunity to make an impact in our communities? The Carbon YPC is both!

The CYPC is a highly driven group of individuals from around the county, working in different industries, all successful in what we set out to do and we are ready to grow as community leaders. Our common goals are accomplished through a shared passion we have for our communities, our county, and the future of our area. Collectively, our goal is to make a positive impact in our communities by utilizing personal and business connections but also by utilizing the Carbon Chamber & Economic Development Corp. With a mission of philanthropy and involvement, the CYPC was excited to continue to grow! We bring high energy, creative ideas, and strength in numbers as we develop ourselves in this 21st Century Chamber and are always looking for opportunities to showcase our strengths.

The young professionals in Carbon County are here and are rising up to the challenge, ready to take on the responsibility of making sure Carbon County is a fun and safe place to live, work and play! We will be part of the growth of Carbon County, attracting new businesses while helping the current businesses grow and prosper ...and we want you to join us!

Meetings are hosted at the CCEDC office on the 2nd Monday of every month, and involvement commitments vary depending on your busy schedule. Be sure to find us on facebook (Carbon Young Professionals) and follow us on Twitter @DiscoverCarbonC .

Friday, March 24, 2017

Agility in the Face of Change

Charles Thiel, Communication Systems Inc., Allentown Chamber President

Business. People. Allentown. All are changing. Some slow and some fast, but if there is one thing we can all agree upon, it is certainly that change is constant. You can always depend on change. It seems that the pace of change has become much more rapid in 2017.

Change is always happening. We can choose to participate, proactively, or be the recipient of the changes that happen around us.

Albert Einstein has been credited with saying that “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”
Einstein, the genius, clearly recognized that no one could change “change.” We are all “humbled” by change and the sooner we recognize the need to work iteratively and adapt to people, methodology and seasons, the faster we will see results.

Why the focus on “change” in this month’s article? Because the world, our country, and Allentown as a city and business community, is changing and everyone reading this article need only to look at the past few years to see its change.

Change happens in us and around us. We have so much more control of the change in us than around us, which leads me to an ever-increasing business topic in these “changing times.” Agility. The need to be personally, professionally and organizationally agile is increasing in our rapidly changing world. Over the past few decades, we saw an emphasis on change management. But change management is now giving way to agility as we realize that our ability to manage change has decreased with the rapid onset of greater and faster change.

Agility is defined as being quick and graceful. Change starts with me. Change starts with you.

Let’s focus on developing our agility and grow together

Thursday, March 23, 2017

IP created opportunities for employees to stretch their skills....

Nancy Dischinat, Executive Director, Lehigh Valley Workforce Development Board

You have heard me talk about Industry Partnerships before...Industry Partnerships are consortia of employers in similar industries engaged by the LVWDB to address common workforce needs, gain access to valuable incumbent worker training resources, participate in peer-to-peer networking, ensure that education and training are aligned with business needs, and obtain labor market data and workforce intelligence. 

Representatives from education, economic development, PA CareerLink workforce system partners participate in partnership activities to understand first-hand your industry driven needs.

Industry Partnership resources give businesses the opportunity to train their current workforce, increase skills, improve productivity, and allow you to remain profitable in a highly competitive marketplace.  Examples of training may  include leadership, supervisory, team building, continuous improvement, Lean principles, problem solving, communications skills and more, as well as occupational training such as machining, Commercial Driver’s License (CDL), forklift, quality, safety, electrical, and industrial maintenance, to name just a few.   

The process to request training funds:

-  Training request forms including application, signature page, company match, training
    template and additional information can be found at www.lvwib.org under Industry
-  Training is to be aligned with the Industry Partnership Training Plan and High Priority
   Occupations and result in credentials/certificates.
-  LVWDB will consider training requests for this fiscal year occurring between October 16,
Training reimbursement is 50% of training cost.  

But maybe hearing about the advantages of participating in and from am industry giant like B. Braun Medical Inc. will give you difference perspective.

Mary Frances A. Mika, PHR, SHRM-CP is the Sr. Trainer - HR at B. Braun Medical Inc., in Allentown.  When asked why she has utilized IP from LVWDB she responded: "It would not have been possible for B. Braun to upskill our employees without Industry Partnership grants to offset the training costs."  

Mary Frances goes on to say that "Industry Partnership training grants have created opportunities for our employees to stretch their skills."

What do you have to lose? Call us now to see if you qualify!
For more information or to discuss your training needs, call 610-841-1006 or email gkormanik@lvwib.org

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

New Business on the Block: 36e Fitness

By: Sara Weidner 
Bethlehem is home to many business from elegant clothing boutiques to the famous Moravian Bookstore, the oldest in the world! However, despite all the culture and commerce that can be found in the Christmas City, there was a need that Evan Robinson, owner and founder of 36e Fitness, saw for Bethlehem, and knew that he could fill it. Robinson’s new business is a unique fitness organization that is unlike any other chain fitness group.

Located in the basement of the Bethlehem Commons, 36e Fitness officially opened to the public on January 5, 2017. The small, privately owned gym is perfect for those who are looking for a more intimate and private setting to start their exercise journey.

“You can’t force a person to sign up to go to the gym and work out-you just can’t. When a person goes to the gym, it’s cause they’re about 80 percent of the way there and they’re ready to work out,” said Robinson.

Robinson strongly believes that the unique aspect about 36e Fitness is that it’s a whole gym created just for the client.

“There’s no having to worry about somebody else being on a piece of equipment or you being stuck in someone else’s selfie,” Robinson laughed. “Whatever you like to do when you’re working out we can do to help you achieve whatever your fitness goal is.”

To Robinson, having one-on-one instruction is always better than being in a group environment.

“I’m here to answer any questions; I’m also here to lead you through any exercise. You always have somebody watching you. It’s kind of like having a private tutor. You get that individualized attention.”

Right now, Robinson offers packages that occur three times a week, twice a week, or once a week. Prices are as follows:
  • 3 X weekly=12 Sessions a Month=$ 480 / month=​$40/hr
  • Twice weekly=8 Sessions a Month=$ 400 / month=$​50/hr
  • Once Weekly=4 Sessions a Month=$ 240 / month=​60/hr

“I put together programs for the client’s goals. You get a personalized program for your fitness needs,” said Robinson.

With his program, you get a warm-up, workout, cooldown, decompress if you want to talk, or cardio if you’d like. And another perk-water and towels are free!

“If you’re working out, you need water. If you’re not working out, you need water. You need water to live! I don’t feel that it’s right to charge someone for water,” said Robinson smiling.

Starting next month, Robinson plans to expand upon his small studio and offer a spin class in the new expansion. He also wants to turn the back half of the room into a boot camp so people can drop by and work out over their lunch break.

Robinson, a New York native, mainly attributed his return to a smaller town because of the American Dream.

Beginning with the martial art of jujutsu, Robinson has always had a passion for exercise and an ambition to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

“Being in and out of the gym has always been a part of me,” said Robinson.

Previously an employee at a commercial gym’s sales department, Robinson found that the quota was not being met, and this caused internal problems regarding financial matters.

“It was right then and there that I said, ‘when I get the opportunity or when I feel the time is right to open my own gym, I said I will never be stuck in a situation again like this.”

This roadblock in his career led him to thinking about opening his own business where he would do his best to run a fair, transparent company centered around helping people achieve their fitness goals.

“I just felt like, I can do better. I can offer a better service at a cheaper price and I feel people get robbed in commercial gyms.”  

Working out can be fun when you are in a comfortable setting. With Evan Robinson who proudly considers himself a social butterfly, he said the best part of his job is getting to talk to his clients. With his bright, fun, and outgoing personality, no one could feel self-conscious or awkward when working with him.

Make an appointment today and check it out for yourself! Even if you’re not an exercise buff, tell friends, neighbors, or relatives that a new business has arrived and that its programs have one focus-you! Visit their website http://www.36efitness.com/  or call 610-756-7700 for a free consultation.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Spring Events with Young Professionals Council

Emily Ascani, Liquid Interactive, Vice-President of Young Professionals Council

Hello everyone! We are very excited about how this month has shaped up and how the next few months are coming together for the Young Professionals Council.

Our Lead to Succeed Panel will be held on March 23rd at Theatre 514 in Allentown. Listen to 5 big names in the Lehigh Valley discuss how they gained their success over the course of their career and what advice they have for young professionals in the Lehigh Valley. PBS39’s Brittany Garzillo will be moderating this year’s panel.

As spring nears, we are anxiously awaiting our Kentucky Derby Benefit on May 6th at Iron Lakes Country Club, in hopes of giving a sizable donation to The Children’s Home of Easton. If you are interested in sponsoring or attending, please register on the Chamber website or feel free to send me an email! There are plenty of ways to get involved with this great cause. Don’t forget that any money from purchasing one of our YPC Benefit Cards will go towards our donation.

There is lots to keep up with! Make sure you like our Facebook page, follow us on LinkedIn, and check out our Twitter & Instagram @lehighvalleyypc to receive event information, articles relevant to young professionals, and opportunities to get involved.