Hello API Job Corps Centers:
WELCOME, NEW ORLEANS TEAM!
This month marks the first time the New Orleans staff are joined in the API family and receiving the CEO Message, which is distributed monthly. We are so excited to welcome you!
API strives to be a wonderful workplace and create an environment on our Job Corps Centers that focuses on employee engagement. According to Gallup (2022) there are components that fundamentally improve employee engagement and enrich center culture. They are described below and paraphrased for our Job Corps environment.
Clear Communication: Contract transitions, unannounced ROCA visits and any unexpected change in routine can raise questions amongst staff. All Westover, Wind River or New Orleans employees should ensure that the communication they are using with each other and with students is clear and ongoing. Confusing messaging from anyone on center (including false information or gossip) only makes everyone’s lives more stressful. It is my belief that everyone WANTS to do a good job and it is all of our responsibility to help everyone on center succeed (no matter your role or position). That is what being a true team player is all about.
Wellbeing: Since COVID-19, the amount of stress and uncertainty in the workplace has rising to an unprecedented level. API centers need to ensure all staff and students feel safe and are continuing to develop in their work and overall lives. It is important to ensure that our students and staff are not experiencing COVID-19 burnout. We can all be a part of reducing that risk by simply being kind and asking how people are doing. Focusing on everyone's strengths and their contributions is the first step in ensuring people feel that our workplace is welcoming and safe.
Positive Conversations: Everyone on center can learn to hold higher-quality conversations — ones that occur frequently and that focus on a persons’ strengths. Every employee has different strengths and different work and life situations. Managers should know each employee well, which makes them the best person to adjust their employees’ workflows, motivate high performance and direct them to the right wellbeing resources, if needed. To do this, there are a few questions Gallup suggests we ask ourselves to have strength-based conversations with staff and/or students:
What are the things that they do best every day?
Where do you see them succeeding?
How can you ensure they succeed more often?
According to https://teambuilding.com/blog/employee-engagement-benefits, (2022), there are many reasons to focus on employee engagement such as:
Improved customer service
Increased productivity and initiative
Increased job satisfaction
Increased feeling of safety and security
The work we do gives us the chance to change lives every day. The better we do, the better we do for our students. I ask you all to strive to be the best you can be. Staff and student engagement helps that happen!
Go for it!! Dr. Wild