Halftime in America and Lending a Helping Hand

Fort Worth landed in the national and international news last week when a local woman had a Google Plus video confrontation with President Obama over unemployment — specifically, her husband’s job loss.

I won't even get into my shock that someone is actually using Google Plus and skip to the Great American Paradox: high unemployment at the same time that so many highly skilled, technical jobs go unfilled. And this paradox is actually not specifically American. When I talk to my friends and clients in Europe and Asia, I hear the same thing: They are buried in résumés yet unable to fill key positions. That’s the ugly truth.

The Starr Conspiracy is lucky. We are actually growing at a time when many companies are still struggling. Much of this growth is because we work directly with companies that are also growing because they are trying to address the Great Paradox through HR and human capital software and services. Yes, some of this work is about helping companies do more with less. But this work is also about training workers and teaching skills to be able to fill these jobs.

Talent is the No. 1 business challenge of the 21st century. And I believe that our company and our clients are playing a part in creating the solution. Some of the solution is creating jobs. Some of solution is talking to people who are looking for work and offering them advice or a kind word, or a referral that could lead to a job. I’ve been in that spot before and I still remember the people who did that for me. I’m just trying to pay it forward. I talk to as many people as I can to try and help.

That’s part of why I love the Chrysler commercial with Clint Eastwood that aired during the Super Bowl. Please put the politics aside. It’s a message of much-needed optimism.

Is it halftime in America or wherever you are? You may or may not agree. But you can be part of the solution — no matter how small. The change doesn’t start with politicians. It starts with us. Be the change you want to see.