Sunday March 17, 2013 | 10:55 AM
Posted by Chris Hall

Hello everyone. Since this is my first blog entry let me say welcome, and also say that I hope you'll be a regular reader.

These posts will be fast and frequent. We'll be visiting people, places and ideas that impact the Portland region's economic, social and cultural landscape. If you learn something new I'll be doing my job.

Tomorrow I'm headed to the State House in Augusta, a place I've been visiting since 1990. I'll be speaking to lawmakers who are trying to bring more focus and effectiveness to our workforce development efforts.

They have a tough task, but their first proposals are good, and include a plan to concentrate public and private resources on our most promising economic clusters, along with funding to bring adults back to our economy.

Here's something to think about. More than ever employers need to connect to their workforce before those people become employees. It's a theme I'll be returning to many times in this blog.

Instead of waiting for workers to show up after high school or college the way we used to, now employers need to find their workers while they're still in school. By using internships, apprenticeships and other connections with learners of all ages, businesses can build their workforce pipeline in anticipation of the company's needs.

If you're not doing it, your competition is. It's a race that few of us can afford to lose.

So I'm off to the State House to represent the Portland region's employers and to urge us all to stay focused on more prosperity - for everyone. I'll let you know how it goes, and we'll have a chance to visit this new world of business/education alliances in action in future entries.



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About the Author

Chris Hall is the CEO of the Portland Regional Chamber. He’s been working in Chambers of Commerce in Maine for over 20 years, and Notes from the Chamber will bring you his perspective and comment on what’s happening in the Portland region that’s most important to our economy today and tomorrow.

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