“During one particular presentation of this program, we used the activity dealing with the impact of negativity on our attitudes. After working through the activity where those negative words are literally ripped up and tossed out, the participants were silent. We gave them a break and some of the responses upon returning to class were, ‘I had no idea what I was doing to my family by nagging them all the time’; ‘This helped me to think about a lot of things I need to push out that are taking up too much time and causing me to be negative’. The activity also started a great deal of discussion about how to turn negativity in the workplace around to positive thinking.” “The participants begin to see the affect their communication habits have upon others. For example, one exercise allows the student to observe a conversation from three different views. They can see for themselves during this exercise what they look like to the individual receiving their comments. From this exercise many of the participants began to change their tone of voice, posture, and word choices.”
I am pleased to provide this letter of support for Smart Work Ethics. It is through programs like yours that individuals have an opportunity to enter the workforce with the skills necessary to take them beyond the revolving door of entry level jobs. As a partner with Smart Work Ethics, the programs offered through Dearborn Y.M.C.A. will be greatly enhanced. Our Smart Work Ethics facilitators will equip the at-risk youth and adults we serve with valuable knowledge about their strengths, stressor, and values and how these factors affect their jobs and their relationships with others. With the instruction provided through the Smart Work Ethics curriculum, participants will be able to achieve their full potential and position themselves for promotion.
The Community Foundation of South Alabama (CFSA) and its Community Economic Development (CDE) Initiative supports the efforts to provide the Smart Work Ethics curriculum. Listed below are five reasons we believe this program will be valuable to all involved: 1. Innovative methods of instruction using reinforcements for learning and change. 2. The population being reached—students who are not going on to college but are going directly into the working field. This series will help them keep jobs. 3. Smart Work Ethics addresses seven core competencies that are building blocks to providing employees with the skills Business and Industry are requesting. 4. Measurable results – employment longevity, raises and promotions. 5. Certified trainers can also teach work ethics in their own community—church, nonprofit agencies, etc. Two crucial components of CED are workforce development and education. We believe this program will reinforce efforts in those two initiatives.
We had a great first class. I am really excited about it. It was so easy to do, and it took a lot of the stress of planning totally out of it. I was able to focus on the group. They seemed to really enjoy it, and are excited to come back.
“There was a huge difference in the self esteem of the participants. It was rewarding to see them believing in their ability to learn and grow and to take on new challenges.”
“I just wanted to thank you again for your time with the seminar this week. I have to admit, I was a little skeptical at first – not really knowing what to anticipate with the program and how it would incorporate with the 9th grade students. But after the first day, I felt very engaged and really excited to get back to the material. I think we had a great group of business professionals and the education professionals that kept the atmosphere extremely comfortable, inviting and fun. I thoroughly enjoyed it and I am anxious to share the information with the rest of the HR staff at Goodrich!”
“I liked most about the workshop: Understanding behavioral traits, learning how to relate through a deeper understanding of behavioral modeling.”
“These things worked for me: fun materials, intimate setting, small class size, and useful skills. Any HR director or manager in most any business would benefit from this workshop.”
"Every single class ended with at least one of the students telling me ‘thank you’ for teaching them something that they didn’t know-or didn’t know they knew. After the Change Your Attitude class one student came back the next week to tell me how much it helped him at home. After the Listening/Rapport Skills exercise in the Interpersonal Communications class, another student came back and couldn’t wait to tell me how he used his rapport skills to get through a very tough situation at home. He was able to listen more and understand where the other person was coming from, and he was so grateful to have been able to practice something he learned in class. Several of the students seemed to ‘get it’ during the ‘different points of view’ exercise in the Interpersonal Communications class as well. They all really liked the dress codes in the Power of your Image class too, and I was surprised that no one really seemed to argue for their ‘personal style.’”
“Smart Work Ethics gives me the tools to help students open up to what is possible for them. I particularly like the Personal Life Skills class which teaches students how to manage problem emotions on the job.”
“I’m just loving, loving, loving teaching Smart Work Ethics! This is only week #2, and these students have “evolved” already into more polished, polite, and enthusiastic students. I’m so proud of them – like they’re my own kids! Even the more quiet, reserved students come to my office door the days I don’t teach them, and they’re just there to say good morning to me. Too cool! This program is life changing.”
“I was headed for trouble and after these classes I realized I was responsible for my own actions…I need a job and more education.” (Student is now enrolled in Construction Skills in West Point, MS)
“You need to come teach this class to my parents”
“I am somebody, I am somebody! This class showed me that I still have a chance.” (This student is now enrolled in Workforce Construction Skills at TVA Center)