The Midwest continues to defy the national unemployment rates and organizations rooted here understand that true talent is always scarce. Some people say that this can be explained by how the labor force is structured in our region and the local distribution of industries. Others chalk it up to just dumb luck.
However, keep in mind that the Plains states also largely avoided the sub-prime mortgage meltdown and housing market collapse that have ravaged many other sections of the country. Ernest Goss, professor of economics at Creighton University in Omaha, Neb., said that the Midwest region has always had much lower unemployment rates than the national average, but the current gap is unusually large due to the magnitude of the recent economic recession. Equally positive, we’re continuing to see a trend of increased hiring that mirrors the thermometer of the economy.
During the last 12 months, I’ve had the opportunity to visit with companies headquartered in California, Tennessee, Arizona, Texas, Canada, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, New York, Washington, DC, Oregon and of course Iowa, Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. Regardless of the industry or company size, the business owners, executives, and hiring managers in the Midwest generally have their finger on the pulse of their businesses and work closer with their people on the challenges they face.
I’m amazed at the depth of talent and knowledge that makes all of these companies unique and dynamic. That being said, my perspective is there is something about businesses here in the Heartland that is truly special. Let’s face it, our transparent teamwork and flat communication style combined with “calling a spade a spade” are simple traits that have become our complex differentiating factor. It’s what keeps employees engaged and in turn, organizations strong. It’s difficult to duplicate this in other regions.
From a recruiting perspective, we have the unique opportunity to relocate professionals from around the country to the Heartland. We’ve noticed that once individuals visit and experience our high quality of life, education system, and the warmth of the Midwest people, they are hooked. And for top talent currently residing here, they know our region is a great place to be.
Leaders from around the United States marvel at the attitudes, work ethic and eagerness to be a part of something bigger than ourselves. It’s just the way it’s done here in the great Midwest.
About the Author, Chris Carlson
Chris is an experienced executive in the staffing industry. She has extensive experience in developing and implementing operational analyses and programs and has assisted hundreds of firms streamline processes and upgrade the competencies of its workforce. Finding innovative ways to generate new business and build teams is her passion. She has developed and executed many successful strategic marketing plans. Chris began her career at Aureus Group, a full-service professional recruiting firm, in 1994 and currently serves as the regional manager of Aureus Group specializing in the Finance & Accounting, Systems and Executive search areas.
In addition, Chris is a Certified Professional Consultant, and has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a Master’s of Business Administration from the University of Nebraska at Omaha.