Every day there are little things and people that inspire gratitude. What’s your story, today?

Mine is about the hospitality training partnership among the Boston Education, Skills & Training (BEST) Corporation, the Local 26 Boston Hotel Workers Union, Omni Parker House (and other hotels in Boston!), the Aspen Institute, Bunker Hill Community College (a Massachusetts public institution), and probably other organizations.

I am absolutely inspired by the BEST program, about which the Aspen Institute reports that committed union, employer, and local community partners can address the challenge of quality jobs with quality pay and acceptable profit margins. BEST ”is solving this problem by providing best-in-class training that prepares workers to excel and engages hotels in discussions about the value of training.”

Selection and commitment among partners, along with the quality of the partners’ engagement are key to the program’s effectiveness, according to BEST's founding executive director, Marie Downey. When asked about lessons for others developing collaborative curricula and OJT programs, she said: ”they need to work with the right employers. Employers are certainly looking for trained workers, but they have to be willing to share profits. It’s letting employers know in the kindest and gentlest of ways that if they want retention, this is a proven model.” 

Communicating in mutually respectful ways pays off for all partners and stakeholders. I am usually the one in my house who harps on the need for genuine dialogue. Ironically, it is my husband who shared the link to the Aspen report, partly out of interest in the work of our son – employed by another local of the same union teamed up with BEST and its partners.

With appreciation to all the partners, and – most of all – the hospitality staffs of Boston, have a great rest of your summer or winter, wherever you are!