At RBV, we believe in fostering the education and training of younger generations in order to shape a brighter future for our industry as a whole. Our leadership team sees the benefits of hiring and promoting from within, and we are dedicated to advancing the careers of our younger team members. We take the time to train our employees and teach them how to do things the right way, and more importantly, the safe way. It is our goal to provide our employees with a clear path to success and ensure that they see RBV not as a stepping stone, but as a place to put down roots and grow throughout their career.
Arnie Ridner, RBV’s Contracting’s Operations Manager, is very heavily involved in the internal employee training at RBV and he is seen by the younger crew members as not only a leader and mentor, but as a friend. In a previous blog, Arnie shared his insight on the advice he likes to give his trainees, including the importance of taking care of their bodies, as a career in construction can be long and taxing. While Arnie works both in the office and out in the field, he understands the value in working right alongside the younger team members, showing them that he knows just how difficult it is to be in the field and that he is not above the work. Arnie sees himself as part of the field crew, and from that mentality, he has built a tremendous amount of respect from those that he trains.
While working directly in the field, Arnie has taken several young field workmen under his wing in the past year and a half. One of those men is Noah Johnson, a Laborer at RBV. Growing up watching his father work in construction, Noah knew from a young age that he wanted to go into the trades. He chose to work at RBV because he saw the possibility for a fruitful and long career with opportunities for advancement. Noah has a goal to someday run jobs and a crew of his own, all of which will eventually be possible thanks to the hands-on training he has received from the team at RBV. Noah also sees the value in more young people considering construction as a career path. “If you have a good work ethic and you are willing to learn, you can make a great living for yourself,” he said. “There is more construction work out there than you can image, and there are just not enough people coming into the trades anymore. The possibilities are truly endless.”
With a large demand for talent in the skilled trades, our team is dedicated to working with local organizations that encourage young people to explore and consider construction as a career path. RBV is a proud supporter of the Detroit-based Access for All Program, a free nine-week Apprenticeship Readiness Training Program that helps prepare students for successful application into one of several trade Apprenticeships. Our team recently hired an apprentice from the Access for All Program and Jim Foucher, Vice President at RBV, has been invited to speak at the program graduation ceremonies. RBV has donated equipment to the program and even made our facility available for one cohort’s final “cleanup” project in our Hope Village neighborhood.
We have also donated construction equipment and operators for the Michigan Construction Career Days, Michigan’s leading construction career exploration event that gives young people a chance to experience construction up-close, get a chance to use real tools, and receive direct guidance from a variety of construction professionals. The Michigan Construction Career Days are held at OE324’s Howell training center.
Our team sees the bright futures and career paths that are ahead of our younger team members, and we want to see even more young people get excited about the trades. With plenty of work to be done, it is time to recruit more talented and passionate workers into the construction industry. Our team loves what we do and we are excited to continue to bring on new team members and help create paths for success here at RBV.