By Bill Turner, Executive Director, Skillful Indiana

Today I am excited to kick off the first retreat of the Skillful Governor’s Coaching Corps in partnership with Governor Holcomb’s Workforce Cabinet, which will bring together 35 talented career coaches from all 12 workforce regions across Indiana. The Skillful Governor’s Coaching Corps is one of Skillful Indiana’s signature initiatives, designed to strengthen and support exceptional career coaches so they are better equipped to connect Hoosiers to effective training opportunities and quality jobs.

Over the next two days in Indianapolis, these 35 coaches will have the opportunity to get to know each other, spend time with Governor Holcomb and receive expert instruction in leadership, problem solving, and skills-based coaching that they can immediately take back to their organizations and communities. And this is only the beginning – in the next eight months, this free, statewide program will provide coaches with in-depth skills development, one-on-one leadership coaching, and access to a network of peers and leaders in high-demand, high-wage industries via a series of retreats and webinars. Coaches will also participate in action teams to contribute their skills and experience to develop solutions to Indiana workforce challenges and present their recommendations to state leaders for potential adoption upon completion of the program.

I personally believe that career coaches play an increasingly important role in our changing economy. To help put this in perspective, consider that in the next decade, Indiana will need more than 1 million skilled workers to fill open jobs and support economic growth. 1 million! These workers may need to hone or acquire new skills and navigate new pathways to good jobs. Career coaches help job seekers and incumbent employees recognize the skills they have, the training they may need, and the employment opportunities within their reach. They also help employers see the talent in their own communities and inspire employees and job seekers to become lifelong learners who can keep pace with the evolving needs of a digital economy.

Like the people they serve, career coaches also need help and support strengthening their skills to meet the challenges posed by a dramatically changing workforce. Skillful is championing skills-based approaches for more effective coaching and offering resources and training to career coaching professionals. When people are changing not just jobs, but sectors, they need a coach schooled in the Skillful way. That is why I could not be more thrilled about the launch of Skillful Governor’s Coaching Corps as the first of Skillful Indiana’s signature initiatives.

I look forward to sharing the progress of the inaugural Indiana cohort of the Skillful Governor’s Coaching Corps over the next eight months, and I’d like to thank our partners – the Governor’s Workforce Cabinet, Microsoft, Lumina Foundation and Walmart – for their support. If you provide guidance to Indiana job seekers or workers at an education, workforce development, or nonprofit organization, I encourage you to register for the upcoming online Skillful Indiana Coaching Community of Practice, which will create opportunities for coaches to network, share and learn from each other while they explore new resources and methods for helping clients. You can learn more and access community, resources and the Skillful Governor’s Coaching Corps learnings online at https://www.skillful.com/career-coaches.