Sept. 14, 2021 - Small retail and food and beverage business owners have to be agile to work through the stages from planning and launching a business to managing and growing it. Small business owners have had to be all the more nimble due to disruption caused by COVID-19. Both before and throughout the pandemic, several employers have been trying creative and unique solutions to address challenges faced by business owners and their employees.
A new set of case studies released by the CWDC, Business Solutions for Training and Supporting Frontline Employees, highlights the innovations and successes of Colorado’s retail and food and beverage employers, including different approaches taken by food and beverage businesses to increase profits by changing wage structures and training plans. The featured business owners found a variety of ways to increase employee performance, retention, and sense of ownership. As AJ Oulette from Fire on the Mountain states in their case study, “We would rather have a really good staff that moves on than an untrained staff that never leaves.”
Retail businesses are also highlighted for their work on collaboration and creating community. For example, the Stanley Marketplace opens their doors to students for field trips, as well as mentors and evaluates students on their ideas for creating new businesses inside the marketplace. Another case study features Ramble on Pearl, a non-profit social enterprise that runs a job training apprentice program for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Ramble makes individualized plans for apprentices, starting with what skill sets the individual brings, and then helps strengthen areas that need development over a 3-6 month period when they help the apprentice obtain a job with a local community employer.
Regardless of the approach, collaboration between employers and education and training partners can save both money and time, and allow businesses to focus on work while supporting their employees in reaching their full potential. View the case studies to learn more about nine Colorado employers and their unique approaches to training and supporting their employees.
This resource was released as part of the Lives Empowered initiative. Lives Empowered brings together retail businesses interested in working collaboratively to increase economic mobility for frontline workers across Colorado and contribute to a strong economy. Lives Empowered is made possible by a $4.1 million grant from Walmart to the Colorado Workforce Development Council.