The California Workforce Association Youth Employment Conference will be held in Sacramento CA. on 
January 12, 13 &14.

Larry Robbin will be presenting a special preconference session Through Disconnected Eyes!  This idea packed workshop is based on the feedback of hundreds of disconnected youth about what they want from workforce programs.  For more information click here.

Larry Robbin Training Topics

Larry trains on more than 300 topics. This list features some of the most requested workshops. Click here for the list of training topics. If you do not see what you need, please contact  Larry   to see if he trains on that subject. Larry trains onsite, by telephone or by webinar.


Welcome to a new series of articles in the newsletter!  In this and upcoming issues the newsletter will highlight a common hidden barrier to employment.  Here is the first installment.

T his frequently hidden barrier to employment can be found in one out of five of the job seekers that are in your program.  It occurs in all types of people.  Most workforce organizations are not well equipped to assess or help people with this barrier.  If you
want to learn more about this barrier that you may be missing, click here.

If your organization is funded under the Workforce Investment Opportunity Act (WIOA), it should change the way you work with job seekers and businesses.  WIOA calls for many important shifts in workforce development.  While much of the conversation has been about how WIOA will change things at the federal, state and workforce board levels, very little has been said about what it means to the front line staff.  I did an interview on this topic with Ryan Hess who is the Associate Editor of the Employment and Training Reporter.  The Employment and Training Reporter is the oldest publication in the workforce development field and it has been publishing weekly since 1968.  If you want to know more about how WIOA will change the work being done by the front line staff in workforce development, click here.

As someone that has seen thousands of resumes in my career in workforce development, I can tell you that people put unbelievable things on their resumes!  This list will give you an insight into why some people are never called for an interview.  Click here to find out more about the outrageous things people put on their resumes.

The Governor of Missouri appointed a commission to look into the root causes of the riots that happened in Ferguson after the killing of Michael Brown.  The commission members were well aware that a number of similar commissions had been formed in other communities following periods of major unrest.  But almost none of those commissions had any impact on their communities.  The members of the Missouri commission wanted their work to be action oriented.  They focused on a number of areas including youth, employment, education, police relations, housing and other topics.  The section on Realigning Incentives And Funding To Improve Job Training And Creation has some great ideas about workforce development.  The youth section is also very pertinent to our work.  The report is called Forward Through Ferguson.  To see it click here .

How do people get the highest paying entry level jobs?  This new book provides important insights into this question.  Find out how connections and social class play a role in the hiring decision by clicking here.


As a workforce development professional, it is important that you know as much as possible about the many jobs and careers that exist in the world of work.  Of course,  you will also use assessment tests, inventories and other tools to help you find the right match for the people you serve.  However, some jobs or careers do not have enough people in them to show up on a job or career matching assessment test.  For example,  I have yet to see an assessment instrument that has workforce development professional in its database!  A job may be emerging into the world of work and will not appear on assessment instruments.  These are reasons why it is useful to know as much as possible about the broad range of what people do for work, so you can have informed conversations about potential matches. 
How would you make this job match?  Let us imagine that you are working with a person who has three strong interests - sports, computer technology and mathematics.  What job would you suggest as a match for these interests?  Most of us would never think of this occupation.  Click here to learn about a great match for that person.

My colleague and client Racy Ming is the Social Services Division Director  at the Employment And Training Branch in Marin County in California.  She recently got a Fulbright scholarship to go to England for five months to study their workforce and reentry employment systems.  She wrote a great blog about her experiences.  It is really eye opening to see how this work is done in England.  Click here to find out more.

Older workers are often defined as people over the age of fifty-five.  These individuals are often referred to as mature workers in the workforce development field.  They face many challenges including age discrimination in trying to become employed.  To get better outcomes with mature workers c lick here for a helpful resource.

Every manager has had the experience of being put in between employees that are having a conflict.  How do you resolve these challenging situations so people feel respected and can get to a win win place?  Most managers just improvise in these situations.  But the best results will come from having a framework for dealing with conflict.  This article will give you a model for conflict resolution and links to other options for models.  Click here to learn more about successful approaches to resolving conflicts.

Sometimes when we try to help people, we inadvertently point them in the direction of a job or career that does not match their real hidden talents.  This can happen when we do not go deep enough with our assessment of their strengths.  This incredible and inspiring YouTube video will teach you and your job seekers an important lesson about finding your path using hidden talents and skills.  C lick here to see the story of Ricochet the dog.

If you help people with job search, you have probably read or heard a lot of things about what to do and say in an interview.  What is missing from all that advice is information about someone should prepare in the week before the job interview.  A job interview is like an actor or actress going on an audition, a championship sports game or any other event where a one time performance means everything.  In a LinkedIn post, I wrote about how to turn a job interview into a job offer and covered research and other topics, but in this article, I want to focus on the ramp up time to the interview itself.  Click here to learn more about how job seekers can prepare themselves to give an interview that will lead to a job offer.


I have been learning a lot lately.  It feels like I have been going to workforce university!  Since my last report, I have done a lot of training and consulting.  The California Rehabilitation Association sponsored my training, From Jails to Jobs for People with Disabilities.  I was very honored to be invited once again to present at the Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs Annual Conference and for the Western Association of Farmworker Advocates.  These organizations are composed of programs that work to get farmworkers out of the fields and into better jobs.  Farmworkers have some of the hardest and most dangerous jobs in America.  These programs provide a vital lifeline to better jobs.  I presented Career Counseling in the WIOA Way and The Radar Approach to Job Retention.  I also presented Are You Talking Like Businesses Think?  How to Get the Private Sector to Hire Farmworkers!, Cooperation Coordination and Collaboration - How to Choose the Right Partnership and Make Them Work Better and Get Ahead of the Pack!  How to Teach People to Find Jobs in the Hidden Job Market.
I trained job seekers who have been out of work for a while for Opportunity Junction by presenting my workshop, How to Stay Motivated in the Long Job Search.  It is easy to forget with all the talk about the economy improving, how long some people have been out of work.  I gave awards to the people with the longest job search.  The four winners had been out of work four to eight years!  I also worked with their management team and consulted on how to assess for learning disabilities, how to keep first generation college students in school and best practices for replicating programs
Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County invited me to be a panelist at the Out of Poverty Action Summit.  This important gathering featured a very diverse audience representing many organizations working on the issue of poverty.  The summit was just not a place to talk about poverty, but it focused on developing action plans to close the fast growing economic gap.  It was a great opportunity for me to talk about policy issues related to workforce development that could help to alleviate poverty.  For example, I suggested that since municipalities give contract preference points to various types of businesses such as small businesses, veteran, minority and women owned businesses, that we should also give contract preference points to those businesses with strong hiring relationships with workforce programs serving people in poverty.  This would reinforce business practices that close the gap between people in poverty, workforce programs and jobs. 
Goodwill Industries of the Redwood Empire sponsored my training From Jails to Jobs!  Even though they were paying for the training, in the true spirit of collaboration they opened up the session to all of their partners.  We had a wide range of people from organizations that had not worked together in the workshop and many partnerships were started in the session.  


"Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life." -Confucius

Did you like this issue?  Send it to someone else.
Just click on the icon at the top on the right hand side.
Let them know that they can go to
and sign up to get the newsletter in the contact section.