I’m glad you’re here. It’s important to me that you understand why we started Real Work. If you’re here, you may already know. In fact, you may see some of your story in ours.
Along with many others on our team, I come from the construction and service industries. Early on, I had aspirations to be an architect but understanding the composition of mortar turned out to be my downfall (long story). I may not be designing buildings, but I did find my way into construction. I started in project management and went on to become General Manager for a regional commercial fire alarm contractor in the Pacific Northwest.
I worked with some amazing technicians over the years. They were the difference between a smooth profitable job (and happy customers) and cost overruns (and unhappy customers). They were also some of my best teachers. But over time, it had become harder and harder to find new talent.
And then there was COVID. While most companies had their employees working from home until they were sure it was safe, we were sending our service techs and inspectors out every day. Some didn’t mind, but others did. One of our inspectors had a daughter home, in her twenties, dying of cancer. Another, a brother. Our team talked bi-weekly, sometimes more. Is everyone ok?
And when things settled down a bit, we were back to… where do we find new techs and inspectors? Indeed? Monster? Craigslist? Facebook? Platforms trying to be everything to everyone.
The bottom line is the industry needs people and has unique needs. Looking into the data, the demand for skilled labor has outpaced the supply (you could have asked us, we knew). Experienced people are aging out. Many schools have cut their trade programs. Fewer shop classes are offered or encouraged. Seems like we’ve forgotten the value of building and fixing things. Technology will certainly change construction and I welcome that, but we’ll still need talented crafts people to keep our infrastructure running and to continue building amazing things.
Things need to change. We can’t keep doing things in the same old way and expect different results (paraphrased from a quote attributed to Albert Einstein). Became clear, it’s time to rethink the way we’re doing things. So… we did. Que Real Work.
For the past two years, we’ve been building a platform for the trades. A platform focused on people – whether they work for a company or for themselves. It’s time to modernize the workplace and bring the industry into the 21st century.
At the core, I believe people are willing to work hard, but there’s a shift toward a better work-life balance. Our goal is to provide flexibility, but importantly, mixed with accountability. Help people. Help employers.
Connecting the dots. There are other organizations out there in different pockets of the country aligned with our mission. We’ll be actively looking for good partners along the way. (Reach out if you represent one of them!).
On-Going Mission. In the not-too-distant future, we look forward to donating some of our revenue to help support organizations doing their part to reinvent the trades. Organizations helping people get back into the workforce – giving people a hand-up. Supporting students and schools. We also want to support aspiring entrepreneurs looking to find their way.
Real Work Founder