Focus on the Positive: Finding Talent in People Usually Overlooked

Mar 24, 2015

"We gain so much more when we focus on people’s positives," says lawyer, speaker, and freelance disability consultant, Matan Koch.

Koch will speak at Coe College the evening of March 24. Ahead of his appearance, Ben Kieffer talks with Koch about how to encourage the talent, purchasing power, and experience of the disability community.

Also on this edition of River to River, Ben Kieffer visits with the founder and several honorees of the Iowa Job Honor Awards, an awards ceremony that recognizes Iowans who have overcome significant barriers to employment and the employers who hire them.

Burlington repair shop owner David Dingman is one of last year's honorees. He says he couldn’t be a mechanic fulltime due to a workplace injury, so he hired recovering alcoholics, ex-cons, and people with little experience.

“I can’t wrench fulltime, I can’t do my job fulltime, but I can teach,” Dingman says. “There’s a few I’ve lost money on, very few. (It’s a) far greater value to take somebody, dust them off and give them a second chance than it is to blow them off in the beginning.”

The Iowa Job Honor Awards are current accepting nominations, which are invited through the organization’s website, before the April 17, 2015 deadline.