Does Asheville have a "talent gap"? If you live here and have talked to even just a handful of people, you know the answer is a resounding "no." Asheville is a hotbed of creative thinkers who are constantly looking for a way to turn their dreams into reality. Despite this, there often seems to be an imbalance between the area's human resources and the available job opportunities. So how do we begin to bridge this gap?
Finding an answer to this question is becoming even more critical as waves of new arrivals come to our mountains looking to start business or to find meaningful work. There's no doubt that Asheville is a draw for both new business and for creative types, but how can the two be synthesized?
Some answers are guaranteed to emerge at the second annual Talent Jam, a "business-focused mash-up of 'speed dating, job fair and a networking event'" presented by the Kauffman Foundation WNC Entrepreneur-in-Residence Program. The Kauffman Foundation's vision in this area is to identify "high-growth companies in the initial stages of development" and the people who can assist in that growth.
The evening works like this: Attending is $5 with advance sign-up ($10 at the door), but an additional sign-up fee of $25 (which goes to benefit the local charities Green Side Up Foundation and Hands On--how cool is that?!) will give you the opportunity to present a 1-minute pitch to the prospective employees or employers in the room. You can select whether you "Are Talent" or "Need Talent" when you purchase your spot. The evening then moves into an informal networking period where you can grab a drink and relax while starting--or continuing--conversations.
Everything goes down at Isis Restaurant and Music Hall on Monday, March 21st from 6-9 pm. If you want to register to make a pitch, you must do so by March 18th (and we suggest you get on it--the quantity of pitches is limited!). We honestly can't think of a better way to spend a Monday night! Get your tickets now!