Every successful company asks the same question at some point: Where will our future workforce come from?

After 70+ years in business, Max Weiss Company is no exception.

Rather than leave the question unanswered, we decided to get involved. Good thing, too – it was a lot of fun!

Twenty-one seventh-graders from Milwaukee Sign Language School recently toured our plant. They saw everything – from the office, to the production area, to the shipping dock, to the logistics center.

When you’re in the structural steel bending service, it’s easy to forget just how amazing your work is. Well, these kids reminded us.

Their wide-eyed looks, and insightful questions, were a breath of fresh air. It prompted us to think that, yeah, working in construction metal forming, and steel bar rolling, is pretty darn cool.

The students toured Max Weiss Company as part of Be the Spark, a program of business education tours organized by the Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce.

Three MMAC Ambassadors took part. They seemed every bit as interested as the students.

It’s the first year Max Weiss Company has participated in Be the Spark. It won’t be the last.

Al Sanders, Dave Gregg and Dan Bertzyk were tour guides. Their groups stopped often during the 90-minute visit. At each point, employees explained details of I-beam rolling, and light steel plate bending, and other techniques to create curved structural steel.

The kids, of course, had lots of questions. How long have you been doing this? How did you get started? Where did you go to school? Is your job hard? Do you like your job?

Paul Schulz, our company President, explained why everyone at Max Weiss Company takes pride in their work. Look around, he said. You’ll see curved metal everywhere: Kohl’s signs, trucks, water parks, stadiums, amusement parks and city skylines. Our construction steel rolling builds the world.

Paul mentioned that Max Weiss Company exemplifies how someone can make a good living without a four-year college degree. Many management personnel began on the production floor. They worked their way up.

Kate Klister, our HR conductor, brought Be the Spark to Max Weiss Company. Interested in sparking your career? E-mail her at hr@maxweiss.com.

Speaking to the kids, Paul ticked off a few simple habits to build a great career: hard work. Willingness to learn. Perseverance. Curiosity. Positive attitude. Working with others.

Judging by the looks on the students’ faces, his message struck home. They were interested. Captivated, even. If they’re any indication, the future workforce is off to a good start.

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