I know you have noticed it. You cannot NOT notice it. Businesses all over America are crying for people to work…but few are showing up. In my line of work, I talk to company leaders across the Midwest. They are all saying the same thing. Whether it is a factory, a farm, a retail store, a nursing home….the businesses are telling me that even IF someone shows up for work, they will probably quit the next day or later that week, and they won’t even tell the employer that they have quit.

I hear it…and see it…every week.

What has happened to us?

My parents grew up in the Great Depression and World War 2. Although my parents died many years ago, I can still “hear” them tell me, “Son, be frugal on yourself. Be generous with others. Do your job and half of somebody else’s. Show up early, work till late, and make yourself indispensable. Be excited that you have a job! Make them happy they hired you, and sad on the day you have to leave. Be considerate of the employer and your fellow employees…give them all at least a two weeks notice if you have to leave. Be ambitious….nobody owes you a thing. If you want something in life, you have to work hard to get it. . .”

And on and on. I have probably a dozen or two more wise sayings from my parents about a work ethic. They didn’t just mouth it; they lived it.

Are these same sayings being communicated to succeeding generations of Americans today? Are these virtues being modeled to younger Americans so that they will fill the ranks of our workforce and make our nation productive and prosperous?

From where I sit (and drive around the country), all the “help wanted” signs are screaming loud and long that more than one generation has not been taught a work ethic.

How can a nation last if many believe that they are entitled to “freebies” and they don’t have to work?

What is the solution?