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Solutions – Part 3 Technology – Dead Last in North America –

Grim Reaper

Every International has one to scores of IT and social media people on the payroll and yet we do not have a basic use of aggressive structured use of social media and the internet going into 2016 throughout even one of our internationals, much less leveraging our entire Building Trades.

Either all those folks are incompetent or all of the Internationals leadership is. The BM’s and General Officers reading this most likely had a reaction to this – whatever it was from excuses to the old standby “we are working on it” these are the exact reasons why the Building Trades down to your/our local unions are irrelevant in today’s world and we are getting our butts kicked!

We can change that quickly and with huge benefits to workers! Mastering the use of the internet and social signals will be the single most effective Organizing/Marketing strategy now before us.

What makes leaders great is the ability to change & maximize ones strengths. The Building Trades’ single best strength is its members, which have a solid knowledge of the internet and other social signals. For some unexplainable reason, many Building Trades leaders & their consultants continue to think that our combined internet use is up to par in the 21st Century. Many believe the Building Trades’ own internet assets, such as websites, Facebook, YouTube & Twitter, are advancing the message of unions. They are not. There is no structured inter & intra connection of our members. Our use to date is purely “social” & passive with some educational value.

Here is the link to the National Building Trades website if you go to this outdated page you will notice the Facebook and Twitter icons in the top right corner. If you click on the T for Twitter you may see this pix – this is NOT the official BT Twitter account, I made it pretty obvious as you can see. The handle then used by the Building Trades President which was @BCTDPrez was uncovered which simply means that it was not kept by the IT people at the Building Trades and the link to Twitter killed. So I acquired the Twitter handle since it was free and made a few Tweets to demonstrate that. It still appears on the National Building Trades page because they did not kill the link. That was back in early September. Perhaps they will figure it out after today’s Blog is posted!?! The pix in the above link was taken Sunday the 20th of December. Will be happy to give you the handle back Brother Sean if you want it. You may want to consider killing the link to the BT’s site and perhaps someone should look at it on occasion between power lunches in DC. This and many other examples demonstrates what the level of competent use of the social media and internet tools that the entire Building Trades has. Also it you click on the F for Facebook, that link has been dead forever. When the Building Trades sent out the APP for the National Building Trades Conference in DC they provided instructions on how to go to the APP store and download it – all they had to do was put a link to it on the announcement. The list is endless in how irrelevant the trades are to everyone in North America, less so in Canada. By the time some of you read this, it “MAY” be down for some of you because perhaps this blog will move someone to take care of this while being paid 6 figures.

At the other end of the spectrum are the great videos produced by the IBEW, here is a link for that site there are videos on all sorts of great info including community service and disaster relief performed by the IBEW. So what’s the issue there great! The issue is in our opinion is  why isn’t this link to these great videos sent out via a mass text to the approx. 670,000 members? Should it be shared even once that would be a powerful message to millions of people showing the great things the IBEW and the trades do that no money can buy? And that’s only the beginning of what an interconnected membership can do in this day and age.

A mass texting program combined with a mass email and APP would be a powerhouse platform to drive engagement at the membership level, the community, our apprenticeships and training, and the political universe changes rapidly if we engage and use our combined leverage, and we can become a sales engine for union contractors and a powerful tool to recruit contractors especially in the residential and service markets. Here is a quick video summary from Leading Labor on just a glimpse of the powder keg of potential power we all have if our leaders drive it!

In the next couple of blogs we will develop the use of technology in several ways. Contractors Marketing Programs (unions as a sales engine vs. the failed Value on Display strategy now employed. Cyber Organizing, which is bottom-up 21st century style. Twitter for political power and getting rid of vendors who have provided worse in class services. This is very measurable and we have hundreds of sites to attest to it. Taking checks for old and usually outdated technology. Virtually no one in attendance to our training, which is in excess of 380 unions has ever heard of basic terms that most vendors in the space would speak to. An example is Google Analytics and providing websites in a content management platforms. Just because some vendors are union doesn’t mean they can underperform magnificently.

Perhaps at the next Annual Building Trades meetings in DC, in addition to a parade of politicians paying lip service to us, if they even show up, we’ll see a structured plan to Organize and connect our members and Great Unions in order to get back in the game in the shortest and most measurable way available!

Raw power and leverage for both political and organizing/marketing literally sits in our hands waiting for even one leader to unlock it. Like now! All the tools needed to do it exist right now and on the cheap, no need to spend big $$$. Need a leader and a will to do it!

“if you see a good fight – get in it”


Danny L Caliendo


Labor Rising/Labor Combat


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