What Is Work Ethic?

So what do we mean by work ethic? You might think of it as the willingness to be a self-starter and get the job done. But there is a deeper meaning, one that encompasses our philosophy here at The Center for Work Ethic Development. We look at work ethic not as a single trait, but as a set of seven skills – sometimes called soft skills, work readiness or portable job skills.

The term “soft skills” is so vague, so instead we focus on just Work Ethic – the foundational workplace skills that are the building blocks for success in every job. These seven skills have been identified through our research and validated by the competency models developed by the U.S. Department of Labor.

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At The Center for Work Ethic Development, we work hard to make sure that our mission, vision, and values are part of our every day decision-making, operations, and customer service.

The overarching themes of our work are integrity and positivity. Everything we do builds from these traits.

Our Curriculum: Bring Your ‘A’ Game – Online and Instructor-Led

This is the fundamental premise of the work of The Center for Work Ethic Development. Rather than rely on short-term incentives, the key to sustained improvement is to build foundational skills, and the values that support them. Our research has found the most effective way to develop these building blocks no matter if you are 16 or 60. These are also the values and skills that drive our business results at The Center for Work Ethic Development.

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Our Team

josh davies

Josh Davies
Chief Executive Officer

Josh Davies is passionate about helping others make a difference in their lives, jobs, and community. Through his work as a speaker and trainer, he has engaged and encouraged professionals across North America, the Middle East, and Asia.

  • 2022 Outstanding Leaders by Education 2.0
  • HG Weisman Award
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Chris Carman
National Accounts Mgr.

Chris Carman has spent his career serving others through education and workforce development. He has over fifteen years of experience administering State-level programs including Workforce Investment and Opportunity Act, Layoff Transition Programs, Business Services, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programs Employment & Training.


Sarah Browning
Operations Manager

Sarah comes to The Center for Work Ethic Development with a background in state government and nonprofit work. She graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a bachelor’s degree in history of public policy, and completed her master’s degree in public administration at the University of Colorado Denver.


Eric Chester

Since 1998, Eric Chester has been the leading voice in attracting, managing, motivating, and retaining the emerging workforce. He’s a former high school career and tech-ed instructor who became a motivational speaker for more than a thousand high school and colleges in the 80’s and 90’s. It is there that he witnessed the declining emphasis placed on preparing students with essential work ethic values and soft skills.

Canine Resource Team

We are a dog-friendly office, and as such we rely heavily on input from our “canine resource team.” They are always willing to greet new people and offer themselves for pets and treats.

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Lily – The matriarch of the Canine Resource Team is Lily. She is a ten-year-old tri-color Corgi mix who found her forever home during the quarantine of 2020. She is a very relaxed and loving dog that spends most of her time in the office either sleeping or requesting belly rubs. Her hobbies outside of work include chasing squirrels, long walks in the park, and of course, begging for treats. The bringer of calm and sanity to the office, Lily resides with Josh and Lara when she isn’t ensuring that humans bring their ‘A’ Game every day.

Wilma – While very cute along with our other furry colleagues, is not the most productive member of our K-9 team. She is terribly inconsiderate of personal space and persistent about sleeping in her dad’s lap- during the workday, no less. She has a total disregard for the importance of typing and is quick to judge if her human attempts to move her, for any reason. And don’t let her big ears give the wrong impression, she rarely listens during meetings and is an economy of words when asked her opinion on important business matters. It is often brought up on her performance evaluations that she shows a total lack of understanding for the 7 workplace skills, but her philosophy is Bring Your ‘Cute’ Game, which apparently is working. Further, she does rely on her “rescue” status to pull heart strings and it seems to work swimmingly. What she lacks in productivity, she makes up for in sweetness and is a total joy to have around.

Penny & Rocky – Penny (left) and Rocky (right) support the team remotely from Texas.  Both are Miniature Australian Shepherds, and both are still in the puppy phase. Rocky loves to be groomed and bossing his sister around.  He is his human’s best friend.  Penny is into long walks and getting dirty.  If there is water to splash in, she is in it!