First of all I should say thanks to Hilton manager Daniel van Wyk for hosting us in the 19th floor Skylounge, which gives you amazing views over the west of the city to go alongside an excellent meal.
The Cabinet Secretary is on a mission to explain. The first cohort of pupils to have been through at least some of their schooling under the Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) are due to begin entering university, college or a job later this year.
We are told as employers that we should expect to have a very different experience in our first meetings with our new young talent. Mr Russell is very keen that we should know more and that we should be ready in advance.
I remember earlier in the year consulting, alongside Stewart Farmer at the Federation of Small Business, a group of businesspeople running their own operations in Glasgow and who would describe themselves as members of the SME community.
We had asked what the most challenging issues were in running your own business in the current conditions. The answer was illuminating.
Yes, generating custom is tough right now - but if you have a good, well run business there are still plenty of opportunities. And yes there are always issues about dealing with large organisations, whether it happens to be complex procurement processes or slow bill payments.
But the issue that was the most strongly expressed was the difficulty a smaller business has in finding good young recruits. There was no shortage of scare stories; no shows at interview, unreasonable expectations of work content or the pervasive culture of smart phone usage on the job. Generally there was disappointment at the work readiness of too many young people.
The Cabinet Secretary appreciates the challenge. Just recently Skills Development Scotland launched a new service called the Certificate of Work Readiness offering support to employers and to new young employees involving 10 weeks of training, a minimum of 190 hours of work experience and a recognised qualification for the trainee.
But the more fundamental change is expected to come from the Curriculum for Excellence. It's been operating only since 2010, so pupils leaving school this year will obviously not have had the full impact - but Mr Russell was confident we would notice the difference.
He highlighted the response from the University of Glasgow explaining how they would handle CfE through revised admissions policy as an excellent example of a reaction to what is coming.
It was clear though that the understanding of the impact amongst the business community was patchy to say the least. However some are trying to help that understanding.
Tricia Rainey, chair of the Glasgow Employer Board, offered to make the work of its Youth Employment Advisory Group available to the Scottish Government - an offer that was warmly accepted. And we at the Chamber are already working with Glasgow City Council to explore how we increase the depth and quality of relationships which schools have with individual businesses.
In the meantime though you have an opportunity to hear direct from the Cabinet Secretary just what CfE involves. We are holding a meeting with him, free to all members, on June 6. Please look out for the details shortly.
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