For Oklahoma City to indeed serve as a hub for innovation, both high-quality training and attractive jobs must exist. This scenario requires skill development among professionals as well as investment from organizations in the local community. But how do qualified tech specialists discover the opportunities? And how do companies build the teams they need using local individuals? Lucas Watson, a partner at StarSpace46, is helping lead the way throughout all stages of the OKC business ecosystem.
Lucas Watson is the Division Director of Permanent Placement for Robert Half Technology. He manages a team of direct hire IT recruiters, connecting people with full-time jobs in areas such as software development and the entire technology space. “I like helping companies build great teams and helping the great people in OKC find new jobs,” Lucas said. He loves to see candidates “get raises and move up in their careers. I’ve been here for more than seven years, and I love my day job!”
Because of his recruitment experience, he’s well acquainted with the needs of local companies, and the skills of the central Oklahoma workforce. Having studied commerce and enterprise at the University of Oklahoma adds to his ability to analyze the landscape and use his unique perspective to help develop the community. As a StarSpace46 partner, he bridges the gap between education, incubation, new ideas, and established business institutions. “I love helping people and raising the profile of OKC and the great companies here,” Lucas affirmed.
He also serves on the Board of Directors for Techlahoma, a network of more than 4,000 IT enthusiasts. The organization develops programs and training on the skills needed to succeed in today's increasingly tech-focused workforce. The training facilitated by Techlahoma programming keeps professionals on the leading edge of the career landscape, and ready to fulfill the needs of the growing local tech industry. Lucas explained that “The impact of Techlahoma and SS46 has been enormous – the community that’s grown around those two organizations is incredible and actually gets things done.”
A part of StarSpace46 since the beginning, Lucas connected with the coworking space just as the previous incarnation, The 404, was expanding. “It made sense for a group of partners from Techlahoma and the local tech scene to build and open a new, larger co-working space with room for Techlahoma to hold meetups and be kind of a landing spot for the OKC tech/entrepreneurship community. I had the opportunity to be part of the team that would build SS46, and I was excited to jump in!” he said.
The dream of SS46 being OKC’s hub for innovation and entrepreneurship is a big part of what motivates him. “I’m passionate about bringing new people and organizations into SS46 to see what a great community we have and how they can join and grow as part of that community. There are so many great collaborations cooking because of introductions and random collisions at SS46. I can’t wait to see what other great companies and endeavors come next!”