Category: Current Affairs
Published on Thursday, 23 June 2016 00:00
Written by Shawn Danker
The following is a conversation overheard at a coffee shop. The names have been changed to protect the conversationalists identity but here's the gist of their conversation.
Lup Cheong: Eh Johnny, Did you hear about what Tharman said the other day?
Johnny: What? You have to be more specific Bro. These days it feels like anything MIW says will set you off...
Lup Cheong: He said "there is less hunger" among the younger Singaporeans compared with 20 years ago...
Johnny: Eh that can mean that we're a nation of well fed people le.
Lup Cheong: No la there's more.
He also said "Something is changing in our new generation. Fewer believe in learning the ropes, taking time to develop skills on the job and working their way up".
Johnny: That seems to go in line with what you've recently been complaining about.
Lup Cheong: What do you mean? Since when did I complain about young people?
Johnny: Hello, just the other day you were complaining about the fresh grads you were interviewing for your company.
(Imitating Lup Cheong) "Wa these young uns haven't even started working yet and want to talk about Work Life balance!? Do they even know what that means?! I bet you it means come to office late and leave early or on the dot at 6?! Dun want to work late but expect to have career advancement!!! Why should I think about promoting you when you're telling me right off the bat you're not going to work hard for me?!"
Does that sound familiar to you Lup Cheong?
Lup Cheong: Errr...I don't talk like that! Anyway don't you agree with me that young people today aren't as hungry as us? No initiative or experience or willingness to work late but want to be managers...
Johnny: Eh, it goes two ways. Good bosses should know how to motivate their staff as well. You can't always expect your employee to always come up with the ideas and implementation. That's probably why you can't hold onto talent. Your employees slowly realized that they're more capable than you and decided they're better off working for themselves. I won't be surprised if your employees see you as an incapable manager who was promoted because he's been with the company for a long time. If you want to retain
your employees, be worth staying for. Give your staff a reason to be loyal to you, not just demand it out of them because you're signing their pay cheques. Bro, don't forget. Times have changed. Just because an employee doesn't stay to do overtime all the time doesn't mean they're lazy. You should be looking at whether they deliver the results you're looking for, not the number of hours they spend in the office.
Lup Cheong: ...
Johnny: I'll also remind you that Tharman also said the following at the same event you're quoting from:
"How many (employees) feel that they matter individually, each man and woman, to the enterprise and organisation? Why is employee motivation relatively low in Singapore?
We must spend time to develop our people, individually, and give everyone a sense of opportunity if they work hard in careers, no matter where they start from.
"We must also develop a less hierarchical culture, one that empowers every individual and helps them see how their ideas, their experiments and their efforts to do the job well contribute to the whole enterprise."
Don't his comments as a whole provide you with something to ponder?