Employees are to be made aware that workforce readiness is more than just hard skills training. Apart from formal qualifications, employers are in the quest for workers who have soft skills; i.e. employees with good attitudes, regular attendance, sound character and are responsible and presentable. All these help define what we can deem as strong work ethics.
Many times, we see applicants for jobs enter the door of an organization to an interview and it’s an immediate wow! Very impressive, you almost want to hire them before doing the interview; their clothing and mannerisms are intact; however, as soon as they are hired and “get their feet wet” on the job, there is an immediate change in their behaviour and general attitude. Employees should know that making a good first impression and maintaining that impression throughout their employ is required throughout their tenure on the job.
If one was to take a walk through the doors of many of our business places and even government organizations, one would concur that many of these employees made their first impression at the interview and forgot that it was necessary to maintain that impression. At school, we wear uniforms and if in the opinion of administrators and teachers “we don’t wear that uniform well”, we are dealt with. Today, employers seem satisfied with and I dare say- may even sanction the unprofessional dress that many of their employees opt to wear to the workplace. Nothing irritates me more than when a young lady gets up from behind her desk to serve me and she drags a pairs of slippers to the counter.
I remember seeing at a well know business place last summer, one of the office staff having broken down the back of her shoe, dragging it around like a pair of slippers. I could only surmise then, that that organization had lowered its standards. One’s work ethic begins with one’s dress and unless business owners, managers, supervisors and employees are aware of that, the situation will worsen. The place of work is not one’s home, backyard, park or a party; therefore, the choice of dress for work should not reflect any of these environments.
Manner of dress has a direct impact on the type of service that one receives in a business place and also the type of atmosphere that is created by the employees. Often times, the staff has to be reminded of their poor attendance at work, their extreme tardiness, and their lack of time management. Employers want to know that an employee will show up on time for work as scheduled. They expect a fair day’s work for a fair day’s pay, and they don’t expect the time on the job to be taken up gossiping with friends on the phone or sending text messages to all and sundry.
Employers need to know that their customers are being served with the type of urgency and respect they should be served, as they are aware that the loss of even one customer as a result of poor service could be the beginning of a bad precedence. Employers appreciate those who demonstrate a sense of loyalty to the organization and employees who understand that the success and growth of a company can spell job security if performance is satisfactory.
Have you ever wondered why so many businesses do not yield maximum benefits from their employees? Have you ever wondered why so many young people cannot last in a decent position at some companies? It can be noticed, that even some of the highly qualified employees attitudes, leaves much to be desired as they give very little of themselves to the organizations; instead, they sit and complain daily. These energies, I believe, can be used in a positive way to the benefit of both themselves and the organization.
We are in an era of competition. These days, companies often get by with fewer staff doing more work, so being seen as someone with good work ethics can really help to distinguish you from others, especially during periods of downsizing or conversely, when it comes time for internal promotion. Nothing beats a good attitude, presentable attire, a thorough knowledge of one’s job, and the carrying out of one’s duties with a level of exuberance and pride. Professionalism in the workplace should be the aim of every manager, supervisor and employee.
This atmosphere does not exist in many Dominican business places and attention should be given to this area – be it through education of staff or modelling of behaviour. Private and public employers in Dominica can only be better served if they challenge their employees to develop work ethics that would not only lead to company growth, but would translate to job security and overall personal development.
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