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May Day 2018 - One With A Difference
Wednesday, 31 January 2018 09:43

Plans are afoot to make the May Day 2018 season one with a difference.

Yes! We will have our May Day street parade. Yes! We will have our May Day speeches and entertainment at Brown’s Beach, God willing, but we will add to those traditional events by organising a number of educational programmes which are designed to drive our economy. And we believe that May Day, being the workers’ day, provides an excellent opportunity to add to how we have been observing May Day in the past.

May Day is more than speechifying, fun and frolic; May Day is a time for serious reflection as to where we are as a people, where we want to go – and it is our hope that we, as a nation, would put aside the sectoral divisiveness and other partitions and use this year to drive Barbados forward.

So, during the five-month span of the forthcoming May Day season, beginning in March, the Barbados Workers’ Union, in conjunction with the Productivity Council, will be inviting the other social partners to team up with us to give substance to what the two organisations have conceptualised as a productivity improvement thrust. The intent of the productivity improvement thrust is to restart and reenergise national interest and emphasis on productivity in Barbados, especially among the key stakeholder drivers of the local economy - employers and workers.

The productivity improvement thrust is a progression of the work started in the year 2017 which was designated as “The Year of Productivity” under the theme – “A Productive People: a Productive Nation”. The theme which resonated with workers and employers implied that if people are productive, the nation will be productive. The theme was a call to action and was also a reminder that this pursuit of national excellence and future prosperity begins with individuals, and then as a collective, a community, a people.

It is our belief that if we are to have a productive people and a productive nation, several critical initiatives and actions must take place at different levels and phases including the following:

(a) igniting a basic awareness and understanding of workplace productivity to all players in the business environment and wider society;

(b) enhancing core competencies in productivity measurement, assessment and improvement in core individual players in existing and prospective leadership positions in organisations ; and

(c) designing, disseminating and applying productivity best practices (across measurement, assessment and improvement phases) throughout the key economic/industrial sectors including the government and private sectors

The specific initiatives that will be undertaken during the five-month period March to July 2018 will revolve around the following three pillars that are the core of any productivity improvement thrust. These pillars are –

a) productivity awareness,

b) productivity education; and

c) productivity best practices.

The core objectives of the exercise are to:

· build and sustain a deeper awareness of productivity, its guiding principles and relevance to individuals, businesses and the national economy – this will be done through programmes on productivity awareness;

· provide the necessary core competencies in productive improvement through practical training and educational workshops/seminars and educational opportunities to drive action among key players in leadership/management – this will be done through productivity education; and

· develop, adopt and apply a range of sustainable and workplace-friendly productivity best practices within organisations to promote positive change in their existing cultures, systems and operations to foster and sustain competitiveness, growth and success – this will be done through productivity best practices.

During the five-month period, these core objectives will be pursued, based on a range of planned initiatives, workshops/seminars and promotional events.

A number of partners and stakeholders from the various economic sectors and industries will be co-opted to actively participate in the planning, design and implementation of this thrust and its associated activities.

Among the outcomes which we anticipate will be achieved at the end of this period are:

- improved collaborative relationships and partnerships among the social partners, businesses and the wider public;

- sustained drive and thrust towards the application and evaluation of key productivity best practices across key industrial economic sectors in the country

- enhanced national and sectoral awareness of productivity and its relevance on an individual organisational and national scale;

- improved education and competencies in productivity improvement strategies and initiatives; and

- reenergised focus of managers and supervisors regarding the promotion .and the sustaining of productivity in the workplace


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