Crop-Over 2012 has now come to its inevitable end. While it was a time of enjoyment, fun and frolic for the average Barbadian and visitors to the island, it was a period of long hours of hard work for those who in numerous ways, were directly involved in the activities of the festival.
All these persons are to be deserve to be complimented on their efforts. Special kudos is extended to the calypsonians and musicians who would have worked tirelessly during the festival. The work of the technical teams, namely the sound engineers, lighting and stage management crews is also to be acknowledged.
It is a reasonable assumption that most participants in the festival are simply concerned with having a nice time. On the other hand, the calypsonian as an entertainer, sees it as long hours at work. The calypsonians concern themselves with satisfying the many patrons attending the various events, as their quality performance each and every time increases the chances of the bookings that they can get for work, both during and after the season has ended. For them it is about maintaining high standards.
With each appearance, the calypsonian is undoubtedly conscious that he/she is subjected to reviews by patrons, the mass media and through the social networks. There is no room for complacency, and therefore constantly seeking to please the paying patrons and being a model of consistency, are areas in which there can be no compromise.
In reflecting on what the calypsonian is subjected to, then the 2012 experience throws up a glaring example that every employee should want to emulate in any sphere of working life. Stedson Wiltshire, the Red Plastic Bag, the 2012 Calypso Monarch of Barbados, is to be hailed as both the calypso king, and a role model.
He brings to his craft a positive attitude. It is clear that he gives of his best efforts, as he seemingly enjoys what he does. This is supported by his comment in one of the daily newspapers: “So it’s about the work more than it would be about winning.”
This is a message that should not escape all workers. As a worker, you should love what you do. It is as a result of the energy and drive that you exert, the commitment, dedication, interest and enthusiasm that make work rewarding and productive. In short, give of your best and the rewards will come.
The Red Plastic Bag has not communicated this in a calypso, but the sentiments that he has echoed after capturing his tenth crown, are weighty and worthy of being committed to memory. To do this would certainly send a message that once again, he has delivered a message that has resonated with the people.
It is in the interest of Barbadian workers to emulate the many outstanding work qualities of the Red Plastic Bag. After, 30 years in the business of calypso, his work ethic is exemplary. As an entertainer, his professionalism is outstanding. His lyrics and music are of the highest quality, his dress and deportment are exceptional, and his commitment to the art form is unswerving. He is dignified in victory and gracious in defeat. To top it all off, he has established himself as a distinguished ambassador for his country.
A lot can be learnt from those who work in the field of entertainment, which employees across all sectors should come to appreciate, respect and emulate. Entertainers are often engaged on contract. Bad performances, unpunctuality, indiscipline, poor deportment, disrespect for paying patrons is never tolerated. Entertainers are therefore very aware that there is no such thing as a guaranteed pay day, should the aforementioned qualities be lacking.
Those who are employed on a full time basis, who believe that some things don’t matter, are simply living in a fool’s paradise. It may be a good time to awake from the dream and come to recognise that in today’s world, no employment is secured or guaranteed. It is therefore best not to leave anything for granted. It is advisable that workers give of their best at all times.
* Dennis De Peiza is a Labour Management Consultant with Regional Management Services Inc.
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