Goodbyes, especially when they will result in distance between the departing and genuine loved ones, are never easy — and today presents one such occasion.
Today, I crave the indulgence of readers as I shift from the normal, expected and accepted stance of writing Editorials devoid of a personal character, to offering this piece in “the first person”.
Today, Friday, September 13, 2013 is my last day as Chief Executive Officer of a company, and Editor in Chief of a publication that was conceptualised by me on the campus of the University of Maryland at College Park, just outside the United States capital in 2006 and designed in my living room here in Barbados.
It is not easy to say goodbye to your baby, but we live in a most dynamic world where at times we must make decisions that were not part of our original thinking, but which nonetheless reflect the vagaries of where we are at the particular time.
So as I leave Warrens and return to Fontabelle, I wish to take this opportunity to assure the extended Barbados TODAY family that I leave behind a team that understands the philosophy that guided the start up of the company, most of whom were there from the beginning moulding and growing with the publication.
I leave with the fullest confidence and greatest of respect for the person who has been my right hand from January 2010, Donna Sealy — a journalist of the highest character, whose strength as an administrator has grown tremendously.
She remains a key member of a team of “originals” that includes Shawn Cumberbatch, Latoya Burnham and Kamilah Cadogan, supported by veteran journalists Emmanuel Joseph, Wade Gibbons and Neville Clarke — and more recent additions, Kimberley Cummins, Jamelia Benskin and Kimberley Browne, who more than make up for their limited experience with immense drive, creativity and dedication to duty.
But our “team” for almost four years has not just been those who operate from Warrens, because our daily offering has included quality articles from a variety of writers who have done Barbados TODAY proud and who will continue to educate, inform and entertain you.
I depart, therefore, knowing that there is in place a lean, mean editorial machine with a capacity and desire to be a significant part of the Barbadian landscape for many years to come.
After almost four years with a business model that derives its revenue almost entirely from advertising sales, I could not say goodbye without saying thanks to those who have supported us throughout.
Our team of sales advisors, Cheril Marshall-Morris, Sandra Moore, David Williams, and Lisa Legall-Belgrave, currently led by IT guru Ted Taylor remains, in place and dedicated to offering the highest quality service. I salute you all for standing by me since the beginning of 2010.
The last four years have been without doubt, the hardest I have ever worked, but they have also been the most rewarding. They have been a testimony to the value of team-work. They have shown that respect for the opinions, abilities and desires of others at times can take you much further than “the dollar”.
They have emphasised to me that many of the old workplace practices should by interred in one of our cemeteries; that as employers we lose out significantly when we try to separate workers from the things that drive their families; that working smart speaks more to results and employee comfort, than “lording” over someone because you sign their pay cheque; and, that trust is everything.
Oh, and that being wrong is not the biggest sin when you are in charge, but being too “big” to admit it.
As I embark on a new voyage, I wish you all well, the in-house team, the extended family of contributors and advertisers and of course you, our readers.