The first in a series of seminars on productivity for staff at the National Housing Corporation (NHC) got under way Wednesday, with Housing Minister Denis Kellman acknowledging that the NHC understood the importance of embracing concepts and attitudes of productivity and would continue to do so.
Speaking at the Baobab Tower, where the nine seminars will be held this month and next month, Kellman said: “The National Housing Corporation has a long history of pride and industry, diligently providing housing solutions for those who need them. It is a history of employees understanding the value of hard work and understanding the importance of the service that they provide.
“Despite the NHC’s proud and industrious origin, it would be remiss of us to become complacent and believe that we need not to improve. This is why training seminars on best practices, as part of our employee development, are very critical as we move forward in a particular strategic direction.”
The participants, a mix of managers, supervisors and line staff, were urged to use the information gained from the seminars to formulate creative solutions. They were also reminded that the NHC’s future was not only in the hands of Government, but theirs as well.
The Housing Minister also commended the Productivity Council for facilitating the seminars and for its “good work” with respect to the National Year of Productivity – 2017. Calling it “an auspicious initiative”, Kellman said it would sensitize Barbadians to the concepts of productivity and encourage the integration of those concepts, not only in business but in their daily lives as well.
Executive Director of the Council, John Pilgrim, noting that the series was part of a wider public sector outreach, stressed his agency aimed to get all public sector departments involved in the productivity improvement programme and process across that sector.
“One of the challenges that we face and many other countries across the world face, is how do we improve productivity, especially within the public sector, and bearing in mind that the public sector creates the environment within which the private sector operates. Often, we hear the private sector complain about things that should be done faster, the level of effectiveness and quality of service delivery,” he said.
Pilgrim explained that the aim of the NHC seminars was to create a greater sense of awareness, among participants, about the importance and benefits of productivity. Acknowledging it was “a simple concept but a complex process”, he added that it involved many different facets designed to improve organizational productivity, including technology, system, work method and people productivity.
“Our challenge and our mandate, really, is to see how best we can improve people’s productivity – the productivity of the employees in the organization,” he said.