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ang moh boss writes about singaporean employees

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2012, 10:44 AM
Join Date: Mar 2011
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warning can only hope to improve
Default ang moh boss writes about singaporean employees

Singapore and jobs: It's a game of two halves

Singapore’s full employment is a source of pride but it is also the source of many of the problems employers have.

Singaporean employees have all the power and they know it. There is a lack of commitment which has a negative effect on a company’s long term planning. Length of employment is short and a promiscuous attitude from employees pervades. This comes through in the enormous number of sick days taken (almost to the degree that it is an unwritten rule that sick days are really just holidays with an MC) lack of drive, responsibility taking, lateral thinking and desire to go above and beyond the call of duty. Why do too much when you won’t be in the job that long?

I have heard many examples of Singaporean’s accepting a job and then either taking another better job even after signing a contract for the first job or just deciding not to turn up to the new job or accepting several offers all at the same time, thus letting down several expectant employers. It’s their playground and they’re going to play in it.

Singaporean’s generally live at home into their thirties or even forties. This allows them to have no financial concerns when it comes to a job. If they lose one or decide to leave to pursue another one without having a job to go to they know that they won’t lose their home as all their bills are covered by their parents. Money is then less of a motivating factor to committing to a job. Hunger is lacking.

A Managing Director of a large multinational once told me that in interviews he would always ask how much debt a person had as he believed that it made them more focused, committed and hard working. They had to worry about paying it off or keeping up prepayments on a house mortgage and therefore were going to be serious about delivering; going above and beyond what was needed and would do everything they could to achieve goals to generate an increase in salary and bonuses. This doesn’t seem to be a factor amongst Singaporeans and that comes through in a lack of ambition to succeed within their roles.

When they are in the job there is a lack of responsibility taking and lack of creative thinking. Is this the education system or just the attitude? Is this because there is a lack of risk taking in case it goes wrong and it’s better to play safe? Ironically you would expect Singaporean’s to actually be braver and take greater risks and think more laterally. They have the safety net of knowing that if it all goes wrong and they lose their job they still have their home living with their parents and minimal debts. Many other people around the world don’t have that plan B. If they take a risk and it doesn’t work out and they get fired or the company goes under they know that it will have a detrimental effect on their home, lifestyle and wellbeing. Yet they still take the risk. Why don’t Singaporeans?

Singapore’s country football team is facing calls from inside and outside of the game to be taken apart and abandoned such is the state of the national team but is it more to do with the same risk free, safety net lack of commitment factor? Contrast that with Barcelona. Barcelona is no bigger than Singapore with an immediate population of 1.4 million and even in Greater Barcelona it is only 4 million, less than Singapore’s 5 million. The bedrock of its success has been its ability to produce top players through La Masía, its in-house training academy. All three finalists for this year’s Fifa’s 2010 world’s player of the year are graduates of the academy and the winner, Lionel Messi, won for the second successive year. Barcelona takes a holistic approach.

La Masía has been home to more than 500 players over three decades, as both a training academy and boarding house. The original aim of the school was to develop successful football players. It sought out players who were talented, but also had the drive to win and the ability to work as part of a team. That is key. Personal development and athletic performance are made inseparable in the lives of young players.

Contrast that with the Singaporean players where instead of going to a boarding house at the age of 12, (as many current Barcelona players did), they are still living at home with mum and dad in their late 20’s and thirties. Instead of coming from relative poverty in Argentina in Messi’s case or Catalan in most other cases the Singaporean players have the comfort of knowing that if it doesn’t work out as a footballer they will be able to find a job very easily in the full employment world that is Singapore. This fall back plan B psychologically tempers desire, determination and ambition. It’s not all or nothing. It also means that they will always look after themselves rather than think of the team. Spain has 20% unemployment. If Singapore had that, would Singaporean’s go that extra mile, take that risk that would lead to greater security and rewards, remain in their jobs for longer and succeed to greater heights? Of course the society wouldn’t be as content and happy…you can’t have it all!

A recent survey showed that 40% of Singaporean’s would change job this year. They will because they know that they can. From an employer point of view this attitude limits creativity, lateral thinking and drive which in turn limit a company’s ability to compete. It’s one of the reasons that one million foreigners have been employed in Singapore in the past decade and its one of the reasons that holds back Singapore from realizing the amazing potential that the country has.

Chris Reed is the Regional Partnerships Director (Asia) of Partnership Marketing

Singapore and jobs: It's a game of two halves | Singapore Business Review

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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2012, 01:06 PM
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Chris J Reed | LinkedIn

he is no position to judge since he job hops often too.

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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 06-03-2012, 01:17 PM
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miwashi is on a distinguished road

if you are in a dead end job with no prospects, why would you want to stay and waste all your potential?

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Old 06-03-2012, 03:57 PM
Join Date: Mar 2011
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warning can only hope to improve

Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
Chris J Reed | LinkedIn

he is no position to judge since he job hops often too.
11 jobs in 20 years
4 months in his first job in singapore
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:21 PM
Monery is never enough
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Originally Posted by warning View Post
11 jobs in 20 years
4 months in his first job in singapore

after 7.5 yrs, I'm still in my first job with a top MNC. By the time I finish my 2-yr bond with the company, it would be my 10th yr. hahaha... I'm starting to worry how to write my CV. There is just too much to write about for a 10 year career in the same company. It's not that i'm loyal to this company. There is simply too much to learn before I embark on my next phase.
But I do agree with this ang mo's general perception of us. I have interviewed and worked with too many local grads who bragged and promised they are capable of plucking the stars from the skies during interviews. But in most cases, less than 2 yrs, they would jump for a few hundred bucks extra. Over 90% of times, chaps < 30-yr old would not have seriously considered what exactly they want to achieve in their career, less to say, in their lives. They would hop around demanding higher pay before considering their exact worth.
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Old 06-03-2012, 04:26 PM
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Bean is on a distinguished road

the ang mo never serve NS, thus not relevant to judge us!!

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