School leavers seen as negative performersNISE chief executive officer Kim Tudor. (FP)
By Marlon Madden | Fri, November 09, 2012 - 12:01 AM
Barbadian employers are generally not satisfied with the level of performance of secondary school leavers entering entry-level jobs.
Human resource practitioners from a cross-section of the workforce have identified a number of common inadequacies and bad habits that have resulted in their labelling school leavers as “negative performers”.
This is according to a National Initiative for Service Excellence (NISE) survey carried out in 2006, Evaluation Of The Readiness Of School Leavers For Entry To The World Of Work.
It also identified what employers were looking for in school leavers.
BARBADOS BUSINESS AUTHORITY obtained a copy of the survey, which showed that 64 per cent of human resources personnel indicated that school leavers were generally not equipped with the work skills and abilities to perform entry-level jobs, 21 per cent said they were prepared, while 14 per cent did not give a response.
Eighty-six per cent of human resource professionals felt that the secondary school curriculum needed to include work-related training, while 14 per cent did not.
Fifty-seven per cent of respondents said they were dissatisfied with school leavers’ handling of time on the job while only seven per cent said they were satisfied. The other 36 per cent were neutral.
Sixty-two per cent said they were not satisfied with their listening skills and only seven per cent were satisfied with their writing skills, 29 per cent dissatisfied and 14 per cent very dissatisfied.
The research also showed that 71 per cent of human resources professionals said they hired secondary school leavers while 29 per cent admitted to not hiring them. The main reasons for not hiring the young people: lack of experience and no vacancies.
NISE chief executive officer Kim Tudor presented the findings or the first time during the official launch of Republic Bank (Barbados) Limited’s Youth Link Apprenticeship programme, at the Grand Salle of the Tom Adams Financial Centre Wednesday night.
She said employers identified low self-esteem, lack of discipline, poor work ethic and listening skills, unrealistic expectations, lack of pride in work and interest in their job, and inability to effectively communicate among the deficiencies in many of the island’s secondary school leavers entering the world of work.
“Negative performers are content to [stay] at the level at which they started.
“People who do not grow and develop any further, those are what we call negative performers.
“Other areas included owning responsibility for your own task, giving up in the face of obstacles, and not demonstrating a sense of perseverance,” she said.
“Employers don’t like to see people who give up – they also don’t like to see people [with] a narrow focus,” added Tudor.
She advised the group of young people involved in the bank’s programme to “desist” from those things and refrain from giving anyone the opportunity to label them as negative performers, adding that they had choices and should make positive ones. (MM)
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