Has job recruitment become harder after the recession?
What business leaders are looking for in their managers is that they need to be very effective at what they do, have broad skills in various areas, in terms of negotiation, communication, customer service.
So in essence, to have the qualities that they can hit the ground running because there is very little time to be able to do anything. If you want to have a competitive edge you have to have people who are very effective at what they do.
So I think organisations are seeing the benefits of hiring the right people at the beginning and then of course giving them the tools and the necessary skills to be able to effectively do their job.
One of the things that we are very keen on is matching people to jobs, that is making sure that you have the right people for the right jobs and they are on the right buses, so to speak. So we place a lot of emphasis on that and we are seeing more effective managers being produced.
My personal experience has been that companies have recognised the importance of hiring the right people so they have not cut back on that. In terms of training, I think that we are seeing a lot of business leaders recognising the importance of training their people and having them develop to the point where they could be very effective at what they do. At the end of the day, the right people in the right slots would produce the kind of revenues, or reduction of costs, in certain areas that typically they may not have been able to benefit from in the past.
So I think that people are recognising that ‘if I invest a dollar today in my people I may get back ten dollars over the next three to five years, so I think that’s the thinking among business leaders today, that they are recognising that they need to invest in their people, what they call the most important asset, and they will get the return as time goes on.
We are looking at introducing a sales training programme because we think that’s something that is needed in Barbados as well. We are not a sales oriented society and we have found this to be the case from our recruitment, where we can’t find good quality sales people on our database. We recognise that if we can provide support through training of persons who have that potential we feel that perhaps we can create and develop a pool of good sales people that will be able to compete globally.
This is something typically that we have seen over the years. Anytime we go on our recruitment database to look for sales people it has always been a struggle. We have found some improvement over time but generally speaking we would like to have a larger pool to draw from. I think typically the way how we are structured in tertiary education that sales is not seen as a profession, and I think that’s one of the concerns that we have recognised.
Peter Downes is chief executive officer of Profiles Caribbean Inc.
We are seeing a lot of business leaders recognising the importance of training their people and having them develop to the point where they could be very effective at what they do.”