Growth strat­egy 101

... Find miss­ing link be­tween busi­ness train­ing and so­ci­ety’s needs

Jamaica Gleaner - - GROWTH & JOBS - Jodi-Ann Gilpin Gleaner Writer jodi-ann.gilpin@glean­erjm.com

AMISSING link be­tween how stu­dents are trained in busi­ness and what the so­ci­ety needs is an is­sue that Dr Charles Dou­glas, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer at the Ja­maica Pro­duc­tiv­ity Cen­tre, be­lieves must be ad­dressed if the coun­try is to see more growth and de­vel­op­ment in the econ­omy.

In an in­ter­view with The Gleaner, Dou­glas made ref­er­ence to a pro­gramme that his or­gan­i­sa­tion has em­barked on in sec­ondary schools, with the aim of in­cul­cat­ing a cul­ture of pro­duc­tiv­ity within the so­ci­ety. He also stressed that a crit­i­cal fac­tor in go­ing for­ward has to see uni­ver­si­ties and busi­nesses en­gag­ing in more part­ner­ships, not­ing that ed­u­ca­tion is the glue that will en­hance the success of any busi­ness.

“I be­lieve that we re­ally need a par­a­digm shift in our ed­u­ca­tion. We need to pro­duce peo­ple who want to cre­ate, make and pro­duce things – the link be­tween what the real world needs and what the uni­ver­si­ties and high schools are pro­duc­ing, I have some ques­tions about it. We have to re­think what it is that the so­ci­ety needs, the kind of the worker the so­ci­ety needs and the kind of worker the so­ci­ety is pro­duc­ing,” he said.

“I think the hands-on ap­proach is im­por­tant as well as the crit­i­cal think­ing

and the prob­lem-solv­ing skills. Also, at the univer­sity level and at the grad­u­ate level, as a prod­uct of an over­seas univer­sity, I find that the uni­ver­si­ties and the busi­nesses in Ja­maica are not work­ing closely enough. In the [United] States, for ex­am­ple, [in the event that] a com­pany is faced with a prob­lem – whether it be a tech­nol­ogy prob­lem, a re­search prob­lem; they take

it to a univer­sity and the univer­sity then comes up with a solution,” he said.

He shared that based on in­ter­ac­tions they have had with some sec­ondaryschool stu­dents, there is still a cul­ture shift that is needed for young peo­ple to suc­ceed in busi­ness.

“I think we need to get the mes­sage out there that pro­duc­tiv­ity is ben­e­fi­cial to ev­ery sin­gle per­son. Peo­ple tend to

think that it’s just about a par­tic­u­lar com­pany, but it’s about ev­ery­body. We have a pro­gramme for pro­duc­tiv­ity as part of the pub­lic ed­u­ca­tion cam­paign, in ed­u­ca­tion in­sti­tu­tions. We fo­cus a lot on the sec­ondary schools and the first re­sponse in most cases at the sec­ondary level is, ‘that’s more rel­e­vant for my par­ents’,” he said.

“Even here we have a tech­ni­cal as­sis­tance ser­vice unit. So when firms in­vite us to their busi­nesses, we go into

their or­gan­i­sa­tions and we will do an au­dit which will sug­gest rec­om­men­da­tions. I find that for some rea­son, we don’t do enough in terms of part­ner­ships to get im­ple­men­ta­tion. We have some success sto­ries where that has happened, but I be­lieve we have to mul­ti­ply those sto­ries very rapidly. That’s go­ing to be one of ours go­ing for­ward,” he told The Gleaner.

FILE PHO­TOS

Grad­u­ates of the Univer­sity of the West In­dies, Mona, dur­ing the 2012 grad­u­a­tion cer­e­mony.

A sec­tion of UTech’s grad­u­at­ing class in 2009.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Jamaica

© PressReader. All rights reserved.