Staying After Office Hours!

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For Wednesday – November 13th 2013.

Between Us Only!

Staying After Office Hours! 

  • Family is the most important thing in the world! – Late Princess Diana
  • A man should never neglect his family for business! –      Walt Disney
  • Family is not an important thing! – it is everything – Michael J.      Fox

A long time ago – a good friend sent me this below – Speech by Brian Dyson – CEO Coca Cola – Imagine life as a game in which you are juggling some five balls in the air. You name them – work, family, health, friends and spirit … and you’re keeping all of these in the air. You will soon understand that work is a rubber ball. If you drop it, it will bounce back. But the other four balls – family, health, friends and spirit – are made of glass. If you drop one of these, they will be irrevocably scuffed, marked, nicked, damaged or even shattered. They will never be the same. You must understand that and strive for Balance in your life.

Family 2Family 1

Images – Family – For Demonstration Purposes Only!

Some years back – I was working in HR for this new Chinese company investing here and as usual by everyone – and them included – they do not have trust and confidence in local expertise and talents. So they brought their own HR person from home – only they gave him a different job title as at that time HR jobs were reserved only for Omanis – and laws were being monitored to ensure this.

You would imagine with such a situation there would be a natural clash with the local HR guy – even if it was not me! The person tried his level best to marginalise and belittle me in the eyes of his bosses – more his jealous and envious streak when they bought a new car for me – but he had to use Company car – as anyway he could not be allowed to drive! Anyway – it ended in me losing out – because of many things – and my own characteristics and personalities could just not go on.

Family A

Images – Family – For Demonstration Purposes Only!

It eventually led to my first Arab Management book – Psychology of Arab Management Thinking – which you may recall won The USA Literary Excellency Golden Seal Award for 2013 anyway! As we the Arabs say – from the stomach of evil came blessings – or the silver lining in the storm clouds!

The reason I am bringing this is to demonstrate live how deceptions, lies, acting and facade can push your career progression upwards very fast!. As the East Africans also say – wait for the person going up the ladder – he will soon come down! Because some time far later the man was exposed – but I cannot put the real reasons here – as it is politically explosive – but is in my book anyway! You will find it at www.myownmajid.com

Besides, I am not a good Actor or Pretender. I have no issues staying behind office hours if there is a real need or case to do so. In my Oil Company – in Emergencies – we could work till 3 a.m. – and 7 a.m. we were back at Office – and sometimes we just did not sleep!

This guy was very good in inventing artificial and unnecessary work to do in HR – just to show he is very busy and dedicated. With his Chinese bosses – they used to go home even at 10 p.m. – but they were Engineering Project people – so it was understandable. But he went along – to accompany and give them support per se! And here was I – a family man – in my own country – going home past 2 or 3 hours closing time – but that was still not enough for them! Even if they were all single contracts – and their families back home!

Years far back – a similar situation had developed when I took over a HR job in my then Oil Company – but here I was able to win – and because there was Real Omanisation support, adherence and taking place! The Expatriate Assistant looking after the job soon found his way out  from my job auspices – after trying the same tricks that his future peer would try on me far later in life! The point to make here – it is not true that many Omanis do not want to stay after Office hours! First and foremost – we have our family and social commitments – that many expatriates do not have! So these wanton acts of pretenses, acting and facade need to end now!

I have seen live my expatriate peers ‘waste time` the whole day – doing petty and unnecessary works – and that includes endless meetings – till you are lost what that meeting was for – and you had to be reminded by The Chair – or bringing even wrong notes to the meeting! Real work for some of them start one or two hours before closing time – and in that way they can look real active and busy – and woe to you who has been working from the moment go – and now near closing time need to take a break – and or even go home!

Staying after office hours cause many expatriate families – and the isolated similarly inclined locals too – lots and lots of family problems and issues! If you read the weekly magazines – and see what the expatriate wives write to the Problem Columns! Some of them are so unhappy and miserable that they wish they were not married – and want to go home! Unfortunately, some of them are real qualified professionals – but have to stay in the houses because of the rules and regulations! I found this myself when I had my Consultancy!

Some of these ladies are so much bored, distressed, frustrated and unhappy  – that there is wear and tear in the family – including the children too – when hubby returns late at night – and early morning back to the Offices – including even weekends and holidays!

Being in HR – I have myself seen live examples and cases of expatriate housewives coming to see me with their problems – because `I was told you are good in listening – and sorry to waste your time’ – because you cannot do anything `for me in this hole I am now in’ ! Yet on the outside – their spouses have very good high paying jobs – paid houses and cars etc. The sad part is those on the lower echelons staying in miserable accommodation and pay – following their top peers!

Trust me in saying this – and I am not exaggerating or blowing things out of proportion here – but I have noticed live escapades and affairs – in those in the offices after office hours – and at homes with the neglected and ignored wives! It now includes men as a new trend too as the spouse – with the women working or in more senior positions – and priority more for the office than family!

After a few isolated visits and the sending of flowers – they will end soon from the Company side – when you really fall seriously sick – and that if you are lucky too! It will be your family, relatives and friends that will look after you – and depends how you have treated them before!

I do not know when ‘this disease’ will ever end? Take Care!

Happy National Day Greetings!

By  Majid Al Suleimany

Minimum Wages!

For Wednesday February 13th 2013

Between Us Only!

Minimum Wages!

There is this expression made frequently by many Scholars that everyone of us is responsible – in one way or the other – for one’s action, inaction, delayed actions and even in missed opportunities. If one goes by just Advisors – as from the famous tale – you will end up with your donkey drowned in the river – instead of being able to sell it – to avoid hunger and poverty! You return home empty handed – and your status quo becomes more worse than ever before – just because you listened to ‘Advisors’ – instead of deciding for yourself – as you are required to do – or at least go by your own gut feelings at the most!

Omani Worker 4

Omani Faces - Toyota

Images – Omani Workers!

 am not going to get deeply involved in the midst of the ‘heated discussions’ as it now seems to be going on – except to raise a few pertinent and relevant pointers! They are: –

  • ·        Every country has absolute rights to look after its own! Why should we Omanis be denied from this – after years and years of being receptive and respectful to the expatriates in our country – far more than any country in the world – even from our own neighbours too for that matter?
  • ·        It is not only Oman doing it – even countries like China and Indonesia are doing the very same things for their own populace.
  • ·        For a very long time Omanis – especially in The Private Sector – have been sidelined, marginalised, transcended – and taken for granted in the ridiculing, condescending and patronising attitudes, focuses and approaches of many expatriate bosses – and even from our very own – especially ‘The Old Guards’ connect!
  • ·        Sometimes – especially the family run businesses – one may be forgiven to think – that they own the companies – and not the other way around of the families running the businesses.
  • ·        Only lately some of them have awoken to their national duties – let alone CSR – to their fellow disadvantaged Omanis – let alone making huge profits at the expense of others
  • ·        People should not just look at the expatriates taking their money out of the country – but also look at how some of these companies operate in their modus operandi vis-à-vis keeping monies in the country!
  • ·        They are now scared stiff because these new regulations may ‘eat more’ some of their profits per se!
  • ·        On the threat of some deciding to pack and leave – some foreign companies in Indonesia have already started the trend – the risks are still worth taking – taking into consideration the risky, complicated and complex times that the society is in now – comparable to the global trend – and more near at home too!
  • ·        Like George Bush Jnr. Had said – ‘you are either with us – or with them’ syndromes! There is no better place on the face of the earth to do businesses – and one should not look deep only at profits – but how the society looks at and treats you!
  • ·        All the expatriates in Oman know deep well the legality, validity and the authencity of the above!
  • ·        Some issues will still need to be made. For example if I am in the echelon levels – and my salary package is at 350 OMR – how do I feel when my peer at OMR 220 has now the difference of only 25 OMR to reach me?
  • ·        The jealousy, envy and haassiyds outlooks need to be looked at – and especially like I always say too – the inward looking and narrow-minded outlooks of many of us – instead of looking at things at the bigger picture – and outside the box things!
  • ·        It is not clear – at least for me – if this amount is only the basic salary or the total consolidated salaries? If it is the later – many Omanis – especially in the Oil and Gas sector – are already getting these rates!
  • ·        They are an example and beacon for others to follow! The Banks and Telecoms are not far behind – though in top echelons – for even Omanis – the reverse is the trend!
  • ·        Not speaking fluent Arabic – or being able to write – should not be the determining factor of determining talented, experienced and qualified Omanis in our country for their opinions, views, suggestions and advices!
  • ·        Conversely, speaking very fluent etc does not necessarily correlate with being very smart, knowledgeable and intelligent either. A lot of good usable highly potentials local talents, skills and human resources are wasted by such inward looking and narrow minded outlooks!
  • ·        I am not going to brag about my books – but I guess the American Publishers are in ‘shock and awe’ seeing the treatment of my books – and even being censored in coming out in my articles – by others determined to keep us ‘down there’ syndromes!
  • ·        We need to support more local talents, skills, entrepreneurships and human resources development in the country – and not only in arts and drawings – but overall!
  • ·        Not in SMEs for crafts and dressmaking – but why not in Top Management too? I mean across the board – not the usual few that always appear in the news – and as if there are no ‘other Omanis’ available – given the right attitudes, approaches and focuses – and the right training, guidance, counseling and mentoring!
  • ·        It is high time that we looked at our own – and those of our truly feeling and caring expatriates are most welcome to join the bandwagon in our honourable pursuits!

HM Speech 1

May Allah God Protect and Preserve us all – and our achievements – Amin.

Take Care!

By Majid Al Suleimany

Posted at: www.majidall.com and at www.majidwrite.com