Asia HRDCongress 2009 (Dr Palan's baby from the time it was known as 'Trainers-meet-Trainers, 30 years ago) began today with its pre-conference program. I remembered more than 10 years ago, I spoke at the conference on the topic 'Changing your Shoes, Not your Feet' when I was Director of Training at KTMB (Malayan Railways). Today, I felt privileged to have chaired the day-long workshop on 'Winning the Talent War' by Kerry Larkan, an acclaimed Australian consultant, author and international speaker. I learned alot of interesting new stuff/findings together with other participants coming from as far away as the Abu Dhabi Police Department. Kerry could not have been far from the truth and I couldn't agree more with him when he began his first slide with 'workplace culture is an overriding indicator and /or determinant of corporate performance' Pleas tell me he is wrong! from his own wealth of corporate experience, there has been too much 'push' strategies rather than the desirable 'leading' culture. You can expect more of that 'push' stuff during this period of economic downturn or 'The Great Recession' overtaking 'The Great Depresion' of the 1930s.
We hear much too often, people lamenting (its a global phenomena actually) about the behaviour of young people but we forgot that Socrates in 425 BC had said almost similar things about the young: 'Children nowadays are tyrants - they gobble their food, contradict their parents, and tyrannise their teachers' (Socrates, 425B.C).
DIfferent societies, different culture look at things differently. Look at your own company culture: are they a culture that's uplifting? or one of downgrading? I like something he said along the way - 'I am not a young man anymore, but I am not an old man either' (haha...I think that should fit my description too? hehehe). He gave examples of Mcfarlane of NZBank, Shackkleton of the 'shackleton paradox' at Elephant Island (read the book 'endurance'), and also gave tribute to Datuk Rafiah Salim former UM vice chancellor who was at one time recently, head of HR at the United Nations. The Shackleton Paradox is essentially about
"the brutal facts of the current reality vs retaining faith regardless of the situation"
it is an example of leadership which Kerry propagated.
Tomorrow evening between 530pm and 630 pm at the Palace of Golden Horses, the Mines, I will be chairing Dr Tom Mulholland's session, Founder, Healthy Thinking Institute, New Zealand who will speak on Healthy Thinking: How to improve workplace productivity and live longer. Have good rest, see you guys there, tomorrow...