Ahead of this year’s May Day Celebration, the Ghana Employers’ Association (GEA), has expressed appreciation to organised labour and all Ghanaian workers.
A press release signed by Mr. Alex Frimpong, the Chief Executive Officer, GEA, copied to the Ghana News Agency, said the GEA recognised the monumental role and enormous sacrifices made by Ghanaian workers over the years and saluted them on the special occasion.
“We say ‘Ayeeko’ to your unrelenting efforts in ensuring the survival and socio-economic development of Ghana despite the ravaging impact of the COVID-19 pandemic since March 2020,” it said.
“It is the hope of GEA that sooner than later, life and business activities in Ghana would return to normalcy”.
It commended Government for efforts at procuring COVID-19 vaccines and entreated all workers and their families to avail themselves for the vaccination.
“We believe that taking the vaccines is the surest, effective, efficient and certain way of eradicating the pandemic from the country whilst boosting the confidence of employers and workers for rapid business and economic recovery,” the statement said.
“As you celebrate this great occasion, one key issue that must engage your attention is the increasing spate of industrial disputes in Ghana.”
This is because industrial disputes affect productivity, profits and workers’ income.
The release said it also threatened the sustainability of enterprises, job creation and investment attraction.
It said the GEA, therefore, urged employers, workers and their unions to deepen the culture of dialogue, consultations and negotiations to resolve their differences, so as to ensure the sustainability of businesses in the country.
“It is imperative for us to remind ourselves that promotion of workplace cooperation and harmony are the cardinal prerequisites for sustainable enterprises and national productivity growth that engender wealth creation and higher living standards.”
It also urged all workers to soberly and dispassionately reflect on the issue of career and skills development, because many workers might not survive the workplace of tomorrow if they were unable to train and retrain in order to be continuously relevant to the labour market.
The release said workers must be forward looking and always anticipate skills that may be required in the future; stating that “what we acquired yesterday may not be needed or relevant tomorrow.”
“According to the World Economic Forum at its October 2020 conference, about 50 per cent of all employees would need re-skilling by 2025, as adoption of technology increases and that critical thinking and problem-solving toppled the list of skills employers believed would grow in prominence in the next five years,”the release said.
“Newly emerging skills in self-management were active learning, resilience, stress tolerance and flexibility; leadership and social influence; technology use, monitoring and control.”
“As workers we must take responsibility for our career development. Let us learn to acquire or cultivate knowledge so that we can harvest it in order to survive the workplace of the future.”
It said equally important was the need for attitudinal change; adding that attitude complements the right professional skill set that were sought after in the market.
“Let us imbibe the virtues of honesty, discipline, commitment, punctuality, diligence, integrity, among others. Indeed, attitude is everything,” the release said.
The GEA believes that the success or otherwise of every organisation was inextricably linked to a peaceful industrial relations environment.
No organisation could thrive in an environment of antagonism, hostilities, mistrust and adversity.
It said to ensure stability at the workplace, labour- management cooperation was paramount as well as the need to entrench the culture of dialogue in the social fabric of the organisations.
“We must also endeavour to open the channels of communication at all levels of the organisation.”