From peon to officer: an example of dedication
THERE are thousands of unemployed youths looking for jobs. At the same time jobs are scarce as new businesses are not coming up and the existing organisations are finding it difficult to survive and get a reasonable return on investment. Nevertheless when some people are fortunate enough to get jobs, in most cases it turns out to be a disappointing experience due to (a) incompetence of the incumbents to fulfil the job requirements, (b) unscrupulous employers paying meagre salaries with unjustified delay, and (c) placement in jobs of a petty and boring nature with prolonged working hours.
It should, however, be remembered that employers need only those who can add value to their business. To provide some guidance to the educated unemployed people, I am quoting the example of a person who is just a high school graduate, started his job as a peon in a large multinational company, and rose to the level of officer solely due to hard work, persistence, great sense of responsibility and right direction.
In the late 1970s the company was setting up its polyester fibre plant in Sheikhupura and its management was in the process of interviewing candidates for various jobs.
A young and energetic – looking village boy named Haq Nawaz came for interview for the position of a peon from a small town of Narang Mandi in the vicinity of Sheikhupura.
He was immediately selected as a peon – cum – caretaker for the plant’s city office in Lahore. He would do the job of a peon during the day time and would act as a caretaker during the night, staying at the office premises permanently except the weekends when he would go to his hometown to visit the family.
Haq Nawaz (HN) was peon only by designation, otherwise he had assumed a role for himself as city coordinator for the project team at the site and as trouble – shooter in all the administrative matters. He would look after the transportation arrangements for the company’s senior managers coming from Karachi and would also extend help to them in case they faced any problem.
He was capable of performing any administrative role in the absence of the regular staff. HN could arrange food for the guests in the city office at a short notice and would not provide a cause for complaint to anyone. One could assign any task to him without being let down or missed.
He was capable of communicating effectively with employees from lowest to highest of ranks. Person having so many qualities soon became indispensable for the company, and efficiency of the office would go down during his absence on leave.
HN was eager to learn the technologies installed for efficient functioning of the office and became fully conversant with the operation of the telephone exchange, supervising the transport fleet, performing the basic secretarial work and computer operation. Possessing all these qualities, HN managed to cross all the barriers of grades in his non-management cadre position and rose to become an administrative officer in the management cadre of the company’s city office at Mozang Road, Lahore.
Those seeking jobs or already employed may try to inculcate some of these traits to get themselves recognised by employers as committed and valuable members of the workforce and not as a burden on the organisation.