Saturday, April 14, 2007

Human Capital is key

When I was in Form 5 preparing for my SPM examinations, I couldn't distinguish between a degree and a diploma. I'll be frank, I had no idea what I was going to do after secondary school and it came as a shock to me that I am about to step into an unknown world. Forgive me, I am from a little "city" called Alor Star(a city that is not a city) and I was not alone in realising the existence of an unknown world.

Don't get me wrong, the school did a lot to tell us about the options we had at that time. There were many educational fairs organised, whether by the school or some private organisations. I remember that I was at this careers talk when the speaker pop the question to me(I was sitting in the front) asking what do I aspire to become. My answer at that time was

CEO of a multinational corporation

I swear that he looked half shocked half amused. What an answer by a student, and to be honest I wasn't even thinking straight. I had just learnt the word CEO less than a day before the fair and there I was talking like I already have big ambitions. I want to be a successful businessman like my dad and my uncles, talk about influence on my youth, sheesh.

If you ask me the same question now, my answer would be no different that that time. The only difference is that I have a clear mindset of what I want to do. Why CEO? Power of course, who doesn't love power, and me being a control freak. Why multinational? Secretly I told myself that my ambition is to take a small local company and transform it into a multinational corporation, that is a show of success. Too much of a fairytale? It is possible and I adhere to this believe.

To realise this ambition, I have to equip myself with all the relevant knowledge. A degree is a key, a qualification as an actuary is a tool, a determined mindset and an acute business sense are requirements. Throughout the years, I've met a lot of different people and I certainly would love to meet more, much much more. I love to listen to what these people have to say, how they go about analysing a particular situation, how they handle the challenges and how they view life. Along with all these, I've also accumulated a few views that I think that I would adhere to one day as a businessman.

One of this views is on human capital.

I came across this article on Bernama. I quote Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop as saying:
has called on the private sector to give attention to the development of its human capital, describing it as a critical component in the country's development. [Source: Bernama]
I do in fact agree with him that human capital is vital to thedevelopment of the country. This is even more so for industries where human capital is the asset of the company such as consultancies, banks, creative industries, advertising etc compared to say manufacturing. Everybody knows this and so this is not a vital issue that we have to note.

An addendum to the above is a very crucial point I would like to stress --- human capital management. A business's success depends on how well the leader managers his employees, whether he can extract the full potential of his employees and how much loyalty he can garner from those who had shown full potential. It is also important that the employees get rewarded appropriately and given enough benefits. This is a move that doesn't only increase productivity, it also helps in bridging the poverty gap said to be widening in our country.

Another form of rewarding employee is to send them for re-education. Of course there are worries that these employees might be poached by competitors, I see this as failure of the company to build loyalty and less of the employees' fault. Why? Figure that out yourself.

Another important thing missing out from the business sector in Malaysia is the providence of pensions to the employees. I know in Malaysia, pensions provision is secured by the existence of EPF, but have you actually thought of whether an employee in your company could secure a good enough pension to lead a comfortable life after retirement? Probably an additional private scheme where feasible would satisfy your employees right? I think that this is even more true if your company is a multinational one.

Lastly, I would like to stress the appropriateness of pyin your employees right. And by paying I mean their monthly salary. There should be more studies on the appropriate pay employees should be gettind instead of just offering the market level. After all,

If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys

If you're still reading here, I would love to hear your comments on this.

Please please leave a comment ok?

  1. Critical for Malaysia to invest in human capital, Bernama, 13 April 2007.


cindy said...

With great power, comes greater responsibility^^ xD

..and of course you get to have more stuff lah! money, car, house, women.. oops!

Hor ny Ang Moh said...

Ha!Ha! Bossy my pay very very low wan,so I suppose my co employed a monkey!!!

Boss Lepton said...

cindy: sure do, cannot be too complacent

hor ny: hehehe u saying that coupled with yr display pic, so funny hahaha

freethinker said...

Hmm.. maybe... I should slip this web address subtly to my boss' desk.


Boss Lepton said...

freethinker: maybe, for entertainment purposes only, i'm just a ma chai who has never done anything but dream yet

boringest said...

well, from how i see it, every company needs monkeys to run efficiently. We all don't need motivated & enterprising alpha males/females doing menial/repetitive work when say, like 1 person in a group of 10 can solve the problems that occasionally crop up, and you just have to pay that "1" a bigger peanut salary.

And all the monkeys with the smaller peanut would want the bigger peanut won't they?

Boss Lepton said...

solve problem? there's always one who can solve the problem but it takes discussion between 10 people to find out that the one person's idea is the most relevant.

I would say that's in the spirit of teamwork so better share the profits ler. Unless the 9 of them really does nothing and just let that 1 person do, then it makes more sense to fire the 9 person right?