By Munyaradzi Hwengwere.
New work ethics
Work arrangements in most service industries that depended on 8 hours a day have been put to question as well. In Zimbabwe’s small scale mining sector, the development was well underway.
Claim holders and their workers are now essentially, partners that must agree on ensuring that production targets are met.
This will become more important as defined arrangements are put in place that not only guarantee production targets are met but makes it possible to manage small teams at a time.
Obviously, there are industries where working at home is still far off from reality. There are sectors where close physical collaboration is required.
This is more so in Africa where robots are not a common feature. Even then it must also be understood that the value of an employee is greater than the paycheck.
If you can not guarantee their health they will leave. There are health institutions in Zimbabwe where nurses and doctors have simply walked away because their employer could not guarantee their safety.
It must be noted that health and safety have suddenly become a top priority. So too are people in such professions.
There is also a debate on whether in an era where the majority are jobless, mining companies can run away from corporate social responsibility, knowing power has titled in their favour.
It is only the gullible who will not realize that revolutions arise in moments of social inequality.
This is the time for companies to redefine CSR. They must move away from events, giving T shirts to investing in long term programme that seek to transform livelihoods .
There is no way a starving community will allow a prosperous mining company to continue operating without challenging how value is shared.
Even under Covid-19 mining companies that had collaborated with the Zimbabwe Agricultural Society for the Livestock Revitalisation Programme, for instance, are encouraged to give greater impetus to such programmes.
Activities that support livelihoods in immediate communities must also be prioritised. This is the time for investing in long term tangible value and aligning with both internal and external stakeholder interest.
Prominence of Online Education
With respect to education, when online schooling began, society questioned the weight of qualifications from such institutions.
Many also doubted the extent to which the concept could be applied to lower levels such as pre-school and junior school. This was despite evidence that pointed to effectiveness of a number of educational learning programmes.
In Zimbabwe we had Mbuya Mlambo who made radio lessons very popular. For some reason little was done to grow this area.
Don’t miss the fourth and final installment of this article on GreatDykeNews 24 tomorrow (30/04/20).