Hi There! – March 2012

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As a young man, I was taught that remaining loyal to one company and enjoying lifetime employment was the only way to go. In fact, I spent 25 years with an American multinational before deciding I wanted to be an entrepreneur. In the intervening period, there has been a major shift in people’s views. Whereas potential employers would once be very concerned if they saw several different companies listed on your resume they now will probably see it as a plus, unless you changed jobs too frequently.

Of course, companies have contributed to this situation by hiring and firing with impunity. The multinational for which I worked downsized several times in response to economic slowdowns only to hire rapidly when things improved. Quarterly profits were more important than lifetime employment.

As a small business owner, there is no question that losing key employees is disruptive but it is unrealistic to expect all your staff to spend their careers with you. In fact, we have been very fortunate. Most of our senior local staff have chosen to stay with us as the business expanded.

Our accountant, Poh Lian has been keeping excellent records and a tight control over the purse strings almost since I started the company. It’s not always a popular job, but it is a critical one. Our websites have been a critical component of our extended international reach. Our webmaster Rusli, who built them all, has just completed ten years with us. Anne Perera is another person who joined us in our early years and now ensures that our monthly Mingles and Wine Dinners go smoothly. Zana, our MM2H Manager, joined us as a teenager and left for University in Australia, returned to us and then left again before rejoining us as Manager of our visa services. This time she promises to stay. Kim, our Art Director, has also been with since we started expanding our publications beyond The Expat newsletter. She continues to do a superb job ensuring our magazines are well designed and delivered on time. Marybeth is our longest serving expat and has been making a strong contribution for many years. She was our Editor for a while and is an important contributor to our editorial efforts, both as a regular writer and a key member of our Editorial Committee. She also has a substantial list of satisfied advertisers who she looks after.

The one senior job where we find people do keep changing is the Group Editor. While it has the advantage of giving us fresh input it is always sad to see someone who has played an important role in our development move on to greener pastures.

Will Citrin has been with us for just over two years and did an excellent job helping build our portfolio of publications which now consist of ten different titles. The job has many challenges and pressures but he always managed to maintain a calm disposition and ensure things were done on time.

Clearly we not alone in recognizing Will’s talent and he caught the eye of people with deeper pockets than us. We would like to thank him for everything he contributed, not least his continued good humor. We are sorry to see him go and wish him every happiness and success in the future.

Have a great month.

Source: The Expat March 2012 Issue

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