For Myself, God And Country…

“This business is like a ship. When it sinks, not only the captain will perish. Everyone else will. The success of this company must be your headache. This business must be your business!”

One day, when Scribe has its building complex, this inscription will glaringly hang in the foyer. Staff will pore over it first thing every morning and last thing every day. It will find its way into their weekly mails. They will be bombarded daily with the consciousness that the success of the company depends on every soul!

Growing up, I noticed a weird attitude towards work in most civil servants. They show up at work late and are in a haste to leave early. They find no creative ways of boosting their performance, thus, play the same role the same way for decades. Others who try to push beyond the low standard are ridiculed and tagged as “too known”.

Mediocrity is the norm. Friday is almost a weekend while the rest of the days are used to while away time. Substandard productivity is king. At the least opportunity, they’d give an excuse why they shirked their responsibility. After all, the company belongs doesn’t belong to them!

We often don’t value what we have until we lose it. Until we become jobless, we’ll never appreciate the worth of our source of livelihood, regardless of how little the income is. Until we are left with no option than to stay home idle (and hungry) for months and years, we’ll never appreciate the fact that leaving home for work is a stress relieving therapy.

It’s about time we lived in the consciousness that we have a stake in the company we work in. We collapse when our places of work collapse. Whether government-owned or not, our performance boosts our institution’s performance. Our company’s business must be our business!

Our supervisors must not become our enemies because they insist on the right thing. We must come to work to work… and not just because we have to come to work. We often complain of our politicians’ non-performance when ironically, we are not performing any better in our institutions either. If you want to see a change in this country, start living that change in your office!

We all must see the bigger picture of work. The more productive we are, the more productive our companies become and the more productive our nation becomes. It doesn’t matter if your role is “just little”. The institution becomes deficient when your role is absent. Our individual roles complement each other to make the bigger role of the company’s core duty a reality.

When President John F. Kennedy visited NASA Space Center in 1962, he noticed a janitor carrying a broom. Interrupting his tour, he walked up to the man and said, “Hi, I’m Kennedy. What are you doing?”

He responded, “Well, Mr. President, I’m helping put a man on the moon!”

His answer stunned everyone. They all thought he was “just cleaning” but he knew he was helping put a man on the moon. When there’s no janitor, there’s no astronaut. His role is as important as everyone else’s at the space center because the concerted role of each staff helps to put a man on the moon!

You matter. Your role matters as long as your institution’s vision is concerned. Your role matters as long as we want to make Ghana a better place. You may just be a traffic warden but your role is as important as anyone else’s. You are helping the President make this nation better. Look at the bigger picture!

In whichever occupation you find yourself, the success of your institution should be your headache. The business should be your business. What we wouldn’t do if the company solely belonged to us must not be done in someone else’s.

We must work on our attitudes towards work. Others should not be able to tell from our attitude that the company doesn’t belong to us. When our institution’s matter doesn’t matter to us, indeed, we are just occupying space there!

You can’t continue working anyhow and expect your company’s financial returns to gallop. Your attitude towards work will be a reflection of how much profits the firm would yield. If you want a pay rise, give your productivity a rise.  If you want to see this nation work again, work again in your office!

Our attitude towards work reflects in many areas of our lives, even leadership. Lazy followers become lazy leaders. When all we have been doing all of our lives is eye service, we can barely work any better when we become leaders. Our political leadership will definitely be given a facelift if we start giving a different perception to work at the grassroots.

The company you work in, whether public or private, is like a ship. Though the captain is at the helm of affairs, the role of every staff onboard the ship is critical. Their role complements each other. When the ship sinks, everyone sinks. When it gets to its destination successfully, everyone is a success; not only the captain.

Everyone matters. Your job description is significant no matter how you look at it. When you fail, the firm fails. When you fail, the nation fails. Your irresponsibility has a rippling effect. If anything must be done, it must be done well. Do it well for yourself, God and country!

The writer-Kobina Ansah is a playwright and Chief Scribe of Scribe Communications (, a writing company based in Accra. His upcoming play is TRIBELESS. Get interactive with him on his Facebook page, Kobina Ansah.


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