It's becoming too traditional Editorial
Guyana Chronicle
February 9, 2002

MANAGEMENT of time and punctuality are vital in today's world where productivity and efficiency are essential factors in gaining the competitive edge in a market driven global economy.

Unfortunately, Guyana is one of those countries where there is almost a total lack of respect for punctuality and poor management of time is generally the order of the day in many places.

No matter how much production increases and how many roads etc. are built, Guyana will continue to lack that competitive edge which is necessary for it to survive in the international market place.

There are far too many meetings at all levels of society, which in many instances turn out to be mere "talk shops" and end up being a bore to those summoned because the sessions are not conducted in a businesslike manner.

This in many instances results in sometimes hundreds of people being inconvenienced, just because some official is at one of these "talk shops" and is unavailable to sign a cheque or a simple document which of course only he/she can sign.

Then there is the usual problem when a meeting or appointment summoned for a particular time ends up one hour or more off schedule.

This has actually become a part of the Guyanese culture, so much so that on the odd occasion that a meeting begins on time many are late because they turn up at a time they anticipate the meeting would begin.

Even more unfortunate is the fact that some leaders and managers of the society who are supposed to set the example are on many occasions the culprits in this respect.

There is also that group of public speakers insensitive to the audience and a speech which could be delivered much more effectively in 15 minutes, sometimes takes two hours.

If the number of man-hours that are lost due to these regrettable factors is measured the figure will be incredible.

Perhaps, it would be useful and instructive for Guyanese researchers to do a study into this disgusting feature of the Guyanese society to determine its negative effect on production and productivity and the psychological pressure it exerts on those who are affected.

What is strange is that the very Guyanese who are guilty of a tardy approach go abroad and are not late for work or an appointment.

This problem of time management and punctuality is indeed a national problem and is actually reaching crisis proportions.

There is an urgent need for it to be comprehensively dealt with or it will be difficult for the nation to make that "quantum leap."

Our own Dave Martins sums it up well in his song "It's traditional."

However, while it is good for a nation to have unique traditions and culture, it is even more important that it abandons those that are inimical to its development and future.