FNU’s NTPC hosts P-Talk

Press Release Posted On: June 2, 2022


Chief Guest Mark Halabe at the P-Talk Session at the Grand Pacific Hotel in Suva.

The Fiji National University’s (FNU) National Training and Productivity Centre (NTPC) hosted the inaugural Breakfast Session Productivity Talk (P-Talk), a platform to share discuss challenges, share ideas and knowledge on ways to improve productivity in the workplace post-COVID-19 pandemic.

Some of the key points of discussion during the 3-hour session centred around the exodus of skilled workers overseas, working smart, strategic planning, digital transformation, impact on productivity due to traffic congestion, allocation and availability of learning resources and the FNU levy for the training.

Award-winning entrepreneur Mark Halabe was the chief guest and shared valuable insights into modern challenges faced by businesses and the need to expand on existing advantages that Fiji has to realise its full potential.

Halabe is the Mark One Apparel owner and the Chairman of the Fiji Business Excellence Awards Review Panel.

“Fiji is in the middle of the South Pacific, and it is a big ask for us to compete internationally, but we can compete with other established nations. If we work smarter and efficiently and find ways to lower our production costs, not by cost-cutting, which would create more pain and hurt the organisation, but we need to work smarter and not harder to raise productivity,” Halabe mentioned.

“When you make a cup of coffee, you will try to be better the next time you make coffee, and you will try to be smarter in terms of putting in less effort but ensuring you make a good cup of coffee. Similarly, when you work smarter and learn from the previous task, you will get better and more experienced, so this is how you can raise productivity. You might want to do the same with your work by being smarter in carrying out your duties, and through doing this, you would be able to spend more time with your families.”

FNU’s Acting Vice-Chancellor Dr William May said Productivity Talk is the first of many P-Talks that NTPC plans to host in the coming months and has been benchmarked against the success of Asian Productivity Organisation’s (APO) Productivity Talks.

NTPC had identified the forum as an excellent platform for increasing awareness of productivity among all stakeholders as part of NTPC’s commitment to advancing Fiji’s Productivity Movement in partnership with the Ministry of Employment, Productivity, and Industrial Relations.

“Your attendance this morning is indicative of the value the leaders place on productivity and quality issues which can be the key guiding principles of your organisations in this country as we forge ahead amidst one of Fiji’s most challenging times,” Dr May said.

“The Productivity Talk is designed to motivate all sections of the community for more discussions on productivity at workplaces and ensuring its sustainability.”

“In line with the Government’s vision that no Fijian should be left behind – whether during the better days of continuous positive economic growth or when we are working through recovery post-pandemic, NTPC continues to work in the national interest by assisting Fijian organisations in developing human capital, facilitating productivity improvement initiatives, and assisting Fijian organisations in raising productivity and excellence.”

Dr Isimeli Tagicakiverata, Director of NTPC, said the session was very fruitful, with the discussions and contributions from the stakeholders, industry, and government that would assist in enhancing productivity.

“As the designated National Productivity Organisation for the Fiji Government, NTPC has a key role in conducting in-service training and promoting productivity in Fiji. We hope to continue to increase and improve productivity in all sectors. The session was also in line with our new FNU strategic plan, education for employability,” Dr Tagicakiverata said.

The session included Fiji Employers and Commerce Federation Chief Executive Officer Kameli Batiweti, Post Fiji CEO Anirudha Bansod and Ministry of Employment, Productivity and Industrial Relations Director for Labour Standards Division, Atish Kumar as the panellist.

Bob Mitchell, Manager Quality Awards, said the session was important for the business leaders as it was a platform to share ideas and learn from each other’s experiences.

“Productivity is about making today better than yesterday and tomorrow better than today. That is indeed the spirit of prosperity,” he said.

“It is about working smarter today for better outcomes tomorrow. Today it is widely agreed that quality, productivity and innovation are the drivers that help create wealth in our economies.”

NTPC will hold more P-Talks in the coming months.