We are almost at the halfway mark of 2014, and we began this month celebrating Labor Day, which is a public holiday in Singapore.
Wait, did I mention that we “celebrated” Labor Day? Whilst all other public holidays in Singapore are either days set aside for cultural and religious observance or days with elaborate celebrations like New Year countdowns and our Nation’s birthday, what happens on Labor day?
Typically, it is just an “off day” for us to rest or probably travel abroad for a long weekend, and few would catch the May Day rally by our PM where we will be informed about our growth and year on year increase in salaries for workers. But does Labour Day have any significance beyond a mere off day?
The celebration of the hard work employees contributed should not be overlooked. However, it should be a two-way street where employers celebrate and recognize the meaningful work their employees have contributed, and employees appreciate what their employers have done for them.
Having worked with youths in Singapore to find their ideal professional internships has given me insights into what they are looking for. Salary used to be the main priorities youths look out for when finding their ideal internships or jobs, but thankfully, there is an increasing trend of youths looking for valuable learning experiences that adds to their career instead of mere good paying jobs.
The future is bright if Singaporeans begin to chase knowledge and career opportunities rather than dollars and cents. If employers can provide an empowering environment, we can all celebrate Labor Day as a day both employees and employers appreciate the work done for one another.