In our "Stars of the Accelerator" series, we will explore the innovative projects and achievements of our Accelerator participants.
Abu Bakar Mustafa Bamadhaj (AB)
A believer of “Adversity is the foundation of success”, AB was keen to join the Accelerator program to bring impactful and positive transformation to his company. On average, we spend about 56% of our waking hours at work. Therefore, fostering good relationships with our colleague is important. The best medium to do this is; to nurture empathy.
As Senior Executive of Organization Development, AB firmly believes practicing empathy benefits the company and contributes to staff well-being. His innovative project will allow staff to donate paid annual leave to their colleagues in need!
This leave donation system will be a welcome relief, especially if a staff member has exhausted their annual leave days or if they are experiencing financial difficulties. It also gives a chance to the donors to practice kindness and lessen the burden of their fellow colleagues.
Studies have shown that empathy in the workplace contributes to higher employee satisfaction and retention. AB plans to measure the effectiveness of the project via a satisfaction survey.
The Head of Rewards (Group Human Capital) is sold on the idea and offered his support. AB obtained precious data from HR system to analyze the leave trends, which will help to move the project forward.
There are a few challenges to implement this project.
1. While leave donation exists abroad, there are currently no companies implementing it in Malaysia. Although there are no laws which prevent its implementation, which means there is no precedence to draw from. This makes AB a pioneer! He plans to reach out to foreign companies to learn the details of how they implement leave donation.
2. There was some skepticism from team members. They were concerned about ensuring that the system is not misused. AB appeased their doubts by explaining validation mechanisms will be in place as well as the benefits to staff morale and for the company.
3. Getting colleagues on board was challenging but crucial; the success of this project relies entirely on teamwork. AB used storytelling to encourage them to empathize with their colleagues’ situation.
Sharing his ideas with colleagues was intimidating for AB at first, but he sees it an opportunity to learn and improve. AB plans to pursue an MBA to become a strategic HR business partner.
Congratulations AB in becoming a Star of the Accelerator!