I had mixed feelings when I first heard about the idea of employing graduates in city traffic management as a module of the National Service Scheme (NSS). I have seen a couple of them in town, smartly dressed and exuding confidence.
I have since had a positive outlook of their role. I am now convinced, more than ever, that introducing this module was a fantastic idea, at least from an entrepreneur's/employer's point of view. However, I am not sure if my reasons are in sync with those of the implementers of the programme.
In effect, here are reasons why I would employ NSS Traffic Wardens instead of their colleagues who did their national service in a company or an office, if I were an employer.
These guys are go-getters
They did not hesitate to enlist onto a programme that had been ridiculed and laughed at. They are risk takers. The opinions of others do not matter at all to them. They heard of it, liked it and went all in for it.
It takes extreme confidence to stand in the middle of an intersection and show leadership in the midst of flying insults, disdain, plus the danger of getting run over by a vehicle. They care not who mocks them. I wonder how many of us have that amount of confidence!
To wear a uniform, follow strict security instructions, clock in on time, and stand in the hot tropical sun eight hours a day takes enormous discipline. How many young people are willing to wear reflector uniforms in public?
These guys are easing the work of the police, saving the government cash, saving the public from danger and probably saving themselves from the allure of bad habit if they were otherwise home with no work. Who doesn't want someone with a community service track record?
The sum total of experience gathered from dealing with everyday human interaction, the frustration, insults, mockery, etc. will toughen them for any job in this world.
The totality of the above points to a certain entrepreneurial quality within each and everyone of them. The best workers are people who are entrepreneurs within their job roles. They take initiative, get their hands dirty and defend their ideas with passion and confidence. We need more of such in Ghana.
The next time you see these smart guys on the streets, see the future of Ghana, see the embodiment of hard work and discipline of the next generation of workers this country is dying for.