Out-of-the-classroom business lessons for retiring civil servants

National 1 minute, 43 seconds

BELAIT

PREPARATORY courses for retiring civil servants will increasingly focus on practical exposure, particularly in its social and entrepreneurship modules, by taking participants on field visits to village-level enterprises and agencies.

Hj Noor Husseini Hj Mohd Hussein, course coordinating officer from the Civil Service Institute (IPA) said that the institute would continue to revise the course syllabus, last updated in 2012.

Currently, the course is designed to have participants spend at least 60 per cent of their time outside the classroom.

“Today, we brought them to see a local goat breeder. Although the breeder himself is not a retiree but a youth, his knowledge can be shared with retirees… and it isn’t knowledge that is in theory but in practical terms,” said the officer, who accompanied on Saturday the current batch of course participants on their sixth day.

The participants, made up of government officers and staff from various departments in Divisions I to V, were conducting field visits to several local start-ups in Tutong and Belait.

“Even if they do not eventually choose to be directly involved in businesses such as animal husbandry, the skills they could pick up might enable them to take up the business as managers or overseers,” said Hj Noor Husseini.

He explained that the current entrepreneurship module introduced in 2012 attempted to cover the varying needs of retirees, taking into account gender considerations as well as widening the scope of direct entrepreneurship to include management, sales and even marketing.

“We try to select locations among Village Consultative Councils (MPK) as we have done in Temburong earlier and now in Belait and Tutong… we want retirees to use their time in activities within their communities and villages… the officers and employees of the government may one day retire, but their contribution remains as citizens. We don’t want them to become a burden to the country,” said Hj Noor Husseini.

All government employees, whether approaching mandatory retirement at the age of 55 or 60, are eligible for the course.

Civil servants may apply to attend as early as five years before retirement.

The Brunei Times