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25 Jul 2022
3 mins
Interpersonal Communication and Fireside Chat with SMOU Senior Members

On 22 June 2022, some 11 SMOU members attended the Personal Effectiveness course and Fireside Chat. Organised by SMOU’s Industrial Relations department, the course aimed to teach members how to communicate effectively regardless of generation or culture, and how to apply the correct communication skill based on the people they interact with in a workplace.

SMOU General Secretary Ms Mary Liew welcomed members to the session and emphasised on the importance of upskilling and SMOU’s support in lifelong learning. She acknowledged the importance of the workshop as communication with people of different ages is something inevitable. “SMOU is here to support our members through their career journey even for members who have retired in the industry”, as she roused members to take advantage of the workshop. Emeritus General Secretary Mr Thomas Tay gave mention to the importance of keeping one’s mind active and lauded the members for their eagerness to learn.

Through the course, members were very participative and even shared a few laughs with the instructor Ms Kit Teng. The course aimed to let members learn effective communication strategies as interpersonal communication is a delicate operation. It also helped equip members with the tools needed to conduct themselves correctly, and how to communicate their thoughts and opinions efficiently whilst keeping conflict to a minimum.

At the end of the course, SMOU engaged the senior seafarers in dialogue to learn more about the struggles that the members faced, and this helped the union gain more insight and understanding of issues that older workers were facing. Apart from the discussion, SMOU also informed members about SMOU’s newly launched Telegram channel that was opened for those who are seeking a job in the maritime industry. The purpose of this was to help link members up with job opportunities, should they want to keep active.

Ms Mary Liew acknowledged the obstacles that some of them were facing, and offered them probable solutions to help with their situations. She said, “Thank you for coming forward with your concerns. The union is committed to help you and will work closely with tripartite partners to offer the best possible solution for you. We hope to make the industry better for you, and if you know of anyone who is facing any difficulties, extend an invitation to them so that they too, can be heard and helped.”

The session was fruitful and offered SMOU deeper insight into some of the challenges that members are facing. SMOU hopes to impact the lives of many, and help even more in the process. The session closed with Ms Liew and Mr Thomas Tay wishing members well and told them that they can look forward to more fireside chats and workshops in future.