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Less worry, more sleep

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They say money makes the world go round and because of this, a lot of people would rather work odd hours so that they can make ends meet, than take off days and relax.

Sleep is a condition of body and mind, which typically recurs for several hours, in which the nervous system is inactive, the eyes closed, the postural muscles relaxed and consciousness practically suspended. A lot of people associate sleep with laziness and lack of ambition and drive, but that is not always the case. Yes, oversleeping has its own effects, which are not quite good, but there is a difference between oversleeping and giving your body and mind the rest that they deserve to fully function well.

It is said that an adult should have about seven to eight hours of sleep and anything less than that is what is called sleep deprivation, which can be either acute or chronic. Sleep deprivation is the condition of not having enough sleep.

As a leader, you should encourage employees to get as much sleep as possible. Everyday there seems to be twice as much work and half the time to complete it, and it is very tempting to want to see the work done and dusted but it would not really be wise to make employees work odd hours just so the company can meet deadlines and targets because when employees are deprived of sleep, it will negatively impact their performance at work.

Your employees will be there ‘working’ but there will be no results to show. This is not because they are not capable or anything, but their body and mind will not be in sync, so concentration is bound to lack. Sleep deprivation can impair cognitive skills. If your employees are sleep deprived, creativity and good decision-making will be close to extinct which can cause company growth to be stagnant. It is highly likely for prolonged sleep deprivation to cause health issues and when employees are constantly ill, they are less likely to be engaged at work and would most probably require sick offs.

This will cause absenteeism to skyrocket and will cause efficiency and productivity to hit rock bottom. A lot of us can attest to the fact that fatigue makes a person irritable and grumpy and when you are fatigued, everything seems to be going left. There is no way an employee can be fatigued and produce good results.

Quality sleep can help employees to focus and gives them the ability to learn and retain new information. The workplace will be filled with happy workforce and a happy and alert workforce is sure to bear good fruit. Some companies allow employees to nap after lunch, and according to research, it is said that a ‘20-minutes’ nap (power nap) can make a person effective and alert for at least two and half hours. We are no longer in the days when napping at the workplace was seen as being unproductive.

We didn’t fully understand the side effects that fatigue can have on an individual and his or her performance, both in the workplace and at home. It is now time to change that culture and not see being ‘well rested’ as ‘lazy’. Ensure that employees are not being overworked by balancing the workload you give to them, offer flexible work schedules and do not make napping at work during breaks seem like a taboo. Embrace sleep and prosper.

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Business

SMEs benefit from Consumer Fair growth

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The Botswana Investment and Trade Centre (BITC) has applauded Botswana Consumer Fair’s continued efforts to improve small to medium enterprises’ linkages.

BITC Chief Executive Officer, Keletsositse Olebile, when opening the fair, said the event has provided interactive forum for both local and foreign exhibitors. He said the shopping show has enabled manufacturers, wholesalers and traders to market their products directly to consumers, an alignment to government’s endeavors.

“As part of government intention, we continually encourage local sourcing by retailers and distributors,” said Olebile who is just few months into his new post. He further celebrated the growth of Botswana Consumer Fair over the years, attributing the expansion to quality of goods displayed at the previous shows.“Improved quality and increased variety of wares increases the interest of the visitors and makes them look forward to returning the following year,” said Olebile.

This year’s exhibitors at the 13th event still running under the banner: ‘It is more than just shopping’ have been drawn from Lesotho, Zambia, Swaziland, South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Egypt, Japan, India, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.

Consumer Fair is a flagship event for Fairgrounds Holdings and provides a platform for small medium enterprises (SMEs) from the different sectors of the economy to showcase and promote their products and services. In addition, the SMEs are expected to establish long term business linkages and promote local manufactured goods.Fairgrounds Holdings is already optimistic that the Fair immensely contribute to the socio-economic development of the country through supporting SMEs.

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‘Involve SMMEs in standards development’-Minister

Keikantse Lesemela

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Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Bogolo Kenewendo appealed to Botswana Bureau of Standards (BOBS) to include the Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises (SMMEs) when developing the standards to improve the sector.

She said the Ministry of Investment, Trade and Industry has identified three areas of focus going forward which are modeled on SMME development, investment promotion and export development apexes. “I would like to implore you to include this sector in standards development processes and assist in improving SMMEs conformity to standards and compliance to technical regulations,” said Kenewendo.

Speaking during the BOBS Technical Committee Members appreciation ceremony on Thursday, Kenewendo explained that the important roles of standards are underpinned by the aspirations and intentions espoused in both diversified export led economic growth and job creation as priority areas. “It goes without saying that the diversification of the economy requires a National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework that promote competitiveness of Botswana goods and services.”

She also emphasized that an effective National Quality Infrastructure and Technical Regulatory Framework are essential as they provide crucial links to global trade, market access and export competitiveness through their contribution to consumer confidence in product safety, quality and the environment.Since inception in 1997 BOBS has published more than 1700 standards through 48 technical committees across several sectors of the economy; 109 certification licences have been issued against some of these standards. Currently 46 Botswana Standards are being implemented through the standards regulations with a view to protecting the health and safety of consumers as well as protection of the environment.

On her note, BOBS Vice Chairperson of the Standards Council, Professor Edward Dintwa said standards are powerful tools for helping organisations that implement them to realize their potential, have access and compete in the global marketplace. “In this highly competitive and complex world, issues of sustainability and productivity, viewed from economic, environmental and societal perspectives require that businesses must be more efficient in their operations, which can be achieved through the implementation of standards”.

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