BY VICTOR BWIRE
Mass sackings, redundancies and poaching happening in the media industry in Kenya are not unique or limited to journalists.
It is global and inevitable.
Indeed, it is not that journalists are seeking for favors or sympathy when such happens.
The reflection is about the process – is it a fair process, one that respects standard labor and human rights principles and professionalism?
Are the Human Resources Managers in media enterprises members of the Human Resources Institute of Kenya?
Does this professional body have ethics and acceptable standards, and does it act against its members?
Why must reorganization or re-staffing in media enterprises be dramatic, inhuman, and nasty? Do they care about the corporate brands of their companies?
Given the role of media and as a trusted institution by the public, does it ever matter to those dramatizing the staff re-organization and movement that this erodes confidence and trust in these institutions?
Given that the mass sackings and or redundancies are just facades- since the same enterprises will be hiring en-mass or will be recruiting the same guys in a few months or years, let us handle these processes in a humane manner.
The amount of hatred and hostilities by ex-newsrooms journalists – who in most cases are now working as media relations and communication consultants for counties, ministries, public agencies and private entities is worrying- they were grossly mistreated on leaving media and just hate it.
This in return is making the work of upcoming journalists very difficult.
It makes it difficult for some of these journalists to access information from these institutions.
A number of those being mistreated – including being sacked via emails at midnight- being denied office passwords or access without notice and even having their terminal dues miscalculated deliberately – have set up very profitable startups and media consultancies.
This is amazing! Some of them are currently the main suppliers of content to the same media houses and fixers for sources.
Lessons for my colleagues- do not fight media owners’ wars- create time for yourselves, take offs and annual leaves and through your saving initiatives invest like others.
Do not carry newsrooms in your head.
Create time for social investment, your family, and others- do not hang around newsrooms even when on leave to check emails or pick that free newspaper or to ensure that you have a splash.
Deliver as a professional and as efficient person while there but remember to create time for yourself.