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Port employees happy Brown is out, Respicio is in

By Nancy I. Maanao

Guam seaport employees overwhelmingly are happy their old general manager, Joanne Brown, was replaced by Rory Respicio and his management team.

Port Authority of Guam employees were invited to anonymously speak their truths in an organizational survey and the results are in showing a high employee morale, job satisfaction and support for management.

The organizational climate survey was conducted earlier this month by the agency’s Human Resources, Planning and Marketing Divisions. Employees were encouraged to anonymously take the survey and 317 out of 356 employees submitted a response which is an 89 percent response rate.

"Brown was a bad manager," one of the employees, who participated in a confidential focus group on the matter, told Kandit News. "She was all about fear, you know? And she wanted to build her big palace even though she knew the docks needed the work. I'm glad she's gone."

"We were happy and we were getting somewhere when Mary Torres was the GM here, par," another employee said. "Then it was all downhill after that when Calvo sent Joanne Brown here. It was like that bad place in Lord of the Rings with the big eye watching, but instead it was the Big Joanne."

“Last year was a tough year for everyone so we wanted to gauge the relationship between the Port organization and its employees to determine if we are moving in a better direction as an agency,” said Port General Manager Rory J. Respicio. “The survey provided employees an opportunity to anonymously rate different levels of our agency as it assessed what they value most in their employment and provided them an opportunity to make positive suggestions for improvement.”

The results showed overwhelming positive results in the areas of job satisfaction and revealed that employees believe that morale is at an all-time high. The survey showed that 99% felt positive that they are proud to work for the Port Authority of Guam and that 97% felt positive that management is accessible and approachable. An amazing 98% of all employees who took the survey felt positive that management has an open-door policy and that the Port is a great place to work. Results showed that 91% felt positive that management is fair, 93% were positive that management was transparent and 92% were positive that management is accountable.

With regards to the situation involving COVID-19, 94% felt positive that management made their work environment a safe place to be during the COVID-19 Pandemic and 96% felt positive that management kept them well informed. The results showed that 94% felt positive that management made it clear to them that they cared about their safety and wellbeing during the COVID-19 Pandemic and 93% felt positive that management provided them the resources they needed to safely do their jobs.

On the topic of career development, 91% felt that superiors share their knowledge and skills on how to handle situations while 81% felt that training opportunities were provided to everyone and 89% felt positive that promotional opportunities were available to them.

When surveyed about Communication, 91% felt positive that their supervisors provide clarification and guidance on the job and 93% felt that management provides them with regular updates on current events and advisories. Results showed that 88% felt their supervisor communicates frequently and honestly about issues that may affect them and that management supports two-way communication between managers and employees.

Employee relations were also a focus of the survey and 90% felt positive that Port Authority employees have a good relationship with each other and 93% felt they were able to approach their supervisor if I they a problem. Meanwhile, 91% felt positive that they could go to management if they had a problem and 92% said their co-workers are always willing to help each other.

Teamwork at the Port also got high remarks as 97% of the employees felt positive that they make an effort to be a part of the team, 92% positively said they support Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero and the Port’s Board of Directors’ vision for the Port and 91% believed that in their departments they work as a team.

“I want to thank the employees who took this survey as an 89% response rate is pretty amazing,” Respicio said. “We are very pleased with the results of this survey. It validates that we’re doing the right things and making considerable progress here while increasing morale as well as openness and transparency.”

Respicio said the port plans to conduct these anonymous climate surveys on a yearly basis.

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Jan 26, 2021


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