Archives Mark J Galea

From Dijon to Malta

Dear Readers,

Well, here we are, this is my first note on Quad’s blog, I hope you’ll find it as interesting as my predecessors’ ones. Before saying anything else let me introduce myself : my name is Guilhem, I’m 20 years old, I come from the city of Dijon in Burgundy… land of fine wine and of the world known mustard. I’m currently in the process of completing a Bachelor’s Degree at the University of Grenoble-Alpes. In order to do so a three month internship abroad was mandatory. Since I’m looking into continuing my studies in the area of Human Resources next year, I might as well try to gain more experience in that field.

At first I really concentrated my internship research on the United States, but as weeks were going by I oriented myself to closer destinations. I really wanted to practice my English, to perfect it, and, since I love Summer, the sun, and so on, Malta seemed to be the destination that filled all the criterias.

To say the truth, before arriving on the Island I really didn’t know much about it except that a lot of young people go in the Summer to party and to try to get a tan.

I was really happy to be accepted at Quad Consultancy. The interview I had with them, really made me think it would be the right place to learn more about HR and about the Maltese culture. And I’ve got to say, I was right… Well, even if it’s been a short time since my arrival when typing this, I sincerely think it will only continue getting better and better as the weeks go on.

It’s only been a couple weeks since I arrived, and I can already say that I love the weather, even though it has been a little foggy in the mornings, the sun always comes out at some point and it’s very nice. For what I have seen in my first days on the Island, Malta seems to be the result of a mix of Italian, Arabic and English cultures, they also have their own weird language, but don’t worry, the majority of Maltese have a very decent level of English (better than French people !). I’m renting an apartment in Lija with friends (a bit far from the dynamic zone) but I had the opportunity to walk down Sliema’s seashore, and it was very nice.

I’m eager to know more about Malta and about Maltese culture to share it with you.

Guilhem

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Chers Lecteurs,

Voici ma première contribution au blog de Quad Consultancy, en espérant que vous trouviez cette note aussi intéressante que celles de mes prédécesseurs. Avant d’aller plus loin je vais me présenter : je me prénomme Guilhem, j’ai 20 ans et je viens de Dijon en Bourgogne. Je suis en fin de troisième année de Licence Management à l’Université de Grenoble-Alpes. La dernière étape pour valider mon année était de réaliser un stage de trois mois à l’étranger. J’envisage de poursuivre mes études dans les Ressources-Humaines l’an prochain, c’est pour ça que j’ai essayé de trouver un stage dans ce domaine. J’ai commencé par concentrer mes recherches sur les Etats-Unis, mais les semaines passaient sans que je ne reçoive de réponse positive, c’est ainsi que je me suis donc tourné vers des destinations plus proches. J’avais vraiment envie de mettre en pratique mon anglais, pour le perfectionner, et amoureux du soleil et de la chaleur je me suis donc naturellement tourné vers Malte.
Honnêtement avant d’arriver sur l’île je ne savais pas vraiment à quoi m’attendre, à part que beaucoup de jeunes y vont pour festoyer et se dorer la pillule.

Je suis vraiment heureux d’avoir été accepté chez Quad Consultancy. L’entretien que j’ai eu avec eux m’a laissé penser que ca serait l’endroit idéal où je pourrai à la fois en apprendre plus sur les Ressources Humaines, et apprendre à mieux connaître la culture maltaise. Même si je ne suis pas ici depuis longtemps je n’ai pas l’impression de m’être trompé, et je pense que ca ne fera que s’améliorer.

Je ne suis que là depuis deux semaines mais je peux déjà dire que j’adore le temps, malgré la brume matinale et le vent. Le soleil trouve toujours un moyen de montrer le bout de son nez. Du peu que j’ai vu, Malte semble être un mélange de culture arabe, anglaise et italienne. Les locaux parlent également un langage un peu bizarre, mais pas d’inquiétude ils parlent presque tous l’anglais (mieux que nous en tout cas). Je loue un appartement en collocation avec des amis, c’est un peu loin de la zone dynamique de l’île mais ca ne m’a pas empêché d’aller marcher le long de la mer à Sliema.

J’ai vraiment envie de mieux connaître Malte et la culture maltaise. Je me ferai un plaisir de le partager avec vous.

Guilhem

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Estimados lectores,

Ya está mi primera intervención en el blog de Quad, espero que será tan interesante como las de mis predecesores. Discúlpenme si hay errores, todavía tengo mucho a aprender en castellano. Pero bueno, lo importante es que me entienden, ¿o no? Antes de decir más, tengo que presentarme : me llamo Guilhem, tengo 20 años, vengo de Dijon en Borgoña… ciudad famosa por sus vinos y su mundialmente conocida mostaza. Llegué ahora en el último año de mi diplomatura de gestión en la Universidad de Grenoble-Alpes, para validarla tengo que lograr una práctica de tres meses fuera de Francia. El año que sigue querría hacer una licenciatura en RR.HH, por eso intenté encontrar una pasantía en ese sector. Empecé a buscar ella en los EE.UU, pero después de semanas sin ninguna respuesta positiva orienté mis búsquedas en destinaciones más cercanas.
Quería estar en lugar donde hay sol, calor y donde -además de todo- se habla inglés. Y en Europa no hay un montón de lugares de ese tipo… naturalmente empecé a buscar en Malta.

Honestamente, antes de llegar acá no sabía qué esperar, sabía que cada verano estudiantes europeos de todos lados se juntan en la isla para festejar y broncear.
Estoy muy alegre de ser seleccionado como pasante por Quad Consultancy. La entrevista que tuve con ellos fue muy interesante, y me dio la impresión que sería la empresa perfecta para aprender y desarrollar mi conocimiento de los RR.HH y para aprender más de la cultura de Malta y de su pueblo. Aunque no estoy acá desde mucho tiempo tengo la impresión que no me he engañado.

Hace solamente dos semanas que estoy acá, pero ya puedo decir que me encanta el tiempo mediterráneo, aunque la niebla matinal y el viento que hay de vez en cuando. Malta es de lo que vi una mezcla entre cultura árabe, italiana e inglés. La gente habla tiene una idioma extraño pero la mayoría de ellos tienen un nivel de inglés alto (mejor que los franceses jaja!). Alquilo un departamento con amigos en una ciudad fuera de la zona dinámica, pero no me impide de caminar a lo largo del mar en Sliema y de ir de joda como quiero.

Tengo muchísimas ganas de conocer más es lugarcito y de aprender más de la cultura maltés. Será un placer compartir todo con ustedes.

Guille

Job of the Week

Our Client, a leading corporate services provider, are looking for Accounts Executives to join their growing team.
Key Responsibilities
  • Preparation of financial statements
  • VAT returns
  • Compile income tax returns
  • Assist in compliance and corporate aspect
Requirements
  • Preferably be in possession of (or final stages) an ACCA qualifiaction or equivalent
  • Experience will be considered an asset
  • Good word and spreadsheet software experience
  • Able to work on own innitiative
  • Excellent communication skills in English. Maltese is preferable
Interested candidates are requested to send an updated copy of their CV in MS Word format (your name in the file name) to Lillian at [email protected]
Should you require further information, please, call on +356 2099 4444.

France to Malta

Hello ! My name is Sabrina, I’m 26 years old and I come from Dijon, in France.

I finished my studies not so long ago, and now I’m an occupational psychologist doing an internship in Malta.

Why this additional recruitment internship? I already have some professional experience in the fields of professional orientation and insertion, and I wanted to discover the “other side” of this job and diversify my skills, especially improve my level of English. I also wanted to discover another country with a different culture and history. I love to travel so much, so I’m always motivated and happy to meet people with a different vision of life, it’s really rewarding.

Why Malta ? Malta is a historic island with a strong culture which attracted me. It is also a place where many people are fluent in English, and there are a lot of job opportunities.

I have been in Malta for 3 weeks now, the first week was spent discovering and visiting different places in this country. For example, I went to the historic city like Mdina which I fell in love with, and the 3 old cities (Cospicua, Senglea, Vittoriosa) located in front of Valletta. I also spent time in more peaceful places like Gozo with its beautiful beaches and high cliffs, it was really great to see it.

People here are really friendly, they are less stressed than in France (except on the road) and it feels good to be in Maltese mode 🙂 You can also meet a lot of people who come from different countries, it’s really rewarding.

So I started my internship within Quad Consultancy 1 week ago and I’m really happy to be part of this team. My colleagues are attentive and really caring with the trainees. I’m staying for 5 months so I know that I could really evolve my skills with different recruitment tasks and responsibilities.

In summary I have a really good first impression of Malta : it is a mix between many countries like Italy, Maghreb, England, France… You can also see it in the Maltese language and culture, and this is what makes this country so attractive to me.

 

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Bonjour ! Je m’appelle Sabrina, j’ai 26 ans et je viens de Dijon, en France. J’ai terminé mes études il n’y a pas longtemps, et maintenant je suis Psychologue du travail en stage à Malte.

Pourquoi ce stage supplémentaire ? J’ai déjà de l’expérience professionnelle dans le domaine de l’orientation et de l’insertion professionnelle, et je voulais découvrir “l’autre” côté de ce métier et diversifier mes compétences, surtout augmenter mon niveau d’Anglais. Je voulais aussi découvrir un nouveau pays avec une culture et une histoire différente. J’adore tellement voyager, alors je suis toujours motivée et contente de rencontrer des personnes avec une vision de la vie différente, c’est tellement enrichissant.

Pourquoi Malte ? Malte est une île historique avec une forte culture qui m’a attirée. C’est aussi un endroit dont beaucoup de Maltais sont bilingues en Anglais, et il y a beaucoup d’opportunités professionnelles.

Cela fait 3 semaines que je suis à Malte maintenant, la première semaine à été consacrée à la découverte et visite des différents endroits de ce pays. Par exemple, je suis allée aux villes historiques comme Mdina dont je suis tombée amoureuse, et les 3 vieilles villes (Cospicua, Senglea, Vittoriosa) situées en face de la Valette. J’ai aussi passé du temps dans des endroits plus tranquilles comme Gozo avec ses belles plages et hautes falaises, c’était vraiment super de voir tout ça.

Les gens ici sont vraiment amicaux, ils sont moins stressés qu’en France (à part sur la route) et ça fait du bien d’être sur un mode Maltais Vous pouvez aussi rencontrer beaucoup de personnes qui viennent de différents pays, c’est vraiment enrichissant.

Donc j’ai commencé mon stage au sein de Quad Consultancy il y a 1 semaine et je suis vraiment contente de faire partie de cette équipe. Mes collègues sont à l’écoute et vraiment bienveillants avec les stagiaires. Je reste pour 5 mois donc je sais que mes compétences évolueront avec différentes tâches et responsabilités en recrutement.

En conclusion j’ai vraiment une bonne première impression de Malte : c’est vraiment un mélange de plusieurs pays comme l’Italie, le Magrheb, l’Angleterre, la France… Vous pouvez aussi le voir dans la langue Maltaise et la culture, et c’est ce qui fait que ce pays m’attire tellement.

 

Finally in Malta!!

Hello everyone !

My name is Lindsay, I am 22 and I come from Nantes, it is a city located in the North West of France. It is a city known for it’s cakes called “Biscuit Nantais”.

I have passed my Bachelors Degree in Human Ressources so I decided to move abroad for an internship to improve my English, but also to develop my skills in Human Resources. In fact, I have already worked as a Human Resources Assistant during my Bachelors Degree in a maritime shipping company. During this training I was in charge of making contrats, participating in the payroll process and organizing training for the seafarers. Thanks to this experience it made me want to continue my studies in this field.

I arrived in Malta on the 18th February and I literally love this place. The people are very friendly and kind except bus drivers sometimes are unpleasant. I rent a beautiful flat in Sliema near the ferry, I share this flat with 3 other girls who come from Japan and France. We are very close and do a lot of activities together like parties, dinners, or have a walk in Sliema.

I chose Malta for my internship because I wanted to discover another country, culture and also internationalize my resume for my future career. And the weather of course!!

I am doing my internship at Quad Consultancy for 3 months, my tasks will include participating at all the recruitment process, support the team and participate in some job interviews.

I am very exciting to work with these lovely people.

Lindsay

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Bonjour tous le monde!

Je me présente je m’appelle Lindsay j’ai 22 ans et je suis de Nantes. Nantes est une ville située au nord-ouest de la France. Cette charmante ville est connue pour ses délicieux biscuits nommés les Biscuits Nantais.

J’ai validé cette année ma licence professionnelle Gestionnaire des Ressources humaines, une fois celle-ci validé j’ai décidé de partir à l’étranger pour effectuer un stage professionnel dans le but d’améliorer mon anglais et mes compétences. En effet j’ai réalisé ma licence en alternance dans une entreprise maritime, j’avais le poste d’assistante RH, j’étais en charge de préparer les contrats, participer à la paie, préparer les formations pour les marins

Je suis arrivée à Malte le 18 février 2018, et j’aime vraiment ce pays. Les habitants sont très accueillants et gentils sauf les chauffeurs de bus qui sont souvent désagréable. J’habite dans un superbe appartement situé en plein centre de Sliema que je partage avec 3 autres filles originaire du Japon et de France. Nous sommes très proches et nous faisons beaucoup d’activités ensemble tel que sortir en soirée, préparer des dîners, ou bien se promener aux alentours de Sliema.

J’ai choisi de partir à Malte car j’avais envie de découvrir un autre pays, une culture différente je cherchais aussi à être dépayser et c’est le cas.
Mais avant tout je cherche à internationaliser mon CV pour ma futur carrière.

Je suis actuellement en stage chez Quad Consultancy pour 3 mois j’aurais pour mission de participer au processus de recrutement, accompagner l’équipe dans leurs tâches mais aussi participer aux recrutements.

J’ai hâte de travailler dans cette nouvelle équipe !

Lindsay

Let Us Deal With Your Headaches

As a business leader or manager, your job is to focus on the smooth running of your organisation.

This usually causes many unnecessary headaches to any business – irrespective of the industry it operates in. At Quad Consultancy, we fully understand your difficulties.

For this reason, we have assimilated a group of top-end professionals from various disciplines to help you run your business efficiently.

We’re here to make your life easier. Let us deal with your headaches.

Contact us at [email protected] for more details.

Employee Retention

Employee retention is one of the major challenges every business faces the world over. Our Managing Director was recently invited by the Malta Employers’ Association to talk about this subject on their weekly TV programme.

During this brief programme, the speakers discussed the reasons why people leave organisations, and why they stay on.

Also, if you’d like to know more about employee retention strategies, please feel free to contact us at i[email protected].

The Main Differences Between Malta and My Home Country

It has almost been 3 months since I came to Malta. During my stay here, I noticed some remarkable differences from the Netherlands, and I think it would be interesting, to sum up some big differences to share my image of Malta (or the Netherlands) with everyone.

Traffic
First, the traffic in Malta is really different. I mentioned this in my previous blog but Maltese people have less patience than the Dutch. In Malta the traffic is more chaotic and there’s a lot of cars on the road. The amount of cars is not strange because apparently, this little island is the most densely populated country in Europe. And I thought Holland was overpopulated!

Furthermore, during my internship I see applicants rejecting job offers because “the employer’s offices are too far!”. In the Netherlands, it is normal for people to travel far for their job but in Malta it seems to be different. But I don’t know if it’s because Maltese are used to having everything closer, or primarily because of the traffic.

Public Holidays
The Maltese get to enjoy more public holidays than the Dutch. Malta is a more religious country and almost every month the Maltese have a day off to celebrate a public holiday. In summer, every village celebrates the feast of their patron saint. The streets turn into a party with the whole neighbourhood and there will be music, colourful decorations and lots of alcohol.

I don’t think the public holidays in the Netherlands are as special as in Malta. The only celebration I miss in Malta is ‘Sinterklaas’. This is one of the celebrations that are very big in the Netherlands and it’s a shame I miss it this year.

Architecture
The colour of the houses was the first thing I noticed when I arrived in Malta three months ago. The predominant colour is white because of the limestone that is quarried and used to build houses. The Dutch houses are darker (because of the red or brown bricks we use to build our houses), and more houses are detached because of the gardens around them. The houses in the touristic areas in Malta are quite plain and simple. However, when you go to the towns and villages, the houses have more character and most of them are quite old with lovely balconies that are only found in Malta. Also, the churches in Malta are very detailed and pretty, especially on the inside.

Cleanliness
I think it’s remarkable how often people clean and sweep the streets in Malta. I see many people cleaning the street in front of their house washing the area with soap and water. Every morning I see a guy at the bus stop sweeping all the trash from the streets. Because of that, the streets in Malta are very clean. In the Netherlands, I don’t see this that often but maybe because we have the rain that cleans the road.By contrast, I think it’s a little bit odd that Maltese don’t use wheely bins or other big containers for their garbage collection. The full refuse bags are placed in front of the door on the streets, and that definitely creates an eyesore!.

Weather
Obviously, the weather is very different than the Netherlands. It’s December but last week I could go outside with only a t-shirt in the morning sun and I also managed to get a tan. Yippeeee!. This is difficult to imagine when you live in the Netherlands. In the summer the temperatures in Malta went up to almost 40 degrees while in Holland the temperatures rarely went up to 30 degrees.

Compared to August and October, It rained a lot in November here in, Malta and I have seen some tropical showers that month. Road drains aren’t very good here, so when it rains the roads will turn into little rivers (as deep as your ankles). Moreover, it looks like cars and buses are floating instead of driving. The distribution of the water in Holland is better but unfortunately, rain is way more normal in my home country.

I still enjoy my life in Malta. It’s a shame I have to go back to Holland next week.

Lots of love,
Romee

 

Grote verschillen tussen Malta en mijn thuisland

Ik ben nu al bijna 3 maanden in Malta. In mijn tijd hier zijn mij veel dingen opgevallen die heel anders zijn dan in Nederland. Het leek me dus interessant om een paar grote verschillen te benoemen om iedereen een goed beeld van Malta (of Nederland) te kunnen geven.

Verkeer
Als eerste is het verkeer echt heel anders in Malta. Ik heb dit al in een vorige blog ook genoemd maar Maltesers hebben een andere rijstijl dan Nederlanders. Ze rijden in Malta agressiever en er zijn enorm veel auto’s op de weg. Het eiland is ook het dichtstbevolkte land van Europa. Het gemiddelde aantal inwoners per vierkante kilometer is hier drie keer zo groot dan in Nederland. En ik dacht dat Nederland dichtbevolkt was.

Verder zie ik tijdens mijn stage dat Maltesers soms banen niet aannemen terwijl deze toch relatief dichtbij wonen. In Nederland reizen mensen wat af voor een baan maar dit lijkt in Malta niet het geval. Maar ik weet niet of dit komt doordat ze meer gewend zijn om alles dichterbij te hebben op het eiland of alleen door het verkeer.

Feestdagen
In Malta zijn er meer en leukere feestdagen dan in Nederland. Malta is een gelovig land en bijna elke maand heeft men een dag of twee vrij omdat er een feestdag is. In de zomer viert elk dorp van zijn beschermheilige. Op de straten ontstaan er dan grote buurtfeesten met muziek, kleurrijke versieringen en veel drankjes.

Ik vind de feesten in Nederland niet zo bijzonder als in Malta. Wat ik wel jammer vind, is dat ik dit jaar niks heb meegekregen van het Nederlandse feest ‘Sinterklaas’. Dit is een van de feesten die wel heel groot worden gevierd in Nederland.

Architectuur
De kleur van de huizen is het eerste wat me gelijk opviel toen ik in Malta arriveerde drie maanden geleden. De overheersende kleur is okergeel door de kalksteen. Kalksteen is het meest gebruikte bouwmateriaal voor huizen en het wordt op het eiland zelf verkregen uit de rotsen. De Nederlandse huizen zijn veel donkerder (door de rode of bruine stenen die we gebruiken) maar om de huizen heen is meer plek voor een tuin. In de toeristische en drukke plaatsen zijn de gebouwen niet zo mooi. Echter, als je meer naar de lokale steden en dorpen gaat vind je mooie oude huizen met hele leuke balkonnetjes. Deze balkonnetjes zijn alleen te vinden in Malta. Ook de kerken in Malta zijn heel gedetailleerd en mooi, vooral aan de binnenkant.

Schoon
Ik vind het opvallend hoe vaak de straten hier worden geveegd en schoongemaakt. Ik zie veel mensen die de stoep voor hun huis met een sopje schoonpoetsen en elke ochtend is er iemand bij de bushalte het afval aan het opruimen. Ik zie dit niet zo vaak in Nederland. De straten in Malta zijn dus mooi schoon. Ik vind het wel bijzonder dat er in Malta nog niet gebruik wordt gemaakt van containers. De volle vuilniszakken worden aan de kant van de weg gezet en dit maakt de straat toch wel rommelig.

Weer
Het weer is natuurlijk een groot verschil. Het is al december maar vorige week heb ik nog in een t-shirt buiten gelopen in de ochtendzon en ik heb voor mijn doen nog steeds een mooi kleurtje van de zon. Jippie! Dit kun je je bijna niet voorstellen als je in Nederland woont. In de zomer hebben de temperaturen hier tegen de 40 graden aangezeten terwijl in Nederland zelden de 30 graden zijn gehaald.

Vergeleken met augustus en oktober, heeft het in november veel geregend en dit heb ik ook een paar keer heftig meegemaakt. De voorzieningen tegen de regen in Malta zijn niet zo best dus er ontstaan overal rivieren op straat als het regent (tot boven je enkels zo diep). Daarbij lijkt het alsof bussen en auto’s drijven in plaats van rijden. In Nederland is dit beter geregeld maar in tegenstelling tot Malta is regen daar helaas de normaalste zaak van de wereld.

Ik vermaak me nog goed hier. Helaas ga ik volgende week alweer terug naar Nederland.

Veel liefs,
Romee

Job of the Week

The Client
Our client, an ISO Certified and market leader in the Service industry, are now looking for a Group HR Manager to join their team.

Key Responsibilities:

  • Managing the Group’s HR Team effectively
  • Developing and implement HR strategies and initiatives aligned with the overall business strategy
  • Bridging the management and employee relations by addressing demands, grievances or other issues
  • Managing relations with the trade union, and other statutory bodies
  • Managing the recruitment and selection process
  • Supporting current and future business needs through the development, engagement, motivation and preservation of human capital
  • Developing and monitoring overall HR strategies, systems, tactics and procedures across the Group’s organisations
  • Implementing, managing and overseeing a performance appraisal system that drives high performance
  • Maintaining pay plan and benefits programmes
  • Assessing training needs to apply and monitor Learning & Development programmes
  • Liaising with the operational departments to ensure that they’re properly services
  • Advises Management on HR strategy and people-related matters
  • Foresees future business needs and advises Management to prepare accordingly
  • Provides support as necessary to operational departments

Requirements

  • Previous working experience as HR Manager with a minimum of 3 years’ experience in such a role
  • Excellent people and interpersonal skills
  • A proven track record of achieving results as agreed with Management
  • Strong leadership skills
  • Ambition to grow as the company continues to grow
  • Excellent negotiation skills
  • Thorough knowledge of Maltese and EU employment laws and regulations
  • Knowledge of HR systems and payroll systems would be considered an asset
  • A tertiary level of education is desired

Interested candidates are requested to send an updated copy of their CV in MS Word format (your name in the file name) to David at [email protected].

Should you require further information call on: +356 20 99 44 4

My Adventure in Malta and Gozo

Last week a friend from the Netherlands came to visit me so I took a few days off work to go on a tour around Malta and for a mini holiday in Gozo. Gozo is a sister island of Malta and I think it’s more beautiful, old fashioned and natural than Malta. The island is small, even smaller than the Dutch Wadden- island Terschelling!

We hired a car for Malta and Gozo. I don’t have my driving licence yet (I failed before I came to Malta 🙁 ) but also when you are sitting next to the driver it’s a big adjustment to drive here. Malta is an old colony of England so they drive on the left side and the wheel is on the right side. Moreover, the traffic is very chaotic: there are a lot of cars and it seems like nobody pays a lot of attention to the traffic rules.

So, we went touring for approximately 4 days and I will tell you what we have been done:

~ Tuesday ~

I didn’t take Monday and Tuesday off from work so I worked on my internship on Tuesday morning. Late in the afternoon we took the car and we drove through Malta. First we went to Mdina. A big part of the “Game of Thrones” has been filmed in this city so if you’ve seen the series, you can imagine what it looks like. It’s like you’ve landed in the Middle Ages and with the high walls it’s like you’re in a maze. Then we drove to the Dingli Cliffs where we saw THE perfect sunset. Before we went to eat we drove to the Blue Grotto real quick, which was less fun than expected. The sun was gone so we saw absolutely nothing. Tip: Go during the day, not in the evening.

~ Wednesday ~

Early in the morning, we went to Golden Bay. This is the most beautiful beach of Malta. We lay in the sun for a couple of hours (and we went back as red as a lobster). After that we went to Popeye Village. This is the village where the film “Popeye” with Robin Williams has been filmed. It was so cute. There were only wooden houses with a little beach next to the village. Then we went with the ferry to our B&B in Gozo. We were kindly welcomed with a cold beer and we ate something in our village Xagħra.

~ Thursday ~

Our day started with a delicious English breakfast with all the guests in the B&B. After breakfast we decided to go to the famous old temple of Gozo, the temple of Ggantija. It was wonderful and there is a panoramic view of Gozo. Next, we drove back to the ferries and we sailed with a boat to another island between Gozo and Malta. The name of the island is Comino and it’s known for the Blue Lagoon. Unfortunately, many people know this place so it was very busy, even on a normal Thursday afternoon! We ended the day in the fishing village Marsalforn in Gozo where we ate good fish with a nice view of the boats in the harbor.

~ Friday ~

The last day… After another delicious breakfast we went to the Azure Window. At least, the place where it should be because it collapsed this year. It should be a beautiful arch, now it’s just a broken rock. But it was nice to see the difference. Then we went to the capital Victoria for a picnic in a garden and we wondered around the city for a while. Before we took the ferry back we drove randomly along the coast. Along the salt reservoirs, the Ramla Bay … and then we came at the hidden pearl of Gozo! We saw a place with a few parked cars, so we did the same and we went down stairs next to the parking lot. It was so beautiful! The most beautiful beach I’ve seen so far, especially because there were only a few people. My collegues told me that this beach was called Wied il-Għasri. In the water there were fish and octopus so it was a pretty place to go snorkeling. I would definitely go there again.

It was a magnificent week.

Lots of love,

Romee

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Op avontuur in Malta en Gozo

Vorige week is er een vriend uit Nederland langsgekomen dus toen heb ik een half weekje vrijgenomen van stage om door Malta te toeren en voor een mini vakantie in Gozo. Gozo is het zustereiland naast Malta en het is op veel plekken mooier, ouderwetser en natuurlijker dan Malta. Het eiland is klein, net iets kleiner dan het Nederlandse Waddeneiland Terschelling!

We hadden een auto gehuurd voor in Malta en Gozo. Ik heb nog geen rijbewijs (ik ben gezakt voordat ik naar Malta ging 🙁 ) maar ook als je naast de bestuurder zit is het zo wennen om hier te rijden. Malta is een oude kolonie van Engeland dus ze rijden links en sturen rechts. Daarbij is het verkeer overal zo chaotisch; er zijn veel auto’s en het lijkt alsof niemand echt goed op de voorrangs- en inhaalregels let.

Maargoed, we zijn ongeveer 4 dagen gaan toeren en dit hebben we allemaal meegemaakt:

~ Dinsdag ~

Ik had maandag en dinsdag niet vrij genomen van stage dus dinsdag heb ik eerst wat werk gedaan. Tegen het einde van de middag hebben we de auto gepakt en zijn we gaan rijden door Malta. Als eerste zijn we naar Mdina gegaan. Hier is een groot deel van de “Game of Thrones” opgenomen dus als je dat hebt gezien kun je je wel voorstellen hoe het er in dat dorpje eruit ziet. Het lijkt wel alsof je in de Middeleeuwen bent beland en met de hoge muren lijkt het net een doolhof. Daarna zijn we doorgereden naar de Dingli Cliffs waar we DE perfecte zonsondergang hebben gezien. Voordat we gingen eten zijn we nog snel naar de Blue Grotto gereden, dit viel echter een beetje tegen. De zon was al onder dus we zagen precies niks. Tip: Ga er overdag heen, niet ’s avonds.

~ Woensdag ~

Vroeg in de ochtend zijn we eerst naar Golden Bay gereden, het mooiste strand van Malta. We hebben lekker een paar uur in het zonnetje gelegen (en zijn als kreeften weer weggegaan). Toen zijn we naar Popeye Village gegaan. Dit is het dorpje waar de film “Popeye” met Robin Williams is opgenomen. Het was zo schattig. Allemaal houten huisjes met een klein strandje om te zwemmen. Hierna hebben we snel de pont genomen naar Gozo en zijn we naar onze B&B gegaan. We werden vriendelijk ontvangen met een lekker koud biertje waarna we naar een restaurantje in ons dorpje Xagħra zijn gereden.

~ Donderdag ~

Onze dag begon met een heerlijk Engels ontbijtje met alle gasten van de B&B. We besloten om na het ontbijt naar een bekende oude tempel in Gozo te gaan, de tempel van Ggantija. Het was bijzonder om te zien en vanaf de tempel was er een mooi uitzicht over een groot deel van Gozo. Vervolgens zijn we weer terug gegaan naar de haven en zijn we naar een eilandje tussen Malta en Gozo gevaren. Het eilandje heet Comino en staat bekend om de Blue Lagune. Helaas zijn er veel mensen die deze mooie plek kennen dus het was enorm druk. Op een gewone donderdagmiddag! We hebben de dag afgesloten in het vissersdorpje Marsalforn in Gozo waar we heerlijk vis hebben gegeten met uitzicht op de mooie bootjes in de haven.

~ Vrijdag ~

Laatste dag… Na ons wederom heerlijke ontbijtje zijn we naar de Azure Window gereden. Tenminste de plek waar hij zou moeten staan want het is dit jaar ingestort. Het zou een mooie boog moeten zijn, nu is het gewoon een afgebroken steen. Het was wel leuk om het verschil te zien. Daarna zijn we gaan picknicken in een heel mooi parkje in de hoofdstad Victoria en we hebben deze stad verder bekeken. Voordat we de pont weer terug namen zijn we random gaan rijden langs de kust. Langs de zout reservoirs, de Ramla Bay … en toen kwamen we bij het verstopte pareltje van Gozo! We zagen een plek waar een paar auto’s geparkeerd stonden, dus wij deden hetzelfde en liepen een trap naast de parkeerplaats af. Het was zo mooi! Het mooiste strand tot nu toe, vooral omdat er zo weinig mensen zaten. Mijn collega’s zeiden dat het strandje Wied il-Għasri heet. Er waren vissen en octopussen dus het was een geweldig stuk om te snorkelen. Hier ga ik zeker nog een keer heen.

Het was een heerlijke week.

Veel liefs,

Romee

How To Be A Bad Boss Effectively

by Mark J Galea

In my (wait a minute. Pause. Stop. I’m 41….so shall I describe my life as long, longish, or short, or relatively short?) professional life, I came across a number of books, articles and papers advising people how to be good or become better managers.

Every single piece of literature under this category aims at converting The Evil Witch/Queen into a whiter-than-white Snow White. I guess, that this creates a gap in the market. So how about addressing those people who want to play the villains at work? Someone needs to acknowledge and address these poor souls, right?

For this reason, I decided to come up with the Bad Boss’s Manual. Political correctness dictates that ignored minorities (or are bad bosses in the majority?) be accepted and embraced. By writing this manual, I feel that not only will they feel embraced, but they will also enjoy a reference guide….a sort of a satanic bible 🙂

Out of respect for generations X, Y and Z who lack enough patience to read articles but have enough time to “invest” in social media, I hereby present you with some brief points to help you become an even worse boss. These are my tips:

1) Empathy is for wusses: You are employed to get a job done. You were given a team to help you achieve YOUR goals….and bonus at the end of the year. Tough luck if they don’t like your style. The door is always open for them to leave and for their substitutes to come through. “Shape up or ship out”: THAT should be your mantra.

2) Terrorise your subordinates: The more your underlings fear you, the more productive they are. This also comes with the added benefit that no one will dare badmouth you. Ever. Not in private. Not in public. Actually, they will praise you with others (both inside and outside the company), and make sure that you get to know they did so. What could possibly give you better gratification than your underlings’ praise? On the flipside, look at how the “kind bosses” get criticised and denigrated in public (both openly and behind their back). Idiots!

3) Divide and conquer: Make sure that you have – at the very least – two factions in your team. Play to their weaknesses and make sure that you can effectively manipulate the weak and insecure team members. In such a scenario, your people will be elbowing each other to curry favour with you. To be in your good books. And while you’re at it, do encourage your underlings to spy on each other and report back to you (1984 style). Reward these loyal servants accordingly. Who can deny that this is a scenario that any manager dreams of?

4) Do your best to lose their trust: If your team fears you already, mistrust is a great bonus! You will become unpredictable in their eyes and THAT’S the one thing they clearly want to avoid. The last thing you want is for your underlings to feel safe. Remember that safe = complacent.

5) Make it clear that you play the political game, and that you have your own agendas: Nothing will make your people feel more insecure and terrorised than the fear of being left out of your grand plan. Actually, they will fight each other out for the leading role of your scheme. They will happily volunteer to do the dirty work for you. They will fight each other to the death like gladiators to climb the beanstalk and steal the magic harp from the giant. Make them play the political game like a video game: kill the ogres to score points. The more they kill, the higher the score…….Which gives me an idea. How about actually creating a leaderboard? No one would want to be at the bottom of the table, right? Muwahhhaaaahaaaaahaa.

6) Badmouth your underlings with other team members AND other managers: If you want to make sure that your underlings will treat you like a deity, you must prevent them from trusting you. Gossip as much as you can….and while you’re at it, make sure to add some of your spice. Go on. Spill the beans. Let them suffer and beg for your kindness.

7) Make sure they don’t trust you: Remember that trust also leads to complacency. If you earn the reputation of bad mouthing people, no one would want to fall victim of your rants. And what’s the best way for them to prevent this? By working hard to be in your good books….and to stay there.

8) Be angry all the time: No one likes to deal with angry people, and this would keep your underlings off your back. Would they dare bothering you with their personal problems? Of course not! Would they come up with some lame excuse for failing in their tasks? Unthinkable. Better still, no one likes to cross an angry manager. Who would be stupid enough to volunteer to fall victim of your wrath? No one should be that stupid, right? And if someone is that stupid, then they shouldn’t be on your team. This is an extremely effective way of getting things done, and achieve your goals.

9) Bark orders at your underlings: Nicities are for softies. Ditch any flowery language and make good use of your voice to show your people that you’re the boss. When ordering them around, make sure to bark your orders thus ensuring that your team is badgered into submission.

10) Be as unfair as possible: Make it clear that you have your own pets. That some animals are more equal than the others. Fairness is for the weak. You must also make sure to be unfair when rewarding your loyal servants. Kick logic and common sense out of the window. Make them crave and work hard for your favours. Convince them to turn their bitter disappointments (when you decide not to give them their rewards) into an even bigger strife for your favours.

11) Avoid consistency at all costs: Consistency makes you predictable; and you don’t want that, do you? Make sure that your underlings are constantly guessing what you’re scheming and that they can never be in a position to predict how you’re going to act. Spice this up by doing things in a diametrically opposed way to what you preach. Avoid acting like this all the time though, otherwise, you’d become consistent. After all, the element of surprise will keep your team motivated to follow your orders to the letter. You also need to master the art of dishonouring promises. Do it tactfully, and you’ll be laughing.

12) Clarity is a weakness: If you want to keep your team under control, make sure that your orders, instructions, and communication are as vague and convoluted as possible. This will inevitably make your underlings come to you asking for direction thus strengthening your power and forging their dependence on you.

13) Denigrate and ridicule your team in public: Make sure that you ridicule different individuals at least once a day. Quash their dreams. Make them understand that they are not worthy…..and keep on reminding them that there IS a reason (or more than one) why YOU are THE manager, and THEY are your servants. THEY are a means to an end. YOUR end. You’ll be amazed by the results you will achieve.

14) Take and keep complete control: Team members are like characters in a video game. You are the player holding the controller. Make sure that you dictate every single step. Every single move. There should be no room for individualism and personal ideas. YOU are the manager and YOU know best. Their role is to do what you say. To follow your instructions. You have no other option but to micromanage your underlings. You’re the only one who knows how every single task has to be carried out  😉

15) You know best: How dare they come up with ideas? How dare they suggest something that’s different to your way of doing things? How dare they question your you?There’s no room for suggestions or any form of discussion. This is yet another reason why micromanagement is the name of the game. Surely IF they were THAT good, THEY’d be managers, right?

16) Make them work hard for you: You will not tolerate anyone who dares to turn up late. It is also unacceptable for you that anyone dares to leave on time. Any “reasons” which – let’s face it – in reality, are excuses should be rubbished straight away. Make it clear that you expect your team to be at work early and leave as late as possible. You shouldn’t be happy to meet deadlines. Impress your bosses by finishing tasks before agreed deadlines. Needless to say, it’s OK for you to leave before any of your underlings.

17) Take all the credit for your underlings’ performance: This is precisely the reason why you need to hold the game controller. How can you claim success if you don’t have complete control? Make sure that your own bosses, your peers and your underlings know that your team’s excellent performance is SOLELY down to your input. If the company ever gets to lose you, there will be no tomorrow! They might as well shut down when you walk out the door.

18) Fire an employee every month: This will definitely keep them on their toes! Fire someone for the stupidest (and most illogical) of reasons, and you will see the team’s productivity soar. Keep this going every month, and you will be unstoppable. And remember: unstoppable = untouchable 😉

19) Hire underachievers: The more unemployable (for others) job candidates are, the more attractive they are for you. You will be the only one who gave them a job after weeks, months or years of searching. They will be forever grateful and will never, ever think of disobeying your orders. Furthermore, not a single one of these underlings will ever even think of dethroning you to take your job.

20) Surround yourself with yesmen: You already have to deal fellow managers and your bosses. Unfortunately, they don’t always do as you say. So why should you allow your underlings to add to the grief and frustration? You are the boss and their sole function is to march to your orders. Make sure that they clearly understand their place in your kingdom. Oops! I mean….department.

I will now leave you with this parting shot: always keep in mind that your decisions are irrevocable and final because, without a shadow of any doubt, you are always unquestionably right!