Saturday, November 15, 2008

Staff Motivation and Fraud

I have been thinking a lot lately about staff and demotivators. really the kind of things that drive staff to levels of risking their very employment to call for strikes, sit ins and general lethargy or go slow. this is also in the wake of business threatening strikes being reported from Kenya Airways and the likes. the teachers strike for pay is now almost part of our own culture as Kenya.

A number of things get said about motivation and employee moral but none ever gets to to be specified about the role of moral hazards in the part of senior business leaders in companies. The one thing that does get ignored by managers most times is like parents do with their kids they assume that their junior staff do not see what they are doing. that the staff aren't aware of reasons why this manager is keen on getting this project complete as opposed to the other. or why this thing is being pushed etc. Employee gets demotivated when they realise that while the senior manager or CEO refused to give a raise or refused to approve a training, conference or overtime citing cost cutting or cost leadership, the same manager signed a huge over priced tender since he had a major cut in it. from that point that staff will go on a go slow or engage in his own fraud at his level. such staff then start to look for any means possible to get advantage from the company and may even start stealing from customers. We have seen how this is capable of bringing down companies.

In the past i used to think that what ails our nation most was tribalism. Well i still think this is a major problem. but a much bigger issue is really the acculturation of fraud. the vice is so in the blood of Kenyans that they don't see it. they only see the ones highlighted by the media in the scale of anglo leasing etc. I was talking to someone and he could not see that buying goods at staff price to sell outside at market price was actually defrauding the company!

Last Wednesday i left work feeling extremely low after i realized that a colleague i respected so much was actually defrauding the company i work for and making big money out of every contract signed. i got to know that he was the force behind contractors who keep on getting contracts in spite of repeated mediocre service and permanently delayed projects. I felt like strangling the stupid villain. but he is quite a rich dude now and i was made to understand that he is a hot live wire. touch at your own peril.

But driving home, i couldn't help but see other forms of fraud, like the driver who cut in front of me, or the one who disrespected the lights or even the one i met head on on the wrong lane also known locally as overlapping. All this to me is fraud but it appears we have become so accustomed that the person who avoids such things is the abnormal one. Its a real sad state of affairs


  1. I remember trying to explain to a pal how dangerous for Kenya it was when he gave that cop Ksh150 bribe every time he passed him with his truck. It was like speaking Greek to him.
    Infact, he was saddened by my naivety...

  2. am going to start a campaign to make sure ua blog appears on the 'blogs of note list'.

  3. @MainaT, sounds familiar
    @REddings, can i hear an Amen?

  4. Thank many times Odegle for your good article.

    Fraud and corruption has the Contagious effect on all around the perpetrator. Staff actually learn to defraud an employer from the senior employees who are involved in it with alot of impunity.It is generrally accepted that staff do commit fraud due to need or greed.

    If staff are shown good examples by their seniors in adhering to laid policies, procedures and a code of conduct, they will surely be less likely to commit fraud research has shown.

    Sosthenes Bichang'a,CFE
    Practising Fraud Examiner


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.