Minister of Foreign Affairs and Aviation of Saint Kitts and Nevis, the Hon. Mark Brantley on Wednesday, March 9, 2022, virtually addressed a Special Meeting of the Permanent Council of the Organization of American States (OAS), that was convened to discuss the topic “Incentivizing Work Effort”.
The Special Meeting was proposed by the Chair of the Permanent Council, H.E. Dr. Everson Hull, Permanent Representative of Saint Kitts and Nevis, to shed light on a topic that he deems of supreme importance to the region, if the region is to overcome the protracted declining rates of productivity and stimulate economic growth.
Minister Brantley in his remarks noted, “The decline in productivity…is deeply troubling. It is an issue of major national and regional concern. It dampens the flow of Foreign Direct Investment to the region. It snuffs out employment and the flow of income and, it propels a human capital flight, as our best and brightest head for the exits, in search of better alternative opportunities.” He further noted, “If we continue the practice of compensating everyone at the same level it means that … some individuals will not give that extra effort because there is no reward in it for me… [Therefore], we dampen down the performance of everyone, by not incentivizing those who do well.”
Foreign Minister Brantley admonished, “If we were to incentivize the performance of those who do well, that will have a bottom-up effect, in the sense that others will be motivated. I want to be like him or her, because they are making more, they are doing better, because of their performance.” He further remarked, “Hopefully this conversation will lead to change in policy across the OAS, across the member states and certainly here in Saint Kitts and Nevis”. He concluded his address, by stating, “Hopefully we can continue this discussion, well beyond the Chairmanship of Dr. Hull, as we seek to reengineer our region and to make us best in class.” The other panellists contributing to this important discussion, at this special meeting were distinguished son of the soil, Dr. Larry Quinlan, Former Global Chief Information Officer for Deloitte and Mr. Enrique Pérez, Senior Client Partner based in Korn Ferry’s Mexico City office, a consultancy firm which assists multinational companies in implementing performance and reward programs.
The discussion was well received by Member States of the OAS, and Chairman and Permanent Representative Hull, was lauded for bringing a “non-traditional issue” to the Permanent Council for discussion.