Here you can see the interview I gave to HR Professional (June 2015 issue) on “ethics and its magical effects on business”.
HR PROFESSIONAL: What is the main activity of Manifest Services and Manifest Security?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: Manifest Services and Manifest Security are service companies in the field of Facility Management, in the whole range of related activities with the role of a reliable and consistent partner for the customers who choose us. But what I honestly feel I am doing, with my team, is that we are among those trying to “change Greece”. This is what I answer when I am asked what I do at a professional event or in the company of acquaintances and friends.
HR PROFESSIONAL: Then I would not like to delve deeper into the obvious answer, after all whoever is interested can see the services of your companies and the relevant websites that are in fact very adequately informed. But I definitely want to explain to our readers what it means for you “I change Greece” and in fact the time when everyone is talking about changes in our country.
Dionysis Ammolochitis: I have in charge of my employer about 500 people at the moment all over Greece, with specialties that vary: workers, cleaners, security personnel, electricians and other technicians, office workers, etc.
My main concern and primary goal is through the education and working conditions I offer them, to make them feel that their job is very important to society, and that they should aim to be themselves. best of the world in what they do. The best not only compared to others employed in similar positions, not even the best in Greece, but, why not, globally. When they feel that they are the best and are recognized for their optimal production, then they feel really happy, not momentarily, but on a permanent basis, as a result of which they constantly increase their standard of living.
I believe that our country has been led to what the media call the “economic crisis” for several reasons, the most important of which is the complete lack of this culture. So, by cultivating and spreading this culture, not only in our own organization, but also wherever we can, we finally make clear efforts to change Greece.
HR PROFESSIONAL: How did you get the roots, how did you cultivate and finally how did you get your company to operate based on this culture, when culture is not something that is required by codes in just one company, nor do people adopt it overnight in another?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: First of all, there are procedures and policies in our company, which we all follow faithfully, and thus our culture develops. Each employee is trained for his responsibilities, knows the results expected from him and is informed about his contribution to the overall results of the company. These are reflected in weekly statistics that measure its productivity.
So, at all times he knows what his productivity is, what he needs to improve, where he needs to make more effort. Having this information, the management of the company is obliged, on the one hand, to recognize and reward the employees who have high statistics, etc., on the other hand, to help them develop more, if they have positive results. Recognizing them, which for us is taken for granted, is both material and moral, and helping them consists in providing higher education.
HR PROFESSIONAL: Are there no employees who do not perform well or do not make progress in your company?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: Of course there are, this happens in all companies. But I believe that people derive satisfaction and happiness from many areas of their lives. The satisfaction that comes from increasing productivity and high productivity in the labor sector, which is ultimately transformed into happiness, is unmatched by any other sector. The employee is called to be productive.
Low statistics show not only low productivity but also low satisfaction and create an unhappy person. Staying with a person with such feelings in the workplace perpetuates these unpleasant feelings and prevents him from daring to do something else that will eventually make him happy. In addition, it deprives another employee of a job that could perform better. So, employees with low statistics should leave this company and try another one.
HR PROFESSIONAL: What are the conditions for a person to be productive?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: In my opinion, to be a productive person must meet three conditions, or operate on the basis of the triptych: morality, good physical condition and intense interest in what he does. I start with ethics, a concept that includes many, but at the same time is “misunderstood” in our time. Simply put, “morality is a personal matter for everyone, and consists of a rational way of thinking that aims at the highest standard of living for everyone, but also for others.”
In my opinion, morality is a basic condition for any person to be productive, happy and to be a good example for others. Otherwise the person suffers and eventually dissolves from an innate, in all people, system of remorse that is proven to work automatically.
Good physical condition means I take care of and love myself as it deserves, because it is the vessel of the spirit. If a person does not take care to get the right amount of energy with food, water, sleep and rest, then it will not work properly, with many consequences, such as lack of understanding and attention, factors that lead to a confused way of thinking, thus creating problems for him and around him. When I mention that intense interest in something and good intentions are important success factors, the simplest way to explain it is to encourage one to consider why certain areas of one’s life are doing really well.
When he realizes which areas are doing really well, then he will automatically come to the conclusion that in these areas he intended to do well from the beginning, so for these areas he showed strong interest and made the appropriate efforts. Usually people, especially when they face difficulties, or when they fail somewhere, believe in luck, or outside influences and are left like leaves in the wind. I believe that with a stated intention to fight for something and with a keen interest in achieving it, we can be the cause that creates the result.
HR PROFESSIONAL: A good example of “negligence” is the crisis we are experiencing. What do you think about this?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: Exactly, the crisis is the alibi, the excuse we say to ourselves that we are not responsible. And since we are not responsible, we do not try to change anything, and so life leads us where it wants. After all, the fact that we have no responsibility and therefore can not do anything, is what characterizes our country throughout this period of crisis. “I am not guilty of anything, I can do nothing and I live in a state of waiting.”
But life is not waiting, it is action and overcoming obstacles. Typically I could cite the following example. Suppose a company has a liquidity problem. The possible solutions that an entrepreneur would temporarily choose would be to reduce his staff, or even to leave unpaid bills. But this would make his position more difficult and create additional problems. Instead, one real deal would be to simply find ways to increase his company’s sales.
HR PROFESSIONAL: I would like to return to the issue of corporate culture. That is, if a company has persuaded its people to operate on the basis of the threefold “morality, good physical condition, intense interest in what it does” will its course be upward?
Dionysis Ammolochitis: This triptych is the basis of the culture of our human resources. But in the company we have other instructions that complete this basic level. We also consider the “excess exchange” as a main condition. First of all, let me emphasize that the concept of exchange must be inherent in all the activities of an environment: from work to friendship. The exchange makes the relationship between two parties equal and fair. Otherwise, if the concept of exchange does not exist, every communication is degraded because it is not evaluated in its true size.
In Manifest we have analyzed the 4 levels of exchange: the first level is the “stolen” exchange, for example when someone gets a product or service without paying for it. The second level is the “unfair exchange”, ie when someone buys a product or service but is not offered what they have been promised. The third level is the “fair exchange”, when someone buys a product, or a service that offers exactly what they have been promised. The fourth level is the “excess exchange”, and more specifically when one buys a product or service, and in addition gets something more than what was promised.
In our culture there is only the level of excess exchange, nothing else is considered acceptable! We exchange surplus in all our transactions – with our people, our customers, our partners. This is because we believe that when exchanges are made on the basis of excess, that is, in addition, then things develop “magically” and everything flows more smoothly, the positive results come more easily and people feel really happy.