Through cooperation and dialogue with suppliers and a solid network in tourism Signature
Myanmar is contributing the promotion of good working- and living conditions for the
Burmese people. Creating more local jobs is one of the key words.
Tourism creates new jobs
Tourism has great potential in terms of creating new jobs and a higher income for
a lot of people in Myanmar.
I believe we have a responsibility in the tourism sector so that the money we earn
will be spread out as much as possible to the population, says Astri Hole Frederiksen,
owner of Signature Myanmar.
We prefer to choose hotels with local roots, where many of the employees come from
the local areas, says Astri. It is important that the locals feel a sense of "ownership"
of the development that is happening, so they don’t feel that it is outsiders
who come and settle on everything.
"Decency in everything we do."
The tourism sector is often associated with massive CSR challenges related to human
rights, labour rights, environment and corruption. Social responsibility is about
identifying the areas where the company can minimize negative impacts and make a positive
impact on the country and its people.
Signature Myanmar is fully aware of the specific challenges associated with working
with tourism in the new Myanmar. Surprisingly, the assessment is that tourism in Myanmar
is done a lot more responsibly and connected with fewer CSR challenges than one might
Signature Myanmar does not have a written CSR policy. Corporate social responsibility
is formulated by the owner's attitude to business ethics and originates from a deep
insight into the Burmese society and culture.
In short social responsibility is about "Decency in everything we do." It is about
showing social responsibility in relation to employees, business partners and to contribute
to sustainable economic development in Myanmar.
Trust, respect and responsibility are important cultural codes
Signature Myanmar consists of a small team of a foreign director, a General Manager
and five local employees. The company has offices in the central Yangon. There is
also a large network of freelance guides who are licensed by the Ministry of Tourism
proving they have a certification exam in tourism.
The employees are paid well in comparison with other local businesses. But one
thing is the salary another is the development of a good working environment. Therefore
it is important that respect, trust and confidence exist between the employees and
the management. Any criticism is explained in a way so that no one will be exposed
of "loss of face".
In the office we are almost like a small family. We treat each other nicely with
respect and understanding. As the boss and owner of a company in a country without
public assistance schemes and insurance you will have to be aware that you are having
a responsibility to your employees that extends beyond the workplace, says Astri.
She has lived in Myanmar for several years and has a in-depth understanding of
the cultural codes that are important to create good relationships between the employer
and the employee.
Read more about the Signature Myanmar CaseResponsible Tourism Policy, MyanmarSignature Myanmar's website