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Marina’s Managing Director disrespectful – Ollivierre

Marina’s Managing Director disrespectful – Ollivierre

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Operations Manager at the St Vincent Shipyard Limited (SSL) Sylvester “Steve” Ollivierre has described managing director of SSL Daniel Ravotti as disrespectful and lacking empathy, among other things.

Ollivierre’s comments came in a Monday, November 21 letter addressed to the “Ottley Hall Board of Directors”. The letter was also sent to the media.

The letter was circulated four days after Ravotti decided to close the shipyard between November 21 and December 22, due to what the managing director called, “a technical breakdown of the company”.{{more}}

During the period that the company will be closed, the workers are not expected to be paid.

But Ollivierre has described Ravotti’s decision as “utter nonsense” and claims that the decision to close the company came only after the company’s employees demanded their full wages, after being paid only half their salaries, some as far back as February this year.

Ollivierre also noted in the letter that the company owes him EC$36,755.13 from his first contract arrangement, plus EC$17,160.08, his salary for September and October this year.

He said he was given a partial payment of EC$1,000 on Thursday, November 17, but when he attempted to cash the cheque, it bounced.

“When taken to the bank, I was unable to receive as a result of insufficient funds. The matter was reported to CID (Criminal Investigation Department). This was not the first time, as it is, all employees are currently being owed by the company. These actions by the CEO, Daniel Ravotti, reflect utter disrespect, a lack of empathy,” said Ollivierre in his letter.

This is Ollivierre’s second contract with SSL. His tenure as dry dock master commenced on July 1, 2015, but that was terminated after the first year and he was rehired as operations manager for a further 10 years, as of September 1, 2016, and according to him, over the last 15 months, there has been a rapid process of degeneration with the company, as management has failed in numerous areas to fulfil the requirement for strong leadership, which would have resulted in meaningful rewards at the facility.

Ollivierre listed a number of issues that he thinks are negatively affecting the shipyard, which he says has the potential to generate huge income.

Issues include lack of ability for the implementation of organizational structure, lack of transparency, lack of vision, Ravotti not listening and dismissing ideas other than his own (egotistical and lack of empathy), forgetting about leadership development and being overly conservative.

Ollivierre has also accused Ravotti of permitting and entertaining gossip, having poor communication of strategy, being close minded, assigning blame, oppressing, humiliating and creating animosity among employees, being inconsistent and slow to adapt and not having enough confidence to lead at his level.

He has also accused Ravotti of being arrogant, assuming that he always knows best, disorganized, mistrusting, over promising and under-delivering.

“In short, we are regressing at a fast rate. Almost all raw materials, tools, stores and otherwise that were handed over to the lessee were utilized and have not been replaced,” noted Ollivierre.

He said that if the shipyard is to progress, this trend has to stop, noting that the facility is in a deplorable condition.

“From my standpoint the market is very viable and sustainable given the maritime activity regionally and internationally. In numerous reports and meetings I have repeatedly stated and made recommendations for a productive outcome, to no avail this was entertained,” said Ollivierre.

The experienced manager said that locals possess the skill set and accountability to carry out the mandate required for a facility of this magnitude.

Ravotti took over management at the Ottley Hall based shipyard and marina (formerly the Ottley Hall Marina and Shipyard) in 2015 and at that time, said workers had nothing to fear in relation to their jobs. The comment had come after workers complained of being placed on a shift system that was stopping them from making proper wages.

Back then he had commented, “The way I look at it is that the job is not only about a welder but it is about a welder and his family and putting food on the table and the company is not going to do that (lay off persons).

“We treat this business as family and we are not giving up on people, this is a big misunderstanding.”

Ravotti, a Venezuelan national, promised on Monday to grant SEARCHLIGHT an interview after a meeting with president of the National Workers Movement (NWM) Noel Jackson, but he could not be reached for a comment. (LC)

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