Finding good employees is challenging for any business. Even if you manage to find good personnel, retaining them is another challenge. Yet GEMS Our Own English High School – Dubai has managed to attract and retain a very professional and motivated person for over 36 years – Mathukutty Varughese, who is currently a Systems Administrator in the Accounts Department.
Mathukutty first joined the school back in 1982 as a Grade 1 teacher, moving into administration just two years later, at the behest of then Principal Mr Henderson. Since then, he has been performing a number of key roles within the Finance Department. And it’s all gone by so fast, as he explains: “I still remember starting work at the school in 1982, as if it was yesterday. I also recall that we were the first school in Dubai to embrace new technology – and computers were quite expensive in those days!”
He also has fond memories of working and interacting with the Varkey family, which was actively involved in the day-to-day running of the school back then. “They knew each and every employee, as well as students of the school. Mrs Mariamma Varkey used to visit the school every single day. They were accessible to one and all. All were treated equally and with warmth and affection” Mathukutty says.
The school has moved its location twice during Mathukutty’s time, from its initial location in Bastakiya and Karama to Oud Metha in 1982, and then from Oud Metha to the current location in Al Warqa in 2011. “Moving to the Oud Metha campus was very exciting, and I remember Mr Sunny Varkey himself purchasing all of the furniture. And today, on our state-of-the-art campus in Al Warqa, we still have some of that furniture!” he concludes.