I love foot massages. A good foot or body rub, given at the right time by a properly trained masseur, has kept me sane during many a crazy period in my life. As writer and massage aficionado Butch Dalisay said in a recent column (Philippine Star, 30 August 2006) entitled “You Kneaded Me”: “I often think of heaven as a place where you can get free foot, back, and scalp massages for eternity”. Amen to that, brother.
So it was with some delight that I read a piece on Procter & Gamble’s Manila office wherein foot massages are a part of office protocol. Apparently, the new P & G Philippines President, Mr. James “Jim” M. Lafferty, has implemented a new policy which might just revolutionize the concept of worker benefits. Every Tuesday and Thursday, employees and guests who care to may now have free foot massages during meetings at the P & G offices in Ayala Avenue’s 6750 Building.
Although some were initially reluctant to remove their shoes in front of their colleagues in the middle of a presentation, nobody misses meetings now, according to Mr. Rafferty. In the Business World article, he is quoted as saying that “there would be things I would do differently. There would be strategies I would bring in based on my experiences in different parts of the world”. Different he certainly is. A trained physiologist/psychologist who initially joined P & G as a fitness instructor before shifting to marketing, Rafferty is a fitness buff, sports tattoos and prefers barongs to suits.
One has to salute Mr. Rafferty for his boldness and vision in introducing “foot-massage meetings”. That’s thinking outside the box. Just remember to check your socks for holes the next time you go for a conference at P & G.