When Belinda Sum joined DEUTZ Australia, the business used typewriters, telex machines and a mainframe computer with data entered by computer operators.
Belinda felt at home the day she joined the company – which now has much better technology – after arriving from Malaysia with her artist husband Anthony in 1985.
“Luckily, all the colleagues in the DEUTZ Fahr Division were very welcoming and helpful and that put me at ease,” Belinda says.
“I also had to learn quickly the accents of many cultures and countries as many of my colleagues were not Australian born. What an exciting and confusing day it was! And what a diverse workplace.”
After starting as a Settlement Clerk on 30 September 1985, Belinda also worked as a Computer Data Operator and Accounts Clerk. She now covers Accounts Payable and Payroll.
Among her many fond memories is the strict stationery dispenser.
“Every Friday afternoon at 1.00 pm, one person from each department would gather in front of the stationery door to be served by her,” Belinda recalls. “Punctuality must be observed no late arrival would be entertained.
“We kept the shortest pencils, tiniest bit of erasers and ‘no ink’ pens as proof of why we need them to be replaced. And yet she could be so kind and helpful in other ways.”
Belinda believes she has stayed for 35 years because DEUTZ provides a safe and fair working environment that does not tolerate discrimination of any kind.
“DEUTZ has become my extended family,” she says. “Together we have been through many ups and downs and shared in the successes from the contributions of all employees and the firm’s management.
“We have developed good working relationships, supporting each other, and making the work place a pleasant place to be in. It’s important one feels at ease, safe and happy as we spend at least one third of each of our 24-hour days there.”
Life has also changed for Belinda since 1985. She has learned about Australia, adapted to a new living and working environment, made new friends and watched her daughters grow up.
“Now that I am a grandmother, I love to spend time with my two lovely grandchildren,” she says.
Due to COVID-19, Belinda may not be able to celebrate her work milestone with her colleagues, but says she is far from the only one affected. “Many celebrations are on hold and so is mine, unfortunately,” she says.
In the meantime, Belinda has some sage advice for those hoping to succeed for as long as she has. “The amount of effort you put in will be the amount you receive in return,” she says.
“Borrowing from Isaac Newton’s Law of Motion – third theory: For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”