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Tag: The View From Taft

To love is to ‘co-create’

“Well, she looked at me/ And I, I could see/ That before too long/ I’d fall in love with her” -- I “Saw Her Standing There” by The Beatles

How business firms perpetuate economic inequality

Our Constitution says that all economic agents, including corporations, shall contribute to the common good in order to achieve our country’s vision of a rising quality of life for all. More than 30 years after the ratification of the fundamental law, easily one-third of Filipinos are poor despite the official poverty rate now falling below 20% and healthy economic growth at nearly 6%. The World Bank reports that the country has one of the most persistent poverty problems in the region. And the concentration of wealth among the very rich continues to worsen every year.

Engagement and Experience: People helping other people

Following the Mindanao earthquake in late 2019 and the Taal Volcano eruption this January, both of which have left many people displaced and affected, companies and corporate foundations mobilized resources and organized relief operations. NGOs, local government units, and educational institutions, among many others, are also doing their share to aid those stricken. From supplying clean and potable water, mounting charging stations, organizing medical missions, to distributing relief packs, these efforts are nothing short of inspiring.

Taking sport management seriously

Opportunities abound to develop or exploit underdeveloped industries such as agriculture and technology, given the right enablers and government support. Sport is one such sector that is gaining increased attention, especially with the recently concluded Southeast Asian Games 2019.

Developing resilience in 2020

The year 2020 started with a bang. From the wildfires that have been ravaging Australia, to the floods in the Indonesia capital, and to the political strife between the United States of America and Iran, the world has been in a constant state of flux. Here at home, we were treated to a spectacular volcanic plume that is causing dread and despair in Batangas, Laguna, and Cavite. This eruption reminds us of how nature’s wrath and fury should teach us to become more resilient.

Eulogy Virtues

“A good name is better than fine perfume, and the day of death better than the day of birth.” -- Ecclesiastes 7:1

Critical thinking for business leadership

Business leaders need to exercise more critical thinking to avoid and solve the problems businesses have caused in the last two decades. While business has created massive economic growth all over the world and lifted billions out of poverty, chronic management malpractices have also harmed consumers and worsened income inequality, environmental damage, and psychological and health issues for so many workers.

Transformational leadership

“The only thing constant is change.” -- Heraclitus

Crab mentality

The performance evaluation has been the traditional way a superior gives feedback to staff. But as I have observed, this evaluation sheet is not the true representation of one’s work. It is either very subjective or objective depending on the situation or on the superior’s opinion. Yes, it is not only a tool to evaluate one’s performance but also a measure of one’s motivation and productivity. However, I find it odd that rank and file employees, even if they worked hard and persevered, may not get the credit for their work. We want to believe that our work speaks for itself. But then, in reality, someone else gets the credit.

It’s time to pay travel time

I have been travelling long distances since I was in grade school. I got accustomed to the time spent travelling as well in the effort and mindset to prepare for the travel. Waking up earlier, preparing earlier or even the day before, not being able to eat breakfast, looking groggy, and enduring cold baths. This was the trend then and continues up to now, especially for those who live in the provinces and work or study in Manila.

Working across Generations: A workplace dilemma

The Commission on Population (Popcom) projected that by the end of 2019, there will be about 108.88 million Filipinos. The growth also means that about 1.4 million Filipinos will be added to the country’s workforce, boosting our total workforce to about 70 million employable Filipinos. With the increasing number of employees year after year, companies must be able to provide their managers with knowledge and essential skills on how to manage different employees from various generations who are present in today’s workplace.

The Silent Scream: mental health awareness in the workplace

A pop of paracetamol, a cup of coffee, a puff of smoke, binging on junk food or skipping meals -- perhaps a reaction to what a person is feeling and perhaps, too, what can be normal in the workplace.

I was asked to dance

“Diversity is being invited to the party. Inclusion is being asked to dance.” I first heard this tagline during our company’s Diversity and Inclusion (D&I) campaign. I am blessed to be a part of an organization that highly values respect for people. As a matter of fact, respect for people is one of our company’s core values and I am proud to share that respect has been embedded in our culture. My first-hand experience of “being invited to the party” was when I was nominated to be a part of a project composed of mostly Western and Middle Eastern employees. I knew I was “asked to dance” when I was given the role to lead a critical part of the project. I felt included and valued throughout the project and even after its completion as I knew that my inputs were appreciated.

Seeking discomfort for success

After graduating from college four years ago, I started working for Sterling Bank of Asia, Inc. I have been with the same department since the start. Having a daily routine for four years can be exhausting from time to time. Questions began to rise in my mind: So, what’s next for me? Should I leave the company that started my career path, or should I continue to look for my purpose in this company?


Shopee is a Singaporean e-commerce platform under the Sea Group, which was founded in 2009 by Forrest Li. Shopee was first launched in Singapore in 2015, and has since expanded its reach to Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, and the Philippines. In May this year, ASEAN UP ranked Shopee Philippines as second among the Top 10 e-commerce sites in the Philippines, with monthly traffic estimated at 14,400,000.

Data Science and Finance

We are now living in the age of Data Science and Big Data, as the ubiquity and availability of large amounts of data plus advances in technology to store, process, and analyze such data have revolutionized ways of thinking about things and of doing business. If you take a look at your social media accounts and wonder how these outfits are able to anticipate the kind of content you like to consume, the answer is that data science and big data analytics are being harnessed to try to guess exactly that, and with very good results. Want to buy a book from your favorite online merchant and out pop some other suggested books that you never even thought about, but you buy them anyway thanks to the prompt? You guessed it, data science and data analytics had a hand in this as well.

Journey to wholeness: Material development

Filipinos are generally spenders. This is our nature in terms of handling finances. After all, we only recognize the importance of savings and investments when in a crisis, we do not have enough money to spend.

Inclusive business means good jobs

We all hear about inclusive business nowadays. And rightly so because business, especially big business, is the most important force in growing the middle class in our country by spreading the fruits of our healthy economic growth.

Journey to wholeness: Aesthetic Development

One of the field trips in my Integral Human Development class was to the National Museum of Fine Arts. This trip was meant to feature aesthetic development, one of the forms of well-being. Aesthetics is the appreciation and nature of beauty, in the context of art. Aesthetic engagement can breed emotional connection through the process of creating, doing, and experiencing art. This connectedness has the capacity to bring about meaningful interactions and belongingness in the workplace.

Journey to wholeness: Social development

As part of our Integral Human Development class, we went on an exposure to GK Enchanted Farm in Angat, Bulacan. The professionalism and courteousness of everyone on the farm was both contagious and heartwarming and it was easy to see why there so many people who are involved in this social enterprise.

Towards inclusion

How do we understand and develop inclusive organizations?

Just a little more…

A cursory scan of the popular titles in a bookstore -- The Little Book of Hygge: Danish Secrets to Happy Living, Lagom: The Swedish Art of Balanced Living, Wabi-Sabi: Japanese Wisdom for a Perfectly Imperfect Life, Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy Life -- and I can’t help but smirk.

The present and (hopefully) the future of Animal Agriculture in the...

What would a meal look like in 31 years? That is the big question scientists are now urging governments and private institutions to answer. By 2050, the global population is expected to rise to 10 billion with no assurance that all those mouths will be fed.

Leaders of Tomorrow: Siklab Awards 2019

The awarding ceremonies of the first Ramon V. Del Rosario Siklab Awards will be held today, July 25. This program is a national search for the youth leaders of tomorrow, sponsored by PHINMA in cooperation with the De La Salle University Ramon V. Del Rosario College of Business (RVRCOB) and the Junior Chamber International Manila. It recognizes youth leaders who have had positive impacts on the community or nation by their work and service.

Keep the ‘killer’ tagline alive!

“Drip... drip... drip...” that’s the sound I heard in the middle of the night from the aircon in my bedroom. I got out of bed and rushed for pails! I was annoyed because the aircon was just cleaned a month ago. I called the company the next day to send someone to fix it. It took at least four days for someone to come. Two technicians arrived. They told me that they were the ones who cleaned the aircon a month ago. The older one was the lead man -- he said that he was new in the company, but he was proud to say he had years of experience. I was surprised to learn that the younger man was an on-the-job-training employee! I am a loyal customer of their company. But I could not believe that they sent company neophytes!

Taking a stand for marginalized employees

I moved to the Philippines 12 years ago to start a business. The skilled labor and high level of English proficiency made it a natural choice among its neighbors in the region. The friendly people, beautiful islands, live bands, and incredible nightlife didn’t hurt either! As my business progressed from start-up to operations, I realized that I had so many questions about why employees behave the way that they do in an organization.

The underperformance doomsday scenario

After years of debate and wrangling among legislators, workers’ associations and employer groups, the Security of Tenure (SOT) bill is now on the desk of President Rodrigo R. Duterte for signing. The bill seems sure to become law since the president himself declared it a priority based on his campaign promises.

MBAs do make a difference

I am here to tell you my story. I was a simple kid who grew up in Antipolo. I was raised and inspired by a single mom, who danced her way to success and gave us the gift of quality education. Our home was far from the business districts such as Ortigas and Makati. No one in my immediate family and in the community had ever experienced working in big corporations. Life there was simple, people were not wealthy, but growing up in that community created a gold mine of memories.

Quezon’s quest

Earlier this year, I had the privilege of visiting Israel. Through our pastor’s teachings and our tour, I learned how President Manuel L. Quezon accepted about 1,300 Jews facing persecution in Germany and Austria. The lesson became more real to me when we visited the Yad Vashem Holocaust History Museum, Israel’s official memorial to the Holocaust victims.

MBAs can make a positive difference

For the first time, Harvard Business School and the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago have not increased tuition for their MBA programs. Applications to the US business schools have been dropping due to online alternatives and more specialized courses. Worse, many international applicants have been scared off by anti-foreigner sentiment in many parts of the US. Some business schools, such as the University of Illinois Gies College of Business, have gone further and shut down their on-campus MBA programs altogether.

Building client trust

Building trust is the basis of any relationship. Fostered relationships are the underpinnings of a successful business. It takes years to form the trust so that a client will be comfortable to deal with a service provider such as a real estate broker.

Developing an entrepreneurial mindset

A national conference on health dubbed “Tech-Care: Revolution, Evolution and Innovations in Health Care” was recently organized by the Our Lady of Fatima University (OLFU) in Valuenzela City. It was organized by the indefatigable dean of the College of Nursing, Dr. Maria Luisa Uayan, who is a friend way back from our graduate school days and she asked me to give a talk on entrepreneurship. At first, I was taken aback because entrepreneurship and the health professions are not usually mutually exclusive. She then told me that in the latest Commission on Higher Education Memorandum Order for the Bachelor of Nursing program that the teaching of entrepreneurship is embedded in the program and is even a specific learning outcome that states “apply entrepreneurial skills in the delivery of nursing care.”

Making democracy work after elections

The recent elections were quite unusual. The near total shutout of the opposition, the staggering losses among political dynasties and the emergence of millennial-elected leaders are just among the remarkable results we are seeing from the unofficial results. As expected, these unofficial results are already being contested. The mysterious failure of the Comelec transparency server gave new meaning to the word oxymoron. Failures of both voting machines and memory cards were reported in record numbers. Yet the Comelec and PPCRV assess the elections to be within the normal range of acceptability.

Change for the better

How do you react to changes in life, may it be a career change or change in the organization? Do you accept it wholeheartedly? Or do you shy away from change to stay in your comfort zone? I am a person who always seeks opportunities, looks for change and sees the bigger picture life has to offer.

Mainstreaming disaster risk reduction with education

Just recently, an earthquake shook different parts of the country that killed people and damaged properties, especially in Pampanga. The Philippines, located within the Pacific Ring of Fire and the Pacific Typhoon belt, is most affected and highly vulnerable to earthquakes, floods, landslides, tsunamis, typhoons and volcanic eruptions. In a span of a century from 1900s, 355 disasters have occurred in the country. On average, we are hit by 900 earthquakes and 20 cyclones yearly. In 2010 alone, Php25 million worth of damage to properties have been reported and affected 3 million people. From 1997 to 2007, billions worth of damage in agriculture, infrastructure and private property have been caused by typhoons. Indeed, disasters hurt people, especially the poor.

Millennials are here to stay — or so they hope we...

As Baby Boomers and Gen X-ers prepare to retire, companies worldwide have been gearing up to accommodate more millennials in the workplace. With three generations having different values and attitude towards work sharing one office, culture shock and clashes are bound to happen.

Work. Life. MBA.

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance you must keep moving.” -- Albert Einstein.

Staying for a reason

I do believe that the organization’s success is highly dependent on its people. Even high tech companies need their employees to be able to competitive. Employers should devise strategies so good employees will stay and grow with the organization.

First impression lasts…

I attended a Lasallian Business Leadership talk as part of our Marketing Management class. The lecture was on “Service Management in the Digital Age,” with the CEO and Founder of ZEN Rooms, Mr. Nathan Boublil. He generously provided insights on how businesses, particularly startups, thrive in a highly competitive industry.

FriYAY or FriNAY?

I love Fridays. It always reminds me of the next two days wherein I do not have to set an alarm, I do not have to prepare to go to work, and I simply do not have anything that has to be done on schedule within the day. Usually, on Thursday, I am more motivated to work, because I always think that in a few hours, Friday and I will meet, then I will have the chance to relax on Saturday and Sunday. At the end of a long and tiring week, I look forward to the next two days off. How exciting is it if we have three?

Matching the mismatched

March can be the highest point in the young lives of graduating college students. It is the month when they happily march up the stage with their proud parents. On the way down the stage steps, they daydream of starting a high-paying job and fulfilling their wildest ambitions. After all, these are the reasons for all the hard work they put in over the last few years.

Everyday workplace fashion

Clothing is a tool used to visualize and benchmark ourselves and the people around us. The way we dress provides conclusions about our persona, social status aspirations, and level of professionalism. As fashion designer, Rachel Zoe says, “Style is a way to say who you are without having to speak, dress shabbily and they remember the dress; dress impeccably and they will remember the person.”


“An object at rest stays at rest and an object in motion stays in motion with the same speed and in the same direction unless acted upon by an unbalanced force.”

Beyond Perception

Do others have a preconceived notion about your personality? Or do you quickly conclude a person’s character? If so, then Susan Cain’s book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, might also capture your interest. Cain is an American writer and lecturer who earned her Doctor of Jurisprudence degree from Harvard Law School. She initially practiced her profession as a lawyer and negotiations consultant but later left her corporate career for the more serene life of writing. In 2012, she published the said book which described the value of introverts. She also co-founded Quiet Revolution LLC, a mission-based American company committed to “unlock the power of introverts for the benefit of us all.”

Never get tired of remembering people power

TODAY, February 22, is the first of the four days of the 1986 EDSA People Power Revolution. The Revolution against the Marcoses officially ended on February 25, when Corazon Cojuangco Aquino took her oath as President of the Republic. Her oath of office was administered by Supreme Court Justice Claudio Teehankee at what is now called appropriately the Kalayaan (Freedom) Hall of Club Filipino in San Juan.