Archive | March 2009

A Wise Investment!

My student, Wilbert Go introduced me to this I.T. mag: PC Shopper.

I instantly liked it! I read the mag from cover to cover! It’s really cool and has loads of information too.. I would advise the techies to get a hold of this mag monthly… Though one could easily surf the net and find the IT stuff written here, it would cost time and usually, “surfing” would lead you to somewhere else.

Anyway, it’s really loaded with a lot of cool stuff! It keeps you updated with the latest gadgets and technology. =)

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Build or Bust Your Career in 2009 by Francis Kong

What is the more frightful horror movie or story you recall?

The Night of The Living Dead? The Zombies? Frankenstein Meets Godzilla? These stories and movies are nothing compared to the latest horror flick that is sending chills up the spine of corporate characters. And the title is: “You Are Redundant!” A double feature offered is entitled: “You’re Fired!”

The economic crunch is upon us all and if you belong to the blessed ones who still have a job, you might want to take heed of the following ideas that can build and not bust your career.

“Most of today’s managers have been taught with books which are out of date or out of touch with the realities of today’s business world,” says John McKee, author of “Career Wisdom.” “By following concepts or ideas which may have worked when the pace of change was slower and more predictable, they are unknowingly plodding a path which simply doesn’t work in an era of fewer people at all levels doing more than their predecessors.”

And you will be surprised that those who get the ax are those who have for years entered into self-destructive habits that have put them out of their jobs.

Building your career therefore start with the following healthy habits:

1. UPDATE YOUR CURRENT SKILLS.

I know you are good with your computer skills but in case you haven’t noticed nobody’s using DOS system anymore. With so many people being declared redundant, it would not be difficult for companies to get younger, more eager and more skilled people who can’t wait to take over your job. And they are willing to receive a lower pay too. So attend seminars. Read books and update your skills.

2. KNOW THAT YOU ARE NOT INDISPENSABLE.

The business landscape is constantly changing. Business owners are more than ever conscious of measuring their costs and investments. And if you fail to deliver expectations, you will be replaced. This is a guarantee!

3. DROP THAT ATTITUDE THING.

It’s time to realize that the universe does not revolve around you. Drop that “Diva” habit and think “TeamWork and TeamWorth” instead. If you think like you’re the only person at work who can get the job done, your people will make sure you will fail and this will qualify you for the pink slip.

4. DELIVER EXCELLENT RESULTS.

Nobody wants average and in fact “average” is a dirty word these days. So start delivering superior results. Under promise but over deliver. The day I began appearing regularly once a week on a popular TV morning show, I was told that they have a minute-per-minute rating or survey on every segment of the program. What a blessing to know that the segment we are doing registered high and this is the reason why I am still there. Do you know that business and professional fields are becoming more like the TV and Radio business? If one’s ratings go down, then it doesn’t take a lot of effort or guilt for business owners to have them replaced.

5. DROP THE TITLE AND ENTITLEMENT MENTALITY.

Those who harbor a sense of entitlement for simply having stayed with the company longer than others irrespective of the results they deliver are guaranteed to fall by the wayside.

The stakes are too high. The fact is that there are more people than jobs available so you better work on yourself more than you do on your job.

I’ve got a few more ideas for you so if you want to see the complete list then you will have to get tomorrow’s copy of your favorite newspaper as I complete these 2 part material on “Build or Bust Your Career in 2009.”

Leadership guru Dr. John C. Maxwell says: “The secret of your success is determined by your daily agenda.” And this is so true.

So building your career or busting it this year? Your choice.

Herman Malonzo, his lovely wife Angie and their talented daughter Mariah are good friends of mine. They have a beautiful house and Herman’s got a very stable job. As he took me and my family along the Las Vegas strip during our annual family vacation he shook his head slowly and said, “My friends from the casinos tell me that there have been massive layoffs. And this comes at a time when home mortgages and college loans have to be paid. This will be tragic to many of my Filipino friends who never had a life plan.” Herman’s house is practically paid off, his daughter has straight A’s in school and is working on her musical talent with the Las Vegas Junior Philharmonic Orchestra. Herman looked at me and said, “God has been good to us all these years.”

Today is the continuation of our 2 part material and idea number 6 in our study on building and securing our career is:

6. MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A LIFE PLAN

Every successful person I know has a well-defined life plan. They know what they want and they set all effort to get it. Forget all those empty promises of so-called “motivational speakers,” forget all those stupid mystical books that promises success without having to work for it. At the end of the day, it is the person with a goal who works hard for it who will get ahead of the dreamers who merely dream great dreams without waking up and doing some work. You and I need to have a life plan. Without a plan, we leave our success in the hands of others who may or may not have time to look after other people’s successes.

7. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE

This is one principle I find amazing. Successful people are always in the company of equally successful people. Losers are almost always with losers too. They rush to get to their happy hour they tell tales where they are the heroes of their own stories while successful people talk about ideas on how to be more successful. They network with each other and the glue that holds things together is integrity and trust for one another.

8. ASK QUESTIONS ALL THE TIME

Be naturally curious. Find out everything you can know about how your company operates. Get to know the people behind the positions. Ask intelligent questions and you get intelligent answers. Be knowledgeable. Knowledge is power and winners remain unceasingly interested in learning ideas and approaches. Successful leaders are those who ask questions all the time and they build trust with their people.

9. MARKET YOURSELF BUT GIVE CREDIT TO OTHERS

In a huge organization setup, it will be difficult to just work hard and hope and wait for the people upstairs to take notice. You have to learn how to market yourself correctly….. (which is an entire seminar on its own)… but in doing so, make sure you give credit to others.

Most people think this is strange. “How can I be noticed when I give others the credit instead of bagging the credit for myself?” The answer is quite simple. You cannot succeed alone. It takes a lot of effort from other people to help make you succeed. And even if you were the first one to come up with the idea and even if you were the person who contributed big time to making the project work, when you pass on the credit to your team, they would love to work with you and make you more successful. And then the irony appears. PEOPLE KNOW! So you don’t have to toot your own horn. This is one of the effective ways in marketing yourself. Never forget this: If you say good things about yourself then it’s bragging. But when others say it, then it is a fact!

10. BUILD YOUR CHARACTER IN ORDER TO BUILD YOUR CAREER

Ask any owner and they will tell you that top in their list is people who are not only efficient but trustworthy. Hands down, no contest. Integrity rules! Most people rise up to their success because of their talents but only to crash because of their lack of character. This is why you need to cultivate a pure heart and clean hands as Scriptures would say and work harder on yourself than you do on your job. Do not lose perspective. The end does not justify the mean-ness. At the end of the day, people love people who are kind, caring, competent and trustworthy. At the end of the day, people are thrown off by scheming, deceiving, slandering and maligning folks who would sacrifice their own personal values on the altar of worldly success.

This is how you build your career in 2009 and this is how you build yourself for the rest of your life.

How I Survived My Quarter-life Crisis…

I suffered from Quarter-life Crisis exactly on schedule: at 25.


Wikipedia:
A crisis (plural: crises) may occur on a personal or societal level. It may be a traumatic or stressful change in a person’s life, or an unstable and dangerous social situation, in political, social, economic, military affairs, or a large-scale environmental event, especially one involving an impending abrupt change. More loosely, it is a term meaning ‘a testing time’ or ‘emergency event’.

It happened during the last quarter of 2008.

I felt I was at the peak of my career. I finished my Master’s degree on time, was invited to speak at various IT conferences and conducted trainings. I was even one of the SFD team leaders who were given special mention. Also, I passed the PhilNITS exam and had a great job offer at one of the software companies. It seems that I was really successful. But one thing was lacking: a lovelife. (Yeah, friends, I know…)

Until I met this guy in one of the trainings I attended. Guy X had everything on my Guy Checklist. A good diploma, title, nice and stable job, charming personality, responsible, Catholic, good son, and lives in the city where I wanted to live and build a family. Plus, he even had a car (ahem). Everything was perfect. It was just so hard to resist. I was supposed to be happy. I was. And I definitely enjoyed those times. Life was soooo good to me. But I had a gut-feeling that it was just too good to be true. I had everything I ever wished for. It didn’t feel right. I waited for the dark day to come.

And one day, it did! The relationship ended. Crashed. Crushed. Just like that. At first, I struggled. I wondered what was wrong with me. How could it happen to an awesome and fabulous girl like me?! How can I be a failure? It was just so hard to handle…at first.

But I handled the crisis pretty well.

I didn’t wallow in self-pity or turn into drugs, alcohol or commit suicide. I am a toughie. I just evaluated my life – took a closer look on who I am as a person and realized that there’s nothing wrong with me, at all! I am indeed fabulous! (in my own standards, at least…) :D
This blog entry is not about “Surviving a breakup” so, I won’t focus on that. It deserves an entirely new entry.

Anyway, amidst all the “getting-over” and “moving forward”, I still had to deal with another dilemma: “Staying or Moving Out”.

I was confused about staying with my current job or moving into another field. It was not a simple decision because it involved moving to another city, looking for a new(and more expensive) house, meeting and working with new people and leaving the people whom I have worked with the past five years. It was a tougher crisis.

These are the questions that kept bothering me:

  • Will I be better as a trainer or a teacher?
  • Where do I fit: academe or industry?
  • Who are the better friends: those in GenSan or those in Cebu?(A stupid question coz all of my friends are equally great!)
  • Will I be happier in GenSan or in Cebu?
  • Will Company X get hit by the global economic crisis?

But again, I was able to get through it with flying colors…

Here are the things I did:

  • Pray – Spiritual guidance really helps
  • Talk to friends – especially those who really understand what you are going through and are much eager to help
  • Meditate/Reflect – Take some time to be with yourself. Examine your heart and identify your feelings. Know your deepest desires and priorities.
  • Read books/blogs – You are not alone! Learn from those who went through similar situations

I am now a better and more mature person because of the crises I have gone through. I am single but happy. At least nobody’s making me cry over nonsense stuff right now. Haha.

And I realized that there was something wrong with my Guy Checklist: I missed the loyal, honest, mature and totally-into-me criteria. No wonder I got the wrong guy! Another thing I realized is that I have a fantastic job here in MSU, which allows me to enjoy the thing I am good at: being with and working with people! I will have fun with my current job and look for other opportunities a little later…

How about you? How did you handle your quarter-life crisis?

How I Survived My Quarter-life Crisis…

I suffered from Quarter-life Crisis exactly on schedule: at 25.

Wikipedia:
A crisis (plural: crises) may occur on a personal or societal level. It may be a traumatic or stressful change in a person’s life, or an unstable and dangerous social situation, in political, social, economic, military affairs, or a large-scale environmental event, especially one involving an impending abrupt change. More loosely, it is a term meaning ‘a testing time’ or ’emergency event’.

It happened during the last quarter of 2008.

I felt I was at the peak of my career. I finished my Master’s degree on time, was invited to speak at various IT conferences and conducted trainings. I was even one of the SFD team leaders who were given special mention. Also, I passed the PhilNITS exam and had a great job offer at one of the software companies. It seems that I was really successful. But one thing was lacking: a lovelife. (Yeah, friends, I know…)

Until I met this guy in one of the trainings I attended. Guy X had everything on my Guy Checklist. A good diploma, title, nice and stable job, charming personality, responsible, Catholic, good son, and lives in the city where I wanted to live and build a family. Plus, he even had a car (ahem). Everything was perfect. It was just so hard to resist. I was supposed to be happy. I was. And I definitely enjoyed those times. Life was soooo good to me. But I had a gut-feeling that it was just too good to be true. I had everything I ever wished for. It didn’t feel right. I waited for the dark day to come.

And one day, it did! The relationship ended. Crashed. Crushed. Just like that. At first, I struggled. I wondered what was wrong with me. How could it happen to an awesome and fabulous girl like me?! How can I be a failure? It was just so hard to handle…at first.

But I handled the crisis pretty well.

I didn’t wallow in self-pity or turn into drugs, alcohol or commit suicide. I am a toughie. I just evaluated my life – took a closer look on who I am as a person and realized that there’s nothing wrong with me, at all! I am indeed fabulous! (in my own standards, at least…) 😀

This blog entry is not about “Surviving a breakup” so, I won’t focus on that. It deserves an entirely new entry.

Anyway, amidst all the “getting-over” and “moving forward”, I still had to deal with another dilemma: “Staying or Moving Out”.

I was confused about staying with my current job or moving into another field. It was not a simple decision because it involved moving to another city, looking for a new(and more expensive) house, meeting and working with new people and leaving the people whom I have worked with the past five years. It was a tougher crisis.

These were the questions that kept bothering me:

  • Will I be better as a trainer or a teacher?
  • Where do I fit: academe or industry?
  • Who are the better friends: those in GenSan or those in Cebu?(A stupid question coz all of my friends are equally great!)
  • Will I be happier in GenSan or in Cebu?
  • Will Company X get hit by the global economic crisis?

But again, I was able to get through it with flying colors…

Here are the things I did:

  • Pray – Spiritual guidance really helps
  • Talk to friends – especially those who really understand what you are going through and are much eager to help
  • Meditate/Reflect – Take some time to be with yourself. Examine your heart and identify your feelings. Know your deepest desires and priorities.
  • Read books/blogs – You are not alone! Learn from those who went through similar situations

I am now a better and more mature person because of the crises I have gone through. I am single but happy. At least nobody’s making me cry over nonsense stuff right now. Haha.

And I realized that there was something wrong with my Guy Checklist: I missed the loyal, honest, mature and totally-into-me criteria. No wonder I got the wrong guy! Another thing I realized is that I have a fantastic job here in MSU, which allows me to enjoy the thing I am truly good at: being with and working with people! I will have fun with my current job and look for other opportunities a little later…

How about you? How did you handle your quarter-life crisis?

Better Friendster Home Page

Kudos to the Friendster team!

I like the new look of Friendster’s home page. The previous one was a poor imitation of Facebook…sans images. Now, Friendster’s home page is even better than that of (the new)Facebook (my own POV)… 🙂 Good job, Friendster!

Making it happen….

“If you don’t have discipline, you don’ deserve to dream”

I have just read Mr. Butch Jimenez’s commencement address to the graduating class of UP entitled “Descending to the Top”. It was very inspiring.

Mr. Jimenez talked about

  • How to reach the top (Be the first in the mind and burn an attitude in the mind)
  • Discipline
  • Execution (There is no try. There is either do or not do.)
  • Descending to the Top (As you rise to the top, the more you have to be a servant.)
  • A heart for our country – Philippines (Show ’em we’re great & give back to the country.)
  • Walk with GOD (There is no destination beyond the reach of those who walk w/ HIM.)

I have realized that for me to be able to reach the top, I have to serve and be humble, always giving more than I am expected of – working more than I am paid for.

Also, I need to be serious with implementing discipline on myself like:

  • delaying gratification
  • setting aside my savings before spending
  • getting the job done ON TIME
  • keeping a tidy place

Assessment of My Performance this Sem

I promised to be at my best this semester. In one of my blogs at Friendster, I said I wanted to make a perfect 10 this sem (because it’s my 10th sem in MSU and supposedly my last).

However, this sem didn’t start quite right because I had to attend a 2-week training at PhilNITS, Davao. And that event led to many “other unexpected” events. I had a roller coaster ride – with all the highest and lowest points, which made my stomach feel funny. Anyway, I was a little distracted and troubled in the past few months. But I managed to keep my sanity. =)

All of my “hopes” for the best performance kept on falling apart because I had so many “back jobs”, too many commitments…

  • I had to attend another 1-week seminar at PhilNITS last January
  • I had to re-echo my learnings from the seminar/training that I have attended
  • I had to present my project at Ateneo de Davao during the Research Festival

That is why, I really feel guilty. But I will make it up next sem (again)

These are some things I want to improve on:

  • planning ahead and implementing the plan
  • check papers and return them regularly
  • provide up-to-date feedback to students
  • faithfully do projects
  • not turn research time into social networking time…(sigh)

My 2008 Travels/Laags


Sarangani Highlands with Officemates


Graduation Blowout
at Pool, Davao with Family


Cebu trip (Airsoft)


Chowking, SM Cebu with College Friends


Bridesmaid of my Bestfriend’s Wedding, Cebu


With BQ Friends at Gumasa, Glan


Jack’s Ridge with PhilNITS trainees

Punta Isla, Samal Island(D-U-H)



Christmas Party at Lago, Glan


Papa’s Birthday at Garay Resort, Hinatuan

Taking a step closer to my life-goals

I am taking a step closer to my goals.

These are my concrete steps:

  • limit my time with “mindless” surfing (FS, FB, Mul)
  • waking up at 5:30 and sleeping at 10:30 (I need at least 7 hours of sleep)
  • check papers on time (and return them at least a week after)
  • choose the TV programs I watch
  • make my working place clutter-free
  • self-discipline!