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Friday, October 17, 2014

A Sure Way to the Top

I used to work for this company which greatly changed my mindset about career development. With the advent on new technologies and globalization of careers, organizations have become flatter in a sense. The question now is, how do you "catapult" yourself to the top? Everybody wants to improve their career prospects, so what can you do to "stand out" from everyone else?

Here are some tips which I've learned from experience and from my mentors :)
  • Find a mentor. It can be your direct manager, or someone you can look up to and who can provide guidance. These are people who can help point out your strengths (and how to further hone them) and you weaknesses (and how to improve upon them). You can even ask mentors to "spread the good word" about you since they're very familiar with how you operate.
  • Have a "Solutions Delivery" mindset. When I was still working as a project manager for a certain investment bank, I attended this training called "ABCD - Absolutely Customer Driven individuals". One of my key takeaways is that, we shouldn't just be providing service (what is expected), but we should always go the extra mile to provide solutions. Since then, I always tell members of my project team that they can only come to me with an identified risk/problem, if they've already thought of potential mitigations (not that I don't want to help, I just like to empower others and I don't always have the best ideas).
  • Networking is Key. Ever heard of the saying "it's not just what you know, but who you know as well"? I'm not saying join in the arena of power plays at work, just make sure that you interact with a lot of people, even those outside your department. If opportunities arise, they can even drop your name since they know how good you are. Employee referral is still the best way to get the job you want because of that "trust" factor.
  • Volunteer! Volunteer! Volunteer! This is perhaps, my favorite thing to do ever since grade school days. I like to raise my hand (LOL). It got worse in Ateneo because we were taught to practice "Magis", to always do more. It's not that you are trying to suck-up or anything, it's just that absorbing more responsibilities makes you more visible. This will help increase your value in the company.
  • Learn New Skills. My future father in law is a doctor. He regularly attends conferences to acquire new learning or know about other fields and it's definitely helping out with his marketability. We must adapt to the ever changing world where we are in. It doesn't mean you have to spend though. I learned VBA in college by reading the Help button in MS Excel. In 2010, I attended a formal training. A few years after, I volunteered to teach a team of processors so they can re-create tools that I introduced during process migration, Later on I was asked to train supervisors and managers on MS Excel Levels 2 & 3. I saved my former employer a lot of money because I did it for free . I already left but up to now, they're still using the training modules I created (glad to help!)
  • Last, but definitely not least - Promote yourself. Be proactive - there is no harm in showing initiative. If there are no opportunities, create them. There is always an area where you can help or improve. If there really is no position to move to, at least you will get recognitions for your contributions.
I forgot to mention, promotions are not always vertical. You can move laterally to a role with more opportunities for growth and personal development. Promotions are not just internal either, you can always seek outside, join LinkedIn for starters.

Monday, June 30, 2014

A Hidden Gem

One night, our friends invited us for dinner at this nice restaurant inside BF Homes in Paranaque. They said we'll love it.

We definitely did.

Adrian, Kenneth & Melina shared the Lamb Piccata Platter - it's composed of Lamb Fillet, Beef Espetada, Farfalle Pasta, Roasted potato and salad. The servings were huge! (to think that this only costs P995!)

I tried their house special, the Chicken Espetada (I cannot eat lamb & beef because of my food allergy). They served it on a skewer stand which I found pretty cool. Food presentation is a big plus for me - it makes it look more palatable.

Adrian and I were pleasantly surprised to say the least. The food was very good and the menu pricing was reasonable. The service was fine with all of the staff being very attentive and helpful.

The only thing I've been wondering is this: how come no one else seems to have picked up on this yet? Anyway, it was a good thing. We didn't have to worry about making a reservation, and it was quiet enough that we can hear each other talk without having to shout over the clatter of dishes or other diners talking. It comes as a surprise that it's the first time I've heard about this place. Anyway, we're definitely coming back here to try the rest of the dishes on their menu and we're bringing more friends with us. :)

Good job, Don Limone!

Address: #199 Aguirre Avenue, BF Homes, Paranaque City
Phone Number: (02) 345-1803
Hours: Tuesday - Sunday, 5pm to 12am

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Perfect Combination

I'm always ready for a new food adventure. Imagine my delight when I heard about a place that combines 2 of my favorite things in one dish -- Ramen and CHEESE. 

My fiance and I got there just before 6PM and got a seat. There were a few empty seats left but they filled up pretty quickly. Got a bowl of Double Cheese Tsukemen then Adrian picked the Shoyu Ramen. 

The lady asked me if I knew how to eat it - of course I did! I never go to battle without knowing my enemy. Basically, you pour the cheese sauce on the noodles sprinkled with Parmesan then dip it into the very flavorful broth.

It was amazing!!! Adrian loved his Ramen too. It was the right kind of spicy for him. He had to eat it fast though because the melted butter started creating a film of oil on top.

Service was efficient. I thought I would feel pressured to finish up quickly because there were people waiting for a seat but I didn't. I enjoyed every dip. haha