I was trying to hide but you found me!

The Blog

Also known as the place I write words.

I’ve always liked the saying “if it’s not broke, then don’t fix it”.  It reflects the prudence more people should take when considering an amount of change.  Change is, of course, natural, but there are some instances wherein an affected change should really be looked at in a very critical manner before it is instigated, such as instances regarding employment.

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I remember the first time I made a presentation when I still employed in a large firm.  The best way to describe it, at least from my perspective, was “disastrous”.

Here are a few reasons why I say it was “disastrous”: the images I had prepared came up heavily pixellated when called up on the large screen, one of the two videos I had inserted didn’t play, and a lot of the graphs I put in turned out with the data scrambled, since obviously in my excitement, I forgot to group all the figures I inserted.  Thankfully, I was able to get all of the statistics add data correct, and I still managed to get the entire message of the presentation across, although just barely.

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How many times have you asked the question “what am I doing wrong?”

It may be rhetorical for some, but it is a rather critical question in many instances that really needs to be addressed, since some forms of failure do tend to be chronic.

Personally, I ask myself that question to start the critical process of analysis to see what could have gone wrong with whatever I was doing.  As careful as a person can be, and I am a pretty careful person, sometimes there will always be that unforseen element that will make things not go according to plan.  The idea here is not really to prepare for everything and anything, since that is just not possible, we are, after all, only human.  What is needed here is to learn from what happened, find the source of what caused the failure, and see what triggers it, so as to better help you steer clear of it for the next time, or at the very least, prepare for it.

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Working abroad is not always as glamorous, exciting, or challenging as most would have us believe it to be.  In many cases, it is all a grand exercise in marketing and advertising, and the reality of it all sinks in after the first few days a hapless worker arrives at the overseas job.

Different cultures, work hours, work habits, and standards of living make working abroad more tedious and difficult than it should really be, and this is all made even worse by the fact that overseas workers don’t really find any sort of advancement or betterment in their social, economic, or career situation when their contract is over.  It gets to the point that many often say had they known they would not really find the advancement they thought working abroad would get them, they would have just settled for a dead-end job back home, where they could at least get to be with the family at the end of the day.

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There’s this old joke that was passed around back in language class when I was in college.  It had to do with two porters who came from different regions, and didn’t speak much of the local language of the port where they were working.  While carrying a particularly heavy load, one porter felt his grip slipping a bit, so he told the other porter to stop, so he could adjust his grip and leverage.  Unfortunately, the porter who was losing his grip told the other porter to stop in his native dialect, which actually had a much different meaning in the native dialect of the other porter.  What meant “stop” in one porter’s dialect meant “drop it” in the other porter’s dialect.  So, seeing the urgency in the other porter’s urgings, and against his better judgment, the other porter dropped what they were carrying, which we all assume fell on the poor other porter’s feet.

This is how confusing, and oftentimes damaging, miscommunication can be.  While it may not always result in crushed feet, it can, nevertheless, have less than productive results.

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Man is, by definition, and by popular belief as well, a creature of habit.  This has been proven time and again, so much so that the practice of predicting and interpreting human behavior has been taken on by so many people, even those who didn’t spend years in numerous psychology-related studies.

The sad thing about this is that regardless of how predictable the outcome of a given set of behavioral traits may be, many still fall to less than desirable results of these traits, often labeled as “bad habits”.

Why?

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My college days were definitely some of the best days I’ve ever had.  Unlike some friends of mine who would periodically complain about how difficult it was to drag themselves out of bed just to get to school, I was always up bright and early for my morning classes, except, of course, for the times that I was too sick to go to school.

I wasn’t trying real hard to be a teacher’s pet or anything, I wasn’t even trying to be popular by studying hard.  I was just driven by the motivation to be able to graduate as soon as I can, earn money, and put into action most of the plans I had been cooking in my head ever since I learned that business would be great if you were really into it.

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Everyone knows the saying “there is no I in team”, and everyone pretty much knows why this is.

What most probably don’t know is that there are also quite a number of types, apart from the “I” type, that really need to be excluded from any team if they want to become a group that works impressively well with each other.

The “types” I am talking about here are actually those which many even find to be the people that every team should have, until they finally reveal how much of a liability they really are, bringing problems and issues to the team rather than beneficial efforts.  Make no mistake, these people are not that easy to spot on the onset, and in most cases, they will always have a quality about them that will seemingly divert the attention of people from the particular reasons why they should be avoided, making them even more difficult to isolate.

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I believe I would not be wrong if I say that for as long as recorded history, man has always been afraid of change.

Change can be confusing, disruptive, and rather unsettling for many, which is why so many people are so afraid of change.  It’s almost an immediate reaction: the moment a person senses a measure of change happening, the fear starts to creep in.  Reactions may differ, but so far, no one has proven to be immune to change, or even unaffected.

But what is it really about change that causes these visceral, gut-clawing feelings of fear?  Why are people so afraid of change?

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A customer is a customer , or at least that’s how some business folk see it.  The more savvy business owners know that musing and fussing over a few lost customers is pointless and an utter waste of time, since they have elevated their game to such a level that they are able to replace a lost customer with at least two or three more.

This manner of thinking is actually driven by the prevailing thought in most businesses that run mostly on sales and marketing:  meeting the quota.  To meet the quota, people often shut everything else out of their concentration, and hone their focus primarily on getting as many customers as possible.  Everything else is just a distraction or a waste of time and effort.

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