Saturday, August 30, 2008

Party Poopers

It's so hard to blog and rant when what you're ranting about is confidential. So I try to be as vague as possible and limit the post to be seen by just a select few. So forgive me if I sound weird as I have to withhold certain information.

I have spent majority of my corporate life in Credit, and it is quite known to be a thankless job. For those with a hazy knowledge in finance, we're known to be party poopers as we usually hold the business back from achieving their targets.

Sales and Marketing has their targets and it's usually in terms of number of accounts or peso/dollar figures depending on who you're talking to. We set the parameters and criteria on who they should be doing business with. We have the power to approve or deny a person or company a credit facility which the business is lobbying to be approved.

To put it simply, the more we approve, the happier the business will be.

However, with the current market crunch and economic conditions, we had to do some belt-tightening and these measures were very unpopular and I stress the word VERY. I attended a credit industry meeting last month and the chair said that credit will be the bank's life-saver in the current conditions and I totally agree with him. It's just so difficult to persuade the people from the other side of the fence.

In the end, our BIG bosses had to step in and dictate the measures and policies to be implemented. The other side of fence couldn't do anything as these were the bosses already. Even the CEO was involved and informed. These measures resulted to lower portfolio figures and lower approvals. They also beefed up the Collections team up to the point that they had to get my own people to help out (yes, whether I like it or not) and are in the process of getting more from other departments.

Last night, my friend from Marketing offered to take me home as he has a party to attend in our village. Since it has been ages since I hitched a ride with him, I agreed. Once we got into the car, we began talking about the recent developments in our business until the conversation lead to the recent measure that we did. We had a long discussion and I felt I was in the hot spot justifying our actions. I know I'm not supposed to take it personally but I felt that Credit has sunk lower in the eyes of the rest of the people at work. He kept on saying that we're killing the business and that we will certainly close shop by next year.

I tried giving him another perspective of things. Though I understand his concern, I told him the facts which lead to us to make those hard decisions. We don't deny applications just because for the fun of it. We have our reasons and by policy and necessity, we can't divulge all those reasons to the whole world except for those who are in the need-to-know basis.

Yesterday morning, I spent four hours in a Credit review meeting with the two business heads and I could see their support especially in terms of Collections. They didn't focus too much on new acquisition as they know I've done all that I could and basically, I'm doing my job in ensuring that my unit does not add to the bleeding (thank God!).

I'm just tired, I guess, from all the stress this past week. Good thing Leo and I are going on vacation the next few days. I need to relax and get my sanity back.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Stress Galore

Sometimes I wonder why I put up with up.

It has been a wringer of a week and my head has been aching non-stop due to the stress.

First of all, one of my top performer staff who was transferred to another department early this month is tendering his resignation tomorrow. I already got wind of it yesterday and asked him if we could talk. I helped him weigh the pros and the cons and I've told him of my plans for him. Apparently, he places more importance to the money and has no patience to wait for my plans to unravel. I already had my boss speak with him and HR as well. But it seems that he has made up his mind. I am so very disappointed because I have so much plans for him and his career growth. We could only shake our heads and say "sayang" (I can't counter-offer or give him a promotion as I just promoted him last April. Salary increase is also not justifiable due to the current promotion).

Second, my boss, an expat and one of the company's country managers has tendered his resignation effective tomorrow. The business head announced it to us just this morning. We're a bit shocked though we've expected it but not this soon. Though there are times that we don't see eye to eye on some policies, personally he's really a good person. We had a heart-to-heart talk this afternoon and I couldn't ask him how he felt because I was close to tears already. I asked him if he was relieved and he said he could not answer me because it's different at his level. I just looked down and changed the topic. Somehow, I could feel his pain on having to give his resignation during the most trying times of our business. He did not deserve that as what happened was not his pure fault. A lot of people are to blame and I hope that the others involved will just up and leave as well. I'm sure Group will have a field day and the Bosses and Powers-That-Be will surely descend on us and pick at us one by one until we've got nothing left to give.

My boss then turned the conversation and asked me how I am and I almost cried. I just laughed and said I'm surviving and ok--as of now. In my 8 years with this company, I've been a witness to its highs and lows and this is definitely a big low. Having existed in the country for 130 or so years, I know we will survive this crisis and many more. I just hope that we will survive with our sanity intact. As my boss said (and to paraphrase Nietsze too), if this does not kill me, it will make me stronger.

I attended a training yesterday on coaching (Great Managers Training). Our speaker was one of the Manco members and is the head of a successful business (Yes, Joelle, you know him). He said that the problem with our business is due to poor leadership and I heartily agreed with him. We've already had 5 or 6 business heads in the past 10 years and all of them have different directions and plans. I then asked him if he's willing to take on the business if the CEO asks him. He just laughed and said he doesn't have any experience. I then said that that was the same thing he said when he was offered to head the business that he's currently managing. I mean who knows, we just need that extraordinary person to turn the business around and give us the inspiration to get things going. Everyone is already tired and God knows we need something to help us through this.

Wala lang. Napapagod na ako. I was supposed to go to Singapore pa mid-September but can't travel in my current condition. Sayang. Wanted to go and eat at Pepper Rice again at Suntek Plaza.

Hay naku, I really don't know where we will end up. With the different problems cropping up and the CBA deadlock, I really...don't....know. Lord, give me strength.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Vacation at Subic

Start:     Aug 31, '08
End:     Sep 2, '08
Location:     Subic Bay Venezia Hotel
To celebrate our first year anniversary, Leo and I will be going to Subic on the 31st of August and will be back in Manila by Sept. 2.

I would've wanted to go somewhere farther but I would not want to risk it due to my condition.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Money Grows On Trees

Wala lang. Just wanted to rant. Iniisip ko kasi kung sucker ako talaga or sobrang lambot lang ng puso ko.

I have a friend kasi who's so down on his luck. Old old college friend. One of our friends (let's call him Friend E) sent out an SOS message to all of us asking for help in behalf of this friend (let's call him Friend C). Apparently, Friend E took in Friend C since Friend C is jobless and homeless and is also sick.

Ok, when Friend E sent out the SOS, I bought Friend C medicines (twice this year na and they're not cheap ha. I think I spent more than 3K on the meds) and one time, Friend C picked them up in the office (he walked from Mandaluyong). He even asked if I could buy him lunch pa. I didn't blink an eye. So when he came over, I took him over to Jollibee and bought him the biggest lunch. Even gave him "pocketmoney" when we parted ways. I felt good afterwards kasi it always feels nice to help. Of course, I never thought that it will be a precedence of something else.

Friend C then texted me the next week when I was in the middle of a crisis in the office. He said that he's in PeopleSupport applying for a job and while waiting for the result of his exam, can I treat him to dinner (yes, that straight). I begged off due to the crisis (hello! I was in a telecon with our Regional Credit Head and he didn't want to approve an account that was endorsed by the Consumer Banking Head and all 3 of us -- me, the Credit Risk Head and the OIC Credit Head -- were being scolded for even endorsing the account to the RCO. And then after that, we had to call the Unit Head who endorsed the account to the CB Head and we spent 15 minutes over the phone arguing why we shouldn't approve it. hay naku!).

This afternoon, he again texted saying that he left Friend E's house since Friend E's sister is in town and is living with him. So Friend C moved out to make room and is now living in Manila (he did not elaborate). He's asking for help again.

As usual, ang sama ng timing niya (I was in a meeting and I was stressing over my lack of FTE--hello! freeze hiring! To think they took out 3 of my FTEs and one moved to another department and not one of them will be replaced!) and I responded late na. I said no because I did not have any spare cash (which is true!). Although may hirit pa ako na I'll see in the next couple of weeks.

Ewan ko ba. How does one deal with such issues? Ako kasi, nagi-guilty ako if I don't give. Parang iniisip ko kasi, what if I was in the same situation? Pero may nagsabi kasi sa akin na dapat may ginagawa kang paraan para makaangat sa situasyon mo and you should not wallow in it too long. One should have enough pride and dignity not to depend too much on dole outs and really try to improve one's life. The problem with Friend C is that it seems that he's not doing his best in getting a proper job and we cannot understand why he reached such lows when he was such a brilliant person when we were in college. Wala na talaga siyang hiya and he will really ask out straight if he needs money. He used to have a good job but somehow got himself fired (tama ba cess?). Is it because of his eccentricities or  he just doesn't know how to hold onto a job?

I don't want to judge him when I haven't seen him for the past 10 years. Maybe he went through something bad that made him turn out this way. But a strong person can weather any storms that comes through his life if he deals with it properly. But from the way I perceived it, he just went with the flow and let things be. Ewan ko ba.

Note that I didn't post this to everyone as some of them know Friend C. Well mommycess knows who he is. Hehehe. Haaay naku.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

For The First Time

For some reason, I want to watch this movie. I think nadala ako sa love team ni Richard Gutierrez and KC Concepcion. Haha!

I'm not really a rabid fan of Richard or KC. I mean, hey, they're such a gorgeous couple and one can't help but just admire them. And note, ang ganda ng kili-kili ni KC. I don't think there's anything NOT beautiful about this girl.

There's this one particular scene that I like in the teaser--when KC and Richard was sharing an ice cream cone. Ang guwapo ni Richard!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Bum Tiyaya

Got this link from Newlyweds@Work, an egroup which I'm a member of.

I love Discovery Channel so I was pretty excited when I saw it. Hehehe.

And here's another one that's live:

Saturday, August 09, 2008

16 weeks

I had my monthly check-up today and Mommy and baby are doing fine. My doctor has a small doppler in the office so we heard the baby's heartbeat.

I lost another pound in the last couple of weeks. I guess that's ok as of now so I have the leeway to gain the pounds on my last trimester. My doctor only wants me to gain 10 lbs ever since I started my pregnancy. I've already lost 5 lbs since then so I guess I can gain 15 now. Haha! :)

I feel better than ever and feel I'm not pregnant except for my expanding stomach and my frequent urge to pee. Sleeping straight is already difficult as I wake up early morning with my bladder bursting. The constipation has also started. I spent the last 2 hours in the bathroom trying to poop but nothing comes out. I already ate pineapple chunks tonight and tomorrow morning, I'll be sharing Leo's oatmeal. Hopefully that will do the trick.

My doctor berated me though for not eating when I'm hungry. Last Monday and Tuesday, I came home at 10PM and was too tired to eat dinner. Well, I ate a bit but not enough. Same thing happened yesterday night. When Leo picked me up at ATC, my stomach was really churning as I was so hungry. My OB told me to bring cheeses to the office and yougurt so I have something to chew/drink when I'm hungry. I don't really have my appetite back maybe that's why I'm not too keen on eating. At least there's no more vomiting.

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Together Forever, Finally!

I saw this at my friend Joelle's blog and I knew I have to post this here as well.

Last Friday, my colleagues at work and I were chatting about Rick Astley's concert and how Roderick Paulate used to emulate him in his shows either with Vilma Santos or Carmi Martin. From the voice up to the dance moves, he's definitely Rick Astley (well of course, Rick Astley is paler in skin color compared to him).

Of course, somebody just had to have Roderick Paulate guest at Rick Astley's concert, much to the fans' excitement and amusement.

Saturday, August 02, 2008

When the Stress Comes

I woke up 430 this morning trying to sort a work related problem out in my mind. It does not help that I've been really tired for the past couple of days and waking up this early in the morning does not help.

I really need to learn to turn my mind off about work once I enter the door of our house/room. I guess it has become a habit for me to bring the work home that I'm barely getting rest worrying. Good thing it's a Saturday today at least I can catch up on my sleep later on.

2010 is such a looooooong way to go. :(