23 Dec

How to Treat People

Treat every client like they are your only source of income.
Treat every colleague like a teammate to win with.
Treat your boss like a person you want to help.
Treat your team members like how you would take care of your kids – teach them, grow them, discipline them, believe in them.

Treat strangers as friends you’ll eventually meet.
Treat your siblings as friends for life.
Treat your friends as wise counsel and crazy-drunk partymates.
Treat your parents as gifts blessed upon you.

Treat your spouse like a queen or king you love.
Treat your children as the most unique, incomparable, and lovable people in this world (they actually are!).
Treat yourself the way you would treat the person you love the most – with respect, with passion, with class, and with humor.

23 Dec

A Different Definition of Success

I started my entrepreneurship journey 6 months ago with a 6-1 winning streak. Meaning, of the 7 potential clients that reached proposal stage, 6 of them went ahead to secure my services. Only 1 declined. I felt like a genius!

Then October happened. And November. Over those two months, another streak happened: 0-9. All 9 proposals turned into a “NO” or a “NO REPLY” from the targets. I felt crushed. It’s never fun to be rejected no matter how many times you’ve already experienced it.

December started much better, as I am currently enjoying a 3-0 streak. But more important than the streak, I feel I’ve grown.

I’m not anymore too attached to winning and losing. Winning is great but it does not define me. Losing hurts but it also does not define me.

What will define me is how I played the game of Life . Did I play it the right way or not?

When you are winning, don’t be arrogant – because it’s just a temporary phase. When you are losing, don’t look down on yourself – because it’s also just a temporary phase.

Life isn’t about winning and losing – it’s about playing the game the right way – regardless of the result.

Keep doing what’s right. Be strong against the pressures to take shortcuts. If you can do that – regardless if you are winning or losing – then you have lived what I define, a successful life.

14 Dec

On This Rainy Day

No matter what you do, you are going to fuck up the life of your kids. Sorry for the language, but I needed you to listen.

When your kids grow up, they will find a way to do something you don’t want them to do. And they will blame you for it.

They will find a way to mess up the perfect lives you tried to give them.

They will grow up and find a way to dislike you and some of the things you do.

Parenting is a challenge for which there is no perfect score. So please, stop trying to get a perfect score.

I am not asking you to give up on your kids. I’m asking you to let go of yourself.

Let go of the pressure to be the perfect parent. Let go of the need to give your kids the perfect, all-organic, ultra mega high nutrition diet. Let go of giving them the perfect birthday party. Let go of thinking you need to say the perfect soothing words all the time when they cry. Let go of the pressure that they should walk, read, write, bike by a certain age. Let go of the need to give them 200 tutors so they can have perfect grammar, blindingly fast algebra, and perfect white teeth. Let go of the need to capture all of their precious moments on perfectly composed photos. Let go.

There is only one thing your kids really need. Your time. They don’t need you to be a perfect hero. They just need you to be there.

You can never be a perfect parent. You can never have perfect kids. But you can be a parent to your kids – and you can only do that when you spend enough time with them. Parenting is a choice we have to make everyday.

And one of these years, when the time comes when your kids mess up (and by the way, they will) you can be rest assured that even if they don’t admit it, they will know in the deepest of their hearts that you will be there for them.

They will know that in their time of trouble and time of parental need you will always make time for them. Because it’s what you’ve always done.

You ain’t perfect. You can’t be. And that’s OK.

07 Dec

Time for Change

Something to think about in the coming weeks as we begin a new year soon.

If the highlight of your week is the weekend and the highlight of your year is the two weeks of vacation, then it’s time to make a change.

Sure, you can change your situation: a new job, a new place, a new relationship, a new city.

But unless you change your disposition, things will always come back to the way they are.

30 Nov

The World Isn’t Fair

The world isn’t fair. So two pieces of advice:

  1. Stop expecting the world to be fair.
  2. Put in the effort to be unfair to others.

Number 1 is the key to peace of mind.
Number 2 is the key to winning in the long-run.

So I repeat – be unfair to others.

When you are paid a certain amount, do not give work commensurate to that amount – give more. Be unfair.  Be generous.

Even when a contract or project is done and you are not being paid anymore, deliver value still. Ask how the client is doing. Be unfair. Don’t just give what’s fair – give more than fair. Be generous.

When you are promoted to a certain level at work, do not deliver work expected of that level. Do work expected of the next level. Be generous.

When a friend asks for time, do not just give time – give undivided attention too. Give empathy. Give comfort. Be generous.

The world isn’t fair. We know that already. But wouldn’t our world be a much better place if we all played to its tune and be unfair to others too?

23 Nov

When to be Patient and When Not to be

People are generally impatient. And are always looking forward to the next thing.

If you are single and you go to a cousin’s wedding – one of your aunts will undoubtedly ask you:

“Kelan ka susunod?” (When will you follow-suit?).

If you are married without kids, and visit a cousin’s baby – that same aunt will then ask you:

“Kelan ka susunod?” (When will you follow suit?).

People just can’t leave you alone. They just can’t wait for your next milestone. Sometimes you wish that you can attend a funeral of a relative, and when you see your aunt there, you can ask in return:

“Kelan po kayo susunod?” (When will you follow suit?).

Hahaha!   Mean, but you get the idea.

We are often told to seize the day and to take charge. That there is no better time than now. That tomorrow is too far away.

If this is the correct, then when does it make sense to wait and become patient?

Action vs Results

Here is a simple rule:

When it comes to taking action, have more bias to doing it now. When it comes to getting the results, have more bias towards waiting and being patient.

For example:

Love life:
• Take Action by going out in the right places (the key word is right)
• Be patient and don’t marry the first person that approaches you

• Take action by providing value to your customers and your managers
• Be patient and wait for your chance to go to the next level

Having kids:
• Take action by [deleted content]
• Be patient – it will come at the right time

Teaching values to kids:
• Take action by role modelling the right behavior at home
• Be patient if the child doesn’t get it immediately

Why is waiting important? Because if you cannot wait, it means you are impatient. If you are impatient, it means you feel entitled. If you are entitled, then in comes pride. When pride comes, downfall follows.

A simple analogy is planting. You take action by tilling the land, watering the plant, ensuring it has right sunlight. But when it comes to result (having the plant grow), all you can do is be patient and enjoy the wait.

Be impatient and take action now. Be patient and let the results come in at the right time.

16 Nov


In the short-term, we are all limited by many things: time, money, connections, talents, access, power, knowledge, information, and even health. These are valid roadblocks to things we want to achieve.

Over many years though – the only real limitations are just two things: our imagination and our perseverance. Two things that all of us, regardless of background, can choose to possess.

Eleanor Roosevelt was right, “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.”

The ones who believe so much in their dreams – that they decide to take action.

09 Nov

Basic Rules of People Management

Here are some basic rules for People Managers.  These are not hard, but they do need commitment.

  1. Praise publicly, correct privately.
  2. Have a regularly scheduled 1-1 time with your direct reports.
  3. Provide direction, tools, connections, training opportunities, coaching, and motivation.
  4. Do not do your employee’s work.
  5. If you delegate or instruct, follow-up on results. Do not abdicate your accountability.
  6. Set expectations in writing. Assess performance based only expectations set.  Expectations should include work to be delivered, team norms to be followed, as well as character/core values expected.
  7. Ensure your employee takes regular vacations.
  8. If you make a mistake, apologize.
  9. Never blame a person in your team for something your team was not able to deliver – the buck stops with you.
  10. Have concern for your employee’s well-being.