Monday, April 27, 2009

Email

This week should have been a fine one since there are only four days to toil.
Friday's gonna be a holiday so it'll be a free day. Thank God.

The problem is, my bosses felt that it is about time to shower us with responsibilities.
As if we have don't have enough yet, they have decided to give us an extra load.
Whew, I feel like I'm going to die soon.

I've been through tough times.
I've weathered some big storms.
But this is one storm I feel like giving up against.

The tasks are just too much that whenever I see their faces,
all I see are tasks to be done or waiting to be done.

I am not the type who just gives up when the going gets tough.
But they are way too much, and I feel so weak against them.

Sometimes I ask myself whether this hell is worth all the trouble.

Today we got our email accounts.
Receiving email in Citi is a reason to celebrate.
After all, you now have an identity in the company and people can now reach you through their computers.
I felt happy for a time, but there's the hesitation at the back of my mind.
Email only means additional burdem.
I so hate it.
But I don't have any choice but to accept my fate.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Observations

Strong emphasis
on company employees

1. Established teams/ departments
>Each employee is assigned to a specific department
>There is a team head – task is to supervise
>Team meetings for projects
>Team members are assertive and detail-oriented
2. Team activities
>Competitions
>Raffle draws
>Parties
3. Employee recognition
>Awarding day (nominated by fellow employees)

Strong emphasis on
company clients

1. Development of advertising materials
2. Marketing projects like coffee and lunches
with clients, promotions
3. Newsletter
4. Perks for the clients –brochures, freebies
5. Clients are monitored
6. Help desk for customers for questions and assistance

Strong emphasis
on the market

1. Competitor monitoring
>The moves of other banks are monitored by the
involved department

2. Marketing projects
>There are projects that help entice potential clients
and satisfy existing ones plus they have promos every once in a while

3. Webpage
The company webpage is highly maintained

Recommendation

Creation of Departments
Create departments in the company that will supervise
necessary company needs like logistics, marketing, auditing, etc.

Department Heads
Department heads should primarily supervise and minimize
teaching load to concentrate on training their members

Standardization
The company should standardize all related company
identification (logo) and communication (invoices, budgeting, etc.)

Employee Recognition
Employee loyalty and team building should be cultivated in the company
and each employee should be given reasonable responsibilities
that gives him that sense of importance
(e.g. a sense of being a part of something).

In turn, the efforts of each employee should be recognized.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I refuse to be a victim

Proofreading Citi e-Savings toblerone ad.

Handsome me. Playing with a mac after lunch.

Citi-zens. Photo op with fellow intern, Jojit. Serious.

The candid version.





What's wrong with him?
I feel like I'm being sexually harassed, always caressing my back and I think he intends to move those freaking hands to who knows somewhere. It would have been nice but the thing is this layout artist is so damn ugly. So ugly you wouldn't waste time looking at him. If I do not have to ask him to do some things fo me then I wouldn't have to bear his ugliness. Arrggghhh.
Boss was out.
This morning when I arrived at the office, I did not greet my boss who I supposed was at the opposite desk. It was deliberate for I don't want her to see me at once and ask me to run so many errands. She just gives too many things to handle and I just don't know how to finish them all. Plus this stupid pseudo boss to us is trying to come in the way as if our tasks aren't enough for a day.
Yesterday was our first week at the office and we have surpassed a week's work already. Normally I measure the length of my stay in a company in a week's performance and I think since I have come this far, I'll be staying in the office for the whole course of the internship. Besides, I promised my boss that I am not like the others who just disappear when the going gets tough.
She promised me that she'll transfer me to another department related to research. I just hope that she keeps her promise. It is going to be about Market Research and I know it can help me a lot. It's not that I am not learning anything here in the Marketing Communication but more than taking off posters from doors or delivering letters between floors, is my desire to learn the rigours of corporate research.
The break even.
We get 350Php a day in the company. It doesn't sound bad. Bad when I try to compute the actual expenses at the office starting from the taxi going and leaving plus the lunch, I think that the measly allowance we receive is an insult to the task they are giving us.
To illustrate-
Taxi....................................... P 50.00
Lunch.................................... 70.00
Taxi....................................... 100.00
Total...................................... P 220.00
Allowance................................................... P 350.00
Net................................. P 130.00

Additional expenses
Time....................................... 9 hours
Intelligence............................ XXX
Effort...................................... XXX
Energy.................................... XXX
And to think that sometimes they ask us to stay more than the arbitrated time. I definitely refuse to be a victim.
I am a fighter by nature and I won't let this corporate abuse get to me. If it means resigning, then be it but I will not let them play their authority over me. I'm sounding a little communist but order should be established out of chaos.
Quote for the day:
"Hindi tayo tao, hindi tayo hayop."
"E ano tayo?"
"Bagay tayo."
-not in any way related to my journal. I just find this funny.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Frustrated

This afternoon, I had to escape from my boss who was so busy talking with her superior.
After finishing the tasks (some of them), I left the building not caring what she'll think when I do.
The thing is, she has kept me and my classmate 30 minutes beyond our work time.
What can she complain about?

Earlier we had lunch at Causeway, a Chinese restaurant.
Everybody paid except for us interns.
I just don't feel that because we were fed lunch, we have to tolerate this abuse.
I just feel so enraged by this.
I came there to learn and this is all I get- calling some agencies for some brochures and banners which should be done by just anyone.

Darn it.
Even delivering letters to other floors are given to us.
Is that in any way to treat interns?
Is this what we are supposed to learn?
I think I am wasting my time there.
I am now giving this company another week and if things don't become better, I swear I will accept the offer of McCann who by the way sent me a message asking me if I am still interested.

The problem with McCann is that they replied so late.
What, are they expecting UP students come crawling to their so-called high profiled name?
Darn. I am so tired that I just get irritated by this system.
Students get more burdened instead of trained.
As I have said time and before, I will not be a part of this corporate craziness.

They don't really have to like me and I don't have to like them.
This is plain prfessional and nothing more.
They ask me- I give them. Simple.
But please stop asking for the moon.
Let me finish one thing before I get another.
I feel so frustrated.



Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Furious

Nothing annoys me more than insensitivity. The following entry describes how during the course of this particular day, I was asked to go hither and thither running after some people in the building and when supposed to leave, had to bear some last minute requests.

1. Aggressive.

In a corporate setting, I realized that dealing with people entails tuning your personality. Sometimes you need to be meek, like a lost lamb. Sometimes you need to assert your dominance and make people understand that they can't go horsing around you.

Excess of these two behaviours are both undesirable as too much meekness might prompt people to abuse you. Too much aggression can make you dislikable. The point is to balance the two all the time. When you start noticing that the people around you are abusing you are making a fool of you, then that's the time you need to pause and reconsider your position. There's something wrong and like all troubleshooting, the right wires should be discovered to make the right connection solve the problem.

2. Time. When it's time, it's time.

I just don't get it why on Earth people have to rush things on the last minute. The day has been long enough to prepare the tasks needed to be done. And then when time to leave comes, that's the time people start cramming as if there's no tomorrow. I'm not saying that we should put for tomorrow what can de done now. What I am saying is that we need to maximize the time we have for the moment. For crying out loud, I am so pissed off askig to stay beyond required time.

In a story about the Japanese workers I have read months ago, it was told that Japanese workers stay beyond office hours to finish work without overtime pay. But this is different when people who also have their own life are affected by this insensitivity. I just wish that they be more considerate.

3. Honesty is the best policy. But more than that is telling people in advance things that we need to do.

I learned that we need to notify people in advance if we have to do something that might affect them. This is one essential value that I hold and endear to defend me against what I call corporate abuse. Let them know that I have a life too and I don't find it funny to stay when I need to leave.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Tasks done

On the third day, we were late.

We were late because of an unforeseen traffic jam at Balara. I just feel guilty I had to drag Jojit to this mess I have come across. Anyway, we ate breakfast at Mini Stop and perhaps due to lack of sleep, everything seemed unreal to me. I just feel floating and didn't care whether I was in Citibank or some far flung area in Mindanao. In fact, anybody could have taken my bag without me knowing it, only too exhausted to care about anything.

It was a miracle that my sleep-deprived brain was able to function properly today. I was surprised how well I have responded to all the task my supervisors handed to me. Let me enumerate all them:

1. Checking the citi cards' measurements and texts. I had to make sure that all cards follow the same format, which they call branding. The positions of words should follow the measurements lest it undergo revision. The lines still circle my head, "...By signing this issuance, blah blah blah." I did find some discrepancies and my supervisor asked me to go to another citi employee. The funny thing is, I immediately went out without asking where I should go.

Lesson learned: Ask before executing a command. It helps save time.

2. Project List. In broadcasting, we call this pre-prods where you put all the necessary things before a shooting. I was more than glad to receive this since I like the feeling of scheduling things. That's my forte. The difficult part about it was that the instruction was very unclear. She just gave me the copies of the event's tasks and asked me sort them out. I don't really mind organizing since I enjoy it, but to walk in the dark is simply confusing.

Lesson learned: Read the documents first before asking. It pays to know the details.

3. Proofreading. I was also instructed to proofread this sort of ad for newspapers at the fastest time. Rushing seems to be developed in us here since work keep coming without waiting for a current task to be done.

Lesson learned: Speed and quality. Cannot compromise the two but I just have to deal with the fact that this is part of the deal.

4. File names. I had to find some photos' filenames from a recent shoot but good thing the layout artist did it since my archaic computer won't open DVDs.

Lesson learned: Find the right people to help you. We only have two hands to do many tasks.

5. Keep files hidden. For security reasons, we are not allowed to leave our materials on our desk. We need to always keep them in a safe place. I learned this the hard way.

Lesson learned: Already stated.

Three days have passed and we really did it. We survived the corporate demands. But this Monday will be the true measure of our skills. The true challenges are yet to come and Monday is just two days away. I hope everything turns out right.

Icon

Corporate culture
Global brand
Brand purpose: driving success
Brand beliefs
1. Client success is our success
2. We are one Citi
3. Simple, clear, and direct
4. Raise the bar everyday
We are brand ambassadors

The ICON:
The icon cannot talk and people only experience the brand through employees

Defend the company
When people complain don’t just agree but defend it

On following up.
Need to know the details.
As Sir Paolo has mentioned, we need to de detail oriented

My supervisor is out, on a shoot.
She lets me know what is going to happen so I appreciate the thoughtfulness a lot.
I was in this jeepney slowly giving in to sleepiness when she gave me a call and it dawned on her that I was already out of the office by 3pm.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Evaluation Guide

ComRes makes an evaluation of companies where our students spend their internship.

Last Section.
RECOMMENDATIONS
Guide questions

A. Would you recommend ComRes to continue sending interns to the company?

B. Is the company intern-friendly? (company environment, employees' and supervisor's attitudes)

C. Does the company provide work space and equipment needed for you to do the tasks assigned to you?

D. Is the work given helpful in your course/career?

E. Other observations

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

I'm still a college scholar

In my university's parlance, being a college scholar meant being a dean's lister as normally called in other universities. I wasn't expecting this, since my target was to be a university scholar but still I am happy though my major subject gave me a really low grade which I think I don't deserve. It's just that there are simply people who are jappy putting people down. But as if I am gonna be affected by their jealous attitudes. I have reestablished my worth as a student and no insecured grade conscious selfish monkeys and bitches would ever make me feel bad again. They are just pathetic to pull people down so that they can come up. Very crabbish indeed, and I hope three more pairs of hands grow on them so they can just show off the world how much greedy they are. The long and short of this- I am very very pleased with my semester's turn of events.

Journal

Prof. Quirante, our professor in internship class, advised us to buy a regular sized notebook to jot down our experiences in our internship.

I'm planning on really writing and documenting this internship to the next level. I want this to be so memorable. Something worth publishing. Just like the books I've read. I'm so inspired, and yet so broke. Reality bites.

Contract signing

I just signed the contract at Citi Philippines today.
After signing the who-knows-how-many-pages papers given to me, I've come to terms that I am really here where I intended to be. I really wanted to be part of something big and be challenged by the demands of working in an international company.

Anyway, I am starting this journal to document all that I would be experiencing back there, the feelings and emotions and what I think about the people I'm going to work with. It's a nice idea that people would be able to read this. I want people to be a part of me. That's all.

I don't have the luxury of time so let me just enumerate some observations I have of the company.

1. Respect appointments please. I was supposed to meet this person at 2:00 but it was already thirty minutes when she came. Talk about punctuality.

2. Taxi fares, my dear. It was so expensive to pay for the taxi so I think the allowance we have would only go to taxi fares. Darn.

3. Good company, always convenient. I have Jojit with me and so I have a company. Good thing.

4. Truth matters. I intended to make an excuse about starting on Monday but I opted to be more honest and they let me. It pays to be honest.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Trunks and Grudge

Today I bought a very cheap swimming trunks with a 50% discount. I am now gearing up for the summer and I just can't wait to head to the beach and enjoy the sun. I swear I am going to have so much fun no matter what happens. 

These past few days have been too tough for me add to that the people who have given me so much stress making me sin during the holy week. And speaking of the holy week, I won't be coming home this year as I used to do because of several reasons but primarily because of the weather; I just can't take the heat, and also the impractical cost of bus fare and its inconvenience. Imagine I have to endure the 5 hour drive and pray that my kidneys bear the long trip lest it explodes and I die. Fares nowadays aren't cheap anymore and going home twice in a month I think is capricious. At a time when global recession plagues our country, we just need to think of measures how to save and only by doing so can we make our life more, I don't know, maybe profitable. Well we can say that since it is really difficult to find money. Good thing I don't have to eat fire for me to survive here in the metro. 

Life is seriously tough and this coming Tuesday, oh heavens, I would be meeting the very people I detest. Oh I pray that I may be forgiven for this grudge I've sown in my heart. But you can't really blame me if I hate some people.

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