Stranger in Ankara

we stay at one of the six units here

we stay at one of the six units here

It’s been three weeks since we arrived in Ankara and we’re lucky to find a furnished apartment that is a lot more affordable than others of its kind in the area – priced at around $1,000 to $1,200 a month.

The units are surprisingly huge in contrast to what we normally would have in the Philippines. Ours, for example, has 3 bedrooms, 2 toilets, a large living room, and a kitchen.

To my estimate, our unit’s area is larger than our own home back in Legazpi so I am adjusting to the “empty” feeling whenever George, my husband goes to work.

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The Ordeal of Job Orders in the Government

Just recently, I came across this blog of young journalists who write so beautifully about various topics. As I continued reading one post after another, my attention was Now what-caught by the essays they wrote about their employment suit against GMA Network, Inc. Four of them joined a team of 110 brave journalists who decided to cry foul over GMA’s practice of hiring them on long-term and repeated contract basis, which effectively deprived them of employee benefits under the law.

Their suit was big news in the Philippines early last year and gained similarly situated journalists their much needed attention. Good news is, there are many Supreme Court decisions which can be used to their favor such as this one promulgated just this April 20, 2015, involving ABS-CBN Corporation “talents”. Bad news is, their bold move temporarily cost them their jobs. Continue reading

Watch that Price Tag

When I was younger, I used to feel embarrassed whenever I accompanied my father or aunt to the grocery and they’d have little arguments with the sales clerk or supervisor about erroneous pricing. To me then, a matter of one or two pesos was too small to be an issue. But I grew up, started working hard for money, and began paying bills – these changed my outlook. Continue reading

Real-life Tips for Better Leadership

In most organizational settings, the people calling the shots are often identified as the “leaders”, while all others obediently follow. This traditional set-up makes it a lot easier to keep an organization running. The simplicity is much like how a shepherd is to his herd – making sure that each sheep walks only on the trail he has identified.

But leadership is not simple. In fact, companies spend a lot of money to train and educate its existing or potential leaders in the hopes of getting the best out of them. While technical learning is truly helpful, there are times when asking ordinary employees about the subject could be as effective – if not better. In this post, I have summarized into 10 tips the personal observations and years of conversation had with employees who wished their leaders knew what was wrong. Continue reading

Photo-Chronicling 2011 Bar Review Days Like It Happened Last Night

The 2014 Philippine Bar Examinations recently gave birth to 1,126 new lawyers who are expected to be euphoric for a year, at the very least. Ask any one of them to tell you about the sacrifice they had to go through, their study habits, or memory techniques and they’d be more than willing to narrate.  Well, ask ANY lawyer to do that and stories will overflow.

Here’s my share (And you didn’t even have to ask)  Continue reading

4 Ethical Principles Every Lawyer Should Remember

Law students and lawyers alike will admit that often very little attention is placed on legal ethics as a course subject. If not for the 5% weight allocation given it in the Philippine Bar Exam, an average law student will most likely skip a legal ethics class in exchange for more library time reading annotations in, say, taxation law.

During the 15th National Convention of Lawyers held last March in Cebu City, I was intrigued when the proposal to remove Legal Ethics as an independent bar exam subject was mentioned by one of the law deans who spoke about changes to look forward to in legal education and bar administration.  Continue reading

Understanding Employee Disengagement

These past days, our office managers have given emphasis on the importance of employee engagement and investing in people to ensure company (or agency) success. Given my inclination to ideas which promote balance between employer-employee welfare, I’ve decided to make it my first blog topic this year and luckily, I came across this online material that point-on tells us what it means to be a disengaged employee – Continue reading