Belated birthday post.
Well, not exactly. Or sort of.
Nica, being the sweet person that she is, prepared a little ninja birthday loot bag for me. :)
It included a bunch of things she figured I’d enjoy: 2 sheets of yummy seaweed, 1 chocolate CHEESE bar, a Zombadings DVD + a slice of red velvet cake, and of course, the cute bag itself.
The food is no longer present in the picture because I have the EQ of a 2 year-old.
I’ve long accepted that I cannot be a food blogger because I’d probably wind up taking pictures of empty plates.
So anyway, point is, if you look closely, you’ll actually notice that this is a SUPER SPECIAL DVD.
Nica, that dear girl, with her admittedly primitive Photoshop skills created her own version of the Zombadings DVD cover featuring no other than Punchdrunk Panda, along with some messages from our Punchdrunk Panda friends. :D
She also compiled the unabridged version of their messages in another layout, which I will just keep to myself since what I really wanted to showcase was Nica’s creativity with this loot bag. Hehe. Boyfriend na boyfriend!
Thank you, Nek-nek!
Certified late 20’s,
My 11.11.11 :D
While the rest of Manila, the Philippines, Asia and the world (in a matter of hours) may have had some kind of monumental celebration because of this cool, once-in-a-lifetime date, I spent the day (and night, less Joseph) with my team.
We didn’t have fireworks, festivities, a concert, a smorgasbord of food or free-flowing alcohol (not exactly, anyway), but we had our weekly PdP Powwow & PL, a new game plan for our next bazaar set-up, Causeway congee and dimsum, a tallish glass of Bailey’s and 1 bottle of Super Dry. It was a memorable 11.11.11.
My 11.11.11 in Detail
Nica got sick the other day on account of over fatigue, (Jonver and I suspect it was aggravated by something she ate at some kebab place) so she experienced chest pains and had trouble breathing last Thursday. She spent a day at the hospital being poked and prodded, so we didn’t expect her to really be well enough to work on Friday.
Fridays are usually our PL (Project List) days wherein we summarize accomplished tasks and detail pending to-do’s per person. Lately, we’ve also moved our intended Powwow Wednesdays (turn-by-turn random educational/inspirational sharing) to Fridays (but Powwow Fridays doesn’t have any ring to it, so I’ll simply call it PdP Powwows now).
I wanted a change of scenery for my team so I wanted to hold it outside the office, at some cafe or something, but that was a failed attempt because WiFi at the venue we had intended to do our PL at wasn’t working. And while we had planned on surprising Nica with a visit during the day, I hadn’t initially considered doing a “work-from-Nica’s” since I thought it might be intrusive or that she might get stressed out or something. But when we were exchanging text messages, I got the feeling she did want company. So yay! Work from Nica’s it was. :P
We started out with my PdP Powwow #2 on Resilience. - Please read this too para sulit effort ko. I also added some things in that post that I don’t think I properly expressed to the team. Or maybe I did. I’m not sure. Then we had our prolonged PL with side talks (always amusing though we constantly have to bring ourselves back on track). Then we planned a bazaar booth setup.
We ended our day on a quest for materials for our revamped bazaar booth, going to various hardware stores and SM North. It’s funny how having a small business forces you into all these unexpected tasks. :)
With Nica’s sensitive stomach, (but perhaps really more because of my craving for Causeway) we headed over to Causeway for dinner. Plain congee + a dimsum feast! Yum. Then we headed back to Nica’s house to finish some very important work. Very important. I thought we would wrap up by 11pm or 12mn, but the work was just very important. Very important. So we wound up wrapping up close to 2am. (Gail, if you’re reading this, I can explain. I’m not a slave-driver, I promise. But I was called an evil bitch among other names several times throughout the night. :P)
So yeah, it was really nice to have this time with my team. Night time was especially productive. Especially productive. So yeah. We should do that more often. :D
Sly deals and not-so-ugly brown property,
Progress Report #2 on Nomad Manager - Part 1 of 3
It’s been around 3 months since I first started this blog, with the intention to chronicle my steps towards “nomadic management” by 2013. But this is only the second progress report I’ve written thus far. Heh.
I was reviewing old entries to see if maybe I had written about my progress in one way or another, apart from my Progress Report #1, but I guess I just had bits and pieces everywhere without any comprehensive summary. I did find it helpful to review my original track, and I am enjoying the fact that I seem to be working my way towards nomadic management quite well (in the sense that I’m building my team). I’m disappointed that I can’t really seem to find any old entry on actual strategies though. Meh. Anyway. So here we go. Here’s what’s up or what’s been in my head as the wannabe NM.
The “New” PdP Team
Our 2 new hires (former PdP interns and incoming marketing officer Jonver and creative director Joseph) are finally starting employed work tomorrow. I’m really excited about working with them to further PdP and developing a rock-solid team.
Our sales for the last quarter is probably the lowest I have experienced with PdP thus far, and while most entrepreneur-friends share the same circumstance, I am not certain to what degree they are experiencing the same. However, an entrepreneur friend agreed with me when I said it was odd that during the year of the fuel hike, or Ondoy, and the year of recovery after Ondoy, people still seemed to buy more. I can’t tell if it’s because of our products/designs (though I feel we’ve leveled up), because I’m pretty certain that our marketing this year has been more intense than in previous years. Nonetheless, I intend to end the year with a bang, and milk the last quarter for everything it’s worth. :P
While it may be counterintuitive to hire more people when low sales leave us with less money to allocate, I am counting on Joseph and Jonver, together with Nica, Gail and I, to really bring in more revenue, either through increased sales or new business. So yeah, we really have to work hard, guys. :) Gail, Nica and I were working on closing some international deals a few weeks/months ago as well, but we’ve yet to get feedback on that, but I do hope we close them because it will be a big deal for us and for the workers behind our production. It would be especially nice for them this Christmas. *fingers crossed*
Progress Report #2 on Nomad Manager - Part 3 of 3
Burnout & Rekindling
[I’m excited about the Kindle I’m to own in about a week’s time, but this is not about the Kindle, and there was no pun intended.]
Earlier this year, in January 2011, I experienced the worst burnout/meltdown as a business owner. My partner Gail had migrated to Canada in May 2010, and while she did what she could from there, I managed the business alone locally since then.
When you manage your own business (and you don’t have a physical store of your own), people don’t seem to realize the extent of the work you still have to put in. I had to oversee production, quality control, coordinate with consignees on deliveries, sales reports and collections, prepare accounting documents and shipments, split the work of creating marketing collateral with Gail, man bazaar booths without any permanent/truly knowledgeable fellow booth manners (i.e. teammates like Gail who I could count on to answer product/brand-related inquiries confidently). I had to beg true friends/coerce househelp to help me man booths. I only ever left the booth to pee. Sometimes I didn’t leave at all. I felt I had no weekends. Or when I did, I felt guilty about them because I knew there was still pending work to be done. I could go on. But I won’t. In a nutshell, I basically died last December.
And then the bingo.
I feel things turned around for me when Nica came into the picture. This was not immediate, but a lot of things changed for me since she joined us. While we have yet to improve sales, having her around, showing her the ropes, and being able to trust that she knows those ropes helped lift a heavy weight off my shoulders, giving me more anxiety-free days to focus on more long-term planning for PdP.
Jonver & Joseph are pretty much part of that team now. And while I’ve yet to really officially work with them, if they work like Nica, then I’m lucky enough to have a strong team to work with (making me less anxious). At the same time, it makes me feel like the business has an even higher purpose than myself or the PdP-losophy/cause. This time, 3 other people will be dependent on me for sustenance. Both financial and otherwise. And while it’s a daunting responsibility, I also find it quite exciting.
‘Til my next progress report.