Sunday, July 29, 2007

Free Hugs Anyone?

This is a wonderful story of how the Free Hugs Campaign all started. If everyone does this, there may not be much fighting around us....

Friday, July 27, 2007

It Wasn't As Bad...

Yesterday at noon, one of my unit heads sent a text message asking that I talk to his staff before the meeting on the promotion. He suspected that she already knew her promotion didn't get through.

After I came back from lunchbreak, another unit head said that another staff who was recommended for promotion approached her almost crying that she was able to verify from a source that her promotion didn't get through.

So I decided to send a message to my boss if we could have the meeting a day earlier as scheduled. Before the meeting, I started talking privately to those who didn't make the promotion.

The first one cried. This was the third time her promotion didnt get through. She's one of those transferred to me from a disbanded division. And for HR to tell her that her paper got lost the last time didn't help. With the 5% quota requirement, she knew it was going to be tough to get the next promotion. What made her feel really bad is that she was among the last batch from the disbanded group due for promotion. Almost all the others with the same rank as hers got promoted.

The second one handled it pretty well. She knew we tried our best. Her paper got through up to the Committee level and was deliberated on. For some reason it still got rejected. Since the memo only said "not at this time," we had to verify the elimination process that was done. We suspected that her 3-level jump from Staff to Officer was a reason. Nothing was officially confirmed by HR. But then again, the fact that her paper was processed up to Committee level meant such kind of promotion was possible. It was in the policy. The Officer position she had been occupying for a year should have justified it. Anyway, she handled and accepted the news well. I saw her working as she did before I told her the news. That relieved me.

The third one also reacted well. He said he waited longer before for his first promotion, so he saw no reason to be griping now. Ohh and guess what, his source that his paper didn't get through was from the Office of the President!!! Now how confidential can that be??? Oh well, I guess he has the "right" friends.

The last and most difficult one I didn't get the chance to talk to. My boss was back and we had the group meeting. I was looking at the guy's reaction as my boss announced the names of those promoted. Two of those promoted were from his batch. I've been trying to justify his promotion, but I guess it just wasn't enough. And I certainly couldn't give him a higher rating than those who performed better than he did. Soooo, he has to work harder for it. But I still want to talk to him about his promotion. I'll do that today....

Breaking the News...

Today, the Global Operations Sector Head went around to announce promotions. I was supposed to have 8 people due for promotion, 2 were from another division which I absorbed after it was disbanded last May. The announcement at my division didn't push through since almost everyone attended aTraining session on enhancements of the new system.

The 5% per group quota was strictly imposed this time. This meant that from our group of about 60 people, only 3 will get promoted. 2 of the 3 who made it were from my division and both are officer-level. A third one was an exception since she completed the Junior Executive Development Program training which automatically qualified her for officer level.

Now the hard part....telling the others who didn't make it. My boss and I agreed to hold a group meeting this Friday to make the announcement before talking individually to those who didn't make it. My people had been working doubly hard since the acquisition of the new system. They went beyond their regular functions. But it seems these weren't enough to get them promoted. The 5% quota had to be followed and they were eliminated by ranking, rating and whatever criteria that trimmed their number down to the 5% quota. It doesn't seem fair but it's the way it is.

An even harder part is that I now have a backlog of people due for promotion. There were 2 or 3 other people lined up for the next batch. Now I have to do a process of elimination..only the best of the best.

I can only hope that the news won't dampen the spirits of those who weren't promoted nor affect their performance. But I guess that's expected....

Friday, July 20, 2007

Lack of Blogging....

I've been so busy lately with our system conversion so I won't be able to blog regularly for quite a while.

I'm missing you guys though...will be back soon (I hope).

Monday, July 02, 2007

They're Off...

They're off... 2 of my staff left for Singapore and Hongkong yesterday for at least a month's stay to train and assist our overseas people convert to the new Corebanking system. It was 2 weeks of stressful preparations. Passport and visa applications, presentation materials, etc.

As an added stress to my staff who's in Hongkong, our Executive Vice President for Global Operations is also in Hongkong until Monday and wanted to meet with my staff and the employees there today, SUNDAY. Knowing him, he'll be very inquisitve and will want to know details of the training and all. That's understandable. In his place I'd want to do the same just as I had wanted to see my staff rehearse their presentation before leaving, but there just wasn't enough time.

They're good. They topped the test for the overseas project and they were always in the middle of all the conversions since the first overseas office was converted last April. They'll do well.

It gets doubly hard though when you have other people and units wishing you or your group to fail in what is supposed be a company project just because their group is not taking the lead in it.

I've always been aware of the corporate jungle. I was just not high enough then to feel it nor give a damn about it. But now I'm in the middle management with at least 26 people to manage and the whole company to support when it comes to setting up the system's global parameters and using the new system. I can feel the pressure from all sides, resistance from some to help facilitate things. At times I have to go to the group head to get things done FAST...that's fine if they want to play it that way.

Being technically a newbie in the company doesn't help...just under 5 years...and that matters to a lot of oldies here. Many old timers probably feel they should be in my place. That also explains why there's a lot of resistance to change. They've been so used to the old ways and taking their time to do things. That's not my style nor my boss', nor most of those in his level now. For me an e-mail is approval enough coming from the right authority. To some, only the hard copy will do, ugh...and for an IT person to require that... tsk tsk.

At this point, I don't really care what they think. As long as things get done, they can think and say what they want. They don't move..I elevate to the next superior...that simple....that's how it goes. Things WILL get done no matter how much delay or pinpointing happens....Change is inevitable.

My other staff will be leaving for New York in mid-July. She still has to get her visa. Maybe I will follow in August...but it all depends on the status of events on the two overseas offices' conversion and finalization of the requirements for domestic conversion which is pretty delayed now.