Showing posts from August, 2008

The MRR Day

The theme these days is the glaring difference in the MBA life I'm leading today compared to last year.

The best example is today, Friday.

But what's with Fridays, anyway?

One year ago, Friday was notorious for being the day our class had to accomplish our individual Written Analysis of Cases (WACs). It was a test in a lot respects, all right. WACs tested your stamina, energy, your decision-making and your drive to accomplish something. The approach was like a mission Jim Phelps would get in Mission: Impossible-- You had 15 hours to write a paper or else you get a zilch, as simple as that. It also meant that your social life was virtually suspended in limbo.

For our electives term that started more than two months ago, Fridays are now designated as our "MRR Day," or a free day for us to do things related to our Management Research Report-- and that usually meant doing research on various data sources, going to our proponents' offices to do interviews or just bun…

More Bloggers from AIM

It seems the blogging tradition in AIM continue with the new MBA guys. (Yey!)

There are a couple of blogs from the Freshies that focused on their respective experiences with the Pre-MBA so far and they are interesting reads. The first one is "Doodles in Words":

Here's a choice quip from the blog: As we get closer to the real stuff, our anxieties are "geometrically" increasing. After barely surviving almost two weeks in the program, I am beginning to feel my body failing on me. And they say it's going to get harder. Sigh. I think I need to vomit. Sounds familiar? :P The next blog is "The Missing Piece": 
And here's an excerpt from Yuva's blog:
The number of credits and debits just drives me crazy . Accounting or “Language of Business” as it is called, is something that us driven some of us in the class to really think again on whether MBA is the right thing for us . I am not very good at it and will never will be but like all things new it is…

Is the Web Moving Towards a “Participation Economy”?

With the Web becoming one big glop of information, especially with bits and pieces coming from the users, business pundits have observed that personal attention has become one scarce resource. And whenever there is a scarce resource, economic theories apply. Thus the term “Attention Economy” was coined.

It may come to a surprise that as early as the 1970’s, experts have observed the deluge of information from various sources have outpaced the span of human attention. Herbert Simon wrote about this phenomenon in a 1971 journal from John Hopkins University, and was followed up by Michael Goldhaber in 1997 during the advent of the Internet in his article The Attention Economy and the Net. The blogosphere has also taken notice of the Attention Economy.

Web 2.0 has undoubtedly accelerated the pace of information creation and codification in the last half decade and if was hard to get people’s attention then, it surely is harder now, even with new ways of interrupting and distracting peopl…

Talent Management Conference 2008

I'm helping out one my classmates, Julie Chua, who is doing her MRR with John Clements Consultants, Inc.

She's helping promote the upcoming Talent Management Conference 2008 at the Quezon Ballroom of the Makati Shangri-La on September 4-5, 2008. The event is organized by John Clements in partnership with Harvard Business Publishing.

The event is described as "A two-day groundbreaking conference aims to serve as a venue for local and multinational HR practitioners to share insights into the significance of talent management in building sustainable advantage in competitive marketplaces."

Easy Street

I was reading through my old posts and I realized how much different my situation is now, compared to eight months ago.

For the last two weeks, I've only been having one to two classes a day, plus the customary Friday break for the Management Research Report (MRR). How did that happen? Well, my classes in Self-Mastery, Arts& Spirituality (SMARTS), Creative Marketing & Selling (CMS) and Customer Experience Management (CEM) are all done.

Remember how screwed up I was? Sheesh, that seemeed like a long time ago. Seniors really have it easier. :)

I guess if anybody is looking for more "excitement," look at the blogs of the freshmen. :P

Poker Night in AIM!

August 21, 2008 will come down in AIM history as the day the very first AIM Community Poker Championship (ACPC) event was held. The tournament was held at the Bancom Room at the Asian Institute of Management.

The Texas Hold 'Em games started off with 37 players on five tables. The winners of each table then advanced in the finals game where the top three finishers would end up with the prizes. Games started at around 7pm and the players and spectators were treated to nice finger food and pizza, plus soda and beer, with the beer courtesy of Prof. Ricky Lim. Very few alumni came (only Carica president Ramon Tan and my former roommate El Lampa attended), but there were lots of non-SUPR students who came, including folks from the new batch. (That's how you start 'em right :P)

The energy at the Bancom room was very high and electric during the games as it had everything about competition-- jubilation from calling bluffs, frustration from not getting the card you're waiting …

Big Brother?

Ah, the Pre-MBA...

The newest batch of 16-month MBA students started their Pre-MBA Program yesterday and they are having manageable dosages of Languange of Business (LOB), Economics and Quantitative Analysis (QA). If you recall last year, we were bombarded with Prof. Larry Tan's LOB classes all the way. :)

I volunteered to play big brother to the new batch (yeah, we're the Seniors now!) and give them a couple of drills in QA. I chose this subject because, obviously, I was utterly so-so in LOB and Economics. I was quite excited to do the tutorial because there are lots of new people to meet and I know a few of them, either personally or via emails or comments because of my blog. The new group is bigger than our class, I hear they are around 130 strong. (Our batch is only 95) A few classmates of mine gave me moral support at the beginning of the session (Thank you Frank, Diamond, Michelle, Mark Chan, and Johnson!)

I started the session with a simple grouped frequency problem. I …

The AIM Community Poker Championships

I'm organizing the very first AIM Community Poker Championships (ACPC) with Frank Shrope of the Sources & Uses of Power (SUPR) class. Being the Sports Committee Head of the AIM Student Association (AIM SA), I felt that there should be an event where poker players in AIM can get together and play friendly competition. It was just my good fortune that Frank was in Prof. Nani Roxas' SUPR class and playing poker was one of their official class activities.(A class that requires students to play poker? Neat!)

Everything is coming together pretty well-- AIM SA Chairman Kshitij Shrivastava gave the project a go, the Student Services, Administration and Registrar (SSAR) also approved of the event, Frank has been a great person to work with and even Prof. Ricky Lim and Prof. Roxas pledged to support the event. The only bump on the road so far is the non-endorsement of AIM's Human Resouces Services to the employees. (I invited the AIM HR folks to endorse the event and spread the …

Two Sides of The Same Coin

Dr. Paco Sandejas, managing partner of Narra Veture Capital, gave a little talk last August 12 (Tuesday) here at the Asian Institute of Management about the whole venture capital scene in the Philippines and techno-entrepreneurship.

Talks like these plus the New Products and Services Development (NPSD) class under Prof. Jay Bernardo really inspire me to take a plunge (or even a dip) into the ocean that is entrepreneurship. I say ocean because it's deep and vast, and not to mention rich, but also filled with sharks and venomous jellyfishes.

I can follow a thread that goes back to our Development of the Enterprise (DE) class under Prof. Titos Ortigas, where the entrepreneurial spirit of our class was being kindled, or rekindled. And for a certain degree, it worked for me.

I still have some trepidations about venturing now, given there is a full blown financial crisis in the world happening. But we have always been reminded how the Chinese view a crisis-- the Chinese word for "c…

I'll be Speaking at Y4IT 2008

For the second straight year, I'll be speaking at the Philippine Youth Congress in Information Technology or simply, Y4IT. This year's series of talks will be held at its original home-- the University of the Philippines in Diliman, Quezon City from September 2-5, 2008.

Like the previous years, Y4IT will be focusing on contemporary and new technology that today's youth will find useful and beneficial in their future careers. In my talk last year, the title of my talk was "Web 2.0 and You," where, to my surprise, I introduced Web 2.0 to over 1,500 college and high school students. This year, I'm shifting my attention to the entertainment aspect of the Web. I thought of a catchy title and what I came up with was "The Internet's Next Big Star-- You!" I'm quite excited about it because I'll be talking about a topic that combines two of my favorite subjects: The Web and entertainment.

Other topics for the multi-day event include eLearning 2.…

MBA: Year One (Part 2)

I remember during the first week in the MBA program, one of my classmates told me one of the "truths" about the Asian Institute of Management-- it's a place where personal relationships suffer. Whether it's with your family, your significant other or friends, AIM had a reputation of putting people through an emotional wringer. I should know. :)

If you have any plans of going to AIM, set the expectations of your family, spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend because you need all the support you could get from them. This one of the best unsolicited advice you'll ever get before start.


Speaking of advice, one advice people often give to shell-shocked MBA students is "Hit the ground running."

It makes sense when the first time you hear it, but you'll eventually realize it's a whole bunch of crap.There I was clawing my way through Language of Business (LOB), Economics, Management of Cost and Profit (MCP) and barely surviving. And then you hear people te…

MBA 2008 (December) Anniversary Party

Our batch, the Asian Institute of Management's first 16-month MBA students, had our only anniversary party last August 7, 2008 at the poolside. Thanks to Pia Sanedrin for organizing the nice get together. :)

There was no formal program that evening, just some nice comfort food for both vegetarians and non-vegeterians, ample booze and... karaoke! Some of the evening's singing stars were Faye Abis, Shu Wang, Gino Romero, Gaurav Nagpal, Diamond Uy, Bok Lamayan, Paolo Tomas, Arpita Maity and the batch entertainer extraordinaire, Neil Risos. It's also nice that some members of the faculty accepted our invite: Prof. Ricky Lim, Prof. Jun Borromeo, Prof. Jess Gallegos, and Prof. Titos Ortigas were all there.

The simple party was an understated tribute to what the batch has been though in our first 12 months.


Bonus! Here's Nikhil Karira's video for our batch that premiered early this year:

Maya Perez, This One's for You

One of my very good friends at the Asian Institute of Management and I have a running joke: That one day, I'll post her picture in my blog and ask people to comment on it.

I was able to convince Maya Perez, a member of our MBA class, to say "What the heck, let's do the photo shoot," and the picture you see in this post is the culmination of that running joke.

If you think her photo warrants your comment, post it! If you think there should be more posts like this, let me know as well. :)

MBA: Year One (Part 1)

Exactly one year ago, the classes for the MBA 2008 (December) batch started. I recall our first class was Language of Business (LOB) under Prof. Larry Tan. I did not know everybody then, especially with folks who did not attend the fast-paced Pre-MBA Program. I'm sure people felt that way too. Another thing I remember was thinking "I haven't been in a room with this many Indians." (Of course, this thought was trumped when I went to Infosys in Bangalore for my Action Consultancy three months ago.)

No one would admit it, but each thought their section was better than the other.

Our class originally had 101 people and we were divided into two sections: Section A and Section B. I went to Section B, and the rumor was Section B folks was the "sub-par" section. At some point in the first year in school, I kinda believed that-- I heard how competitive the Section A folks were, being more assertive in case discussions and more open to critiquing others in the ca…

I'll be Speaking at WordCamp Philippines 2008

Thanks to Andrew Dela Serna, I got an invite to speak at the country’s biggest WordPress event next month: WordCamp Philippines 2008. The Manila leg will be held on September 6 (Saturday), at the College of Saint Benilde in Taft Avenue, Manila.

I’ll be talking about Web Standards and how the WordPress blogging platform fits into the puzzle. (My Web Standards blog is powered by WordPress, by the way.) I’ll also touch on stuff like Usability and some little Web Accessibility to complete the loop. Of course, since the audience will be a mixed bag of bloggers and non-bloggers, I may have to make the talk very easy to follow with the least possible jargon. Well, I’m guessing  by the time I give my talk, everyone in the audience would already have been bombarded by geekspeak. (See the WordCamp schedule)

September is going to be a busy month on the speaking front for me because there are other events on the pipeline. I’ll keep everyone posted. :)

You Got Tech's Corporate Blogging Episode

Aileen Apolo of You Got Tech, the tech blog for non-techies, interviewed me last April during the Google Day in AIM. The topic of my interview was Corporate Blogging, and at that time I just finished my second seminar, Corporate Blogging and Online Repution Management.

Here's the interview that took place:

I just realized I looked goofy and scatterbrained on camera. :P So please do check it out and see how distracting my hands get. :D

(Extra challenge: Can you guess which venue the interview took place?)


So much for a smooth-sailing Management Research Report (MRR).

I hit a snag when I got a very ironclad Non-Disclosure Agreement from my initial proponent-- there was a confidentiality period of five years. One of my advisers, Prof. Jun Borromeo, said that such terms is not feasible for a case series MRR because the case that I will write will no longer be that relevant in that time. Ideally, cases should be released as soon as possible, especially when the management issue in focus is very timely. (In my case, I'll be writing about online marketing).

So what did I do? I immediately ran my Plan B-- which ironically was my initial idea for my MRR. I got to the phone and called up a few contacts and voila! My new MRR topic was in motion. I had to improvise here and there so that things would fall snugly into place. However, there are still some issues to be resolved like the consent of the companies I'm writing about, but I do hope I don't need to pull out my Plan C.


I do…