Entrepreneur, PBC Abu Dhabi Chairman
Abu Dhabi, UAE
Recently elected as the Chairman of the Philippine Business Council in Abu Dhabi, Jan Barlow is a formidable mix of a business woman and tireless community leader who considers time as a doting wife and mom an essential and worthy part of her life.
I am co-owner of Pacific Consulting Services, a consulting company in Abu Dhabi. We write policies and procedures for local and multinational entities, as well as other services such as training manuals and catalogues. My husband and I have had this business since 2000. I joined PBC in 2008, and have been involved with PBC events and projects since then. I think success comes simply from doing what you say you are going to do. It is not about being brilliant or inspired. With our customers, if we say that we are going to provide a deliverable on a particular date, we have to do that. We tell our daughters the same thing: keep your word and fulfil your commitments.
What do Filipinos need to do to get ahead globally?
It is not about traits. It is simply about delivering value for customers or employers. This starts with being competent, and not making excuses – no “palusot”. If we can think clearly, start with realistic plans and deliver results, we can succeed. Obviously, education is important, but more important is personal integrity and effort.
My dreams and aspirations
I am a mother, so my main attention is on my daughters. I want them to grow up to be good Catholic ladies and to choose suitable husbands. I am also interested in being able to guide our community members, particularly if they have plans to set up businesses. One thing that we really need in PBC is a knowledge base, and I would like to start building that, so that people with entrepreneurial ambitions can obtain checklists or guidelines for particular types of business.
Living life to the fullest everyday
As a working mother, I am usually up and about till 12 midnight and make sure that the man of the house is served dinner no matter how late he comes home. My usual day starts with a cup of coffee at 7am while giving a foot rub to our dog – Lili. By 8:30am, I am seated at the farthest corner cubicle of our office, if not out with client meetings or doing onsite duty, checking all my emails and answering each one of them (including the Council’s). At 10am, normal rounds with different projects, checking all due dates and internal meetings with our production team. At 12 noon, I am absorbed with finalizing against checklists due deliverables – forms, flow charts, procedures and policies. Work continues until 5pm. By 5:30pm, out of the office (as a rule) or I will get a boot from Mr. Barlow, and should be at the house by 6PM. If at home with Mr. Barlow, I prepare dinner and we eat together while the girls sit with us and we listen to their stories of the day. By 7:30pm, if very busy, I go back with Mr. Barlow to the office to wrap up more work, if not, then I stay home with my girls – and do the never ending “have you done your homework”. By 11am, I switch off home Wifi and I am usually cleaning up cupboards or reading a book, till Mr. Barlow comes back home again.
My Mantra in Life
I am a Roman Catholic. The Church teaches us how to live.