It’s What I Do:
Project Manager – Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority
Last July 2015, I joined Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority as Project Manager under their Program Progress Department where I am directly reporting to the Chairman. To say that my career in this country has been exciting is quite an understatement. In 1998, I ventured to the UAE and was lucky enough to be hired as Supervisor in Dubai Municipality, until my post was localized in 2002. On the same year, I joined Orient Irrigation Services under the capacity of Small Contracts Manager. With God’s blessing, another opportunity came to me in Aril 20015. I was hired to work with a Government agency in Sharjah as a Civil Engineer, and in a span of 3 years, I was promoted as Senior Projects Engineer, and then as Projects and Planning Manager until May 2015.
MY WORK DAY
My day in the office starts with an early morning coffee discussion with our PPD Team, to review our progress and to prepare action plans for the challenges ahead. My main responsibility is to assist the Department Manager in ensuring that all activities are executed without fail. Part of my responsibilities is to provide technical advice to the Chairman of the Organization on key matters such as review of techno-commercial offers, drawings and contract agreements, and other executive-level directives. I also travel to other countries in Asia and Europe to attend and witness factory acceptance tests for equipment ordered for the projects.
Filipinos are known for being well educated, hardworking, and honest professionals. The question is why so few of us achieve success despite our good qualities. Based on my 30 years of experience in the construction industry, my advice is to plan for your career path. If you do not know how to do something, seek advice and try to live with what you have. You need to reward yourself for your hard work, but learn how to prioritize things and know the difference between what you really need and what you want. Plan properly for your future. Invest in yourself by seeking higher education. Keep up with technological advancements and stay globally competitive. My colleagues and I conduct a workshop for PEM (Professional Engineering Manager) Certification under ASEM (American Society for Engineering Management). I invite all the Filipino engineers and architects in the UAE to avail of this opportunity to upgrade their educational qualifications.
Media Buying Executive – Dentsu Aegis Network
I am a Media Buying Executive under Dentsu Aegis Network and handle one of their top clients, General Motors. As part of the Amplify division of DAN, we try our best to secure ad placements for our clients, invest advertising slots to appropriate vendors, and manage clients’ investment through relevant mix of media and target.
MY WORK DAY
I usually start my morning with coffee to pump me up for a busy day ahead. Work usually consists of meetings with suppliers and negotiating with them as to what extent prices and rates need to be approved. Meetings consist of call-ups, face-to-face and email conversations back and forth during the day. Busy day ends around mid-afternoon but team huddles come around during this time as well. We usually do this to makes it a point to update each other about what bookings need to be sent across to supplier and data updating.
I take great pride in getting my family to come to Dubai and stay with me. A better life for our families is all we can ever hope for as overseas Filipinos, but to have your family with you is even better. I count myself blessed, having my wife and my cute daughter with me here in Dubai. Together, we have made a real home in this foreign country.
Hard work pays. This is what I believe in. When you focus on the task at hand and work very hard on it, success come easy. As long as we work to the best of our abilities, any job or task that we do would manifest in greatness. To my fellow Filipinos out there who are away from their loved ones and are working hard in the foreign country: you are not alone. We all face the same difficulties, albeit in different degrees and forms. Make the best of your stay in your host country, and stay true to your mission objective, that is, to be the best that you can be and make a better future for yourself and your family.