What Sets Your Business Apart From Others?

I am one of the millions of people who loves to shop from the internet to high street stores.  If you jump from one establishment to another, you’ll mainly notice three things: features, quality, and price.  In my country, I thought these were the only things that a business handler should keep in mind.  So every time I shop around the mall, it is a common scenario for consumers regarded without attention by sales attendants unless they buy something.  But after exposing my self to other places, I realized what our local sales industry is deprived off and that is high-quality customer service.

Take what I’ve experienced as an example – I got a home internet provider from a certain company and availed the service for nearly seven years already.      Indeed I am a loyal customer.  I had few troubles every time I loose our connection but I still tried to understand them.  Until there came a time when I can no longer help but rush to the service center (I always prefer to call the customer service hotline first before I physically exert an effort by visiting their office).  There was a lady who entertained me but the way she handles our conversation during that moment made me feel like I don’t want to continue availing their service anymore.  I didn’t feel respected and my presence didn’t seem to be important at all!  Then I realized something, every time I visit some shop in our place, it seems like I’d make another enemy.  It’s really frustrating!

It saddens me how ignorant these people are.  If I could just make them see and feel what I’ve experienced when I was living in a different country, they would know how employees are so keen in welcoming and entertaining customers from first encounter up to point of purchase and this even extends to client follow-up.  It really amazes me how their point person knows exactly how to inform their customers by bringing out the advantages that they have compared to other products or companies, please their clients by making them feel very precious no matter how small your purchase is, and most of all they know how to extend help.  In each gesture they carry out,  they can make you feel what this phrase means – “without you, we are nothing.”

I guess some people in here are still accustomed to the old ways where no one would care if they don’t show a good customer service practice, I’m pretty sure they were thinking since before up to this very day that consumers will always be consumers and that people will still buy even if they hate to because they can’t find other shops that sells their needs.

Ever wondered why a lot of businesses who have been operating for like 50 years or more were now closed?  It’s because they can no longer compete with the market.  Competition doesn’t only rely on cost, benefits, and functions.  It now includes the people in the business especially the front liners.  After all, what do customers expect to immediately receive when they shop?  Isn’t it a top-notch customer service?

The number of industries in a common field are definitely rising.  Before, if consumers wants to buy a mobile phone,  they can just go to a certain shop that solely sells such product.  But today, you’ll see numerous mobile stores and it gets harder for business handlers to keep their shop a primary choice for consumers.  Even now,  people rarely shop for mobile units alone.  Why should they?  Isn’t it that network providers are now offering cheap monthly plans with a delightfully free unit?

Even though I was awfully dismayed with the kind of business sales attitude and process that our place still adopts.  It still gives me an inner excitement and thrill knowing that I would be playing an important role in transforming a company that I’m about to work for.

Photo courtesy of: Marc Phillips

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Kitty Emergency

A week ago my pregnant Siamese cat gave birth to a very lovely kitten.  We decided to name him “Micky”.  His name was actually derived from the word “miracle”.  We took the first two letters, the fifth one and attached it to letters K and Y.  He is a miracle baby, also he is the youngest I have ever saved from a near death situation several hours after his birth.

When Panda (mother cat’s name) gave birth, Micky didn’t show any signs of weakness.  He actively searched for his mother’s nipple so that he could feed and bond right away.  But several hours after he suddenly displayed detachment, loss of interest to suck milk from his mother and generally looked unresponsive.  Then he was constantly opening his mouth as if he can no longer breath with his nostrils.  I got worried but still I was doubtful if it’s something normal.  I decided to monitor his behavior and he got worse.

Micky suddenly blurted out a loud and high-pitched voice, stretched out his extremities and froze.  I panicked and picked him up from the basket where he and his mother were resting.  I placed him in my palm and turned him to the other side but he literally froze and I instantly realized that he was having a seizure!  I immediately searched the internet and found out that from what I saw he might be suffering from low blood sugar and hypothermia.  Also, I found  an emergency remedy ( makes me want to thank people who started several forums because it really helps)!

So I rushed to the kitchen, grabbed a maple syrup and dabbed it to Micky’s mouth.  Few minutes after he screamed and had another seizure.  I then got an oral rehydrating solution and a dropper so that he can have several drops once in a while.  I also made sure that he was lying on his side while his head was slightly elevated to avoid aspiration.  It was already early in the morning when I decided to rest and made sure he was wrapped by his mother to increase his body heat.

I checked him the following day and he still felt cold.  I wrapped him with a warmed dry towel and bought a formula milk for neonates and infants.  I made him drink the milk by using a tuberculin syringe (thank God I still have my nursing equipment) since I realized that droppers deliver a greater amount so it’s a lot more dangerous for the kitten.  After an hour, I encouraged further bonding with his mother and guided him to one of Panda’s nipples.  I was so happy the moment he opened his mouth and displayed successful suckling.

Now, Micky is already one week old, in perfect health and enjoying his daily naps 🙂

I awfully had a rough night with this baby but it was all worth it.  I just saved this precious little one and made Panda enjoy her motherhood. 🙂

The City of Opportunity – Part 2

To continue where I began… here are several other shots I took as I conquered one of the world’s culture capitals.

One among the Horseguards British Army at Westminster. I didn’t manage to take a closer look. See that warning board at the right side? That’s exactly the reason why! lol!

If only I had enough free time, I would probably choose this place as my runaway. This is St. James’s Park and is located beside the Buckingham Palace and Trafalgar Square.

“…The flower that wilted last year is gone. Petals once fallen are fallen forever. Flowers do not return in the spring, rather they are replaced. It is in this difference between returned and replaced that the price of renewal is paid.
And as it is for spring flowers, so it is for us.” ~ Daniel Abraham, The Price of Spring

Floriferous Shrubberies in the Spirit of John Nash, St. James’s Park, Westminster, London

On my way to London Natural History Museum… Excited to see some dinosaurs!!

Hello there big fella! To see this angry dinosaur in motion, everyone has to fall in line and guess what? Nobody wants to move forward. I don’t want to either since I was struck with amazement!

And off to another location! Departing London Natural History Museum.

There are only two things I’d like to do whenever I crave for Asian food. That is to visit Aroma (Chinese buffet) or rush to this place called “China Town.” It is located north of Leicester Square.

I rented that Barclays cycle and it charged me £30… only God knows why 😦 I guess it was because of the area coverage.

Flowers with oh so vibrant colors!

I never fail to appreciate flowers especially roses.

At first sight I already had an idea what this place might be called. So it is “Little Venice” located north of Paddington. There were boats everywhere and it really feels good to just sit and relax on their side benches.

London eye is always beautiful to watch by night time. Though I got no camera tripods somehow I managed to pull out this shot. I know the quality would’ve been better with the tripod considering that it was icy cold during that evening.

Here is another shot of London Eye as I strolled down the Hungerford Bridge.

Big Ben rings every hour and I think it’s scary.

This is the Houses of Parliament taken at the Westminster Bridge. ———— So I guess this is the end of it.  Thanks again for looking!  Time to think again for my next post tomorrow.  Cheers!———

The City of Opportunity – Part 1

After creating one post under the category – Traveller’s Den,  I realized how much I need to travel more.  There are still so many places here in my country that are waiting to be visited and discovered.  Well, I guess I should secure a stable job first before I lay my hands around those exciting and wonderful scenarios.  By the way, I’ve been dreaming about this next destination:

This place is located in Surigao del Norte, Philippines.  From where I am right now, it’s actually reachable by land and the travel time is around eight hours. I’d like to give credits to this photographer: junsjazz.

Okay, since I can’t give you more of those sweet summer captures yet.  How about sharing some of my photos when I was living miles away from my home land?

The next place I will be featuring is  the so-called city of opportunity.  I personally think this is true.  Never have I encountered such massive job adverts coming from London agencies and companies over the internet!  People are always looking for someone to hire in London.  I think it’s even impossible for one to be jobless living in that busy city!  Other than career opportunities, it’s the experience that is really different.  I may have regrets for staying in London for more than a year but I can’t deny the fact that it taught me greater things I’ve never realized before.  My life turned upside down because of this place… but so far in a good way.

LOCATION:  LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM

One of the world’s famous landmarks – The Buckingham Palace. This place is indeed full of tourists.  I visited this place spring of last year.  Fronting the palace are the beautiful landscapes and blooming flowers which are full of life! It kind of reminds me how everything looks dead during winter.

See? I was really overwhelmed with the beauty of these flowers!

Heading toward The Household Cavalry Museum. At the back is the London eye which I will be posting as we go along.

This is the Admiralty Arch. I was amazed how this huge building was created magnificently. At the top part of the arch there is a Latin inscription that says: ANNO : DECIMO : EDWARDI : SEPTIMI : REGIS : VICTORIÆ : REGINÆ : CIVES : GRATISSIMI : MDCCCCX :
It means: In the tenth year of King Edward VII, to Queen Victoria, from most grateful citizens, 1910

Right at the heart of Trafalgar Square is London’s National Gallery. No entrance fee was required but you can donate any amount of money if you wish to. I’ve learned to appreciate art pieces somehow but I find some of them quite eerie. One painting that really remained in my consciousness was the one by Paul Delaroche’s entitled “The Execution of Lady Jane Grey.” Just for you to have an idea of what I’m talking about, check the next picture.

This is the oil painting I’m referring to.  See that man with a scary humongous axe?  He’s looking at the poor girl as if saying “another boring day with another head to chop.” Photo courtesy of: Wikipedia.

This man was performing when I visited Trafalgar so I decided to take a picture of him. He has this ball that he uses to let it glide smoothly from one body part to another while synchronizing it with his choice of music.

I was supposed to be killed by this human statue but I ended up smiling instead. I don’t know how to react! I can’t help but remember that I used to see human statue street performers on TV only and people would suddenly jump off the ground after knowing they actually weren’t real statues! lol!

This is the 2012 London Olympics Countdown. Too bad I was no longer there during the event.

Pryor’s Bank Bishop’s Park is located just beside River Thames right after reaching Putney Bridge. This place is quite near to where I was residing and I find this location very relaxing and romantic at the same time. If you walk towards the inner part of the park, you’ll see the All Saints Church and it’s quite creepy if you ask me.

I don’t know what’s making this church creepy, I guess it’s the dead trees fighting its way back to life… and those gravestones your seeing right there are making a perfect combo well suited for holloween.  This is the All Saints Church and I just learned that this was said to be one of the shooting sites of the film “The Omen.”

Putney Bridge connects the gap between the road leading to Putney High Street and Fulham. That high-rise structure you’re seeing right there is called Putney Wharf Tower. There was this old woman I used to care for and she lives in the 12th floor of that building.  I can remember how magical the view was. You can see the entire Putney and experience the sun dancing as it rises. Though one event made me so mad about this tower… it was when the lift wasn’t working.

This is the Pryor’s Bank Cafe. At first I thought this was an inn because the structure is too big for a cafe. I would love to get a coffee if only they were open. Unfortunately, they weren’t operating at that time for some reason.

Poor me but I honestly don’t know if this is a cherry tree. I tried to compare its flowers to the usual cherry trees I’ve seen but their features are somewhat different. It doesn’t matter though, the beauty is still incomparable.

This is a sculpture of a mother and child named “Affection” located still at Bishop’s Park and was crafted by Herman Cawthorn.   I remember tagging my mom in this picture when I posted it in Facebook to remind her that Mother’s day in England was fast approaching.

Here is another sculpture which I failed to recognize. I’ll be doing an in-depth research about this soon or if you can give me an idea I’d be happy to hear from you. As far as I can remember, this was located right in front of All Saint’s Church.

As you can see, there are red poppies placed at the bottom part of the cross. This serves as a remembrance of their lost loved ones during the First World War. ——This is the end of “The City of Opportunity – Part 1” post.  A continuation of this entry will be released tomorrow.  Thanks everyone for looking! ~hugs and kisses.

The Virgin Island

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” – Mark Twain

Many people don’t understand the joy and excitement travelling does to each discoverer.  It isn’t the fun alone but rather the experience and the new things you get to encounter.  It’s like breaking away from the chains and living the day like there’s no tomorrow.

Let me show you some photo shots I personally took.

LOCATION:         CAMIGUIN ISLAND, PHILIPPINES

This is a sample of God’s perfect creation. Katibawasan falls is located at the mountainous side in the island of Camiguin.

Mantigue is a small island detached from Camiguin. The sand is literally powdery white! You can stroll and check out the entire area within minutes. Sumptuous food also awaits you here.

Here is another picture of Mantigue as we went to the farther side of the island.

This is the Port of Benoni, one of the island’s existing ports. That boat can take you from and to your point of origin.

Try catching this heart-melting sunset in one of Camiguin’s famous beach resorts.

One Who Lacks Employer Ethics

I just learned today that my closest friend is having trouble with his employer. Attitude problem? Sort of.  Too much workload?  Definitely yes.  Low salary wage?  Yup.  Swindled?  Shockingly true.

Nowadays, people can really do anything just to save some cash.  Even if it means blinding someone from the truth and even if that employer is actually your relative.  My friend told me how he was convinced of accepting the job offer and was also informed how much the employer is willing to pay.  To be honest, the figures are really bad.   However, my friend accepted the job since he was in need of money and also his heart ached seeing how that person desperately needs someone who could lend her a hand. Before he even started working, he was sure that his duties were mainly focused on certain areas only. Then again he was suddenly informed of the other numerous things that must be worked on.  My friend sucked it all up and just now he discovered the craziest truth from that lady. After working for this woman for a couple of months, he has just been told that his salary is actually less than two hundred dollars from the original amount that he and his employer have agreed upon.  And so she kept on talking about how hard it is for her to find a stable job and that she can only fulfill her promised wage once she finds a decent earning.  My friend attempted to reveal his frustrations about the issue and demanded a good pay but she rampaged and got mad for being too ambitious and greedy.

To all the readers, your head must be probably boiling hot now huh?  I felt the same thing and it makes me sick.  Things like this really happen and they’re full of shit.  But it’s this shit that makes you learn.

For those who have encountered this freaking scenario before, read what’s written here below and might as well print and throw it to their pretty faces – I mean keep it and use it as a reference for any complaints which are worth filing.

Employer Ethics

  • No to false assurance.  I’ve read several blog posts before saying that they were given false hopes by their prospect employers.  It even led them to closing other opportunities since they were already secured with a job but only to find out that they weren’t actually hired.  Some would call them, notifying them of their rejection while others would find weird excuses.  And if they’re already involved with the job, whatever it is (I suspect delightful offers and benefits) that came from them during the orientation phase will suddenly vanish.  There really is no definite truth unless everything is written in the paper.  So, it’s always better to secure a hard copy rather than depending on the in the information given to you via word of mouth.
  • Right to proper treatment.  Just because you are being paid for what you are instructed to do doesn’t mean that you are already entitled to be abused and maltreated.  Remember, employers get the output of the workforce in exchange of money.  Without you they will remain incapacitated.  So it is rightful for employees to get the correct treatment they deserve.
  • Right to earn the appropriate wage.  This may seem quite familiar to most of the workers especially for those who are into blue collar jobs. Employers think that they can get a big chunk out of their people’s salary through several excuses e.g. income tax, government programs and other organizations that would require monthly deposits.  Where in actuality, they haven’t dropped a single coin to those accounts.  Always check the payslip and also cross check it with the the institutions declaring deposits.

I guess overall, these are the factors I’ve summarized on how the code of ethics for employers works.  Whichever country you might be in today, the code will remain applicable.  It is therefore a general rule just like how the standards of nursing or teaching comes in.
photo courtesy of:  Scott Liddell

sources:

Employer Ethics [online].  Available at: http://www.speedupcareer.com/articles/employer-ethics.html

Jones, Kasey.  n.d. Ethics in the Employer-Employee Relationship [online].  Available at:  http://www.ehow.com/info_8444312_ethics-employeremployee-relationship.html

Welcome Weary August – Did I Get the Job or Not?

From the 1st of August up to now, nothing has changed.  Still the same old me.  Oh yeah, something interesting did happened… I got an invitation for a job interview.  You see, I was so busy applying for several jobs here in our local city.  I don’t want to be away from this place anymore.  Living abroad was the worst nightmare I ever had.  It was a huge mistake involving a huge amount of money.  Damn it, I just can’t forgive myself for being so stupid.  Anyway, the interview went well last week.  I am just not sure if I will be getting the job!  I got an idea, however, that we will be having a third interview soon.  That is, for those who they think have the potential.  Well, I hate to live a life full of expectations.  I guess I just have to wait until they ring me… or maybe they won’t bother anymore. Oh how I hate this feeling!  Okay, now to make this post fruitful, let me talk about several indicators on how to know that you got yourself a job.

Right after the interview, I got myself a pack of lunch and went home immediately.  The following day I googled anything there is to know about the ‘indicators’. And here are the information I’ve gathered:

  • Chemistry.  The people coming from different sites I’ve visited say that interviewers would display an inviting feeling if they are about to welcome you to their company.  Some commenters also described the ‘spark’ on your conversation as you go along with several kinds of topics.  It comes out naturally from the interviewer.
  • Body Language.  You might observe the interviewer exhibiting excitement and curiosity to your CV or to your previous job description.  They also avoid any gestures that would mean that they are not really interested to your heartily written ‘sell-yourself’ paper.  These kind of behavior indicates that they like your experience and your over-all professional background.  But if you see someone who would cross their arms, frequently check their watch and raise their eyebrows – there is a huge chance that you might not be the one they are looking for.
  • Note Taking.  If you your interviewer are taking notes, they are interested in you.  Just make sure they are not just the short ones, for all you know it’s just a memo saying ‘application rejected.’
  • Loooong Interview.  When I say long, I mean really really long.  Sometimes it would even take hours.  It is very important to be very patient and to stay engaging during your conversation with the interviewers.  If you are tired of answering their questions, then endure it!
  • Closing Statement.  If you have been told as to how and when they are going to communicate with you just before the interview ends then there is a great chance of you being hired by their company.  Though most interviewers are stating this as an S.O.P.  If they know you have a slim chance of getting hired they won’t give you the full details.  In short, the interviewer must give you full instructions and shouldn’t make it sound vague.  Some would even discuss the salary range, company expectations, and a summary of the succeeding things that you will be hearing or expecting from them.

If you have already experienced a job interview before and have seen these familiar indicators then I guess you can totally relate to what I’ve just written in here.  If not, considering that you’re a fresh graduate or you’ve been previously spoon fed with a job – just like me, you must give time to prepare!  Honestly, I went to that interview without any preparations (since I was used to it when I was still residing in a different country, totally different culture!)  I felt really incompetent with what I just did.  And I guess there is no reason for me to be wondering if ever I get rejected.  But please! Rejection doesn’t really mean that you are no good as an employee.  Every company has their own preference and if you don’t get to be chosen then it just means that your skills and professional background won’t suit their needs.  It doesn’t reflect your personal worth!  So don’t pity yourself.  The next time you apply for a job and landed one, you’ll see that you are actually in a much more excellent position.

photo courtesy of: www.celalteber.com