Monday, November 22, 2004

Corporate Life: Stepping Stones

I subscribe to this Intermediair Magazine, a weekly publication with a targeted audience supposedly in the ranks of HBO opgeleid and up, meaning Bachelors and up educated. The articles they have, which are obviously written in Dutch, are very educational and informative in nature. In fact it is good dosage for any professional who is always on the lookout of what’s currently brewing in the Dutch corporate world.

I was meaning of sharing the cover story, -Hippie Ziektes-, some sort of Burnt Out Disease, which as many say is a new phenomenon in the Netherlands. But then something else caught my attention. See below...

Intermediair Issue: 47 Date: 18.11.2004

The Top 10 Best Companies to Start your Career with in NL:

1. Unilever - (Food & Packaged Products)
2. Shell - (Oil)
3. PricewaterhouseCoopers - (Consultancy/IT)
4. ABN Amro - (Bank)
5. ING - (Bank)
....McKinsey - (Consultancy)
6. KPMG - (Consultancy/IT)
7. General Electric - (Electronics)
8. Philips - (Electronics)
....Rabobank - (Bank)
9. Accenture - (Consultancy/IT)
10. Deloitte - (Consultancy/IT)

They are supposed to be good -stepping stone companies- in the Dutch business market, where you can set and perhaps lock your foot in, then later progress further in climbing the corporate ladder of success.

Incidentally, the Dutchman works for one of the companies on that list, and if I am not mistaken, the company was voted and awarded last year as the -employer of the year- in NL.

Oh well.

This brings back memories, 10-11 years ago when I started my career in Makati, the Central Business District of the Philippines.

At 24, armed with untainted dreams, unyielding audacity, just 1 year work experience in marketing and design, sheer perseverance, a bachelors degree and license that I didn’t want to pursue, I was at a crossroads. The art of juggling my solitary existence and survival in the big city while trying to sympathize and strategize with my inner self on what I really want with my career life... was not an easy challenge.

I left home at 22 to seek myself, develop my own identity, experience the ultimate freedom, have the reigns of responsibility behind the truest sense of independence, and to fulfill my obstinate desire of this term: achievement (which is relative by the way).

So, bye Cebu, hello Manila.

Nonetheless, I was very desperate. I need to start somewhere. And without the help of friends and family, who by the way are a hundred miles away (to be exact an hour by plane ride, hehe), I was left alone to fulfill the daunting task of my dreams.

Then I had a break and landed a job in this promising IT firm in Makati. As a beginner in the corporate rat race, they said it was the RIGHT company to be a part with. Like all starters, I was naive but they were right.

My manager that time, a mother figure though only a shy of 5 years older than me said, “J, use as a stepping stone, a training ground for you to move forward to gaining employment in large multinational IT firms or to bigger and higher responsibilities.” She added, “Just to let you know, this company is sought after for new talent by the big fishes.”

During that time, 1994-95, only a handful large multinational IT companies had offices in the Philippines.

I guess... we all started somewhere, didn’t we?


  1. Everyone starts small except those who had to inherit corporations like the Ayalas and the Sys. Here the hot job now is the call center job, but of course, nothing beats the nursing and caregiver trek to the western countries.

  2. Anonymous12:41 pm

    Starting up is ALWAYS difficult but once you learn the trade and build your network (very important), you'll find your way. You have done it MissT--I am sure you have a lot of stories to share when you were starting in Holland. Incidentally, I met a couple of Pinoys here in NL who landed very good jobs at the no 1 and 2 companies you mentioned. This gives me inspiration as perhaps in due time I will find my own niche in this country. Sigh, starting up IS difficult but I am just looking forward...Succes! - Sari :-)

    PS: I hope this works as I have been experiencing difficulty leaving a comment :-)

  3. Anonymous5:45 pm

    Accenture used to be called Anderson Consulting and they have a branch in 6750 Ayala Ave. A friend works there and from what I've heard its a great company with kick ass benefits.

    I started in a really, really small company after college. But I also flipped burgers at McDo and was a GRO (when the term used to be respectful hehe) at Wendy's Taft.


  4. dr. emer,

    yeah thats right, call center jobs are so big in pinas right now and it did help a lot of our fellow countrymen have jobs.

    here's a new upcoming trend - the philippines as a haven for business process outsourcing. seems to be the direction of many IT companies there when i had meetings with them the other month.


    i actually feel that i am still starting here in NL coz i dont find the happiness in my current job. i would love to do the "ontslag indienen" (resignation) but that would be stupid. in fact what i wrote in this entry summarizes how i feel about my career here. though i have a good job (sales management) and a good salary but i still feel demoted since i am practically doing hardware stuff right now which is totally different from what i did in the past, consulting-software. hardware doesnt challenge your mental process. haaay there are mornings that i dont want to get out of the duvets coz i dreaded my daily job. but it pays the bills and wants and puts money on my savings.

    u will be fine, u are just new. enjoy the country and their peculiarities hehe. go through the tourist phase coz it will wear out fast. am sure u will find ur niche... in due time and with perserverance.


    andersen and accenture are tied up with SGV in pinas. when andersen went bust, SGV quickly bought themselves out of the boat. i work and compete (this a lot, lol) with andersen in the past. i have a love and hate relationship with one of the directors there. not only that, neighbors pa kami sa wackwack lol. memories...

    u didnt tell me that it was wendys taft? i lived circa 1993 in fatima building, that condo-apartment beside wendys across PGH. i lived for awhile with my cousins who were resident physicians at PGH. and i was always at wendys or garys kasi tamad magluto! lol!


Hi, thank you for taking time.

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