Have you experienced consistently encountering a word or series of thoughts for a week or more, as if it wanted to tell you something?
The first time I heard the word “benchmarking” was from Kuya Nad – which he referred to my strategy of questioning her wife, my friend Ayen, on how they met and eventually ended up as a couple. Neither did I know that a few weeks after, I will be attending a Benchmarking workshop at Asian Institute of Management, sponsored and facilitated by Olan Ignacio (Life at Work group and Pass It On Movement) and learn more about how I’ll find the word useful.
Benchmarking is a corporate strategy of seeking out best practices from other companies which may be applied to work for their own context. The workshop I attended applied this principle to attain individual success. The key is finding mentors, or learning from people who have succeeded or are currently performing well in their respective fields.
I previously blogged in my other social networking accounts about informal mentors I was able to meet this year. (See Link below – My Daily Mentor) I am thankful for the knowledge I obtained from them, but application is another thing. I admit I need more effort when it comes to this.
Last February 21, two days after the workshop, I was privileged to speak for a seminar on social marketing to communication students of Letran College in Laguna. It was an immediate way to share what I learned. The activity itself was for me a combination of what I love most doing – public speaking, interacting with the youth and encouraging them to dream.
I have many dreams – not meant for me to do alone. It’s neither for my own benefit. Sometimes the spark that needs for dreams to be lit is asking. Upon having experienced routine and boredom in my work (which seldom happens), I asked myself one night after my overtime shift: What is it that will excite you about what you do? What else do you want to explore?
The question may have been from the Lord, because I got an instant answer when I was called to oversee a nationwide fundraising drive in partnership with SM malls. Things happened so fast, I was notified three days prior to holding the campaign. I did not ask for a tsunami in Japan, but that incident just led me and my team of fundraisers to stand up and take the initiative in encouraging mall goers to donate for on-going relief operations for tsunami survivors. That two-week period of monitoring 41 locations, stretching a handful of staff and mobilizing volunteers made me witness God’s grace and provision. I asked for that nationwide campaign – tiring and toxic; yet thrilling, especially now that it’s over and regarded as a victorious experience for us.
Sometimes you need good questions to bring up what’s inside your heart. What are your passions? What are you willing to sacrifice for? What are the things you find difficult to do? How do you think you could overcome them?
Seeking out wisdom and pursuing dreams entails passing thru difficulties.
I recalled my friend Neil Tan pointing out to a framed verse hanged on his office wall just a few weeks ago which says, “In every difficulty, there is an opportunity”. That quote is a proven principle we could benchmark on. The star of Christmas Himself has proven this true when He humbled Himself to be borne and raised in a situation of poverty and injustice. His mission was difficult, yet His dream to reclaim humanity was noble. And His message to men of finding a Saviour and Lord in Him still rings loud and keeps on knocking in the hearts of many. Consistently.