During a global leadership conference (Haggai Leadership Experience), I had this conversation with a fellow participant.

Fellow Participant: “Do you have a structure in your devotion?” (He probably meant a designated time to read the bible and to worship)

Me: (Without a blink, I said) “I don’t have.”

This was not where the above conversation took place. But this is a photo of another meaningful conversation with fellow Haggai Participants. Photo was taken at Haleakala National Park in Maui, Hawaii, USA. Photo courtesy of Brother Junep Ocampo, our resident photo journalist. haha. 🙂

I said “I don’t have”, but what I truly meant is that when I was a new believer, I enjoyed every minute of alone time with Him. Everyday, I would wake up early in the morning and I was always excited to read His word and praise Him. I was looking forward to His new revelations and encouragements.  No one could even make me open the door of my room unless I am done singing praises to Him. Sadly, that was before. 

Somewhere along the way, the busyness of life got me. I became more complacent about my faith, started to trust in my own strength and I just go back to HIM for consultation. Yes, I reduced Jesus to merely being one of my consultants.

Yes, I reduced Jesus to merely being one of my consultants.

I lost that habit of meeting Him and I did not even notice it because everything was doing well in my life.

After coming home from the said conference (Haggai Leader Experience), admittedly, I still did not strictly go back to my former routine of morning devotion.

Blessedly, the organizers of Haggai sent me a recording of a Leadership Class that I missed. And while listening, I learned this:

We may have the office or the position (the position of a leader, a pastor, a speaker, an influencer), but not the anointing. We lose our anointing when we are not connected with our creator. And when we are not anointed, we are not effective.

And when we are not anointed, we are not effective.

In the recorded Leadership Class, the importance of seeking Him DAILY was reiterated.   The facilitator called it “Verdict Continuum” or a “Continuous Decision” of surrendering to Jesus. A believer, when he wakes up EVERY MORNING, apart from being thankful for another day, should say “Here I am Lord, Use Me”. Accordingly, we must have that continuous commitment of willingness to be mightily used by Him. We must have that continuous yearning for the Lord’s daily anointing. Otherwise, we lose our effectiveness.

A believer, when he wakes up EVERY MORNING, apart from being thankful for another day, should say “Here I am Lord, Use Me”.

That insight encouraged me.  And I was all the more fired up when in my morning devotion I read Psalm 105:4“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually”

“Seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually”. 

It is written in the bible that we should seek His presence – CONTINUALLY

As a lawyer by profession, I stand by my arguments when these are evidence-based. It is easier to believe when there are clear reasons to do so. The Lord knows how my thought process is so He led me to Psalm 105:4.  This convinced me to finally settle to renew my morning devotion and yearn for the Lord’s anointing DAILY.  

This convinced me to finally settle to renew my morning devotion and yearn for the Lord’s anointing DAILY.

I would like to share to you how I bounced back to my morning devotion through the following tips:


This photo was taken at the Prayer Garden at the Haggai Institute, Mid Pacific Center, Maui, Hawaii, USA. This is the garden where Christian Leaders from different nations start the day with a prayer at 6:45AM.

People are unique and I understand that we do things differently, but here are some practical tips that helped me jump start my renewed morning devotion:

  1. Find a time where every family member is still asleep. This gives you the freedom to worship and keeps you from being distracted. Just like what Jesus did when he prayed as shown in Matthew 14:23 “And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone…”
  2. Find a designated place where you can do your study. This will make it easier for you to be on a worship/study mode. For me, I get out of the comforts of our room and use our dining table.  
  3. Make notes in your bible or have a separate notebook. What helped me go back to the lessons I learned from my readings are the scribbles in my bible. You can try that too. I also realized just while writing this that I might want to start having a notebook again where I can write my thoughts while studying to facilitate quick reference.
  4. Apply/Do what the Lord has spoken to you through your devotion. In Ezra 7:10, it says: For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to DO IT
  5. Discuss the insights that the Lord gave you.  You can tell about it to a friend, to a colleague, to someone you love, or you can even post it on social media.  In short, TEACH what you learned so you won’t forget. Ezra 7:10 fully states: For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and TO TEACH his statutes and rules in Israel. 

For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and TO TEACH his statutes and rules in Israel. 

There you go! I hope those tips will help you strengthen your relationship with the Lord as it did to me. 🙂 I will pray for you and I would like to request for your prayers too so that I may stay committed with the habit of having a morning devotion. 

If this article helped you, please do not hesitate to SHARE so that we can reach more people.


This is an image of how I make notes on my bible. It can be messy. But make it personally yours! 🙂

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It has been almost  seven (7) years since my wife and I started Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc., and I am glad that we never gave up even if there were times that we really wanted to.

bright hope moving up

Bright Hope is a small school with a big heart and it continues to advance as one of the premiere christian Pre-kinder and Kindergarten School in the City of Baguio.  Apart from its uniquely designed age appropriate programs, one thing that makes it different from other schools is that it offers Baby Classes for ages 1 year 8 months to 2 years and 2 months old babies.


For further inquiries, please email: inquiry@dexterdiwas.com or eventscoordinator@dexterdiwas.com

Currently, BRIGHT HOPE is composed of 11 employees and we are blessed to have leaders who actively manage it.  This allows my wife and I to just be around as volunteer management and academic consultants.

Looking back from where Bright Hope started, I can say that it has become a ministry just like how we envisioned it to be and we are making it a goal to continue to grow.

I’m no business guru but with seven (7) years of Bright Hope existence, let me share to you seven (7) life lessons that I learned that may be useful to those who are putting up a business or an organization:

  1. Do not quit your day job – If you are currently employed and are just relying from your monthly salary for daily sustenance -DO-NOT-QUIT-YOUR-DAY-JOB.  Resigning from work will probably apply to those who have savings that could support them for five years or more.  It takes time to grow a business and your monthly salary can help cushion your survival expenses. If you are stressed just because you don’t have enough time to be hands-on in your business, you’ll be more stressed during off peak seasons and realize that you have no cash flow. 

2. If you can, avoid investors who do not understand your vision and is just up for the money – we have different views when it comes to entertaining investors so to each his own.  But what worked for Bright Hope is not getting other people to invest. Carefully consider this especially if your vision differ from individuals who offer to invest.  The advantage of not getting investors is that we can allocate our budget to wherever we see fit without consulting other individuals. It takes away unnecessary headaches caused by clashing decision makers.  

3. Love your employees, they are a big factor why your business is a success.  I like this quote from Stephen Covey

Always treat your employees exactly as you want them to treat your best customers. 

Bright Hope’s success is attributed to the dedicated teachers and staff who sincerely love their students.  In a business or in any organization, I learned that taking care of your employees or the people who help you run the organization does really make the difference.  Give them what is due.  We enter into business so that we can earn a living, but our employees need to live too. People who work for your organization will not demand more if they see that they are getting what is just and due to them. Plus, you’ll be greatly blessed as you allow yourself to be used to bless other people.

Bright Hope Team 2018.  This was taken after the Parents’ Orientation. (3 others not on photo, sorry guys!)

4. Exceed customer expectation – I worked for several BPOs as a call center agent and that is where I learned about the importance of exceeding customer expectation.  It actually works if you care about your customers.  Besides, they are the very reason you are there. It is true that we cannot please everybody but in the field of providing services, we try to please everyone in as much as we can. This creates regular clients and customers.  Businesses do not aim for one time customers, they aim for repeat customers and that’s what you’ll need to thrive.

5. Never stop learning – continue to develop your craft, your people, your services.  Evolving will ensure your existence even if there are other products and services that are being created everyday.  Invest in education and in trainings.  My wife had to enroll in online classes just so she can learn new preschool concepts.  I had to take up management classes just to learn how to handle people (though I did not finish it after Math came in so I am looking at other Math-less courses okay?).  The teachers at Bright Hope had to go through series of trainings including make-up lessons so they can look presentable and professional even if they already are.

make up bright hope class
Make Up Tutorial for Birght Hope teachers by Krizia Guevara.

And just recently, my wife and I attended the E-Commerce and Social Media Learning Sessions of Ms. Janette Toral held at Cordillera School of Digital Arts Baguio.

training csda 1
with Ms. Janette Toral of Digital Filipino.
csda certificate 1
Certificates given by Ms. Janette Toral during the Social Media Learning Sessions at Cordillera School of Digital Arts Baguio. 

The point is, learn new things everyday.

6. Don’t be discouraged by people who do not believe in your crazy ideas – business concepts start off as crazy ideas until they are developed and are ready for hatching. While you are contemplating on your business model you will find yourself tempted to tell your friends about it and that is normal.  Prepare to get laughed at.  That is also normal.  Remember that not everybody is born a dreamer like you. Put that in mind, okay? But don’t hold it against them, they are created to challenge you.

7.  Never, never, never give up.  There were times when my wife and I were on the verge of panicking because we were worried we could not pay the rent for Bright Hope but we just focused on answering this question:  “How can we better our services so that we can attract more parents to enroll?”  We then created program after program and blessedly, there were parents who enrolled and believed in the programs that we offered.  This kept us going.  This kept us believing that Bright Hope exists for a purpose and we will never see that purpose if we gave up. We are thanking the Lord for giving us the strength to not give up and providing for our needs.

Currently, apart from Bright Hope’s mission of sharing the good news to the children and their families, we are glad that it is able to help alleviate poverty by providing employment, a college scholarship, and a plan to subsidize skills training for children in conflict with the law.

The things that I shared are not new, but I hope it encouraged you.  We can all make a difference, hold on to that bright hope and use it to ignite a bright tomorrow.

I have to go now, my son has been playing with my phone for almost 2 hours as I write this! haha.

My wife working on her paper as I write this blog, my son took this stolen shot upon my instruction.



6 Opportunities for New Lawyers and Law Graduates

For some, having a Bachelor of Laws Degree can sometimes be a hindrance to landing a job. Either you are regarded as over qualified for the entry level job you are aiming for or they do not see your educational background as relevant for the vacancy you are applying for.

For New Lawyers, you might still be in the cross road as to whether you want to join a law firm, put up your own office, join the government, or just venture into other things that has nothing to do with lawyering.

Whether you are preparing for the next scheduled bar examination or job hunting as a new lawyer, here are some career paths you can take to maximize your degree or to add on to the services that you offer as a lawyer.


Not everyone spent a semester in their life learning about the Insurance Code of the Philippines. With your knowledge of this specific law, you can easily shed light to some common concerns of prospective clients such as the difference between a pre-need company vs. an insurance company.

You can even be creative and blend your knowledge on the laws relating to Succession and even Taxation.

With those laws in your finger tips, you have better chances of convincing your prospects to get their first insurance policy from you.

How much you’ll earn?

Limitless! Depending on the plans you’ll be able to sell and the commission plan of your insurance agency, you’ll earn an amount ranging from 25 to even 45% of the premiums your client pay on their first year.

How to start?

Choose an insurance agency that you trust so that you can easily sell their products. The insurance company will usually assist you in obtaining a license to sell insurance. You can search on the big players in this field such as the following:


Get a mentor and obtain a license so that you can legally sell insurance plans. It is also best that you invest in your own insurance plan so you can sell from experience. Imagine a situation where in the middle of your sales pitch, you were asked what insurance plan you have and you answer: “None”.


In law school, you had sleepless nights reading about Laws on Property and Ownership, the Law on Sales, Land Titles and Deeds, Taxation, Contracts etc. This gives you an upper hand if you want to be successful in the field of real estate.  Your days in law school actually gave you a wholistic understanding on what can go on from the point of offer to buy or to sell up to the transfer of properties.

How much you’ll earn?

If you are unlicensed and only a referrer, they usually give 1% to 3% commission based on the selling price of the property sold. Once you get a license, you can demand 5% commission. Again, commission rates are flexible depending on the agreement of the parties.

How to start?

To gain experience, you can start selling condo units as there are a lot of developers looking for sales agents. Do yourself a favor by checking the profile of property developers so you don’t end up selling questionable properties.

Some popular condo unit developers include AYALA LAND INC., SM DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION, DMCI HOMES and others that you are actually familiar with in your community.

Or you can even do freelance by offering to sell the property of some relatives or friends who are looking for buyers. Don’t fret, you will be able to learn the tricks of the trade as you go along but first you have to get out from that bed and start grooming yourself to becoming the next real estate tycoon!


Nowadays, companies look for  Human Resource Personnel who has knowledge of the Labor Code of the Philippines to help them ensure zero legal liability pertaining to labor.

Didn’t you enjoy two semesters reciting on labor laws and reading jurisprudence on illegal dismissals? With that, you can actually better guide your employer in making sure that he does not violate any labor laws.

How much you’ll earn?

Salaries usually depend on your experience. HR associates can be paid a starting salary based on minimum wage while HR directors can get as high as 6 to 7 digits a month.

How to start?

You don’t go to companies and say: “Hey! I have a law degree and I’m applying for that HR Manager Position.” Unless you have prior HR experience, seldom that companies get fresh from law school people to become their HR Managers.

You usually have to climb the corporate ladder in this field which means that you have to start from being an associate, to an officer, to a manager, and a director.




If you did not pass the bar yet, you can still teach Constitutional Law  or other social sciences subjects.  Apart from constitutional law, you can also start by teaching Criminal Law to criminology students, some school don’t require that you pass the bar to teach this.

Other universities who are not that strict in law experience may also get you to teach in their law school.

How much you’ll earn?

This depends on the load you are given and the hourly rate of the school where you choose to teach.

How to start?

Apply in Universities and Colleges, of course. Take whatever load they give you just so you can gain teaching experience.


Being an entrepreneur means you will be your own boss. You will be running your own company and dealing with hiring and terminating employees, tax implications of your business moves, contracts etc. If you are a person with a business sense, do not allow your four (4) years in law school to just go down the drain, you can use your legal training to guide you in building a business empire.

How much you’ll earn?

It depends on the business that you will be starting. Don’t immediately think that you’ll rake money on your first year. Businesses take time before you can even enjoy the fruits of your labor.

How to start?

Know your passion. What do you enjoy doing? Are there needs that you want to address? Do you have a special skill that you think you can offer to the public?

Entrepreneurs usually start with an inspiration to come up with products and unique business models that customers will embrace.  So what do you have in mind?

As for me and my wife, we started Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc., now a premiere preschool in Baguio City.  This was born out of my experience as a former tutor and my wife’s experience as a Guidance Counselor. So bank on your acquired skills to come up with a bright business idea.


While I was still in law school, I usually get invited to talk to college students and I usually share my experience as a job applicant. Apart from sharing my experiences as a job applicant, I also included topics on how to prepare a resume and how to answer job interviews. Since you are a law graduate, you might want to add some topics on basic labor laws, too!

After passing the bar, my topics in speaking engagements evolved to talking about labor laws, criminal law, family, and my experiences as a drugs court lawyer.

If you want to make this as a career, you can start by sharing your experiences on something that you are an expert on. Say for example, leadership etc.

How much you’ll earn?

This depends on the budget of the inviting organization.

How to start?

Say yes to every speaking engagement where you think you can add value to the audience.

The six (6) enumerated career paths are based on my experience and not intended to limit you but to help you realize that there are a lot of possibilities.

Bottom line, you have the ability to open numerous doors of opportunity with your Law Degree, you just have to want to open those doors! 🙂

Do you have any additional suggested career option for law graduates? Comment below. 🙂

Just passed the bar? Or planning to take it?

Do you want to unlock your potential?

Take the Clifton Strengths Assessment now and book a Strengths Awareness Session with Atty. Dexter Diwas.

Click the link below.


How to know God’s Best?

I just want to share what I heard while on a long drive.

How to know God’s Best?

According to Pastor Peter Tan Chi’s preaching, determine if it is God’s will, God’s way, and if it is God’s timing. If the answer to all those three is “Yes”, then definitely – it is God’s best. 

Have a great day everyone! 


Posting on social media may seem harmless but not until Republic Act No. 10175 or the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012.  The said Republic Act provided the penalty for Cyber Libel.

Cybel libel is libel committed through a computer system and this includes posts on facebook.

Ano nga ba muna ang libel?

Under Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code of the Philippines, libel is defined as a public and malicious imputation of a crime, or of a vice or defect, real or imaginary, or any act, omission, condition, status or circumstance tending to discredit or cause the dishonor or contempt of a natural or juridical person, or to blacken the memory of one who is dead. Thus, the elements of libel are: (a) imputation of a discreditable act or condition to another; (b) publication of the imputation; (c) identity of the person defamed; and, (d) existence of malice.

In short, cyber libel is paninirang puri done on line at mas mabigat ang penalty as compared to ordinary libel.

So what is the penalty?

Kapag ginawa mo ito, you shall be punished with prision correccional (6 months and 1 day to 6 years) in its maximum period to prision mayor (6 years and 1 day to 12 years) in its minimum period or a fine ranging from Six Thousand Pesos (P6,000.00) up to the maximum amount determined by Court, or both, in addition to the civil action which may be brought by the offended party.

Angry Man (9)
Kaya kahit na gaano ka na na-ngangati, nag-ngingitngit, at na-ngi-nginig at gustong gusto mo nang siraan SA FACEBOOK ang umagaw sa boyfriend or girlfriend mo: DON’T.

A lot of teenagers are not informed kung gaano kabigat ang consequences ng irresponsible social media use and many schools recognize this concern. Kaya naman I was thankful when I got the chance to be invited as a resource speaker to talk about Cybebullying and Netiquette before the 800plus Senior High School and College students of PASS College in Alaminos, Pangasinan during their orientation.

PHILIPPINE ACCOUNTANCY AND SCIENCE SCHOOL or more popularly known as PASS COLLEGE is located in Alaminos, Pangasinan. The school offers BS in Elementary Education, BS in Hospitality Management, BS in Business Administration, BS in Computer Science, BS in Tourism and Hotel Management, and associate courses such as Associate in Bookkeeping and Associate in Computer Technology. They also offer Bartending (NCII), Commercial Cooking (NCII), Food and Beverage Services (NCII), Front Office Services (NCII), Tour Guiding (NCII) and Healthcare Services (NCII).

In preparation for the talk, I found a graph that shows that we Filipinos spend an average of 4:17 hours every single day on social media. You read me right – 4 HOURS AND 17 MINUTES. That is a lot of time wasted if we use social media irresponsibly! Very alarming. (Please refer to the graph below)

time spent on sm

This explains the reason why most of the cyber libel cases that I handled were committed on facebook, the most popular social media platform of our time. Nowadays, Facebook has been the easiest avenue for venting.  Airing our frustrations in life through facebook may seem so innocent but can, most of the time, be messy.

To avoid being a victim of cyberbullying or to make sure  that you don’t cyberbully or commit cyberlibel as defined under Republic Act 10175 also known as the Cybercrime Prevention Act of 2012, you can follow this one simple tip that I borrowed and shared during the talk:

Take a deep breath, isip isip muna kung ipo-post mo ba talaga yang na-type mo habang ikaw ay galit at punong puno ng hinanakit.

THINK stands for:

think before 3
  1. T – is it TRUE?

Make sure that all your posts are TRUE.  And let me just warn you that even if they are, not everything that is true deserves posting on social media. In a Supreme Court decision, the latter said:

“It must be remembered that every defamatory imputation is presumed to be malicious, EVEN IF IT BE TRUE, if no good intention and justifiable motive for making it is shown.” (emphasis provided)

It is true that…

telling the truth
But there is a right time and a right place for telling the truth and in your situation, social media may not just be one of them. 🙂

Oo nga, totoong kabit siya! Pero huwag mo idaan sa social media, gather evidence para makasuhan mo siya kung ang kinakabit niya ay ang asawa mo. 🙂 Pero kung pinost mo ito sa facebook nang hindi nagdadalawang isip, baka magkabaliktad pa ang mundo at makasuhan ka din. Kaya huwag magpost ng kung anong hugot ate at kuya, huwag.

2.  H – is it Helpful?

Will your post help? We cannot deny that social media aides in fast dissemination of information.  We learn about the death of relatives, the fact na walang pasok dahil bumabagyo,  na walang maka-daan sa Kennon Road dahil landslide, na may 3-day sale sa SM, at iba pang information na talaga namang nakakatulong para mapadali ang ating buhay.  Through facebook, we are also reminded of the birthdays of loved ones and are even encouraged to greet them.

facebook reminder
Facebook has made it easier for everyone to remember birthdays! Huwag mong sisihin ang hindi nag-greet sa iyo, malamang bawal siya mag-internet sa trabaho at wala siyang internet connection sa bahay, or di siya maka-connect sa alin mang wifi, o di naman kaya ay namumulubi na at walang data, they also need your help.

In those examples, posts are of big help.  Through social media, helping can just be a click away, we don’t have to be physically present to help inform someone.  Imagine kung iisa-isahin mo ang mga kamag-anak mo para sabihin na may bago kang bentang sabon na makakapagpabago ng buhay nila, stressful diba?

And if what you have is internet connection and a lot of time on facebook, use that time wisely.

Social media, more particularly facebook, also help bloggers reach their potential readers and it is us netizens that decide whether to share them.  We can opt to share articles that sow good vibes or spread negative ones.


Kaya remember, post to help.


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3.  I – is it inspiring?

A lot of us get encouragement when we read inspiring posts online and I thank those people who take the time to craft inspirational quotes for sharing.  There is no problem with posting personal statuses (one thing that I am most guilty of) for as long as it has a goal, and if it is not to inspire, it will be no different than a spam clogging someone else’s facebook feed.

Di ba? We can be a source of inspiration just by posting quotes or stories that brings back trust in humanity. 🙂

4.  N – Necessary?

“Kailangan mo bang i-post yan?” For the past days, my facebook timeline has not been busy because of this.  I just realized that I have been unnecessarily posting before to the point that every person I meet in the workplace know every single detail of what is happening in our family.  There were many many times that I crafted facebook statuses and end up deleting them without posting it after realizing that my facebook friends need not know about it.

In some of the cyber libel cases that I handled, the perpetrator mistakenly confused her facebook account with her diary. She posted her frustrations and reached the point of naming and shaming her husband’s mistress. Though she had the right to be angry, her husband’s mistress now has a case against her. Sad.

5.  K – is it kind?


We see a lot of posts bashing someone else’s grammar, accomplishments, pictures etc.  One latest example is this celebrity who was told for her grammatical error when she posted:

“the more you ignore me the closer i get, your wasting your time!”


A netizen then reacted and posted:


The netizen may be knowledgeable about grammar, and she was right with the grammatical error that she spotted.  But a lot thought that the netizen could have just chosen to be a little kinder by sending her a personal message if her intentions were pure.  Ang ending, na bash din ang netizen.

Social media is an effective platform in making life easier for us these days.  We can get a job, open opportunities, and get our message across easily because of this technology.  But if abused, we open ourselves to falling victim, worse victimizing our fellow netizens.  Let us protect ourselves and our loved ones, let us T-H-I-N-K before we post.

One biblical rule that I challenge myself to follow before posting:

Think about these things, then confidently hit that POST!

God bless, everyone! 🙂

5 Screaming signs your employee is not happy and might resign anytime

     From the time that I worked as an employer-employee relations officer for some BPOs and for retained small business clients (when I was in the private practice) up to this moment that I am managing our own business, I had the privilege to observe and learn how to interpret human behavior in an organization.

     What amazed me are that the signs that will eventually lead to someone leaving the company are predictable. Let me share some indicators that will help you tell if it’s nearing goodbye between you and your employee:

1. They suddenly become frequently tardy – if your employee usually reports to work earlier than anyone else in the office and suddenly started to incur frequent tardiness (almost everyday), this is already a sign that their motivation to come to work has been affected. Their drive to wake up early has waned and they might be considering looking for another job.

If you are in charge of personnel, take this opportunity to get to know them and ask them what’s causing their being tardy. Take this cue to come up with a program that will inspire all members who are going through the same situation.

Important! Don’t forget to document this though as it might prove handy in the future in case their tardiness becomes a liability to the organization and it is already you who wants to say goodbye to them.


brighton logo

Enroll your child at Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc.  Baguio City’s Premiere Kindergarten School that offers Baby, Toddler, Nursery, Pre-Kinder, and Kindergarten Program. Visit our facebook page by CLICKING THIS.

Located at 2nd Floor, Luke Foundation Building, 90 Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City.  Contact 074-424-2647 or  09176562006.  Look for Teacher Amanda Demandante.

2. They have used up their leave credits and their number of absences have dramatically increased: a motivated employee would love to be in the workplace almost everyday. They have this certain drive and noticeable liveliness at work. But a person who feels he should be somewhere else other than his workplace would usually use up his leave credits to escape the pit where he is currently in. These employees regard leave credits and the chance to be absent like “life lines” that will give them extra energy to survive the daily grind at work.

But when their leave credits are depleted, what happens next?  This might likewise be damaging to your organization so better find out what is causing it.

3. They become less productive: if at first they were usually one of those who close the most number of sales or have always submitted work before deadlines. Now, you feel like the decision of hiring them was all a mistake and you wonder where the person you so courted to join your team has gone.

This is already a waving red flag.  Their enthusiasm to deliver has already faded and allowing this to continue is harmful to both the employee and the employer.  Try to rescue him/her by getting to know what’s causing the problem and start your HR strategy from there.

4. Their linkedin account suddenly becomes updated – stalk them a little and see if their linked in account has been updated. If their linked in account became “so attractive you want to hire him again”, tendency is that they are waiting for that next head hunter to pounce on them.

5. Has facebook posts of being stressed at work – Browsing their facebook account makes you look at your life and say “thank you” that you are not on their shoes. They’ve posted a lot of depressing quotes regarding work or cryptic messages about their workmates that they recently fought with. If he is one talented guy, this person will readily grab an opportunity that comes his way.

Those are just few of the indications that your employee might not be happy at or with his work and has probably contemplated leaving soon.

What will you do then if you see those signs?

If you want to keep them, you better know what motivates them. Come up with programs that will keep them at work such as incentives (money is not always it though) or other activities that will once again ignite their love for their job.

However, if you want to let them go? Do it the right way. Document each tardiness, absence, or decline in productivity (you should be doing this from the onset anyway). Once there is enough evidence that their tardiness, absence, or decline in productivity is becoming a liability, notify them about it and impose the necessary disciplinary action based on the company policy and the law. (Avoid litigation expenses, contact your employer-employee relations lawyer for the proper way to do this)

Just to share, in my experience, there are instances where it is more beneficial for both parties (the employer and the employee) to let go of each other. To make it easier for both of you, you can talk to your employee and tell him/her that you support his/her plans and that if he/she intends to leave, he/she might as well do it the right way so that his/her performance and records will not be affected.

Assure your employees that you will give them a good recommendation for as long as they give their 100 percent dedication while they are in your organization. Sounds so ideal? I have always done this with all of my employees and we have maintained a healthy friendship even if they left the company. So somehow, it works.  It is two-pronged, a win-win solution. You get the necessary dedication while they get the needed support for their career growth.

But the bigger question will be: why would they want to leave in the first place? (But that’s another topic for another time)

So, there you go! As HR people, it may be cliche but why not take advantage of the above signs to help our respective organizations lessen attrition rate and increase productivity.

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About the Author:

Dexter D. Diwas is the co-founder of Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc., a premiere Kindergarten School in the City of Baguio, Philippines.  Apart from being a lawyer, he is also passionate about Business, Human Resource Development, and Career Advising. He is currently taking up Master of Management at the Institute of Management, University of the Philippines – Baguio.

6 Effective Tips to making “employment termination” less heartbreaking

Our organization may be small at this stage, but thankfully, we reached a point where we gained the trust of our clients because of the way we do things.  Because of this, we committed to do everything to be able to hire the best fit to join our team.

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Enroll your child at Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc.  Baguio City’s Premiere Kindergarten School that offers Baby, Toddler, Nursery, Pre-Kinder, and Kindergarten Program. Visit our facebook page by CLICKING THIS.

Located at 2nd Floor, Luke Foundation Building, 90 Leonard Wood Road, Baguio City.  Contact 074-424-2647 or  09176562006.  Look for Teacher Amanda Demandante.

In the process of hiring new team members, there will always be times that we commit lapses – meaning, we hire the wrong people. Thus, there are those who make the cut but eventually get cut.

As a Human Resource Development practitioner,  one of the important aspects of effectively managing people is one’s ability to relay the phrase – “you are fired” with less drama, less heartbreak.

I consider it an achievement being able to deliver bad news and at the same time helping the receiver look at the brighter side of the message.

Here are some tips that I can share to my fellow HR practitioners:

  1. Give the news personally and directly – There are several channels of communication, but the most effective channel to breaking down this kind of news is through a face to face meeting.  In this way, you will immediately know your employee’s reaction and be able to address it right away.

Na-imagine mo ba na makatanggap ng text message na ang laman ay tinatanggal ka sa trabaho?  Nakamamatay yan.  What if your employee received that message while crossing the pedestrian lane? What if na-shock siya, hindi nakagalaw, at nasagasaan? Dagdag kunsensiya mo pa. So better relay the message ng harap harapan.

Also, you must do it directly para hindi mukhang chismis.  Hindi pwede yung i-teterminate mo si Ana pero bago pa malaman ni Ana e alam na ni Mila dahil idinaan mo sa kanya. Diba?

2. Balance the content – One technique in balancing the content is to apply the “sandwich approach”.

This means that you say good things first about his or her performance (dapat sincere ka naman dito).  After affirming the person, carefully move to the more sensitive information, the fact that he or she committed something and that it is a ground for termination, then assure him or her that it is not the person but it is the act (kasi ganun naman talaga, walang personalan, trabaho lang).


Employer:  You know, you are a good employee etc etc. I have not heard anything bad about you. However, there is this instance that we would need some explanation. (Tell him or her the facts) Would you want to say something about it?

Employee:  Explain, explain, explain.

Employer:  Ok, thank you for giving your side on the matter.  We will use this in crafting our decision.  We are however, giving you 5 days to explain this in writing. While preparing your written explanation, please remember that this is not about you, but it is about what happened. Ok? 

Employee: Thanks. 

Don’t immediately condemn the employee.  Everybody commits mistakes and this might just be another hump in their careers.

3. Be specific – How will the employee know the specific violation he or she committed if you speak in general?  Dapat sabihin mo kung ano talaga yung violation niya complete with details e.g. incident report by a witness, cctv footage, and other available evidence.

This will avoid unnecessary debate kasi kitang kita na kung sino nagkamali.  This has saved me a lot of energy debating with employees who have the tendency to deny to death.

4. Give feedback when the receiver is most ready to accept it – there is no better timing than immediately after the incident happened.

Nawawalan ng halaga ang mensahe mo kung ang pangyayari ay nangyari ngayong araw pero next month mo pa ina-address. This only means na you are just trying to find ways to get rid of your employee at hindi maganda yan.  Siguradong pagdududahan ka rin kapag nagsampa ng illegal dismissal ang empleyado mo.

5. Be accurate; validate your information. – Before you even relay the message, gather facts and investigate.  Mahirap ang magkamali.

Can you imagine breaking a news that would possibly change someone else’s life tapos mali mali pala ang facts mo?  There might be legal implications so better get your facts straight before you present it to the person being terminated.

6. Offer Continuing support – Most of my termination meetings, thankfully, end in a good note and I enjoy the fact that we all remain friends.  To maintain relationship, assure them that you care for them and that everything happens for a reason. 🙂

Siyempre, the tips above won’t suffice if you don’t follow the legal process. May sinasabi tayong 2 notice rule sa Labor Law but that will be covered in another topic.

In order to be guided in legally terminating erring employees, it will be best to consult your lawyer.

Photo Credit: http://www.pistonandfusion.org/blog/warning-signs-fired/

tarp for kennon 4 x 16

About the Author:

Dexter D. Diwas is the co-founder of Bright Hope Room for Growth Inc., a premiere Kindergarten School in the City of Baguio, Philippines.  He is a lawyer who is passionate about Business, Human Resource Development, and Career Advising. He is currently taking up Master of Management at the Institute of Management, University of the Philippines – Baguio.  

ProPER way to form a good habit.

good habits“I am your constant companion. I am your greatest helper or heaviest burden. I will push you onward and upward or drag you down to failure. I am completely at your command. Ninety percent of things you do might just as well be turned over to me, and I will be able to do them quickly and correctly. I am easily managed, show me exactly how you want something done and after a few lessons I will do them automatically. I am the servant of all great people and, alas! of all failures as well. I am not a machine, though I work with all the precision of a machine, plus intelligence of a man. You can run me for profit or run me for ruin – it makes no difference to me. Take me, train me, be firm with me, and I will place the world at your feet. Be easy with me and I will destroy you. Who am I? I am habit.” – Author Unknown

Meriam-Webster dictionary defines habit as a usual way of behaving or something that a person does often in a regular and repeated way.

A lot of successful people reiterate the importance of forming good habits to achieve success and I could not agree more. The things that you do daily, define who you will be in the future. Let us say for instance that you make it a habit to wake up early in the morning and run several miles around the city, tendency is you will be enjoying the benefits of having a fit physique. That is a good example of a good habit. In contrast, if it is your habit to sip a glass of wine every other hour then the outcome of that habit could possibly be alcoholism.

Now we understand that our habits can make us or break us. Of course I will not waste your time reading about forming bad habits, instead, let me share to you 4 points that you can do to form good habits, I will call it the ProPER way to form a good habit.

First: Prompt.

In theater, we call someone who gives an actor the trigger or cue as the prompter. The same principle applies in forming good habits. We must first think about that particular habit that we want to acquire and prompt ourselves to start doing it. For example, if we want to form a good habit of waking up early every morning, our prompt could be an alarm. So the first thing that we need to do is to remind ourselves to set an alarm in the evening so that we can wake up early the next day.

Second: Perform.

After setting a prompt, we should make sure to do the very thing that we prompted ourselves to do. This is the perform part. So if we base it in the above example, if we set an alarm for us to wake up early in the morning then we should perform by immediately getting out of bed.

Third: Enjoy.

After successfully performing what you prompted yourself to do then it is time for you to enjoy its benefits which leads to having a sense of fulfillment.

Fourth: Repeat.

Repeat this over again until it becomes a habit. Time will come when you will no longer have to prompt yourself to perform because it has already become part of your system.

Apply the above principle every time you want to start a good habit and see how your life will change.

Challenge yourself now and follow the ProPER way to form good habits!

Habits aristotleAuthor: Dexter D. Diwas