How would you describe your current role to a HR outsider?
My team and I design, plan, implement, monitor, and evaluate all learning requirements and needs of our people in Sprout Solutions. I work closely with executives, department heads, and managers to identify key learning areas and learning requirements of their teams.
What is a common misconception about the work you do?
The most common misconception about learning and development is that learning happens fast and learning is just about acquisition of new knowledge. These might be true to some individuals, especially for children. But for most adults, learning is a long, and sometimes slow process. It includes learning new things, and unlearning outdated concepts.
How did you get started in your HR career?
During and right after college, I never pictured myself as part of Human Resources. Back in 2012, I was a licensed dietician practicing in a hospital for 2 years. I love the medical science that revolved around my work as a dietician, however, career progression and development is beak here in the Philippines in that field. Eventually, with a little convincing from my mother, I decided to shift careers to education. I got a license to teach and enrolled to a master's of educational administration program in one of the top universities in our country. I loved every bit of it. I taught in a public school for 3 years and then joined a publishing company for 2 years training senior high school teachers on adult learning theories and technology integration. My very first stint in HR was really in Sprout Solutions as an L&D Lead. Due to my experience in managing a small school, HR was not really new to me. I was able to contribute new knowledge and effective practice to my colleagues. The journey was long, and sometimes confusing or even frustrating, but I think my heart really is in developing people for them to realize their full potential.
Describe the most impactful HR project you've personally worked on.
Our team's most meaningful project to date is the in-house leadership training program that we have developed which is contextualized to the needs of our organization. It took us several months to complete. From gathering data in our learning needs analysis, to one-on-one discussion with managers, to the current business direction our company is heading. We really need a go to leadership training where new leaders in our company can take. At the pace we are growing, Sprout leaders really need to be equipped with all the knowledge and tools they need to be effective in their teams. And we need it fast while having a clear picture how all these leadership and management concepts apply specifically in our context.
What is one HR/future of work trend or change you're not convinced will work for SEA startups?
The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) in the workplace, especially in HR, is really upon us. A lot of experts saying that almost half of the workforce might be replaced by AI. Although this might be true to some degree, I firmly believe that AI will not only improve how we work, but it will also be the main driving force that will push economies in the South East Asian region to the next level. And HR will be at the center of it all as a strategic partner to any business.
What is one HR/future of work trend or change that you hope to see more of at SEA startups?
I would love to see more diversity, equity, and inclusivity (DEI) initiatives as an integral part of all HR SEA startups. As we move towards a more digital and virtual workspaces, companies need to be more rooted in post-humanist practices. And DEI assures empowerment of the workforce to a more equitable economy.
What is your favourite HR resource that you would recommend to this community
The Harvard Business Review's digital publication is a very useful resource that I always use for insightful thought leadership that guide me in my practice.
Lastly, where are you based, and where would you take friends visiting your city for the first time?
I am based in a small city in Metro Manila, Philippines called Malabon city. Whenever friends visits me for the first time, I would just invite them in our home and order scrumptious food that our town has to offer.