Chit Juan

Chit Juan

It is very refreshing to know that not all of us are victims of generation gap. Or that not all of us have to contend with trying to understand why millenials are less formal than their older cousins. Or why GenY seems to have a different set of norms from what Gen X believed in.

There are 21-year-olds who happen to know what they want and are helping others in their age group to adapt. Not very many of them know how to navigate in a working world comprised of past generations, baby boomers as well as digital natives. So the Dreamlist was born.

Samantha Sales, 21 years old, and her partners Edward Martinez and Sophia Tan had a dream. They wanted to find better applicants and further find good companies for these applicants to work for. Companies with the same mindset or were in a group that had social consciousness, corporate social responsibility (CSR) and environmental awareness.

They started with a short list of companies they admired. They realized they also have their dreamlist of companies. And they created a website to magnetize both companies and people. In just a few weeks, 1800 “likes” on Facebook happened. Then people even share their website with other like-minded friends.

I am honored that ECHOstore is in Dreamlist’s shortlist of companies they want to work for. And we are in good company with Rags2Riches, GotHeart and other social enterprises. There is Shell Philippines, Ayala Foundation and other CSR believers.

I told Samantha that the idea thrills me as an employer and entrepreneur who has been hard pressed to find applicants who are driven, have potential to be loyal and have potential to stay the course and grow with our company. And I was again thrilled that Samantha calls her kind the Potential Set. She says, “if older people have the power set, we younger ones have the POTENTIAL SET!” Well said.

I encouraged her to engage more companies, sponsors and youth to fill in the slots brought about by new companies being formed, old companies who are reengineering and microenterprises getting bigger and better. She needs our help because her idea is something we all need to be able to compete in a changing business environment.

I remember reading “Competing for the Future” by Hamel and Prahalad in the year 2000, and the same authors have an article in 1990 called “The Core Competence.” To be able to compete, you have to be “ahead of the curve.” And this is what I see in Samantha and her partners. And to be able to compete, you must know your core competence. You cannot be everything to everyone. You have to excel in something and you can only achieve that if you have staying power and the perseverance to learn things the hard way. Not just through Google. But through good employment opportunities. And core competencies also leverage on the mix of people and their leaders in companies that are ready for any future challenges.

After that oh so refreshing meeting with Samantha, I met my “nightmare” millennial a few days later. She had the twang of a New Yorker (although she is Pinay), a plunging neckline and a casual stance. How I wish she and Samantha would meet. She knew her “nuts and bolts” but lacked the formality or professionalism for a good “first impression.” Argh.

Is this what they call a generation gap? I cannot relate because while I am trying to reach out to the millenials through social media, many of them are not reaching out to the baby boomers’ need for the usual propriety on first meeting, shaking of the hands, and handing out of a business card.

But, I bite my lip and carry on with the meeting. Some call it the BPO syndrome.

Many BPO or call center agents never need a business card, never need to shake hands, or even dress for a business meeting. And so they tend to think that is the norm for business. Even after they have left the BPO office.

So again, I am glad there is Dreamlist. As I write this, I recall today’s meeting with Samantha’s team—Edward, Jilson the photographer and Carmel the make-up artist.

“Birds of the same feather flock together” the saying goes. And it still is true.

Samantha’s team is my type of entrepreneurs, career people and “potential set.”

Good luck, Samantha. May your tribe increase. Both the corporate and entrepreneurial worlds need you and your kind. Dreamlist. They exist. Check them out at www.dreamlist.ph.

Chit Juan is a founder and owner of ECHOStore sustainable lifestyle, ECHOmarket sustainable farms and ECHOcafe in Serendra , Podium and Centris QC malls. She also is President of the Women’s Business Council of the Philippines and President of the Philippine Coffee Board Inc., two non-profits close to her heart. She often speaks to corporates, youth and NGOs on social entrepreneurship, women empowerment, and coffee. You can follow her on twitter.com/chitjuan or find her on facebook:Pacita “Chit” Juan. Email her at puj@echostore.ph


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