Category Archives: March 2016

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How to Host Internal Learning and Development Sessions

Investing in learning and development for your employees shows that you care about their professional growth, and ensure that your team stays updated on the latest industry trends. However, sending people off to take courses online or at local colleges can cost time and money that your business can’t spare. Not only is it financially costly, it means that at least one member of your team needs to spend time to go to the course, take it, and then commute back. There is a better way; internal learning and development sessions.

5 tips to host an internal learning and development session

1. Decide what needs work

Every teams have their weaknesses. Before deciding what learning and development program you should implement, find out what your team’s weakness is. Start by looking at your different departments and finding which ones are performing poorly, then analyze which skills need improvement. For example, your marketing team needs a fundamental understanding of analytics so they know which campaigns were worth running and why. You could also start with a general refresher, like an introductory marketing course that goes over the basics so your team can brush up on their skills.

2. Narrow down your program choices

Choose your program based on good research, but also look at the logistics. Here are a few questions you should ask before you begin your research;

  • How much time can your team (or trainees) spare each day? Do you want it to be a one-day course, something they can take in their free time, or something longer?
  • Do you want the course to be online, or in the office?
  • Do you want to teach it yourself, or do you want a program that comes with a facilitator?
  • Do you want to develop a learning and development program in-house?

3. Do your research

When you know what topic you want to cover, and what logistics you’re looking for, you can begin your research. Look into programs that have a good reputation, cover the topics you want, and are within your price range. If you’re in the Philippines, check out People Dynamics.

4. Prepare a space

Unless you decide to go with an online course, your team will need a space to meet and learn regularly. Even if you do choose something online, you may want to set aside a space in the office they can watch the training videos and listen to lectures in private. This designated space could be a meeting room or a conference hall, depending on how many people you want to send through the program.

5. Implement

Once everything is set up, execute the lesson plan and measure the results! You may want to give your team some incentive to complete the learning and development course with flying colors.

What are your tips? Let us know if we missed anything in the comments below. We’d love to hear from you!

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Productivity at work: The art of deadlines

Productivity at work: The art of deadlines

Setting deadlines strategically and tricking your brain into getting things done more quickly is one way to improve productivity at work. Typically, deadlines are viewed as a stressful affair. Just the word brings to mind panicked scrambles and rushed work to meet certain time-frames. However, when used properly, they are an excellent tool. Here are a few tips on setting and keeping deadlines.

Give yourself early deadlines

By tricking your brain into thinking a deadline is earlier than it truly is, you’ll end up finishing your projects with time to spare. This is a good practice to get into, since it shows you that you can complete tasks and projects ahead of time, instead of going all the way up to the deadline every time. Early deadlines also make for happy clients, and get the ball rolling more quickly.

Break your deadlines down into smaller tasks

Deadlines are often so scary because they are paired with large projects, and they are literally the “dead” line. The latest you can submit your large, impressive, intimidating projects. One way to make deadlines less intimidating is to break them down into smaller tasks that come together. For example, instead of setting the deadline for a finished website, set deadlines for the website design, build, and content population. That way, each team member has their own roles and responsibilities, and as long as they meet their (attainable) deadlines, the project will get done in time.

View deadlines as your tool, not your master

Change your mindset about deadlines to take advantage of them and improve productivity and efficiency. When you view deadlines as the end-all, they become scary and almost unattainable. But when you look at deadlines as tools to help you get work done, they become just another useful tool in your repertoire.

Forget deadlines

If you are ambitious and want to take it a step further, finish tasks that come your way as soon as possible, and ignore deadlines altogether. As long as you ensure you get your projects done immediately, you won’t have to think about the deadlines at all!

What are your tips for deadlines and productivity at work?

We always appreciate feedback and new ideas to write about. Share them with us in the comments below.

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Public Seminar: Managing Millennials


Please join us on April 13, 2016 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for a workshop on Managing Millennials. Learn about generational differences, HR aspects and more.

The program focuses on understanding of the generation that is exponentially dominating the global workforce. What motivates this increasing workforce and how to leverage its strengths and identify growth and development opportunities to be able to effectively manage this so-called Gen Y. Prepares and equips leaders with diverse approach in building a culture that will respond to the needs of the new generation.

Register Now; Managing Millennials

Course participants will learn about generational differences in the workplace, discuss the profile of Millennials in the local work environment, HR’s perspective of the Gen Y, and the transformation in workplace culture. We will also go over modern technologies and social media, as well as how they affect Millennials’ behavior and productivity at work.

The workshop will revisit management styles that respond to the emotional, psychological, and social needs of the Millennials, study work-life balance, and go over how to create a positive, people-focused work environment.

Course Outline

  • Profile of Millennials
  • Changing Times
  • HR Practitioners’ Perspective on Gen Y
  • Recruiting, Engaging and Retaining Gen Y
  • Managing Millennials
  • Work Life Balance
  • Culture Transformation
  • Better Care for and Keeping Millennials

An investment of P4,500 includes snacks and lunch, instruction by an expert facilitator, small group workshops that provide “active learning,” a specialized student workbook and a personalized certificate of completion.

Register Now; Managing Millennials

About the Facilitator

Leonida G. Reyes is a dynamic professional with more than 15 years of rich experience spearheading the whole cycle of Human Resources Management and Development. Currently associated with the Philippine-Australia Human Resource Organizational Development Facility (PAHRODF) and presently engaged in organizational interventions and outsourced Human Resource Management with private corporations and Civil Society Organizations. She has worked for Smart Communications where she gained a wealth of experience in Change Management, Culture-Building, Management and Leadership Development, Team Effectiveness, Instructional Development, and Facilitation of Learning among other behaviorally-anchored skills training for more than 11 years. She has handled senior positions in HR Management and Development with diverse industries from Aviation, Systems Integration, Land Transportation, Shipping, Supply Chain Solutions / Logistics, Overseas Manpower Deployment, Manufacturing, Retail, Business Process Outsourcing, and Management Consulting. Ms. Reyes was conferred an honorary Master’s Degree in Human Resources Management from the University of Santo Tomas in 2004. An active member of People Management Association of the Philippines, Organizational Development Philippine Network, Philippine Society of Training and Development, HR Philippines, and Society for Human Resource Management, U.S.A.

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Hiring tips: How to assess a recent graduate


Recent graduates don’t have the same resume as experienced job applicants. That means when they apply for a job, you’ll have to look at things aside from their past experience to determine whether they have the right skills and culture fit to suit the position. These 5 hiring tips will help you ensure you recruit the right person for the job.

1. Evaluate for skills by looking at education history

There are many ways you can evaluate for skills without an extensive work history. For example, look at your candidate’s major, and their class list. Does his or her major coincide with the position you’re hiring for, or is a math major applying for a graphic design position? Ideally, most of the classes that your candidates take relate to tasks they will be doing for your company. You can also look at the workshops they attended and any volunteer experience.

2. Observe behavior and communication style

Look very carefully at how your candidate responds to your emails during the application phase. Did he or she follow application instructions? Is it clear they researched the company beforehand? Observe the language they use in their cover letters, any email communication, and resume; make sure their material is free of spelling or grammar errors, and they are polite and professional. You should also look at their response time; if they reply to your email weeks later, they probably aren’t putting the job high on their priority list.

3. Ask for experience in the interview

The interview can tell you a lot about your candidates. Look at what they do while waiting; are they reviewing their resume or reading a magazine? Did they come on time, or were they late? Pay attention to how well they communicate, especially if they’re trying to fill a communication role or have to interact with customers. You should also ask them about the last time they solved a problem, an example of when they had to take responsibility for something, and a story about when they demonstrated leadership. What they say will give insight into how they’ll handle problems in a professional setting.

4. Get their references

Even if they haven’t worked at a paid position before, students can still get letters of recommendation from their professors. Get their list of references and make some calls to find out what kind of student your candidate was, his or her work ethic, whether there were any problems, and more.

5. Give them a test task

If you have a good idea of your candidate and his or her skills, it’s a good idea to assign a test task just to double check. Ask your candidate to complete a short, paid job related to what the job role is. For example, if you’re hiring for a communications position, have candidates draft emails for customer outreach. If you’re hiring for a programming position, have them troubleshoot a recent error.

What are your hiring tips for recent graduates? Share them with us in the comments below!

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Public Seminar: Test and Measurement Design 101

Join us on April 6 and 7, 2016 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for our public seminar and learning workshop on test and measurement design. This seminar-workshop provides the participants with the knowledge, abilities and skills that are needed to carry out an in-depth evaluation of educational and psychological tests and to be able to interpret test scores.

Register Now; Test and Measurement Design 101

Course participants will develop an appreciation of psychological testing and its importance, obtain an understanding of the basic concepts of reliability, validity and test construction, and learn to interpret scores. This seminar is recommended for HR practitioners, psychometricians, teachers/professors, and guidance counselors.

Course Outline

  • Brief History of Psychological Measurement
  • Importance of Psychological Testing
  • Characteristics of Psychological Instruments
  • Purposes of Test and Measurement
  • Types of Tests
  • Bloom’s Taxonomy
  • Application of Psychological Measurement
  • Educational Testing
  • Personnel Testing
  • Clinical Testing
  • Ethics in Psychological Testing
  • Steps in Test Construction
  • Choosing the test Format
  • Validity and Reliability
  • Scoring and Interpretation

Register Now; Test and Measurement Design 101

An investment of P8,500 plus VAT includes snacks and lunch, instruction by an expert facilitator, small group workshops that provide “active learning,” a specialized student workbook, and a personalized certificate of participation.

About the Facilitator

Maria Vida G. Caparas, Ph.D.,RP holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management” and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities.

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Learning and Development in Manila

Learning and Development in Manila

A progressive learning and development program for your employees is crucial in keeping their skills updated and continuously growing. It keeps your team interested, engaged, and impressive in the industry. It also helps your business to have teams that understand the new changes in the industry, best practices, and multiple viewpoints on how to perform different roles, such as marketing, leadership, etc.

View our 2016 Training Calendar for an overview of the public seminars we are scheduled to host this year.

Learning and development in Manila can be a little harder to come by, but there is an abundance of training programs happening if you know where to find them. Here’s what to look for in these programs;

  1. A qualified presenter. The people facilitating a training should have real-life background and experience in what they are talking about. Theory isn’t enough, so just having gone to a top college isn’t enough. Look at their resumes for how many years they’ve worked in the industry, in what roles, and for which companies.
  2. A structured course outline. Look for courses that are well thought out and laid out. The course outline should cover topics that relate to the lesson at hand, and provide value for the participants.
  3. Type of workshop style. Some workshops are lecture-based, so attendees simply sit down and listen to someone speak. If you can learn like this, then that’s fine, but many people learn better when participating in activities.
  4. Course materials. Workshops should provide some sort of notebook, workbook, or at least a copy of a slideshow for participants to take home and review later on. It also helps in remembering all of the lessons.
  5. Other opportunities. Look out for workshops with networking opportunities before or after as an added bonus.

Interested in learning and development in Manila? Visit our Public Seminars page to see some workshops that we offer.

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Public Seminar: Coaching and Mentoring


Join us from March 16 to 17, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for a two-day workshop on coaching and mentoring. This training course is for all managers or individuals working in leadership position that could benefit from learning about how to coach your staff to retain and motivate them. Knowing how and when to coach (and when to use other tools, like mentoring) is an essential skill that can benefit both you and your organization.

Register for: Coaching and Mentoring

Coach, Mentor, Role Model, Supporter, Guide… do these words ring a bell? Being a coach involves being able to draw from several disciplines. Coaching is based on a partnership that involves giving both support and challenging opportunities to employees. Mentorship is a related skill that is often a part of coaching. It’s about being a guide, offering wisdom and advice when it is needed.

How you will benefit

  • Understand how coaching can be used to develop your team
  • Develop the coaching and mentoring skills that help improve individual performance
  • Demonstrate the behaviors and practices of an effective coach
  • Recognize employees’ strengths and give them the feedback they need to succeed
  • Identify employee problems and ways you can help to correct them

An investment of P8,500 + vat includes instruction by an expert facilitator, small group workshops, snacks and lunch, a specialized student manual, a free eBook on Coaching and Mentoring, and a personalized certificate of participation.

Register for: Coaching and Mentoring

About the Facilitator

Dr. Maria Vida G. Caparas holds a Master’s Degree and Ph.D., Summa Cum Laude, in Psychology. She is an Accredited Trainer of the Philippine Government with invaluable experiences in Organizational Development as a Human Resource, Training and OD practitioner. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management and was a Trainer Delegate of DFA-Foreign Service Institute in Italy and Singapore in 1999-2000. Dr. Caparas is a recipient of various national awards and also a professor in prestigious universities. She authored three books on Psychology/HR Management namely “Psychological Assessment: Theory and Practice”, “Uses of Psychological Tests”, and “Human Resource Management”.

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The Case for Internal Email Newsletters

The case for internal email newsletters | Profiles Asia Pacific

Email newsletters are a popular way for businesses to connect with their customers, but they are also an excellent way to build company culture. Internal email newsletters allow leaders to connect quickly and comprehensively with large teams, who can read the newsletters at their convenience. It doesn’t take much time to set them up, and there are so many benefits.

Benefits of internal email newsletters

  1. They don’t take much time to create well.
  2. It’s a good way to disperse a lot of important information and make sure everyone gets it.
  3. You don’t have to send them out regularly, just when there’s something interesting or important to put in them.
  4. It’s a channel for leadership/management to communicate directly with their teams.
  5. Helps foster company culture.

Tools to set up an internal email newsletter

It may be tempting to simply send out a quick text email, but we recommend doing that, especially if you have a lot of information you want to share. Creating a well-designed newsletter so your teams read all of the info, instead of getting confused or bored in a sea of text. There are a few great email services (many of which are free) that you can use to build aesthetic newsletters that are a pleasure to read.


Without a doubt one of the most popular email newsletter services out there, and for good reason. MailChimp has many templates and features that make it easy to organize your information in an easy-to-read format. It also has more advanced features like A/B subject line testing, and allows you to see the open-rates of your newsletters.


This newsletter is great for sharing links from around the web, but it also allows for text and images to be inserted with Markdown language.

Mad Mimi

Simple, easy-to-use email newsletters. It’s marketed as the service for people who want emails to be simple. Their free plan allows for 100 contacts and unlimited emails.

Campaign Monitor

Another popular service, Campaign Monitor has an easy drag-and-drop interface and great templates.

Constant Contact

This service has complex functions, but a great support team. They have tutorials and guides all online, so you can learn exactly how to make the most of this email newsletter service.

Anything we missed?

What would you like to add about internal email newsletter? Let us know in the comments below!

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Public Seminar: Organization Development


Join us for a two-day workshop from March 14 to 15, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on organization development.

There is one constant thing in life, especially in organizational life, and that is change. Organizations experience more rapid change. The nature and forms of organizations are changing dramatically, specifically due to globalization, Information Technology and managerial/leadership innovation. Hence, there is a real need for organization development.

Register for: Organization Development

This seminar-workshop will provide an introduction to organization development, explains why organization development is needed by organizations to adapt in a complex and rapidly changing world, and present the process and practice of organization development in a logical flow.

Topics you will discuss

  • Appreciate what Organization Development is, as well as, its relevance to the organization;
  • Learn and understand the process of OD; and,
  • Learn the different OD interventions and apply some in meeting the desired organization’s outcomes/results.

This course is recommended for human resources and organizational development practitioners, team leaders, external and internal consultants, planners and implementers of change who want to learn a leading-edge methodology for understanding and achieving optimal organizational development.

An investment of P8,500 + 12%vat includes instruction by an expert facilitator, small interactive classes, a specialized student workbook and course materials, snacks and lunch, and a personalized certificate of completion.

Register for: Organization Development

About the Facilitator

Dr. Rosario Alzona holds a Master’s Degree in Statistics and Ph.D in Organizational Development. She is an accomplished Organizational Development professional with almost 20 years of experience in diverse workplace environments. She has varied experiences in organizational assessment, OD intervention design and implementation, learning and development and process/procedure design and development. Dr. Alzona has taken various Information Technology and OD Consultancy projects with several Consulting firms and has taught for ten years in the Graduate School of several universities and colleges in diverse topics of management and leadership. She is a frequent speaker at various seminars and workshops with topics on Leadership, Team Building, Organizational Assessment, Strategic Planning, Change Management and Appreciative Inquiry. She is a High-energy Trainer and Creative Facilitator, skilled in guiding learners through engaging breakthrough learning opportunities.

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The cost of toxic employees

The cost of toxic employees is no small amount. They aren’t felt simply in monetary loss, but in the loss of time and morale they cost the entire team. So much thought is put into finding top performers that we don’t as consciously avoid the toxic hires as carefully as we should. According to re:Work, one toxic employee can wipe out the gains of two top performers in a company.

The cost of toxic employees can include;

  • Lower productivity, not just for that employee but the entire team.
  • Loss of revenue due to slow response time and poor work.
  • Wasted time dealing with the employees’ wants and/or demands.
  • Lower team morale.

In order to avoid toxic workers, keep an eye out for certain traits.

“…toxic workers are actually much more productive than the average worker, which can perhaps explain why they tend to stick around an organization longer than they should. We also find that workers who profess that rules should always be followed are also more likely to be toxic. The toxic employee may be falling back on pedantry over common sense or decency.” – Dylan Minor, Just how toxic are toxic employees?

You can also use structured interviewing and professional assessments to pick out the would-be toxic employees on your team, and eliminate them from the running before they even get hired. These will give you insight into how well they fit into your company culture and teams.

Over to you

What are your tips for avoiding toxic employees? What indicators have you noticed and how do you spot them early? Let us know in the comments below.

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