by James Chiong, Marketing Manager
Last 2017, we celebrated our silver year with the battle cry: Driven by Passion. The theme was fitting as we have been marching to the beat of its drum for the past 25 years.
The recipient of the TeamAsian of the Year Award is at the core of every project. She worked behind the scenes, and helped others until the plans of the team are realized — i.e. someone that embodies passion.
Lorna Cadiang with Mic Oberio from the Exhibits and Productions team (left), and Jeff Enriquez, Web and IT Director (right)
Passion is the life blood of Lorna Cadiang, TeamAsia’s Procurement Manager. It’s the Filipino value of malasakit that enabled her to be recognized as the Rookie of the Year in 2016 and eventually, as the TeamAsian of the Year last 2017. We sat down and had a chat with her, and asked her to share how she stays inspired amidst the daily hustle.
Q: What are you passionate about?
A: My passion and purpose in life is to serve other people. Growing up with a single parent, I had to learn how to do things on my own from an early age. Instead of having my mom prepare my uniform and baon for me, I did it for myself. I took summer jobs and stitched together unused pages of old notebooks, and reused school supplies to help my mom financially. Because of all of these, I know how lonely it can be to do things on your own. I know the value of having someone who is constantly there for you. I know it makes a huge difference so I aim to be this person for the people I work with every day.
Q: What inspires you to wake up and go to work everyday?
A: My family is my top priority. Kumakayod ako para sa pamilya ko. And of course I am inspired to go to work for the people who need me. Knowing that I contribute to bringing brands to the next level experience, I am inspired to go to work.
Lorna (right) with the fam-bam
A: I really like reading quotes, and this one really struck a chord within me: “Don’t feel bad if people remember you only when they need you. Feel privileged that you are like a candle that comes to their mind when there is darkness.” I know that the work I do is valuable for TeamAsia, and my heart is filled every time I am able to help others.
Q: Tell us more about your work principles and how you developed them.
A: My first work principle is putting my heart in everything that I do. I believe that by doing things wholeheartedly, at merong malasakit sa kapwa at sa trabaho, we are able to elevate our work. I equate this with serving my loved ones, because for them, we are able to go beyond the call of duty.
A: The second principle I live up to is that I aim to be optimistic. I don’t see obstacles as challenges, but as opportunities through which I can learn new things that are beyond my current abilities. My job description exposes me to a lot of new learnings, and thus, new mistakes. Thinking about them positively enables me to learn from them and not dwell on them too much.
Lorna (second from the right) with Bea Lim (rightmost), and Monette Iturralde Hamlin (middle, in the foreground) and the rest of the volunteers for My Dream in a Shoebox last 2016
A: My third principle is to open my heart to everyone that I work with. I believe that by treating everybody with openness and respect, we cultivate an engaging work environment—and that’s what makes work more fun, right?
Q: How do you seize opportunities, overcome challenges, and work excellently at the same time?
A: My work for TeamAsia really brings a lot of opportunities and challenges, and for me these things really bring out the best in me and in everyone. These things really mold us into better versions of ourselves. And personally, I get bored without challenges.
From trying times, we gain strength and fortitude
Lorna embodies the steadfastness in her job, but she also admits that there are days when she feels burned out. There are days that the stress sometimes overcomes her. But, she shares that she feels a genuine joy of doing her job and of learning from other people, enables her to be stronger and pull through with the requirements of her job.
Q: What was one memorable challenge that you had, and how did this experience help you grow?
A: I remember my first biggest project was to facilitate and put into motion the relocation of the TeamAsia office – from its former home in Northgate Plaz@ B to our current home in Aeon Prime Building. And because we are relocating to a PEZA zone, we also had to file PEZA-certifying requirements. It was a monumental task because it meant a lot for the agency – a new leaf that we’re turning, in line of our 25th anniversary in 2017.
A: I was new back then, and I didn’t know so much about TeamAsia. Still, I was accountable for making this happen. The task required back-tracking all company documentation, invoices, and records; and making sure that all the requirements were on point. I had to work with people who, prior to the task, I did not get to know personally. This made me uncomfortable, but with the bigger goal in mind, we succeeded.
Lorna with the Finance team, during the blessing of the new office in 2016
A: At this point, I cannot recall the details of how I completed that challenge but I am thankful that I did. And through the support of my TeamAsia family – I am grateful that we succeeded in this task.
She embodies the virtue of malasakit
Humbly, Lorna tells us that she is honored to be recognized for all her effort and hard work. Believing that all the opportunities and challenges that she has faced in TeamAsia is rewarding enough, being recognized for it is simply the icing on the cake for her.
She also shares with us a secret ingredient in working excellently. “Having a sense of malasakit is something that allows me to push for my best effort all the time. Malasakit. This is not something that you learn in a seminar – it comes naturally when you do things out of love,” said Lorna.
Q: Has working in TeamAsia contributed in making you a better professional today?
A: Yes! What I like about the company is that it’s very generous in giving you chances to excel. It exposes me to a lot of opportunities to learn and show my capabilities. Even though I do not know some of the things I am tasked to do, they show their trust and confidence that I can pull through. I also love the feeling of belongingness, that no matter the circumstance, the team has got your back.
Lorna receiving the Rookie of the Year award in 2016
Q: How do you envision TeamAsia five years from now?
A: There’s definitely no other way for TeamAsia but up. I know that TeamAsia will be recognized more for its passionate and committed people, and be able to provide next level experiences for more international brands. Being part of the team that envisions and realizes this is an honor, and I will make sure that my efforts are excellent and consistent.
Q: What’s the best advice that you can give to your TeamAsia family?
A: My advice is to never lose the ability to dream. That whatever our circumstances are, we should always be able to dream, set goals, and realize them. These achievements fuel us to do better. And her second advice, and possibly the most important advice, is to know our passions. Embracing our passions help us to do great work – for ourselves and for the people we love.