Saturday, October 6, 2012

Overcoming the Procrastinator in Us and Getting Our Brand Stand Out

By:  Gilbert M. Forbes
DepEd Quezon

According to Filipino Financial Expert and Leadership guru, Francis J. Kong in his article published in the Philippine Star entitled, ‘Are You the Late Juan dela Cruz,’ the way we particularly behave and show ourselves to others is our brand.  If we think that only marketed products need branding, we too need branding. 

Francis J. Kong said that “You are a brand, just as I am my own brand and your next-door neighbor is his own brand. Who we really are and what people perceive us to be – our brand – may be two different things, but as the famous line goes, “Perception is reality!”

Many of us couldn’t deny that many of us are constant procrastinator since time we could remember.  The reason why the word Filipino Time has become a negative connotation to less than we, the latecomers ourselves.   We simply love to do things between deadlines.  We always feel like we can do things better when it’s almost time.  We find it hard to start from scratch if there’s still enough time.  I don’t know but I find it easy to start and finish things while cramming.  I’m sure others would share the same experience.

However, we have to realize that it is creating a negative images or mark on our brand.  That brand is of being a peculiar procrastinator.

We may not be the only procrastinator in town but if we are popular, we would stand out as the leader of all procrastinators.  So, we have to slowly get away from this negative label.

Francis Kong reminds us that we have to remember that our constant tardiness costs the  company or the government  money, but we need to understand that it actually costs us more. It’s because our reputation is put on the line every time we are late.

“Habitually late people are usually procrastinators who have trouble resisting immediate gratification. Sometimes, they even enjoy putting something off until the last minute. Such habits become ingrained over time. Chronic lateness is like an illness – it begins with a few symptoms that grow into a full-blown sickness.”

“Despite the consequences, tardiness is often a difficult habit to break. Battling it takes more than setting the clock 10 minutes advance. That never works. Stop making up excuses, and start managing your time with these helpful tip that Francis Kong recommends:
  1. Traffic is terrible, so why not simply set out early? You will never know what may go wrong while you’re off to work or to an appointment. And then there are days when just about e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g goes wrong. But if you’ve set out for work early, you can run behind yourschedule and still be on time for the call time.
  2. Compute the time it takes to do other tasks.  Travel and traffic are just two things, but what about the time it’ll take for you to secure a parking space? If it’s your first time to go to a location, consider also the time you’ll spend looking for the right address and asking for directions. 
  3. Better plan the night before.  The clothes you’re going to wear, the shoes you’re going to use, the things you need to bring – if all these were prepared the night before so that all you have to do is just grab them on your way out, you will definitely save a lot of prep time. So stay organized!
  4. Let technology serve, not enslave you.  Cell phones, SMS, email. These things make us available to everyone 24 hours a day. Assign only a specific time for checking and returning them. Intermittent opening would take up a lot of your time without you noticing it. You should do the same even in returning clients’ phone calls. Keep in mind that there are more than two countries in this world of ours aside from “Rush-ia” and “Urgent-tina”. Don’t get caught up with long conference calls or last-minute memos. Keep it off and open it only during break times.  For emergency, give the emergency hotline of the office or the institution you are working for.  Inform your peers, friends and family members that you could only communicate with them during break time.  It would be better if your could leave your cellphones in a locker just like those working in factories and department stores.
  5. Don’t just stand there… Do something!  When there’s a job for you to do, start it immediately. It’s really rare to find people who actually work best under pressure, so don’t fool yourself into thinking you’re one. Looming deadlines become less bothersome when you start working on the task early enough and when you keep at it until it’s finished.
Kong further explained that every time we make people wait, we are communicating to them that they’re not important to us. we are robbing them of their precious time. We are silently announcing to them our arrogance. 
So, let us be punctual. It will reflect our character. It will build our brand every day of our life. After all since time immemorial, our forefathers, are known not only in their honesty but on punctuality.

If there is an American Time, there is Filipino Time because Filipino Time is on Time!

(Mr. Gilbert M. Forbes had his Bachelors Degree and MA in Educational Management (CAR) from the Philippine Normal University.  A campus paper adviser and trainer for 13 years.  Currently, he is a school principal in one of the central schools in the Division of Quezon.) 


Kong, Francis J., Are You the Late Juan De la Cruz?, The Philippine Star

Forbes, Gilbert M., Getting My Brand Stand Out and Overcoming the Procrastinator in Me, A Reflection Paper Submitted at the Philippine Normal University as part of the requirements in Human Behavior and Management, First Semester 2012
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