- Category: Perspective
22 Nov 2012
- Written by Roderick L. Abad | Special Features Writer
THE Philippines is seen as a key future player in the global market, but it needs world-class leaders to do so.
Chalre Associates Executive Search Chairman Richard Mills told the BusinessMirror in an interview that because of globalization, the country needs to have more experienced and competent leaders to stir up the economy and, eventually, make its presence felt more worldwide in the years to come.
“The Philippines has a very young populace. While there are so many good quality young people [here], there’s a critical need for high-quality senior managers to develop them as good leaders in the future,” said Mills, who is also the chairman of 2012 Asia CEO Awards.
A good leadership within an organization or a company is very important for its success.
This, among other factors, is dependent on the experience or time spent by its leaders to hone excellent management skills.
“So it is vital, especially here [in the Philippines], where the population is very young compared to other countries,” Mills noted.
The shortage of senior managers, for instance, is very evident in fast-growing industries like business-process outsourcing (BPO). Over the last 18 years, the BPO sector rapidly has gone from employing roughly zero people to about 700,000 today—all of which are under the age of 35.
Industrywide, most of the BPO locators at present are hiring young employees, averaging at the age of 23 as compared to other countries at over 30 or even early 40s.
“As a result, it’s very common to have a 26- or 27-year-old manager, managing either a hundred, 200 or 500 people,” Mills cited. “The idea of that in other countries would be considered risky.”
Such notion, nevertheless, seems to not dissuade foreign investors from doing business in the Philippines.
In fact, he said, “most investors who come here are very impressed of the quality of young managers” that they immediately have built large companies with them.
Taking a cue from his own experience, he believes that most of the expats who come here will agree that Filipino workers, especially the young ones, “have the heart for what they do and they sincerely want to help other people and be nice to them.”
Given their impressive work ethics, however, Mills said they still need the right guidance and direction from experienced leaders to be able to move up in their careers.
“Unfortunately, there’s a shortage of senior managers to develop them,” he admitted. “We may have good quality of young people, but the one missing piece of all of that that is critical is the management talent. We need more of them [senior managers]. We have to develop their skills to be world-class managers. Only by then that the country will move ahead. So this is the purpose of the Asia CEO Awards—to promote excellent leadership and management.”
The 2012 Asia CEO Awards
IN recognition of leadership excellence within their respective organizations, 11 companies and individuals were conferred with the prestigious 2012 Asia CEO Awards during the Oscars-inspired awarding ceremonies held at the Resorts World Manila’s Newport Performing Arts Theater in Pasay City on November 8.
The Asia CEO Awards is an annual citation that recognizes leadership teams and individuals of organizations operating in the Philippines and the region, who have demonstrated outstanding achievement for their organizations and contributions to others.
From over 150 contenders vying for the coveted 10 accolades, the winners in each category were: Ayala Land for Executive Leadership Team of the Year; IBM and Meralco, Top Employer Organizations; Doris Magsaysay Ho (Magsaysay), Global Filipino Executive of the Year; Dan Spinks (Fluor), Expatriate Executive of the Year; Smart Communications, Most Innovative Company; Schneider Electric, Quality Excellence Company; Philippine Stock Exchange, Most Admired Board of Directors; Pointwest Technologies, Technology Team of the Year; Maersk Global Services Cent, Finance Team of the Year; and Coca-Cola Bottlers, Sales and Marketing Team of the Year.
They were adjudged accordingly by the distinguished panel of judges, who are some of the most accomplished and recognized figures in the business community in the country, namely, Dr. Bernie Villegas, distinguished economist, author and professor at the University of Asia and the Pacific; Don Felbaum, founder and chairman of the ICT Committee and Health Committee of the American Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines; Edward Chang, president of the Korean Chamber of Commerce Philippines; Francis Estrada, independent director, chairman or vice chairman of a number of major corporations and not-for-profit organizations; Jun Palafox, president of the Management Association of the Philippines and principal architect of world-renowned architectural design and planning firm Palafox Associates; Nobuo Fujii, vice president of the Japanese Chamber of Commerce and Industry of the Philippines; and Mills, Board of Governors of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce of the Philippines.
“Each category was different. But they [the winners] all seemed over the top [of their game] or had something unique that they [the panel of judges] saw them different from the others,” Mills said when asked about what made this year’s batch of winners a standout from other finalists.
With an excellent culture of leadership seemed so ingrained within their organizations, he said they still have areas to improve on when it comes to managing their respective businesses.
“If they want to make a place in the global economy, they need to become world-class in everything they do, such as the performance of their people and business. They need to develop more of their young leaders. That’s where they should focus on,” said the chairman of 2012 Asia CEO Awards.
More than 1,000 of the nation’s most senior business leaders were all gathered to witness the recognition rites. Hosted by Giselle Sanchez, John Henrix and Mills, this year’s edition was a class in itself with world-class entertainment numbers from internationally renowned stage performers Isay Alvarez and Robert Seña, with musical direction from Mel Villena and the AMP Big Band.
The 2012 Asia CEO Awards was presented by American Express, in cooperation with the BusinessMirror, Jones Lang LaSalle Leechiu, KPMG, NorthgateArinso, PLDT Alpha Enterprise, Teleperformance and The Net Group.
In Photo: Coca-Cola Bottlers, Sales and Marketing Team of the Year