Elevating Careers: The Viventis Career Accelerator Program Win Story
In today's society, and more specifically, the workspace, so much has happened and changed over the last few years. As much as we're tired of hearing it, these changes and upheavals were brought about by the global pandemic that broke out in 2020. Old practices and beliefs were put to rest, making room for new ones. Even the people in our respective workspaces have transformed, with millennials now filling managerial and executive roles and Gen Z steadily entering the workforce, adding their own flavor and making significant contributions to the organizations they work for.
In hindsight, due to these changes and transformations, the competition for talent and jobs is now equally and evidently fierce. For young professionals aspiring to enter the workforce, the initial step can be rightfully daunting. Beyond the intense competition for opportunities, there's the challenge of finding a workplace that meets not only their basic needs, like income and career aspirations, but also their psychological and emotional needs, such as a sense of purpose and belonging.
In essence, securing a job today isn't merely about employment; it's about finding a space for holistic growth.
In this context, Viventis Search Asia stands out and excels in this domain, having recently been recognized as the sole winner of the ACES Awards Inspiring Workplace in Asia for 2023 and honored with the Asia Leaders Awards as The Company of the Year: Human Capital.
Viventis Career Acceleration Program (VCAP 2024)
On January 17, 2024, Viventis held its second run of the VCAP program at their Career Center in EDSA Shangri-La Hotel. The organization warmly welcomed twenty individuals consisting of fresh graduates, new professionals and career shifters who are looking into jump starting their careers in the Human Capital Industry
The program was skillfully led by two distinguished VCAP graduates: Jake Abuso from the Executive Office, also the organization's campus recruitment specialist and the head planner for this year's VCAP, and Neil Bryan Avellaneda from Talent Attraction, a star-performing Associate Consultant for the Banking and Financial Shared Services Industry (BFSI) business unit. These two individuals adeptly set the tone for the event, making attendees feel at ease with their outstanding hosting and rapport-building skills.
To commence the program, Jake and Neil took the participants on a journey down memory lane, reflecting on the day when they themselves were seated in this year's VCAP seats. They shared insights from their career journeys, starting from their initial hiring to their current roles in the organization and their roles as hosts, welcoming this year's participants.
The session was opened by their very own Executive Director, Yu Ming Chin, who talked about VCAP's true purpose, which is to encourage and guide young professionals to be their own version of eagles—not the actual animal but the majestic and dominant aura it exudes as compared to an ostrich, who is known to be cowardly despite its very tall structure.
This thoughtful analogy connects perfectly to the Viventis Career Accelerator Program because it aims to accelerate the career progression of young professionals, molding them into elite talent scouts and transforming them into industry kingmakers.
In his opening remarks, he introduced and emphasized the significance of Viventis by highlighting the organization's specialties and core values. He illuminated the dynamic nature of the business landscape and unveiled the organization's objective, believing it could make a substantial contribution industry-wide for both employees and employers:
"The Future of Career Creation."
As a key player in the human capital solutions industry, Viventis Search Asia aims to assist clients in co-creating careers and promising opportunities, connecting them with the right individuals. Executive Director Yu Ming Chin genuinely hopes Viventis will be at the heart of this innovative movement.
Concluding his talk, he shared the "4 Cs of Success": Clarity, Confidence, Commitment, and Competence. These values, he emphasized, are essential for Career Experts to thrive in the recruitment industry.
To be a successful talent scout, one must possess not just any passion but purposeful passion.
Closing his talk on a poignant note, Yu Ming Chin provided insights into the crucial role of talent scouts. He underscored their significance as individuals who can spot the brightest and most promising candidate amid the sea of talents, making this profession a promising and rewarding career opportunity.
Championing One's Own Career
How do you visualize your career path?
For the first part of the keynote session, Marketing and Communications Senior Manager Trish Santos officially opened a very insightful discussion that talked about one's career path and how to navigate such a "treacherous" route.
She first asked the attendees how they visualized their career path, and the general consensus was that no one was sure as to what their career path looked like as they're still looking around and considering their options, which Trish gave them a chance to choose: whether their career path looked like a straight line, a zigzag, or a squiggly.
Many answered zigzag, which is a very fair point, but Trish later revealed that the correct answer is: A career is a squiggly line.
Meaning, our career is filled with uncertainties AND possibilities. This insight was brought about by a TEDTalk she stumbled upon, and this particular perspective resonated with her, so she enthusiastically shared it with everyone.
With the ever-changing business landscape, so many new businesses entering the country, and technology rapidly advancing, change is inevitable and can happen in just a blink of an eye. That is why our careers will always be a continuous journey. With that, she also pointed out that attending VCAP would be advantageous to the attendees, as the program can serve as a springboard for them in spearheading their careers, an opportunity not a lot of aspiring professionals have or have had, especially in their heydays.
For the next portion of her keynote session, Trish proceeded to share her five tips on how to navigate through their "squiggly" career path.
- Identifying your short and long term goals
When confronted with the question of their 5-year goals, many individuals often find themselves uncertain, leading to feelings of pressure and overwhelm. To navigate this uncertainty, establishing both short- and long-term goals can be beneficial. These goals can act as checkpoints, allowing them to reassess their aspirations and determine whether they still align with their vision. They can also serve as points to look at when feeling the need to reevaluate goals or as something that can help them ground themselves whenever they need a little motivation to keep pushing forward.
- Aim for something higher than promotions and pay raise
At the beginning of their professional careers, two of the key goals individuals hope to achieve are a pay raise and a promotion. Undoubtedly, these aspirations drive them to meet their daily needs and make a name for themselves in their respective industries.
While these objectives hold significant importance, it's crucial to recognize that professional aspirations can extend beyond mere monetary and hierarchical advancements. It's okay and highly encouraged to aim for something higher than that. Trish then continued to share her own experiences when she first started working, and coincidentally, her first-ever job was at Viventis. She went on to share an activity called the "real deal deck," wherein it's an activity that was initiated by Dr. Paul Stotlz wherein individuals get to choose their top 5 non-negotiables or in this case “deal breakers” that can help them decide if their current job is fulfilling these.
Deal breakers are non-negotiable values that can help individuals decide if their job is still worth it.
- Build meaningful connections
Strengthening their professional network is crucial for both career and personal development. Reflecting on the individuals encountered along their career path is essential, as they contribute significantly to their progress. These connections not only aid in career advancement but also offer opportunities to acquire and enhance the skills needed for success.
Building and sustaining a good LinkedIn profile is one sure way of building and nurturing these connections. As they may all know, Linkedin is something Viventis promotes as it is religiously used by the employees and has been part of some of the organization's initiatives, such as the Linkedin "Rock Your Profile" and the Campus Roadshows, wherein they conducted job fairs and hosted talks in different schools in the country, PUP, NU, and UPLB, to name a few, which are also supplemented by the platform.
- Be open to a flexible career path
It is important to know that shifting career paths is okay and completely normal. As the saying goes, "their career journey is a squiggly path." They never know what will happen in a year; they don't know if what they want right now will be the same next year or if they see themselves working for a certain industry for *insert number of years here.* This is particularly true for the adventurous Gen Z individuals, known for their inclination to avoid staying confined to a single place as they’re eager to explore.
- Find your Ikigai
What is Ikigai? It refers to what gives your life value, meaning, or purpose. In connection with this, Trish recounted the moment she discovered her ikigai. She pinpointed her sense of purpose just last year while working on her final MBA paper. It was then that she realized her deep passion for connecting with people, understanding their goals, and offering assistance. Aligning this discovery with her strengths in marketing and communication, she successfully merged her love for helping others with her professional expertise. By utilizing her skills as tools, she found fulfillment and purpose in serving others through her work, ergo Ikigai.
Understanding their ikigai, or sense of purpose, helps them stay grounded, even if they change careers. It helps them focus on what truly matters to them, making their journey more purposeful. It's like a compass that keeps them on track, turning the search for their purpose into a journey of self-discovery and fulfillment.
Why choose a talent scout as a career?
For the second keynote session, it was led by one of Viventis' top performers, Queny Tabujar, Sr. Executive Technical Consultant under Executive Search and part of the Digitech Team. She delved into the topic: Unveiling Potential: The Art and Impact of Talent Scouting Careers, or, to put it simply, why choose talent scouting as a career or profession?
Talent scouts, or recruiters, play a crucial role in connecting qualified candidates with job opportunities. They actively source, screen, and collaborate with hiring managers, contributing to employer branding and compliance with employment laws. Choosing talent scouting as a career is rewarding as scouts identify potential in diverse fields, act as intermediaries connecting talent with projects or organizations, and enjoy benefits such as contributing to success stories, working in dynamic environments, networking, continuous learning, and influencing industry trends.
Success in talent scouting requires essential skills such as keen observation, the ability to spot potential, networking, effective communication, industry knowledge, creativity, analytical skills, negotiation skills, interpersonal skills, strategic thinking, ethical standards, adaptability, time management, cultural awareness, passion for the industry, and a results-driven focus. These skills contribute to the personal fulfillment, professional growth, and potential financial rewards that come with a career in talent scouting. As Queny emphasizes, being a recruiter goes beyond filling roles; it's about finding individuals who not only meet job criteria but also represent the company effectively.
And for the next portion of the event, the two hosts and VCAP 2022 alumni, namely Jake Abuso and Neil Bryan Avellaneda, as well as the speaker from the second keynote session and Sr. Executive Technical Talent Acquisition Consultant Queny Tabujara engaged in a brief question-and-answer session led by the organization's HR Head, Dan Du.
During this segment, they shared insights into Viventis as an organization, its operational processes, revenue generation, and addressed queries from attendees about the VCAP program or Viventis in general.
One of the questions posed revolved around the success stories of candidates placed by Viventis recruiters and their career progression. Queny, Neil, and Jake eagerly responded, with Neil sharing a notable achievement: the successful placement of his first candidate at CIMB, who has now risen from a collection officer to a team head. Neil attributed his own success to the comprehensive training provided during the VCAP program, highlighting the invaluable guidance from mentors and his personal experiences. Remarkably, within just two months since graduating from the program, Neil has become one of Viventis' top-performing talent scouts.
Concluding the Q&A session, the three recruiters enthusiastically addressed more of the attendees' questions, offering insightful perspectives, and to seamlessly wrap up the event, the focus shifted to one of the key program objectives, which is the fast-track application event.
Currently, the organization is actively processing submitted applications, with more expected. Furthermore, interns from Indonesia are poised to join the Viventis Career Accelerator Program, bringing something new to expect and interesting dynamics to the initiative.