My two daughters, Sofia (11) and Stefani (10) call me Mum, the ‘best Mum in the world’, in fact. They’re biased I know, but I enjoy their bias and I regularly savour the attention of being their most favourite person in the world. Last night I was asking them about their fears and I was expecting fear of spiders or the dark, and never thought, “I fear Mum when she’s angry but I fear losing Mum,” would be their response. I had a laugh and a cry at the same time! Best feeling in the world.
So yes, I’m “mum” at home and I’m a training consultant at work. You see, I have an Economics degree with a Masters in Accounting, but it was late December of last year when Amanda Taylor, the Campus Manager, called me on the bus home to ask if I could do the graduation speech, to which I had accepted with great honour; not knowing that it would change my life forever.
My story actually began 10 years ago when I started out as a trainer for an American outsourced call-centre in the Philippines. To this day, I still fondly refer to those days as my glory days, but sadly it had to come to an end because I wanted to give my children a better life. Years after, in the most unexpected of incidents, those glory days found their way back into my life! On the day of my graduation, I finally got to meet Chris Hooper, the CEO of Accodex, who was the keynote speaker at the graduation ceremony. On that fateful Wednesday afternoon, he had invited me to be part of the best professional services consulting firm on the planet. Of course I said, “YES!”
A New Chapter
As I entered the boardroom 5 days later, I was pretty much expecting to be part of changing the accounting game forever by being what I’ve always feared I’d become, an ‘Accountant’. But little did I know that on February 9, things that were buried deep in my heart of hearts would be unraveled. Instead of an Accountant, I was asked to go back to my roots. Not just my Filipino roots as I prepare for culture presentations, but my training roots. How crazy is that?
Something so powerful stirred in me; it was like remembering your first love but you know there’s so much to be re-discovered! As I sat across the room listening to Chris, I remembered why training has always been my first love. As a mum, you see your children growing bigger as you speak life into them – by encouraging their individual growth through recognising them as the person they want to grow up to be. You watch them conquer the world as you empower them to be the best versions of themselves. You see them generously give to others as you have generously given your life to them. I believe that’s what training is all about. It’s not just about teaching them what to do, but empowering them to become who they want to be and believe that they can be the best at it.
As I embark on a new journey of rediscovering my first love, and believing that love is lovelier the second time around, you realise that the 10-year journey of equipping, maturing and learning has brought you to this day, when you start sharing your life not just to your biological daughters, but to what I would dotingly call my “work babies” as I help mould and sculpt them to be the best team we could ever be!
There will still be tons of books to read, a long queue of Sir Ken Robinson and Tim Ferris YouTube videos to watch, a gazillion blogs, reports & PowerPoint presentations to write and create and a lifetime of learning to endeavour until I become how my CEO Chris puts it, “the leader of the best training technique in the world!” but I’m ready as I could ever be!
A Final Note
To close, I would like to share a thought with you that has been resonating in my heart as I am writing this article; be ready to lose so that you could win. I had to leave my girls behind in the Philippines for four dreadful years so that I can study and work hard here in Australia and finally be with them for good. I lost by leaving them only to win now that they’re back in my arms. As I pursue what my heart has always been beating for, I’m ready to lose my inhibitions, my self-unbelief and my insecurities so that as I generously share my life to all my babies, we win the best version of me. I have lost my first love for 10 years only to find its way back to me, then I realise, I’ve won.
Written By: Lindsay Menguita