Maggie, one of our project managers with HGS UK, shares her recent experience at one of our sites in the Philippines:
This year, I flew to the Philippines for my holiday to escape the British weather and fully embrace the Filipino 40 degrees summer. There has always been something special about summers in the Philippines and this time around was even more exciting. After a few days of drinking fresh coconut water by the Pacific Ocean, I went through severe technology-withdrawal syndrome from the lack of internet. As a remedy, I decided to spend the remainder of my vacation in the capital, Manila.
What's unique about Manila, you ask? I took advantage of the fact that I was staying close to the HGS offices, and decided to visit our Manila site. I was eager to meet a friend I have been working with for several months now—Sweet. I believe that given a chance, visiting another site is a great way to gain a better understanding of the organisation where we work. When you meet your colleagues for the first time, after hours of talking to them on the phone, it's an incredible experience.
I spend my working time in Chiswick, and even if technology facilitates our connection, the "human touch" is what makes the real difference. The first thing you'll notice in the Manila office is that there are a lot of colleagues—more than we have in the UK. The second thing that you'll see is that there are no periods of silence—our Manila offices are awake all day and all night! I visited our offices in Eastwood, a vibrant area of Manila. Our colleagues there have plenty of choices to spend their break time, aside from the pretty canteen on site. I must admit I was a little bit jealous of their meeting rooms with a view.
Working with HGS is exciting. You wake up and feel ready to work with different people and experience different challenges. Talking to the folks in Manila, I realised that all our goals are aligned, and everyone in Manila and London is working towards the same vision.
Everyone, irrespective of where we are, is working towards the same goal.
On that note, I cannot speak about HGS without one thing popping in my mind: FUN. Wherever you are, you can have fun with your colleagues, even though our days can sometimes be challenging. My experience left me with a greater sense of belonging, and I feel even prouder to be part of the HGS family. Many of our colleagues in the Philippines have been with HGS for years, and their stories are truly inspiring. A considerable part of the management has started as agents and built up their careers over the years. Some Team Managers started as interns during University and have landed a full-time job afterwards.
I've been so lucky to have had the chance to visit one of our sites in the Philippines. I am most grateful to Sweet for enabling the opportunity to meet with the team in Manila. I can't wait to visit again!