Insights for VRO Capacity Builidng IV
23-26 October 2018 Subic Bay Traveller’s Hotel
Before Capacity Building
The Values Restoration Officer (VRO) Capacity Building has a theme of “Strategic Persons of Stature Positioned in Precision Creating Significant Moves”. At first, as a newly assigned VRO of our office, I have no idea what will happen in this event. When I get involved in this kind of situation, a situation of no ideas, I put myself in a comfortable position where I can fully observe. And I tell you, the only thing that I learned before day one (1) starts, the guests or the invited employees, same as me and Atty. Joyce, they seemed to know and comfortable to each other. I wonder why, and I could not stop myself to ask Atty. Joyce in our dinner, “bakit parang familiar na sila sa isat-isa?” As curious as I am, I got no answer from her.
Raffle Prize Winner
There is no greater way to start the training than winning the “very first” raffle draw from this event. Atty Joyce bagged the prize and I do not know what’s in the prize but what a way to start the day. Congratulations!
Day 1 – Day of Strategies
The day started with singing of the National Anthem, a doxology prayer, marching of Core Values and welcome remarks led by Dr. Voltaire Acosta. After that, the program proceeded to the first topic: The Art of Strategy.
First Topic: The Art of Strategy
Speaker: Dr. Voltaire Acosta
I noticed at the first phase of his speech and powerpoint presentation, he is an avid fan of Sun Tzu. Oh well, if you are talking about strategies, art of war, how to win a battle, how to be a great leader etc. etc. there is no greater author than Sun Tzu. All the facts, all information, all contents of his presentation I can guarantee they all came from the teachings of Sun Tzu. But of course, there is no harm in listening, and I believe you can learn a lot when you actively listen. The presentation focuses on the needs for strategy, how to come up with strategic actions, and how to come up with an accurate strategy. After the discussion, I am waiting for the speaker to tell us the application of what he discussed. He did not mention any application for the theories he discussed, maybe it will be mentioned on the other topics.
Second Topic: The 7 Leadership Perspectives for VROs
Speaker: Dr. Voltaire Acosta
Same speaker as first topic, he primarily focuses on seven perspectives of leadership which are:
1. A great leader must have a strong and concrete vision.
2. A great leader should be able to teach.
3. A great leader can serve his or her members or disciples.
4. A great leader should also be a great organizer.
5. A great leader is a mediator.
6. A great leader has great ideas.
7. A great leader is a good provider.
So the aim of this discussion, to be an effective and accurate strategist, one must have these leadership perspectives. But while he was discussing, I noticed again the familiarity of majority of audience about the topics. Because once the speaker asked a pop-up question like for example “What faith can move?”, the majority of audience answers “Mountains”. Anyway, I am only sharing that observation that would last until the end of the event.
Third Topic: Principles In Creating Significant Moves
Speaker: Mr. Nathaniel Saquiban
After lunch break, the speaker told us that his topic should be discussed in day two (2). But for some “conflicting schedule” reasons, he must deliver his topic on day one (1). Moving forward, as for the topic, it primarily focused on strategic persons who can create remarkable impact to their areas of influence. That remarkable impact should result exceptional changes and trend for others to follow. So for that person to be like that, WAKE-UP and SOAR.
W – Warn
A – Analytical Study
K – Key People
E – End all negatives
U – Use all resources to reorganize
P – People Movement
S – Submissive
O – One in heart and mind
A – Accurate
R – Restored and Ready
Fourth Topic: Strategies for Stature BuildUp
Speaker: Dr. Digna Acosta
The wife of the first speaker Dr. Voltaire, Dr. Digna teaches us the strategies for building up stature. But before going to the strategies, she clearly differentiate the word status from stature. Of course she uses dictionary to define them. For me, they are synonymous in meaning, the only difference is the word “blessing”. Status has only blessing of a human being, stature has a “divine” blessing. So the topic focuses on “stature” because it has a spiritual influence in that word.
So to build up one’s stature:
1. Must be mature
2. Be wise steward
3. Assess one’s attitude
4. Increase passion for Transformation
5. Increase knowledge and intimacy with God
6. Yield and be willing
7. Envision destiny as how God wants it to be
8. Grace the Opportunities to Expand Righteousness
And that concludes the topics for day one (1). I felt overwhelmed and grateful to our office for giving me an opportunity to learn “some non-IT related stuffs”. After the discussions, I feel all facts, info that I received overflows in my average mind. This is only the first day, I felt overwhelmed already, what if when day two (2) comes?
First Topic: Realigning and Repositioning for Precision
Speaker: Mr. Jesus V. Sison
I met the speaker already during the registration part of the event, and I found him approachable, happy, full of energy type of person. And that kind of energy was brought to his discussion. He seemed very enthusiastic on his words, sharings and testimonies. And as for his topic, Realigning and Repositioning for Precision, the person positioned in stature must know these principles:
1. What we listen to?
2. How we listen?
3. Who we listen to?
I remember that I mentioned about I still chose to listen even though I already knew the topic. Well I am proud to say that kind of attitude paid off, and reflected on his topic. For us to be precise, to be perfect in our position, you must know to listen, and that is a strategy.
Second Topic: The Strategic VRO in VRP Implementation
Speakers: Former SET Member Atty. Jose ‘Joey’ Lina Vice Mayor Orly Amit (Samal)
Before going to the topic, lets define first the definition of VRP:
VRP – Values Restoration Program
– this program is composed of strategies, techniques to help VROs to implement values in their agency This is it, when I saw the word “implementation”, I assume that the application of all the topics that they shared, taught and discussed would be brought up. And that did not fail me, as the first speaker for the final topic, former SET member Atty. Joey Lina shared his experiences way back when he was a full pledged public servant, and how sometimes in making decisions he encountered questioning his values. He admitted that his journey was not that perfect, and I believed that there is no perfect existence here. His testimony was too long but there is one thing that he mentioned which really inspired me most. It has something to do in making decisions, always choose what is the right thing to do, even if the situation is not best handled when you chose “right thing”, because in right thing, there are applied values on it. Applying values in everyday work will never go wrong. Well, that’s it for Atty. Lina.
Trivia: On that very day I only learned that former senator Atty. Joey Lina, the speaker for this topic, was a former member of our office.
The second speaker, Vice Mayor Orly Amit of Samal, shared his experience in implementing the values program on his municipality. One of his projects there was rehabilitation of their prisoners. What he did there was he used the “spirituality” value to inject the VRP to the prisoners. He invited all the pastors around the area, and made them pledge to volunteer some time for preaching. Other than that, the good vice mayor made some jobs for the prisoners so that the prisoners themselves can help their families financially while serving their time. When we think of his ways, his projects, they are very simple, but very effective. By listening to him, it is proved that the value “spirituality” can somehow moved a person’s heart in order for him or her to be a changed and better person. Well, that’s it for vice mayor.
Sharing and Testimonies
When it comes to application, sharings and testimonies of VROs implementing VRP is the best way. In this 2-day capacity building, in between topics, there were two testimonies done by two government agencies, Local Government Unit Tacloban City and Bureau of Customs (BOC). But let me focus on LGU Tacloban because I somehow forgot The first who shared their successful implementation was the Local Government Unit of Tacloban City. Their main problem was corruption, and they did not say that they fully shut down the corruption in their office. But looking at their presentation, little by little, step by step, there was an improvement in battling corruption. I cannot help myself to show my two thumbs up for them. One little step, if it is properly implemented in time, could do greater things. Lets hope and wish that in few years from now, the Tacloban’s LGU wins the combat against corruption.
Day 3- Packup
I learned a lot in this 3-day event. Like I said earlier, information overload non-IT related stuffs are tightening my brain. Even though it is non-IT related stuff, I can say that learning and integrating values in everything you do, is more than everything. For me “values” is a foundation of a person’s attitude, and attitude is what you are and who you are. Maybe, having this kind of event can somehow fight the problems of our government, mainly “corruption”. Imagine if all the leaders, like Atty. Joey Lina, would have their values restored and recharged, it would definitely help one’s society. From their testimonies, especially LGU of Tacloban, the little step can become a giant step if they are going to be consistent in their implementation. So it takes patience, resilience, consistency and passion in order to fight the anomalies in our government and make a values-oriented-integrated nation.