Top Ten Lines Lousy and Incompetent Managers Would Say

Good leaders, like good managers, provide vision, inspiration and direction (Morriss, Ely, & Frei, 2014). People want leaders who pursue goals and put emphasis on values (ethics) that are deemed important. People want leaders who respect and promote the dignity, autonomy, and self-esteem of their constituents.

A job title doesn’t make a person a leader. More so, it doesn’t direct a person to exhibit leadership behavior. It is a mistake to refer any person as a leader by virtue of his/her position. Leadership, rather than a mere quality, is more of a function that inspires individuals or groups without the coercive use of power (Roussel, Thomas, & Ratcliffe, 2014). But, let the reality speak for itself. These people actually exist. Many have been fooled by the notion that people holding an office are there because they are good managers or leaders. Some might be but it is not always the case.

While I believe both managerial and leadership skills are learned in the process, this isn’t enough reason for constituents to become minions of their growing tribe; let alone suffer the consequences of working under lousy, weak, and ineffective managers.

In no particular order, here are the top ten things ineffective and incompetent managers (by title) would say:

1) I cannot do anything about it.

This is possibly the worst thing a manager would say. While there are limits to one’s authority or power, anyone who is holding a high position can do something about his/her constituents’ opinion, suggestions, or grievances. He / she is in the position to forward, at least, these grievances to the proper authority for appropriate action. I guess this is the least the manager can do. Well, maybe, unless otherwise stated by law.

2) It has always been this way.

While we love the idea of preserving tradition, we don’t love the idea of being stuck in the old, corrupt, and ineffective system. We shouldn’t be afraid of trying out something new even when it’s scary. It’s always scary when doing things the first time. Traditions stick around because they preserve culture and customs. But if the ‘tradition’ is ineffective, might as well venture out to something new and different and make it the new tradition.

3) I don’t make the rules. I (try to) enforce them.

Is what a manager would say if he / she lived during the dictatorship. We are bound to question rules especially if they affect our welfare. I am not a fan of bending rules. Rules exist to create an organized environment that allows organizations to pursue its goals. Rather than bending rules, question. Revise. Question. Revise. Enforce.

4) I will consider your idea.

Or maybe never? Don’t hear me out. Listen! Maybe the best ideas come from the person we least expect.

5) This shouldn’t be fun.

Says the manager who’d rather live to see satisfactory ratings than a company made of happy, content, and goal-driven constituents. Work could and should be fun. Work, without play, makes Juan (or Juana) a dull boy (or girl). A productive workplace is one which people feel safe – safe to experiment, to challenge, to share information, and to support one another (Harter & Adkins, 2015).

6) You’re better than (insert name).

Or worse, “(insert name) is better than you.”  Stop comparing one employee with another. Spend time discussing one’s strengths and weaknesses. Ang kalaban ay ang sarili. An employee and his/her manager should strive to improve the former’s mere average.

7) Because I’m the boss.

Says the weak manager. Just because he/she is the boss doesn’t mean he/she is right. Yet again, we live in the age where most of our heads are managers by title alone.

8) I don’t have time for you.

Yes, you do. Yes, you should have. Research have shown that managers spend greater than the average portion of their time listening. But doing a lot of listening doesn’t mean managers listen well.  Listening is not the same as hearing.

9) Sh*t, P*ta, T*nga, etc.

Need I say more?

10) (silence)

People value an effective two-way communication. It is the basis and sometimes the foundation of any healthy relationship.  The best managers know and understand that each employee is unique. Each person has his / her own successes and challenges at and away from work. Knowing that employees are people first, managers move towards accommodating their employees’ uniqueness while managing toward high performance (Harter & Adkins, 2015). It is when people feel another person is invested in them that they are more engaged.


People leave bosses, not companies. A Gallup study of more than 7000 US adults revealed that one in two had left their job to get away from their manager to improve their overall life at some point in their career. In the case of the nursing profession in the Philippines, nurses leave the country primarily in search of better opportunities abroad. However, some do leave because they’ve grown tired of the system.

For several years, we’ve all been witnesses to countless managers who let titles do their jobs. Let today be the end of that era.#


Anniversarius: 2017 Year in Review

The end is the beginning and the beginning is the end.

The past year was a series of anniversaries, endings, and new beginnings. In this blogpost, I present the highlights of my year – my own version of #2017bestnine. I’ll do away with very long wordy blogpost which I did in the previous year. This year, let me take you back to everything that’s happened in the past year through pictures.


Our undergraduate research paper was published in several online journals this year.  Cannot help but be proud of our group!16640571_10206561653155080_1725655335588100820_n


My partner and I got tested for HIV and we both learned that we’re in the healthy side of statistics. We encourage everyone, LGBTQIA and straight, to take the test. Read more: Know your status.



I enjoyed my very first summer outing with the Ward 5 Family! We went to Bolinao in Pangasinan and enjoyed the beautiful Patar Beach.


Nightingale Research Solutions celebrated its first anniversary on August this year. We continue to offer research consultancy services. For more information, visit our page here: NRS.


I’ve been in the service for more than a year now. I am proud to say that I have finished my two-year return service pending the submission of my final RSA report. 🙂



Grabbed almost all the opportunities to be with my high school classmates. Low maintenance, ever-supportive friends!


5. Project GifTED and Serge Aclan

Project GifTED was launched early this year and was able to receive grants for its project proposal : the establishment of the Lipa City Youth Orchestra. After receiving the top prize during the Angat Buhay Youth Summit last August, we were also invited to visit South Korea to pitch our proposal for more funding. Here’s the story as told by Rappler: Project GifTED.


Hanyang University (Seoul) invited us to pitch our project proposal and join the 2nd 17 Hearts Festival. The event was held last November. Project GifTED was given another grant amounting to 1,000,000 Korean Won.



I was in Korea during my birthday. Happy that I was able to celebrate it with new friends from various countries in the world.


Here’s a photo of the post-birthday celebration with the Family.23659133_10208333661574183_5595003834283529240_n

And finally, a very late birthday celebration with my closest college friends.24837621_10208270108270727_8333591224430867264_o


In the middle of 2017, I organized a family dinner where they “officially” met Neil as well as the partners of my two sisters.



Just this December, one of our cousins got married and I was asked to be one of his groomsmen. It was a wonderful wedding experience and celebration of love.



Finally, Neil and I celebrated our first anniversary last September. Our relationship isn’t and will never be perfect but I am happy and blessed that this is true. I’ve never been happier. I’ve never been more certain. Borrowing the lyrics of the song Forevermore, you were just a dream. I never thought I would be right for you.

I never thought I am the right one for you.



Many other great things happened this year. Thank you to everyone who made 2017 an awesome year. Let’s leave all the negative behind and look forward to bigger and better things. There are many things to be thankful for. But more importantly, there are many more to look forward to.

Here’s to hoping for a greater year this 2018! Cheers! 🙂

Photo credits: Javillonar, E. Jarabe, A. Jarabe, Rosales, RR Tamayo, Magno, Falzado, Rappler, bestnine2017, Gilo, Office of the Vice President

Thoughts on the Philippine film industry

There are good movies but there are better ones. Depends on how you define ‘good’ and ‘better’. I just don’t like shaming one or two movies because it lacked visual appeal, social relevance and impact. For every film that’s out in the market, there’s a director, production team, and a set of artists who definitely gave their efforts to produce one that suits their target audience.

Movies that some people consider as ‘bad’ are not necessarily bad. For some, it could be as entertaining as they want it to be, serving the primary (I suppose) purpose and goal of the whole industry.

However, I am one with the call for more socially-relevant, world-class films that we, Filipinos, can truly be proud of. The Philippine film industry should evolve and become what the society needs it to be. We should produce films not to merely entertain but to encourage, inspire, and move Filipinos to embrace the true Filipino identity, appreciate our homegrown talents, and laud the artistry that is truly Filipino.

Care for those who care


We seldom talk about it because we think it’s “part of the job” or that we “signed up for it”. This is a skewed view of what nursing really is. Priority is given to patient care but self-care should be given equal importance. I believe violence in the hospital – be it physical, emotional, or verbal – coming from either patient or fellow HCP is obviously underrated and often unreported or underreported.

We, nurses, often struggle with role conflict between our duty to care for others and one’s duty to self when providing care especially following a critical incident that involves violence.

I believe what we need is an (1) immediate debriefing following a violent incident and (2) a good supportive work environment to prevent violence (both from patient/caregiver and fellow HCPs) and, maybe, enhance resilience.

Much like the lauded newly-established customer care center, we deserve the same mechanism where nurses (and other HCPs) could voice out their concerns, struggles, grievances of any sort without the prejudice of being judged, ridiculed, and sanctioned (especially by seniors) for basically just stepping up for one’s human rights.

We’ve got a long way to go before we finally realize that job satisfaction and quality of life affect the quality of care we render to our patients and the overall patient outcome and satisfaction. While hospital services and health care delivery have been improved in the past months, I cannot help but ask, what about us? People who care for other people also need to be cared for.

I cannot accept that “this has been the practice” and that “we cannot do anything about it”. We shouldn’t stick with practices that are clearly outdated, irrelevant, and ineffective. And yes, we can do something about it and the rest of the many issues and challenges we are facing day after day.

Care for those who care?

UP Manila says ‘No’ to Medical Cannabis Legalization in the Philippines

I agree that:

1) further research on Cannabis’ efficacy and safety should be done under strict protocols (provided by national institutions) to ensure patient safety and safeguard public health.

2) any policy, especially public health policies, should be evidence-based.

“UP Manila says ‘NO’ to Medical Cannabis Legalization”
Download whole document:

No to HCP shaming

Pt asks about procedure

Pt: Sabi nung nurse… Pre-res: Wag kayo maniwala sa nurses. Sa amin ka maniwala, sa mga gaya kong naka-white coat.

Conversations like this support the misconception that nurses are dumb and “alila ng doktor”.  Maybe we could simply correct the wrong statement (if indeed it’s wrong) and do away with statements like “wag maniwala”.

A good HCP will strive to make the entire HC team better in terms of knowledge, skills, attitude.

I say no to doctor shaming but I also say no to shaming nurses and other HCPs. We are a team and we use a multidisciplinary approach. 🙂

Episodes 10.22.17

I’ve been struggling the past weeks. I have these episodes where I feel down. I feel too weak to function. I lose my interest in the world. I barely talk to anyone. I don’t even want to go out. But I go out of my room to eat. I think one of my coping mechanisms is eating food that I crave.

There are times when I experience these episodes at home. Sometimes, even at work. It’s hard when it hits me during work because much of the work I do involves interaction with other people. When I feel down, I tend to lower my voice. My coworkers usually ask me to repeat what I just said. It’s hard for me to talk to patients and their relatives when this happens. I apologize for this. There are times when I feel like crying so I rush to the nurses’ lounge where our comfort room is. There I spend a couple of minutes to flush out my emotions. I cry. silently inside the comfort room. I just pretend that I have common colds if they ask me if I’m okay.

I try not to let this get in the way of my work. I know many lives are stake. So far, I have functioned well at work even when I feel down. And I laud myself for that because even though it seems easy, it isn’t. It’s a struggle.

I am writing this right after I cried. And I feel sorry that my thoughts are cluttered.

I don’t know what is happening to me. I don’t know what’s wrong. I am a nurse and it frustrates me that I am able to help others and yet I can’t help myself. I don’t know what to do. Or maybe I do but I can’t or do not want to acknowledge it. Maybe I need help. But I don’t feel like I need it now. Maybe I need a time off. But that isn’t possible now. Maybe I am just tired of everything, of waking up each day knowing that I still live in a world where wrong things could be the right things. Maybe I just cannot process everything. Maybe I am just frustrated that I am left with no choice to just go with the system. Maybe I just feel like I am helpless and sometimes even useless.

I am sharing my thoughts tonight not because I’m asking for pity or sympathy. I’m sharing this because I want to let it out. Some have already offered their help. I turned them down. I feel like a burden. I don’t want to be an added burden to other people who I know are carrying tons of problems. We all have struggles and I believe other people’s struggles are way worse than mine.

At this point, I have stopped crying. I am listening to instrumental music. I’m trying to calm myself.

I am down. I feel down. And I would just like to eat then sleep. A warm tight hug would be great.