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Posts Tagged ‘Hong Kong’

Writing, or Reporting?

Haven’t you had the experience finding yourself cursing at the end of reading an article or commentary on the paper, only to find nothing more than a literal description of commonly known facts or events?  I am experiencing that again today.  The newspaper column describes the pitfalls of checking into private hospitals in town, resulting in gigantic hospital bills due to the recommendation of private rooms by the medical staff.  The bills are seldom adequately covered by medical insurance and more and more patients end up having a second heart attack the moment they take a glimpse of the six-figures screaming at them.

So I was captivated by this very real and relevant topic and read on.  The article quickly ended advising patients to watch out for such occurrences.  That’s it.  No advice, no suggestions, and no tips for further information.  What’s the big idea of pointing out some commonly known facts and nothing else?

This is robbery, since I think the columnist is paid a fixed fee for regular posts on the paper, and she needs to keep writing to earn her paycheck.  I know it’s a short column, and I shouldn’t be expecting investigative journalism on a paper that is aimed for a 15-minute consumption during subway rides.  Yet, I still want better standards.

I always think there can be various angles to write.  You can offer help, advice and solutions, or if that is too heavy for the lifestyle and entertainment section, write with a viewpoint, or simply, an emotion.  Let the readers understand you.  Let the readers feel for you.  Not everyone will care about it, but at least you are writing something, or some emotional reaction, that is one of a kind.  If I don’t find material, at least I want to see some authenticity.

The best columnists that I have come across offers sincerity, humor, wit, and the willingness to open up for those who enjoy some emotional stimulation through reading.  That takes some skills and practice, but more than anything, the confidence and also the humility to share one’s true viewpoints.  It’s harder than you think.  Expressing coherently a relatable thought on a short column proves to be a lot more challenging than it seems.  No wonder I’m seeing so many ridiculous columns by pseudo-reporters, instead of the true columnists that I have expected them to be.

Not everyone may agree with me of course, but I’ll admit that I’m looking for passion when I read.  It may not exactly be chicken soup, but at least it can be a small piece of chocolate, for the soul.

Writing

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I have no idea whether it’s because we really have nothing else to say in front of our friends and relatives.  After all we have already shared on Facebook over what marvellous life we have, the trips we have gone on and the mouth-watering food we have inhaled over the weeks.  If you think that we can then finally get down to what’s at stake, and what’s real – our lives, our ups and downs, our struggles and revelations when we finally got time to sit down with our best friends and family, you are wrong.

We are multi-tasking even when we have company.  Our conversations are constantly interrupted by instant messages, texts and up to the minute Facebook uploads and downloads, as well as tweets and weibo.  It feels that everyone else in the virtual world is more important than our companions at hand.  Oh yes, they would understand, since they are doing exactly the same in their virtual friend sphere, at the same time.

And for the few who are not so much into the latest digital gizmos, or the unthinkable catastrophe where your gadgets are either out of power or network coverage, not to worry.  If physical human interaction cannot be avoided, there is always our most loyal friend to the rescue, television sets.

There is nothing more tacky in my opinion than large screen LCD hanging television panels in restaurants in town, and they can be as densely installed as ceiling lights.  I hate it when it’s now considered a must-have item on the restaurant fixture list.  Not only are they in no way aesthetically pleasing, these 60 inches panels just suck the life out of everyone , turning them into chewing zombies.

Call me old-fashioned.   If you want to catch a TV show, stay home for it, or record it for private viewing later.  Please don’t strip away the last bit of enjoyment of actually sitting down for dinner, over a nice long chat.  For me, that latter eye-to-eye interaction is actually what makes a meal memorable.

If it’s up to me, I would really pick some place without the floating TV sets.  Maybe I’m really getting old.

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10 Reasons I Love Dim Sum

Do I have reasons loving dim sum?  Sure I do.  Good reasons?  Yes.  How many reasons do I need?  None.  Good food is always a blessing, and the fact that we have the health and luxury to indulge ourselves, at least occasionally, in mouth-watering cuisines, needs absolutely no rationalization.  Yet then and again, sometimes I do need a reminder or two to reaffirm my faith for these little drops of heaven.

  1. It’s the ultimate culinary art.  Even if you are a fabulous cook you will seldom find yourself making dim sum at home.  Seldom has there been so much preparation work involved with such tiny bite-sized treats.  It involves the freshest ingredients and as time evolves also the most expensive ones.  The chopping, dicing, steaming, baking, frying and the precise timing makes attempting dim sum at home a nightmare.  There is so much depth to a good piece of dim sum.  If you are not a fan yet, chances are they weren’t prepared by the master chefs with heart.  Don’t allow yourself to be stripped of your eternal right of culinary orgasm.
  2. It’s the ultimate time-waster.  Aside from those run-of-the-mill business lunches when you find yourself fighting for the last piece of siu mai with your colleagues, or when you are so exhausted entertaining your clients by putting the emphasis in difficulties to make a booking over actual qualities of food, it’s life’s biggest blessing when you find yourself sitting in a place for 2 hours enjoying little portions of dim sum in the middle of the day.  Dim sum is not meant for rush eating.  Chinese tea is not to be consumed like coke and you don’t dunk 3 pieces of dim sum into your mouth like you chow on a burger that is 8 inches tall.  If you get a window table on a weekday, you get to feel sorry over the pedestrians scrambling for work on the streets.  On the weekend, you get to be thankful that you haven’t slept through most of the day as you still get to enjoy a sumptuous brunch while enjoying the sun and breeze.
  3. It means you still have friends.  Dim sum is not meant to be consumed alone, though there are lots of seniors who enjoy having a light breakfast after their early morning stroll or Tai-Chi, alone.  Taking that aside, dim sum is better shared with the people you love.  If you have a steady group of close friends whom you feel comfortable to invite to your dim sum gatherings while gossiping, you have done something right in your life.
  4. It’s for the undecided.  I sometimes have a phobia making menu decisions.  I always find the entrees picked by my companions far better than the ones I’ve picked for myself.  With dim sum, all my troubles are gone.  Although there can still easily be 50 or 60 choices on the menu, I can still have about 6-9 chances to make something right.  Yes I do love varieties in sample sizes, and dim sum makes it legitimate for greedy people like myself.  Even if I’ve over ordered, I can still easily pack it up to go.
  5. It’s perfect for people watching.  No it’s not just like any other restaurant.  Chinese restaurants have brighter lighting and closer table proximity in general, and you’ll be amazed by the abundance of personalities from all walks of life.  If you want to feel the pulse of the city, head to a Chinese restaurant during dim sum hours.  You will be bombarded by gossips, opinions and never-ending drama.  Enjoy.
  6. It’s available in every street corner.  If you are in Hong Kong, you will find yourself surrounded by dim sum restaurants virtually anywhere.  When hunger strikes, and sometimes in the middle of the night after a few rounds of drinks, the ultimate comfort food here may not only be greasy pizzas, hot dogs or kebab, but glorious bamboo steamers of your favorite shrimp dumplings, beef balls and spring rolls.  Its popularity has since made its way into around the clock convenience stores.  Of course, the authenticity and quality of such remains questionable.  Nevertheless, it’s the city’s ultimate comfort food, in every definition.
  7. It’s the no-brainer hotspot to entertain foreigners.  If you want to scare your dear friends from abroad, order chicken feet, stinky tofu or roasted pigeon and video tape their reaction.  If you want to scare yourself, be amazed to see your dear friends drown everything from shrimp dumplings and siu mai into soy sauce before the very first bite.  A dim sum lunch is in no shortage of entertainment for either sides.
  8. It’s the ultimate taste test.  If the restaurant serves fantastic dim sum in the day, you should be assured of its quality and consistency all around.  If you ain’t sure whether that’s a place good enough for your clients or your mother-in-law, try their dim sum and you can tell.  This golden rule has never failed me so far.
  9. It’s piping hot.  For Chinese, temperature is almost everything.  It warms our body.  It’s soothing, and it increases our metabolism.  Aside from selected desserts, most dim sum comes out steaming hot.  Parents always use the excuse to remind kids to eat quickly because “it’s getting cold”.  I am guilty of such even with my own friends.  Frankly it does taste a lot better when you consume it right out of the steamer/oven.  Problem is, you may find yourself finish swallowing everything in less than half an hour.  In that case, you might not get to experience reason #2 above.
  10. It’s affordable.  I know.  There are plenty of places where you can break the bank by ordering siu mai with abalone, or shark fin dumplings (only if you are not an environmentalist).  The truth is, there are tons of places where you can find affordable dim sum at decent quality.  What you sacrifice for, most likely, is the ambience of the place and service from the wait staff.  Rental is exorbitant here in Hong Kong, and I don’t blame them for extremely tight spaces or expected high turnaround of patrons.  As long as your expectations are set in determining what you are in the mood for the day, you shouldn’t get a heart attack seeing the bill.  The latter can still happen in plenty of western and japanese places in town, unfortunately.

So, who cares to join me for some mouth-watering dim sum?

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For the first 100 pages, I was imagining I was Christian Grey.  I immediately changed my mind after that and starting from around page 300, I found myself losing patience and skimming toward the end.  If not without a few daily interruptions in the past week,  I would have finished this worldwide bestseller in less than 3 days.  And no, even though I already have them on my iPad, I don’t think I’m going to continue to parts 2 and 3.

Yes, I’m talking about the renowned Fifty Shades Trilogy that has recently taken the world by storm.  The first part is Fifty Shades of Grey, followed by Fifty Shades Darker and Fifty Shades Freed as the grand finale.  I first heard about it from the Today Show one morning, and recently encouraged by a friend to give it a go.  I was eager to join the 40 million (and fastly growing) readers in finding out what the fuss is all about with this literary sensation that has swept past the Harry Porter series in terms of sales and popularity.

I’m positive that the essence of erotica lies in the imagination.  Everyone got something different out of fictional characters, and there simply isn’t an absolute right or wrong of whether the novel works or not.  At least, it saves you from a world of stress and headaches and transports you into a heaven of fantasies, 500 pages or so.  With that, there is only one single story line which even an 8-year old would follow.  Although this is not exactly the kind of reading material you would share with an 8-year old.

There was some suspense when the NDA (Non Disclosure Agreement) was out, and believe me I will never look at the NDA in the same way, at work, from now on. (Oh and don’t forget my “soft and hard limits”.  I will surely use them in my next negotiation at work.)  What is this dreamy, rich, handsome, charismatic, tasteful, young, hunky, “cocky”, self-made CEO with a heart to save the world from hunger is hiding from Anastasia?  Well once you find out Fifty Shades of Grey is actually 50 Ways to Play, the hype is quickly over.

I believe the fascination lies on the unthinkable, or a side which not many of us have crossed.  Like what some have mentioned, little did I know that I have been living such a vanilla life.  I seriously think sales at hardware stores around town would surge, and I can certainly see product placements appearing in the rumored movie version of the trilogy.  Yet that hype (and high) passes quickly as you read on, and soon you will be faced with 300 more pages of a highly repetitious story line of “should I?” and “should I not?” revelations.

Indeed.  The book has 79 “Oh My…!”, 82 “Jeez…” and 101 “Crap!”.  I thought Ana could only bite her lip and Christian cocks his head from side to side at all times.  Because the attraction is almost purely sexual in nature, there isn’t any emotional element to draw me to the end, undisturbed.  Yes I know you wouldn’t expect a literary masterpiece from erotica, but it certainly can be more varied and sophisticated in terms of the writing.  I know the following 2 parts will continue to unveil the 50 shades of Mr. Grey in probably a psychological manner, sadly I don’t care anymore as the main characters look a bit silly and stupid to me.

If you ask me the writing has pretty much taken away the excitement, or kinkiness, away from the book.  Nevertheless, the fact that the trilogy has captivated so many women around the world proves that there are so many of us who are dissatisfied with our sex lives, or to put it a bit mildly, way too vanilla.  It certainly is a topic worth studying.  I recently have the same sentiment when I witness the thousands of ecstatic women and men screaming at the 60 hunky, chiseled, 6-packed, jaw-dropping handsome, 6-feet-2 shirtless models staging outside the new Abercrombie & Fitch store in Central.  Yes, we all need a piece of fantasy every now and then.  And yes, sex always sells.

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I really don’t know why people are STILL complaining about their jobs being outsourced.  Yes, the obvious drawbacks are possibilities of wage deflation, losses of luxurious corporate benefits, absence of job security, and absolute increase in work pressure and workplace efficiencies.  Plus, most of us complain about the degradation of service levels as well as increased costs in inter-partner bureaucracies and training.

I wrote last year about the irreversible trends of corporate outsourcing, and they are only getting more popular.  My arguments are that even if you are fortunate enough to still be employed by the big corporates, none of the so-called solid benefits are going to last forever.  You don’t have job security, your bonuses are increasingly tied to the ever-rising or unattainable goals.  The company is talking about a “review” of your pension plan, and human resources just broke the news that rising health care premiums are driving their need to reduce medical coverage gradually over the next few years.

Unless you are at the so-called top of the food chain, and making huge revenue for the company directly, chances are, no one is immune.  The world is a flat economy, and cheaper labor around us are certainly going to “steal” our jobs, whether we like it or not.  Instead of complaining, we really need to step up our game by finding out what makes us either irreplaceable, or what’s unique in our problem solving approaches.

If you are real worried about your life at an outsourced company, hear it from me, your days are already numbered at your current one.

Life is hard, and people pay you because you have the ability to handle head-scratching problems, and very often ahead of its time.  Money is not going to fall from the skies and working models are evolving every second.  So get over it, stop reminiscing, and grow a pair.

 

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Ever since I started posting pictures of some of my fruity smoothies on my Facebook page, some of my friends have been curiously asking me questions over the apparently weird contents of my daily regimen.  “Is it nasty?”,Does it kill you?” are amongst the many questions I have answered a number of times.  Perhaps there’s no better place than here on my own blog where I can lay out all the answers of these frequently asked questions.  Alright, let’s fire it up, and go!

Why Do You Do It?

All of us know about the nutritional value of fruits and vegetables, but I feel that I have not been eating the required amounts in my diet.  My occasional fruit intake is never going to deliver the healing effects they promise with such scarce quantities.  Vegetables are often cooked with oil and sauces and despite its fiber content, most of its nutrients are already gone by the time they are served on a plate.  Salads are rather expensive, and you probably get less than 500 grams of greens from one standard serving.  I feel that I need a solution that can give me the most benefits of fruits and vegetables in a tasty and efficient manner.

Why Don’t You Just Eat The Fruits And Vegetables Directly?

Good idea, but not all phytonutrients can be absorbed by our body purely by chewing and normal digestion.  With the use of a high-speed (35,000 rpm & above – revolutions per minute) food processor/blender, fruits and vegetables are chopped and ground into fine angstrom units that are perfect for phytonutrients to enter into our body cells.  In other words, blended juice is much easier to be digested and absorbed by our bodies.   Due to the high-speed motor itself, juices from these high-speed blenders are around 39 degrees celsius which can trigger the enzymes and magnify the phytonutrients in three folds.  Nutritional value of the juices will deteriorate above 39 degrees.  Lastly, the skin, seeds and core of fruits have the highest level of phytonutrients, though they are often discarded when we consume them in solid form.  With a high-speed blender, we are not wasting any single bit of these fruits and vegetables.

What Are Phytonutrients?

Phytonutrients exist in all fruits and vegetables and they help our bodies fight cancers and all kinds of diseases.   They are extremely effective in healing our bodies without the need for modern medication.  There are many types of phytonutrients depending on what fruits and vegetables you are getting.  Thus, it is always beneficial to include as many varieties as possible in our daily diet.  My earlier post 15 Healthy Foods You Cannot Afford to Miss covers these necessities in more detail.

I Have A Juicer.  Is That The Same Thing?

There has always been debates about whether a juicer is better than a blender, or the other way around.  I think it’s definitely up to your personal taste.  To begin with, either one is going to do you wonders when compared to eating cooked vegetables or fruits in small amount.  A juicer works without the need of adding water, and you get a perfectly smooth beverage every time.  However, I think it eliminates our access of the most natural dietary fiber, let alone seeds, core and skin.  I don’t want to just drink sugary juice.  With my blender, there is nothing to clean except a simple rinse under running water since the whole fruit is ground into liquid form with the addition of water to facilitate the grinding process.  I have wasted nothing.  Needless to say, blended smoothies are going to be thicker than the watery form of pure juices.  Yet you can control its thickness by adjusting your fruit/water content.  The more water you are adding, the lighter the texture.  You get the same level of goodness as long as you finish the whole thing.  Hence, you can tell that I am more of a fan of the high-speed blender than a juicer.

Can I Use Any Blender With Speed Lower Than 35,000 rpm?

Your stomach will have to do more work to digest the veggies if they aren’t ground fine enough.  You risk yourself stomach ulcer that way.   You may not be realizing the true benefits of all the nutrients.  The texture is going to be super thick if you put in a lot of goodies, and also you will end up spending more time in the kitchen cutting and dicing fruits before the blender can operate.  All in all, not worth it.  Better invest in a good tool if you want to do it right once and for all.

What Fruits And Vegetables Do You Blend On A Daily Basis?

As I mentioned, I prefer the concept of varieties and balance.  I like stocking my refrigerator with around 10 different fruits and vegetables on a daily basis.  It’s easy to google the benefits and nutritional value of each fruit as you like, and my article above highlights the 15 super foods that I often incorporate as well.  Lately, my must-have items include carrots, tomatoes, green beans, ginger, apples, pears, cucumbers, grapes, grapefruit, kiwi, beet root, broccoli, cabbages, black sesame and black soybean powder, flax seeds and cranberry mix, and wolfberries.  The beautiful thing is that you can create your own mix according to your personal liking.  I usually go down to the supermarkets and sample what’s in season.  You really can’t lose with that.

It Looks Overwhelming.  How Does It Taste?

Again, you know what each of these fruits and vegetables tastes like, so you already will have an idea as to the sweetness and sourness levels of your ingredients.  I like to balance my tastes with the sweetness of grapes and apples and mix it with grapefruit and one or two vegetables for a fresh and layered taste.  I first started with fruits only and it can ONLY taste good.  I then figured that I wanted an even more balanced diet and started adding more greens to my mix which may not be to your liking.  If that’s the case, just skip the greens and blend it some other time.  Also, you don’t need to pack as much like me.  Less ingredients with slightly more water will ensure a lighter smoothie which will be easier for beginners to adapt.  Use the natural flavor of your ingredients to adjust the taste.  Or simply stick to one fruit only as you can never go wrong with that.  You don’t need sugar or honey at all.

How Much Of It Do You Need?

It’s up to you really unless you are aiming to reverse particular symptoms, which you can easily google the various recipes online.  As normal supplements, you probably need no more than half to one litre a day, since you can keep it in your refrigerator for up to 24 hours.  As I replace my breakfasts and sometimes even lunches with my smoothies, I go all out by filling up my tank with goodies for a 2-litre mix.  I take half of it in the morning when it’s freshest, and leave the other half for the rest of my day.  Whatever left in the fridge will grow slightly thicker over the cold so the earlier you finish it the better.  Do not store it over 24 hours as it will go bad since there are absolutely no preservatives added.

What Benefits Have You Personally Experienced From It?

I’m not a medical doctor, and I have not taken physical examinations since then so I cannot provide scientific evidence here.  However as a fact, I feel that I have a lot of energy even if I replace some of my meals with my veggies mix.  The fibre keeps me full, and the smoothies are very easy to digest unlike regular meals with meats and processed foods.  You will not have any constipation problems whatsoever, and you will feel your body cleansed and detoxed.  My skin is better and brighter, as if the natural antioxidants are doing its magic.  All in all, I can’t say for sure whether this is all psychological only, but again I can’t think it will be harmful to me as well.

Is This Expensive?

Not at all.  I shop all of my ingredients from local supermarkets and they are imported from all over the world including China, United States, South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, Chile and Taiwan.  I have done a rough estimate that my daily mix (2-litre) costs no more than HK$35 a pop.  That’s cheaper than a Starbucks coffee, and almost the cost of breakfast in the city.  Some fruits like strawberries and blueberries will certainly cost a bit more, but you don’t need them on a daily basis.  I think this is one of the lowest cost healthy solution in the market.  Of course, this is unless you decide to pick organic fruits and vegetables.  I am sure they are so much better as they are free from pesticides and genetically engineered processes, but since they can easily cost up to 10 times higher, so far I have not been switching to organic just yet.

In terms of the blender, there are a few options in the market.  I don’t intend to promote any particular brands in this space as they each have their pros and cons.  Leave me a message if you are interested and I shall be happy to share some of my thoughts.  If you blend as often as myself, the daily cost of the blender is negligible.

What Do I Need To Watch Out For?

Check your allergies – Needless to say, you know yourself best, so stay away from suspicious foods instead of being overly adventurous.

Beware of pesticides – For vegetables and fruits which you won’t be skinning, soak them thoroughly in running water before putting them in the blender.  I know there are risks as with anything these days, but luckily for the 2 years I have taken this up so far, I have not had any problems with fruits and raw vegetables even if they are grown in China.

Time – No I’m not talking about blending.  In fact the preparation time is quite minimal, usually within 30 minutes which includes all the washing, cutting, blending and cleaning up.  The key is getting fresh ingredients if you want to maintain this as your daily regimen.  You can’t stock up too much since the ingredients are all perishable and they lose their nutritional value quickly.  I almost shop every other day, sometimes even daily since I blend a lot.  That’s why you need to assess whether it will be easy for you to find produce on a regular basis.  If not, reduce the frequency to a manageable level.  If you find it too time consuming or troublesome solely for the sourcing of your ingredients, I would advise you to drop the idea entirely.  You will not be able to keep this up.  So save the hassle and money of buying a blender.

Picking a blender – This topic will be taken offline but I just want to say that aside from functionalities and all, you need to find something that requires the minimum effort of cleaning.  As mentioned, if you need to spend 15 minutes cleaning up parts and filters and caps every day after usage, you will lose your drive altogether.  Furthermore, if you have other cooking ideas in mind, pick the right blender as some can whip up puree, sauces and even desserts like mine.  I once whipped up a hot ginger soup for myself that ended my months-long dry cough after only 2 days of serving.

Leave me other questions if you have any.  I am excited to share your experienes, anytime.  Happy blending!

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6 more days and we will enter into a new era under a brand new Chief Executive of the HK SAR. All we are bombarded by the news these days are the various scandals going on with the two transitioning heads of state. For months, the incumbent Donald was caught repeatedly by the press in reckless spending on business trips, accepting lavish traveling and even residential favors by local tycoons, and very much to our horror, smuggling truckloads of liquor from the chief executive’s mansion to his home. On the other hand, CY, the CE-elect, was wildly skinned by the public for lying blatantly about his illegal building works at his home – an offense which he harshly accused of his rival Henry only a few months ago. These scandals have hardly anything to do with public policies or the welfare of our fellow citizens. Worse yet, they speak about our leaders’ character and integrity. Or, the lack of it.

There is a saying that our souls can be corrupted by power, and don’t act all naive and shocked when you turn on the TV news. This happens everyday at the work place and in your households. The difference is only in terms of the level of misuse for personal gains. I am never saying that any of this can be condoned. I’m just saying that while we point our fingers at those around us, we should at the same time have the decency to look at how we conduct ourselves.

In my profession I always look into areas to minimize wastage and inefficiencies. I agree, these are only fancy and politically correct words. My company charges me to make sure we tighten up our expense control measures so that no one is stealing corporate resources. That’s why I am in one of the most hated professions on the planet.

Corporate resources can be traveling guidelines so that the junior marketing manager won’t be checking in to the presidential suite like our Donald did. They can also be how the heads of departments spend our money on unnecessary external consulting firms so as to “pass on the blame” for below-par business results. Talking about how it is best to spend company’s money is challenging and confrontational alone from a third-party point of view, but nothing is even remotely comparable to the landmines of employee benefits. You can imagine the extent of it by looking at the public riots you see in the cash-trapped countries of Greece and Spain.

What are these so-called employee benefits? Alright, we have hotel categories, hotel breakfasts, hotel locations, serviced apartments, daily spending limits, flight classes, lowest cost airlines, airline lounge access, airport limousines, club memberships, blackberry models, cell phone packages, laptops, flat screen monitors, office furniture, name cards, stationery, pens, folders, giveaways, and the list goes on.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE nice things. I love to be pampered, and I like to think that I have earned my ranks enough to be treated nicely by my boss. However, I know what the reality is, and I know how to draw the line. I come in to work and deliver and get my pay check. Then I can spend it on nice things. I’d rather see my employer make money and then reward me with a bigger pay check. Then no one owes anyone anything. What strikes me hard is that I often see many well-off senior staff thinking very much like Donald and CY – let’s get as much out of the company/government as possible.

I am fully aware that there are blood-sucking corporations out there who take advantage of innocent workers like running a sweat shop. That’s why we protect our employees with well written policies – something which our Chief Executives conveniently omitted for themselves. We know what we are entitled to when we sign on to a job offer. From time to time, companies will want to revisit those policies due to flagging business results or other priorities, and this often creates an outroar of frustrations and resistance from everyone. In my years of experience, I often find the biggest resistance actually comes from the highest ranking staff and often the most wealthy ones. They work their way around with smart excuses, threats and pressure through their poor secretaries. The only thing they almost never do, is walk away. No, it’s not worth losing those high paying jobs, they admitted.

That to me is a complete revelation of their character, and it is eye-opening. I believe it is a competitive market out there, and every one of us should know how much bargaining power we have in all circumstances. If you truly believe you are being ill-treated by not getting the true rewards of your deliverables, walk away. There must be tons of other companies who want to grab you. You have suffered enough. Don’t bully your way through the innocent policy enforcers. Negotiate a bigger package and then take 150 days of leave a year to indulge. Don’t spend your precious time haggling over the next hotel tier or that first class window seat on your next business trip. The reality is, a business trip is a business trip. Even if you have Donald’s presidential suite, you can still hate it because your diamond shoes are too tight.

That’s why, if I am charged with attacking “greed” as one of my buying commodities, I will happily and politely defer to my fellow human resources colleagues for their professional enjoyment.

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