Baking Your Way to Success!

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My very supportive wife with her IG post on my bakery operations seminar. Mr. Gerry Samaniego Mendoza – our speaker [in white] and the proud owner of Eng Bee Tin Mr. Gerik Chua [in yellow] handing over the certificate of completion.   

How do you start a successful bakery business at home? It takes a good mix of baking skills, business acumen and a lot of passion.

I learned these from the Philippine Society of Baking’s (PSB) Bakery Operations & Management Seminar held last July 9, 2016 at the Filipino-Chinese Bakery Association hub in Manila.

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The future successful bakery owners with the industry’s creme de la creme during the seminar. 

Like any other business – bakery operations have more required skills to take it off to the next level.

Gone are the days of “have a capital – let’s start a bakery” mentality. Now, before you plunged into it, you really have to be keen in every nook and cranny of the business.

To be with the company of the best of the best in the bakery business in the country was a privileged. Our speaker was Mr. Gerry Samaniego Mendoza, a Bakery Consultant of US Wheat Associates (USW) with over 25 years of experience in the bakery ingredients industry.

His business perspective on how to operate a bakery was a treasure throve of wisdom and knowledge.

There were a lot to consider in kicking off a bakery – from a management perspective, you have the capacity to grow it to leaps and bounds by being dedicated to documenting everything. Put everything in paper – procedures, costings, requirements, etc.

Consistency, quality and dedication – few of the recipes for success to make it on top of the industry.

I never knew that Mathematics played a key role in this type of business. Yes, you heard it right. Bakery Math, it is. These are set of tools that every professional baker use to keep consistent quality in their products.

Prior to our seminar, there was even a separate workshop about Bakery Math – to show how crucial it was.

It will help you control your costs, adapting and improving your formulations and ensuring your profits.

I sat beside a past principal in Bulacan who wanted to start a baking business and an educator who taught kids how to start a small business.

We shared our experiences and learned from each other.

According to Mr. Mendoza, most of the ‘would be bakers’ fail because of financial management. He was referring to small business operators or craft bakers. They mixed up their daily sales with their daily family’s expenses without proper accounting. Money are lost and sooner or later the business closes.

I encourage everyone to buy this book: Proof – The Philippine Baker’s Guide by the Philippine Society of Baking, a commemorative 10 years anniversary black book for professional bakers.

Proof the Bakers

It’s a must have!

For more details on Philippine Society of Baking’s upcoming seminars, please visit their website: http://www.philippinesocietyofbaking.com/ or check their facebook page: Philippine Society of Baking.

Learn, Unlearn & Relearn English

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This photo started it all. A learning reminder that I will never forget. 

How do you learn, unlearn & relearn English – the cancer conqueror way?It was a quick trip to the Imus Vocation & Technical School (IVTS) with my brother, he was supposed to avail the cookery class. Unfortunately, it was not yet available that time.

My wandering soul took notice of a tarpaulin banner outside the IVTS office – an English proficiency class with job assistance program with the City Government of Imus and e-Learning Contact Center (ELCC).

I overheard a grandmother with her grandson. “Apo, I need to enroll, gusto ko pang matuto kahit anong course dyan, (I need to learn with any of the courses offered),” prodded by granny.

I felt the sincerity and the eagerness. My zeal for learning ignited.

If grandma chose to learn a new skill, why can’t I?

Right then and then, I inquired about the English proficiency course and I was advised to join the class.

I was quite hesitant at first.

But, I took a leap of faith.

e-Learning Contact Center (ELCC) positions itself as a hub of excellence for professional training of individuals that addresses communication skills, soft skills and personality development. A group of Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) experts started the company. They provide customized training that meets BPO industry standards. They also provide job assistance with their ‘big’ networks of BPO partners.

I dived with an end goal in mind to learn something new but I gained more than that.

I came in during the second day of Wave 17 dubbed as Team Smooth.

It was a good mix of co-learners: a group of housewives, a bunch of giddy young students, ex-OFWs, fresh graduates and a cancer conqueror.

Our trainer was a Filipino American from Tennessee, USA. His accent was quite intimidating but he was oozing with personality – very congenial, approachable and humble.

The learning atmosphere was fun.

The 10-day course started with Basic English from learning the right accent and subject-verb agreement; with some sprinkles of personality development, overview of BPO industry, handling job interviews and public speaking.

Some tips on how to learn, to unlearn and to relearn English:

  • Start with a blank slate. Focus and adjust on the pace of the trainer. Don’t bring your mental baggage in the class. Throw them out of the window and start fresh.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions. That’s the reason why you’re there in the first place – to learn something new. If things are not clear, ask more questions.
  • Practice. Don’t be too lazy to make a quick review before and after the class. Speak the English language as often as you can. Watch English TV series, read more books and express your thoughts either through writing or talking with others.
  • Have fun. You will never learn unless you enjoy it.
  • Be ready to meet new friends. Reach out to others and interact more.

We have a simple graduation ceremonies – games, giving of certificates and a boodle fight.

Deposited more memories in my life box.

If you are an Imus, Cavite resident or lived nearby check out ELCC. They have an amazing staff to assist you. Visit them!

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Contact ELCC now!

I gained also a deeper appreciation with my co-learners about life. All of us are pilgrims. Our journey is unique from each other.

Everyone has a story to tell.

Be willing to listen and to learn from each other.

After the session, we are still in touch with some of my Wave 17 batch mates. Some are already hired and plunged into the BPO world.

I did try but the graveyard shift was a concern.

My health was my priority for now.

Along the way, I met also BPO experts who shared their stories to me.

I admired them.

Their life was a continuous inspiration of taking risks for the love of their family.

Hats off to our BPO comrades!