Employee Spotlight: Michelle
Some think being a high-profile chief executive officer (CEO) of a company is a glamorous job. In truth, this role is fraught with great responsibility and liability. As the highest-ranking executive of a company, a CEO is accountable for major corporate decisions, managing all operations and resources of a company, and being its public face. While the job comes with great hazard, it also comes with great reward. Learn how Yempo CEO Michelle Fiegehen navigates this complicated role from day to day and with the long term in sight.
Can you describe your role at Yempo?
I’m the CEO. Most of my job entails regular communication with our client base, and working to grow our staffing levels through new clients or existing client expansion. I work closely with the management team of Riza, Rizza, Ronnie and Ian.
How long have you been working here?
I established Yempo as a company at the end of 2014 with Ian Parkin, my co-founder. I was based out of my apartment in Makati back then. In January 2015, I relocated to Cebu and established the office at Oakridge. The official start date of the company is January 5, 2015.
What can Yempo employees contact you about?
Absolutely anything at all. I am available for any sort of queries that employees would like to raise. If I can’t directly assist, I will find someone who can.
Can you share any latest projects you’re working on in 2020?
My main activity is sales. I’m working on a couple of programs to increase the company’s visibility. But with the current corona virus pandemic, much of my attention has been diverted toward planning, managing and supporting our work-from-home workforce and keeping close to our clients so that I can understand any potential changes in their staffing requirements.
What do you love most about your job?
My role at Yempo has more variety than any other job I’ve held. In a single day I might get involved in recruitment, sales, marketing or finance. It’s very busy and very diverse, which I really enjoy. I’m also very lucky to have close and collaborative colleagues in the back office team.
What are your strongest skills?
I’m super organized, very responsive and decisive. I manage my time effectively too.
What was a challenge you experienced at Yempo and how was it solved?
A few years back, we had a lovely team of workers that was a great fit for our culture and we enjoyed excellent relationships with them. Unfortunately their client wanted us to heavily discount our fees, which would have made it unprofitable. The client made the decision to move to a budget service provider and we had to transition the team out. It was incredibly sad to lose the workers, many of whom we are still in contact with, as they didn’t want to leave Yempo either. But it was a good learning experience for us, to smoothly and efficiently transition the team out so that they and their client had minimal impact. It was a good reminder as well for me about our company values and how important it is to uphold them.
What do you like best about Yempo’s culture?
I sit with the Cebu-based Yempo back-office staff, and have weekly communications with Manila team. It is a constant source of pride that I see how the entire team works collaboratively and supports each other across geographic boundaries, functions and cultures.
Which core value (commitment, excellence, community) is the most important to you? Why?
Commitment is the most important value for me. Doing what I said I’d do, in the timeframe I promised, underpins trusted relationships. And without trusted relationship, our clients wouldn’t stay with us and neither would our staff.
Where do you see your career 5 years from now?
When it comes to my life and the path it takes, I tend to be an opportunist, rather than a long-term planner, so it depends what arises along the way. Ideally I’ll be in the same role but with a much larger client base and workforce. Even if my job is the same though, I expect I will still learn new things along the way.
Do you have quotes, advice, or mottos that you follow that might inspire other Yempo employees?
Speak up. If you see something that doesn’t look right, say something. If you see an opportunity for improvement, tell someone. This is what leaders do, and everyone can display leadership, regardless of their position, age or tenure.