RJ Suaverdez: Turning Challenges into Opportunities for Growth
Working in a different country and taking on leadership responsibilities can be quite challenging. But RJ has learned to face them all by adapting and improving his skills with the support of his friends, his colleagues, and his managers. Read about how working at ASW/Trident has boosted RJ’s career growth.
Hi RJ! Tell us something about yourself and your career before ASW?
I have over 13 years of IT experience in various positions such as System Admin, Networking, Service Desk and eventually landing into a leadership role for the past 5 years – as a network analyst managing a team of 21 members for 2 years. It was a rocky road but those experiences along the way were all worth it.
I was born and raised in the Philippines and have lived in Malaysia for the past 8 years where I eventually met my wife. My hobbies include food hopping, going to the gym and shopping with my wife.
Did you move to Malaysia because of work? What have you learned from your experience?
I’ve heard a lot of good things about Malaysia, so I came here to pursue my career aspirations. I did have to make some adjustments, especially with the food as I could not eat spicy food. I made good friends over time who also supported me to help me achieve where I am right now. Overall, I love the culture in Malaysia and the hospitality of its people.
Can you tell us more about your role here at ASW with Trident?
What are the usual challenges that you face as a leader and how do you deal with them?
The most challenging part of my job is dealing with different types of personalities. As a manager, I have to ensure that things get done, to help maintain everyone’s work behaviour, to treat staff equally and to protect the team.
With open communication, these challenges have become opportunities to improve. I don’t make decisions for my staff. I guide them, give them options, let them choose which is the best approach, and meet in the middle.
I’ve learned how to see things from different perspectives. Dealing with personalities takes time. I earn the trust and respect of my staff by trusting in them, too. I have learned to be patient and to not let my emotions cloud my judgement.
What do you enjoy most about your job?
It gives me satisfaction when the company recognises the offshore staff or when a team member gets promoted as their success is my success. Over the past 3 years, we have promoted several offshore staff and they have been doing fantastic.
What important lessons have you learned with ASW/Trident?
I’ve learned from the leaders at Trident that if you make a mistake, own it, fix it, do not repeat it, and move on. Most people tend to focus on the mistake, thinking that they’ve failed. To me, the question is what can we do to ensure it doesn’t happen again? I always look at the positive side of things and what can be done better.
Every day is a new day for me, I don’t stop learning, I listen to podcasts on manager-tools.com and I also surround myself with people who are smart enough to call me out when I’m in the wrong direction.
Thanks for your time! Is there anything else you’d like to share with your fellow ASW/Trident colleagues as we’re celebrating our 10th anniversary?
I have high respect and trust towards everyone who helped me to manage the team during the pandemic, with everyone working from home. I’m proud and lucky to work with a team that feels like my second family: having each other’s back, helping those in need, and training themselves to improve and push forward. The teamwork is priceless; they always do their best. It’s always a privilege to work with this crew!