Thursday, August 28, 2008

Together, let's pray that we host Olympics 2024

LEARNING & INNOVATION – August 30, 2008

By Moje Ramos-Aquino, FPM


Together, let's pray that we host Olympics 2024


Our Filipino Olympians did not get any medals. But they fought hard and long and even broke their personal best and Asean records.  Congratulations!


I was dismayed to hear four Solar Entertainment anchors talked about the impossibility of the Philippines ever hosting the Olympics.  And they went on with reasons (I don't know where they came from) such as is our lack of resources, blah, blah, blah, blah.


I don't know how much thought they put into their words.  You just don't go bashing your own country on television watched by millions of Filipinos and foreigners, most likely, because they were the only ones covering the Olympic Games.


Years ago, many would not even think that China will be able to put up, according to many media observers, one of the best Olympics in history—venue, opening and closing ceremonies, over-all management, and many other aspects of backroom activities.  Yet, they did it!  Remember that several venues were finished near the start of the Games.  Pollution was a big problem before and during the Games.  Yet, they did it against all criticisms, negative speculations, etc.


Whether they were happy with or harbor a gripe against their government and life situation, I could just imagine how the Chinese people rallied towards their dream Olympics.  So many volunteered to do particular tasks; there were even three Filipinos among the volunteers, who were taken because of their proficiency in English.  For sure, from observations of media personalities reporting from different parts of China, there were many untold unhappy stories.  For example, the uprooting of Beijing residents whose ancestral homes were demolished and land were appropriated by their government and used for the Olympics.  Beijing underwent revolutionary changes, not only face lift, just for the Olympics. 


They have all the political will to make things happen and went on with it.  As soon as they won the bid for hosting, they never looked back; they dreamed on and made their dream real.


Going back to those four country-bashing TV commentators, who do they think they are?  There are things such as political will, vision, mission, values, goals, objectives, and action-orientation as necessary ingredients to getting things done.  Every entrepreneur knows this.  Even workers should know this.  Otherwise, the business will perish soon and there will be no more jobs.


Tell me, what is the vision, mission and core values (VMV) of the Philippines and the Filipino people?


Instead of bashing our country, those four predictors of doom, could redo their script and start talking about the Philippines formulating our VMV and propagating these via their network.   Let's set basic directions where we could commit our important resources; the essential logic of our existence as a country and as a people.  Then we can talk about setting long-, medium- and short-term goals towards having an impact in the global community, continuous learning, development and nurturing of our people, development and acquisition of support technologies and whatever focus of success our national leaders would choose.


I briefly caught the final announcement of the new program of President Arroyo on radio—hearts or something.  That's a good start—having a focus.  I hope this sinks into the heart and mind of other national and local government officials who are tasked with further defining expectations and standards (both qualitative and quantitative) and eventual implementing such programs.  This will help avoid wasting time, effort, resources and disappointments.


I like to shout every time that woman comes on TV and thanks the president "sa pagtulong ninyo sa amin" (for helping us).  Look, they are not helping you, they are just doing their job; in fact, not a very good job.


For those four clowns (aka Games anchors) and for all of us, we need to "set the bar" as high as possible for government initiatives, for government officials (from the president down), for business people, for our own people.  We need to establish criteria for measuring tangibles, intangibles, levels of service and quality and other soft issues such as values, ethics, and culture.


As a people we need to raise the bar for our own expectations and aspirations.   I dream of the Philippines hosting the 2024 Olympics.  Let's dream together and make it happen.  Let us remember that everything that we think, say and do are prayers.  And as they say, be careful what you pray for, you just might get it.;


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