It feels good to be recognised

Few weekends ago, I read article on 7 Things You Can Do on Friday to Make Monday Awesome. I’ve been doing some of them, not on weekly basis but now and then. I like to organize the week, get one thing off my desk before weekend kicks in and reflect on the week. My colleague guessed my favourite is #5 as I always put on music when work gets tougher.Occasionally, I end the week on a high by planning to show someone my appreciation.

On the next Monday, I did just that. I shared the article with my colleagues whom I worked closely with on company’s FY15 Planning and invite them to try the coffee butter cake that I baked and brought to office. I sent The Little Things Count to my manager for her support and for being such a great manager to us. I responded to performance review feedback requests from colleagues as part of end of year check in to help them to develop further.

Before I joined my current employer, I used to admire my Auntie and friends who received awards and recognition from their employers for job well done. Not that I’ve never done a good job throughout my career, it’s the way the recognition been given to staff which is usually just a thank you note or emails. Somehow, US companies have a more structure and formal way of giving award and recognition to staff. There are Kudos, The Little Things Count, APAC CFO Award and many other awards given out by Subsidiary and Corporation.

Finally on 5 Jun 14, I experienced the feeling of receiving such award. In APAC Finance All Hands today, I received FY14 H2 APAC CFO award, under the category “Giving to Others”. I received as Subject Matter Expert (SME) for subsidiary on our new forecasting tool, shared best practices and provide Helpdesk to colleagues in the office and peers in APAC region to support them in using the tool.

After the announcement from our APAC CFO, several instant messages popped out on my notebook screen. I received congratulatory messages from colleagues all over APAC … “Congratulations”, “Well done”, “Very much deserved”, “Great stuff”.

I was so, so happy and truly enjoy the moment. It was a pleasant surprise, it was a great feeling and it surely motivated me further to help others and to do great job. Of course, I did not forget to thank my manager for her recognition too.

Today, my boss shared the announcement with the local Subsidiary leadership team and also with my key stakeholders. In a few hours, I received more than 30 “feel good” congratulatory emails from the team. I was overjoyed, simple thing like this made me feel over the moon. It was really a GREAT feeling and something that I truly treasure the memory!

Summerset Greens with Duck Breast and Roasted Pine Nuts

Teambuilding and cooking … seem to go in pair nowadays. More and more companies are organizing cooking classes or cooking competitions as a form of teambuilding. It’s easy to organize as there are so many culinary schools that offer such activities. The price is reasonable too. Most of all, at the end of the day, there will be so much fun, laughter, noise and good food to satisfy the hungry stomachs.

When our team decided to have cooking class as teambuilding, I suggested Food Studio and Bayan Indah which are my favourite culinary places. Bayan Indah has higher minimum pax requirement. As there were only 8 of us, we signed up with Food Studio for our teambuilding.

WP_20140618_003It was nice to see Chef Paul again, our chef for the day.


It was also nice to be back to familiar place … a kitchen fully equipped with Electrolux appliances.

We learned to make Smoked duck salad as appetizer, herb crusted filet of salmon for our main course and Pavlova for our dessert.


Ingredients for Smoked Duck Salad


The presentation of the Summerset Greens with Duck Breast and Roasted Pine Nuts by Paul Chef. Beautiful! Love the different bright colors of the salad been presented on a white plate. We had to repeat and present the smoked duck salad in the same way.


These were presented by all of us on our dining table. I think we did a good job. They all looked presentable.

A few days later, we were planning for dinner to celebrate Mom’s birthday. SC suggested to have dinner at home and she would roast chicken and grill lamb. Since it was a Western dinner, I volunteered to try to make this newly learned smoked duck salad.

The following are the ingredients:

  • 50 g  mixed and washed salad greens
  • 50 g Smoked Duckbreast
  • 15 g Pinenuts
  • 1 pc Orange
  • 2 Tbs Olive oil
  • 2 Tbs Orange Juice
  • 2 pcs cherry tomatoes
  • 1 mango, cut into small cubes
  • Salt and Pepper
  • Onion Sprouts

The ingredients prepared by me

First, slice the duckbreast into thin slices. I bought this sliced, frozen smoked duck from Isetan. No need to slice, just need to warm them in oven.


Remove skin from orange and cut out filets.


Whisk together olive oil with orange juice and dash of salt and pepper.


The whisked salad dressing.


Roast the pinenuts in a dry pan until golden brown.

Mix salad with dressing in large bowl.

Slice tomatoes in half. Cut mango into small cubes.

Arrange salad nicely on a plate and add sliced duck.

Top with onion sprouts and roasted pinenuts.

Decorate with tomatoes, mango cubes and orange filets.


My contribution for Mom’s birthday dinner. Successful.

This is how I presented it.

Guess we had teambuilding at home too. I organized it like a factory line, assigned duties to my siblings and nephews. Even Dad has to cut mango into small cubes. Each person was in charge of one item and presented it on each plate the way I showed them. It was fun, with lots of noise and laughter in the process.

WP_20140621_054Our table setting for Mom’s birthday dinner and it was a success!