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One observation of cultural difference: The Philippines and Australia
February 26, 2018

One observation of cultural difference: The Philippines and Australia

Written by: Mark Engelmann

Just the other day I was attending a sales call at an office in inner city Brisbane. The person I was meeting was running late so I patiently waited in a chair in reception for about 15 minutes.  This was actually a very interesting thing to do.  It gave me time to observe the staff in the office and how they interacted with each other.  I observed that the large majority of staff were in their early 20’s, they dressed well with a bit of a ‘hipster’ trend running through the office fashion standard.

As I sat and watched, a young male employee came out to reception, sat on the front counter and started speaking to the equally young female receptionist. The conversation went a little like this:

Receptionist: Do you want to go and get a coffee?

Male Employee: I’d love to, but I’m soooo broke…

Receptionist: Really?  Why?

Male Employee: Every time I get paid I end up going out and getting really drunk and spending all my money.

Receptionist: (laughs) It is OK.  Coffee is on me.

Both employees then walked out to presumably get a coffee.  I was left with the impression that I was about to go and meet with a bunch of drunks and questioned whether they fit our ‘ideal customer profile’.  The other thought that popped into my head was ‘What if I was a customer?’ ‘Would I be happy to hear that conversation?’

…..Probably not.

As an Outsourcing Professional, I always try and think about how these sorts of scenarios relate to my bread and butter - Outsourcing.  It made me think about the quality of staff we have in the office at Beepo and the high levels of professionalism they display on a day to day basis.  The conversation above would never be had in our office in the Philippines - Why not?

Maybe it is because although our staff get paid extremely well in comparison to the average wage, they use their money to support their families and relatives, to ensure food is on the table and everyone is well looked after.
Before I got involved in Beepo, which is now truly an international business, I would have thought the above conversation to be completely normal in an office. Especially when I think back to when I was 20 or so.  Now, being an owner of Beepo and meeting and working with people from all over the world - I see this as being purely Australian… for better or for worse.

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