Yesterday, I was back at my university campus to share about my company and job function in order to recruit interns and fresh graduates.
It was nice, sharing about the brands I’ve worked on, the consumers I’ve met and the work I’ve done with my multi-functional team.
It was also nice, to be a Singaporean and an alumni, talking to people whom I might have looked like, sitting in the same spot, many years ago.
After my presentation, some of students approached me to ask more questions about my job function.
One of them was a shy boy who introduced himself with a little stutter and asked me, “What would I miss out if I were to join the industry? What if I joined an agency instead?”
His question smelt so much of the uncertainties and excitement of a youth, the what-ifs, and the so-what-ifs.
He is studying data analytics, and understandably he would be wondering if he should find a related job to practise what he has learned, or to go off-tangent in one where he might not get to fully practise what he is specialising in.
I told him that unfortunately there is an opportunity cost in every decision we make in life. It depends what he wants to be and what he is willing to give up.
In choosing my job function over being an agency, I definitely lose out in terms of not being an expert in, say, the details and technicalities of regression modelling.. instead I need to be able understand the principles and articulate the outcome.
And I am ok with that.
So he has to evaluate if he would be ok with the trade-offs.
As I sat at the back of the Grab car on the long drive back home, I thought about what I said to the boy, and wondered if it was good advice.
Afterall I did not give him any direction and probably gave him more to think about.
It was the same thing I’d fretted over when I was at his age. Should I do this or should I do that? What would happen?
I learned that it was ok to try, to go for it even when I wasn’t sure if I’d succeed. I learned that there would be trade-offs but it is ok as long as I am ok.
But as I grew older, I became afraid to try.. Because I think it is too late for me to start all over again, because the stakes are high, because the opportunity costs are higher than the potential gains.
Also weighing on my mind, though not as heavily as I thought it would, was something I’d predicted would happen.. and that was confirmed by my boss earlier in the afternoon.
Before I knew it I was home and switched on my mum mode. 😆
Tucked the baby in, showered the big little boss, read bedtime stories.. And then it was chitchat time.
The little boss shared with me about her day, how happy she was to give raisins to her two best friends, yet how she likes everyone in her class so she has no “best” friends, and how J said he would give her something and she’s guessing it would be a Kinder surprise egg.
As usual she asked me how my day went, and I decided to tell her an over simplified version of what was weighing on my mind.
“XX doesn’t like mummy,” I said to her, half-jokingly, almost trivializing the situation.
“Then you just don’t sit with her!” Her advice was almost immediate. 😂
“But I cannot not sit with her,” I explained.
“Why she doesn’t like you, Mummy?” She asked.
“Because she thinks Mummy is not good?” I told her.
“Ok then you sit with her, but you don’t talk to her and don’t look at her!” She suggested, very helpfully. “You talk to your colleague XY*!”
(*Lol she’s been intrigued by the fact that I have a colleague who has the same Chinese name as two of her classmates so I guess she was suggesting that I talk to XY because she’s friends with the two “XY”s in class.)
“Hmm ok,” I couldn’t help but laugh at her interpretation of and solution to classroom politics.
She paused for 30 seconds, seemingly thinking about our conversation.
“Mummy?” She looked up from her thoughts, sounding like she’d made an interesting discovery. “You know, Mummy? You very very pretty, that’s why XX thinks you are naughty!”
#toddlerlogic or #clarissawisdom?
What exactly is she learning in school?
Maybe I should go to her school to learn something too.
Thankful to have her as my little life coach!