Thursday, December 29, 2011

I was offered..... (And it takes courage)

I appreciate thus far to take bold courageous moves in my life. There were many times I couldn't believe I took the courage to do things I was offered.

In school, I was offered.... To be a prefect. I've NEVER thought I could assume a role which could be considered a leader in school. I was naughty, I punched my kindergarten teacher, slapped my primary school teacher and argued with my headmistress. No one would ever think I can lead but that's where my turning point was...

I was offered.... To assume roles in youth organisations and I did well. In fact I founded Pandan Jaya Neighbourhood Watch, numerous programs and recently the Voice of Women.

I was offered.... An opportunity to save a live, a stranger whom I didn't know. Now as I looked back, I really didn't know how I said yes but I'm glad I did. It was the best joy of giving I had in life.

I was offered.... An opportunity to publish my book. Anas helped me. And I'm so glad that the book had now inspired many and helped many people make decision to pledge their organs.

I was offered... To work with Dato Sri Ong Tee Keat. Learnt a lot to WALK THE TALK. I've been talking about organ donation for 16 years and it was time for me to DO IT and I did it while I'm alive.

I've learnt that it is less valuable to talk (or in this technology world, tweet/FB) but it is important to PARTICIPATE in the decision making process and make a difference. I learnt that those who only tweet/update FB but dare not, will not or better not participate to DO SOMETHING has no relevance.

Think! You only talk but dare not take up the challenge to work on things which could benefit people. At the very least, give suggestions to make things better - not just talk and condemn at all times. I've openly stated this opinion even in the mass media.

And then.... I was offered
To contest in the election. My first response to it - THREE BIG NO... No No No! It wasn't until long 'lectures' from friends and rethinking my earlier paragraph of this blog, thinking deeply I actually said no to THREE things.

I said No because I still enjoy people saying good things about me - who doesn't? I said NO because I don't think I want to work as hard as politicians who really served the people. And I said NO because I didn't want to associate with a party, a President or a coalition many people said was dirty, tainted and losing touch.

Yet the biggest NO was because I was just chickening out. I asked myself again and again, how long can I live in a wonderland? And as dirty a party is, why not I be in it to clean it? Why must I get into it and get dirty myself? As much as I've always been talking about how dirty politics is, what have I done to reverse it and what have I done to make a difference?

Given another chance I'll say Yes Yes Yes. It doesn't matter if people say I'm dirty, I'm losing grounds/sanity, accusing me of being a betrayer, accusing me of being in politics for self gains, accusing me of choosing the wrong party wrong President. I will say yes for THREE big reasons.

I want to serve ad that's what I've always been doing. I'd say yes again because I want people to know that talking is cheap, doing something takes courage. And I truly believe I can make a difference because I've done it.

I already realised even giving my liver invited negative responses, what more being in politics and especially with one with a President some people think is tainted? So be it, I know what I want and most importantly what I want to achieve. If you'd like to support me, please give me constant reminders NOT to be 'like them'. I think you guys understand what I mean.

I recall a ZEN comic.
Student: Teacher, you are so noble you should go to heaven
Teacher: I will go to hell
Student: Why so?
Teacher: It is so dirty in hell, if I don't go to hell, who will help them?
Student: Bow
Things just happen, the rest is up to ME to make it GREAT!

Hoong Ling

Sent from my BlackBerry® Smartphone

Friday, December 23, 2011

Tokleh tehe: In Malaysia you cannot even admit your mistakes openly

I have never said I am a total neutral. I am always a BN supporter but I also criticise BN if I think what they do is too much. Yet, there are times I also agree a lot with the PR for certain things done right. I am always a centrist leaning towards BN all these while if all you have not yet noticed.

Many close friends know well I am a BN fellow.

Therefore, while I attended many functions within DAP, PKR and the Selangor government, I was still a member of a party within BN coalition. I have friends from both coalition and during Tenang By-Election, I even attended both BN and PR camps!

Ask anyone, I have always invited both the coalition in things I do, particularly instrumental as the ONLY one who would interviewed YB Chang Lih Kang, YB Elizabeth Wong during the Youth Lab, listed among others Nurul Izzah and Nik Nazmi as politic youth icons in my reports.

Yet, when I invited Dato' Sri Dr Chua Soi Lek as a speaker in Kahwin4.0 Youth Forum, all sorts of comments come about. They forgot that their enemy could be Soi Lek himself, but they dragged me into it by calling me "losing political neutrality", "losing dignity". Kahwin4.0 is a youth forum and a forum initiated by myself. I think I hold the rights to invite any leaders I feel worth a discussion.

Funny thing was, these comments only come from people who have NOT attended the forum! They did not know WHAT Kahwin4.0 stands for, they did not know what Kahwin4.0 is all about and they did not know WHY Soi Lek was chosen. Yet, many assumed it was a marriage talk, accusing how Soi Lek could talk about marriage and all kinds of "women should not invite Soi Lek to any events"

And yet, DURING the forum, I was literally SHOCKED to see women walking passed our venue of event voluntarily wanting to listen to the very man people said was TAINTED. Another shocker came when a female would stood up and said "This is the first time I met you and I have all the respect for you for your dignity to take responsible for what you have done and resigned at that time." And after the event, I have this cool duckie said this:

Had fair share of accusements, finger pointing, names calling, tweet "siege" (????) and bombarded by many!

By organising this close door (close door some more!!) youth forum alone, even my friends could call me "losing political neutrality" just because of one event. Never finding out who wrote the website content - by taking a look at it, I was accused as too complimentary in the content towards the man we invited.

Now I understand that a friend could be otherwise just because you invite his opponent/enemy or someone he dislikes, to an event. Now where did common sense or friendship go?

I sometimes hated people but I have never lose respect by calling names or pass certain remarks despite how bad the person has been to me. I recall a person whom I can still may never be able to forgive but yet I still respect all his achievements and accomplishments. Even till now, when someone bad mouth about him, I will still say the good things he has done.

Just like my cute yellow duckie friend said... On a professional level we respect Soi Lek... but his personal life is not for us to judge. All of us made mistakes and have our own idiosyncrasies.

This man had the dignity to admit his mistake OPENLY, dealt with his family members and resigned. Who in Malaysia has done the same, please raise your hands and you could be someone I'd like to interview too. :)

Come constant accusing.... I will invite the man to more events! Thank you friends who gave me a good birthday lesson.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

How to vote during elections

I read Anas' blog with interest, not because he has my name in it but because it provoke thoughts and encourage people to think how to vote.

His blog post here

For me I'd vote for individuals who could do good for the country regardless of parties.

Some criteria I'm looking at are:

1. DO something
I'd look for past track records of a candidate and see if he or she has done a noble cause or at least a project to benefit the community. Doing a project does not mean just funding it or attending as a Guest of Honor. Personally manage a project from the beginning till it produces results and benefit the people. Because we have too many politicians who can talk and talk and talk but just CANNOT DO things. Therefore first thing first - someone who have done something. I don't care if the project failed as long as he has tried. If the project failed, better still! And he must learn from the mistakes.

2. Consistency in his beliefs
I always believe politicians who fight for a cause consistently is better than those who speak of an issue just to seek popularity. It is perfectly OK that he changes his stand upon learning some new facts or adapt his stand to current situations but he must fight it consistently.

3. Socially advocate, commercially sustainability
I'm a strong believer of social enterprise, social businesses and corporate for social good. I don't think any social organisation can survive at this situation without having sustainability factor. Thus, my candidate cannot keep fighting for social good but never think of commercial values or sustainability of it. I've seen so many politicians going against commercially viable companies or detest to businesses. To them businesses are for greedy corrupt people but to me, it sustain the economy, give jobs and if it is a social business it gives social impact.

4. Very universal and accepted by all races and communities
He or she must believe in the 1Malaysia spirit, Malaysian Malaysia or whatever you call it. Someone who the Malays feel comfortable with, the Chinese feel represented, the Indians feel secured with him.

5. Down to earth and truly approachable
During elections, we see candidates go house to house to campaign. Between elections, we don't see the representative visits our houses anymore. That again is not consistency. Worse still there are politicians who never ever show up or do anything after winning elections. I want a MP who is there when we have voice to bring to the Parliament and help make the constituency a better place. Even when not invited he'd say he'll support an event or program

6. NOT giving goodies as approach for charities etc
I saw so much money being spent during elections and people too take advantage of elections to make money. I strongly oppose to this culture. THINK - if politicians give money, where will the money come from? They will need to seek projects, dwell into corruptions just to please people with money. If you are happy with receiving money from your MP then don't talk about eradicating corruptions. If you talk about eradicating corruption, stop asking MPs for money which is out of their budget. If the candidate continue giving money to the public and out of his budget, I do not think he can stay uncorrupted, so I will not vote for him. He should provide innovative solutions for sustainability and not continuously funding his constituents.

This may be a simple criteria but I've also seen representatives of the rakyat who do not read to expand their knowledge.

Perhaps more people can come up with your own criteria list for a candidate or how to vote during election, will encourage more people to rationally choose a representative rather than voting emotionally.

I'd think people who fit my criteria perhaps are:
1. Marina Mahathir
2. Chandra Muzaffar
3. Anas Zubedy
4. Syed Akbar Ali
5. Zainah Anwar, Sisters in Islam

Ok lahhh I know you want young people
1. Lim Chee Wee, Bar Council
2. Edmund Bon, LoyarBurok
3. Syahredzan, MyConsti
4. Saifuddin Abdullah, Deputy Minister of Higher Education
5. Wee Ka Siong, Deputy Minister of Education

More women candidates preferably:
6. Nicole Wong, Beliawanis MCA
7. Kat Wong, INSAP Deputy Director
8. Fui K. Soong, CEO os CENSE
9. Ellynita Lamin, cancer survivor and social entrepreneur
10. Ng Yeen Seen, policy analyst

Prefer to have 'OKU' as well
11. Zhariff Afandi, social entrepreneur
12. Anthony Thanasayan, activist for the disabled and The Star columnist
13. Sia Siew Chin, Beautiful Gate

Things just happen, the rest is up to ME to make it GREAT!

Hoong Ling

Sent from my BlackBerry® Smartphone

Friday, December 2, 2011

Tokleh Tehe: Role of a Social Media Strategist

Is there even such a title? Social Media Strategist?
And perhaps expenses spent by Ministry of Tourism for social media has open the eyes of many Malaysians.
Yes, I believe a social media strategist should be paid and should be highly paid. I do not want to defend the ministry involved but if that much of money spent and effectiveness of the strategies evaluated, I think it should bring more wealth in tourism dollars to the country.
Enough said, this blogpost is on social media strategist. Many Malaysians limit their knowledge of social media to only Facebook and Twitter, yet there are hundreds of applications out there which are so called social media.
Just like branding is so important for a company (and no one would blame you for paying huge sum for branding because people know its importance), social media weighs heavier than brand alone.
A social media strategist or consultant will act as brand consultant, marketing communication, corporate communication, public management, sample management, even event manager at the same time.
He is responsible for generating content, updates and consistent engagement with his client's followers on social media. A minimum of three updates per day on Facebook, a whooping 20 tweets per day as a rough target.

He will create content, updates and statuses fun with hypermedia. And if you think is easy work, try think of 1000 new updates for a certain brand - that's enough to squeeze the juice out of your brains.
He also monitors comments, retweets, mentions and if there are complaints by followers at large. He will need to rectify errors, apologise on behalf, provide explanation - exactly what a corporate communication department should do.

More over, his tasks, just like a salesman, has number of followers to increase. He also guards the standardisation, language, professionalism and reflects the company as a whole.

He is also a marketing researcher, having the needs to understand geographical, demographic and interests of client's followers. He may also well be a programmer, to program landing pages, database collection and codes applications like games or contest pages to attract and engage with followers.

All in all, in Chinese we call them a One Leg Kick.

I can have my nephew sit in front of the laptop, make him admin for my Facebook Like page but God knows how many UNfollowers I will have in the next hour.

And to have the politicians criticise that the amount paid is too huge, it is an insult to a social media strategist whose works include all the above.

Things just happen, the rest is up to ME to make it GREAT!

Hoong Ling

Sent from my BlackBerry® Smartphone