SUGAR T. ESPADERA
Choithrams’ multi-awarded HR executive urges OFWs to work beyond boundaries
Position: Regional HR-Training &
Location: Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Hometowns: Bislig, Surigao del Sur & Davao City
Sugar Termoso Espadera was recognized by the Philippine Consulate in Dubai and Bayanihan Council as a Dakilang Bayani (HR category) for 2016. She personally received the award from Consul General Paul Raymund Cortes. Sugar is the first and only Filipino who works at the management level-regional in Choithrams which covers the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) states.
Life was great in the Philippines as she was a performer at work and was on the hype of sharpening her skills. “It was never in my mind to really cross to another country to work. I believe there are great opportunities for me back home. I was at the peak of my career in HR back then. I was holding a senior management position until a friend of mine encouraged me to try visit Dubai and explore the opportunities. I had second thoughts but I said there is no harm in trying.”
She came to Dubai and worked as an administrative assistant in one of the leading construction companies. It was completely a restart of her career. However, with her persistence, abilities and hard work, after a year, she was promoted as HR-Admin Officer until Choithrams opened its doors for her to further learn and develop opportunities which are her cup of tea. While at Choithrams, she got many firsts – the first Filipino who was hired to work in its HR Department, first one who designed and delivered Behavioral Learning sessions for senior level managers in the company, first to introduce experiential learning sessions for the company, and first to implement the company’s Learning Management System.
Inspired to give back
“I am blessed with great people who nurtured and guided me professionally. Now is the time for me to give back to others. I have been a member of FilHR for the last three years. I used to assist in job fairs and many other FilHR activities. I supported, as an assessor, of candidates. Currently, I am the VP for Career and Development of FilHR. I organize trainings, coaching sessions and many other activities to sharpen the skills of our fellow HR professionals. This is my weekend commitments. I too offer pro bono trainings outside FilHR upon request. I have conducted a few sessions on Leadership, Career Development, and Personality Development for the Filipino community and team building session for the Philippine Embassy staff,” she said.
“During my free time, I extend professional coaching or help to others even other nationalities. This way, I could be able to reach out to the community better,” she added.
A CSR advocate
Choithrams is also known for its Corporate Social and Environmental Responsibilities. They have schools, hospitals and other institutes that serve indigenous people in India and Africa. Choithrams has been partnering actively with the United Nations-WFP, UAE charitable organizations and other private institutions which organize CSR. “I am fully involved in all Choithrams CSR activities. As an L&D Manager, I organize the awareness programs and trainings for Choithrams’ employees.
“My leadership mantra is ‘When you are a leader, you create more leaders not just followers.’ As a believer of community service, I continued to inspire our employees to give back to the community by using their talents, skills and become ambassadors of Choithrams’ CSR programs. In fact, one of our Customer Service Supervisors, Jovielyn Castor is also an awardee [of the] Dakilang Bayani [award] for Sales and Customer Service category. I wanted her to inspire her colleagues with her excellence during our CSR campaigns and to use their talents to help others no matter what rank they are in. I look forward to see more sensible and effective leaders from the Filipino community.”