For a man who has seen it all, done it all, and oversaw all the inner workings of top management while still being a relevant figure in the scene today, hard work and dedication are all but an understatement for this stalwart of the corporate world.
And with almost four decades of experience as a business leader, MgtStrat Senior Consultant Romy Serrano and the firm’s resident/Head Executive Coach, is now pursuing his passion. He wants to equip the next generation of leaders by helping these individuals go from where they were, to where they want themselves and their company to be.
“My number-one aspiration is to share my talents and experiences with people, whether they are executives or not,” says Romy Serrano, who has been with MgtStrat since 2010.
After formally retiring in 2008 from an illustrious career with various multinational companies, Romy had himself certified as an executive coach. “I pursued executive coaching because I always find fulfillment in helping individuals become a better leader and a better person.”
Romy, a highly sought-after executive coach in the country, traces his passion early on in his corporate career. “I noticed that I like to work with people. And in all the roles I had, I would always have a group of people that I would be mentoring. I find fulfillment helping people develop their careers, their life goals, and issues. And I knew that this passion would be something I would pursue after my corporate life.”
After finishing his Bachelor of Science in Commerce degree at San Beda, Romy completed the Management Development Program course at the Asian Institute of Management. He then pursued the Advanced Management Program and International Senior Management Program of the prestigious Harvard Business School. He also got his certification as an Executive Coach by Austrian-based AIMS (Association of International Management Search) later on.
Romy spent 26 years with Kodak Philippines/Eastman Kodak International where he held more than 15 positions within the company. Initially a credit representative, he switched to sales, to training, to HR, to running the business unit, and finally getting expatriated to Taiwan, New York, and Hong Kong. When he came back in 1992, he was appointed as president of Kodak Philippines. He availed of an early retirement from Kodak but the knack for productivity just wouldn’t let him be. After a couple of months of getting “bored,” he decided to go back to the corporate world, becoming the country manager for Motorola Philippines and then manning the helm for Fuji Xerox as President and CEO.
So when he finally retired, Romy decided to pursue his passion to help others through executive coaching — and it just doesn’t seem he is going to tire of it. Ever.
“Management Strategies helped me accomplish my personal mission (of helping people develop) by being my vehicle to accomplish my passion,” says Romy, who tried his hand at executive coaching for another consultancy firm right after retirement before finding his heart and home with MgtStrat.
“I have done it with another consulting company, and I even considered doing it on my own. But I’m sure I will not be enjoying it as much as I enjoy doing it with MgtStrat,” he adds.
Romy says the relationship he has with the company is “a good combination of work and fun.” He notes that he loves being with a team that offers quality work for all their clients. “MgtStrat does not offer canned programs. They will always design for the specific needs of the client. Secondly, the MgtStrat family is the kind of people that I’d like to work with. Very talented, fun-loving, dedicated, they are enjoyable not only at work but outside of work. And they keep me thinking young when I’m engaged with them. I bring the old school, and they bring the new school,” he quips.
“Working with MgtStrat also keeps me young.”
His time with MgtStrat, likewise, had its fair share of memorable moments but certainly one or two stand out.
“One memorable experience was when we sat down to design or develop the strategic plan of MgtStrat. That’s very memorable for me because that was the first time I was really engaged with the partners of the company and I think what we’ve established during that period up to now, is still there.”
Another MgtStrat milestone for Romy was the time he helped the company develop Executive Coaching into one of its services. “Before my role was just to do Executive Coaching programs for clients. But when we went further ahead, we developed executive coaching as an MgtStrat product.”
According to Romy, coaching is not about teaching. He says coaches are there to facilitate the thinking process of the coachee by asking them questions, facilitating positive change by improving quality of thinking. “Executive Coaching is facilitating the thinking process of an executive in order to improve performance and for change to occur,” says Romy, stressing that as coaches, they don’t tell clients what to do but help the person discover other perspectives and mindsets.
“Coaching brings out ‘aha’ moments.”
For Romy, he appreciates MgtStrat’s non-stop development as a business consulting company. “MgtStrat doesn’t rest on its laurels…and they treat each client differently, addressing the same problems yet providing customized solutions.”
“In the future, I hope MgtStrat will further promote coaching and enhance the capabilities of our coaching pool. Our coaching pool is composed of former CEOs and executives. And that is one of our unique selling propositions.”