Giving Our Best In Tough Times


Amidst the current COVID-19 climate, which will go down in history, while everyone is scuffling to panic buy essentials, I’m fighting figurative fires for my agency’s clients.

When clients express their gratitude towards our pro-activeness and care for their businesses, it struck me that they view us more than just an agency in charge of their digital marketing.

We’re seen as people who are genuinely concerned about their businesses. Of course, the well-being of their business determines ours as well.

There are always people who think that working hard for yourself often means you have to sacrifice the company’s interest.

For instance, if you want to get what you want – higher pay, better benefits – you’ll have to fight for it and even then, you might not get it from your bosses.

And if you’re working hard for the company, you have to compromise yourself – work more than your pay grade, put in more hours than you’re paid for, etc.

But is that really the case? I’d like to think otherwise. Putting in maximum effort into one’s job is more about benefiting from the process and less about giving the company more than it deserves.

Your best often benefits others as well

Some might think I’m an idealist and I’m too naive to believe that others will reciprocate my efforts and not exploit my kindness.

But time and time again, I give my best and more than my all only to receive well-deserved rewards, albeit sometimes after a long wait.

Specifically, how I treat my assigned clients at my agency is sometimes “questionable” to some – why am I doing so much when they probably won’t even know the lengths I went to get what they want.

Hell, my bosses might not even know either. So why give so much when there’s no visibility on my (often) thankless job?

Well, the truth is I didn’t even bother to worry about that and just give it my all.

Because I believe and know that when my efforts do pay off, the outcome justifies all the unsung investment on my part.

Calculate less – it takes too much effort

If I were to keep tabs on how much effort or time I’ve invested in each client, most of my time would be spent on contemplating whether each client is worth it.

The result? Less time and energy to do the actual work.

This might sound counter-intuitive but I personally find more success in working on the clients (and other aspects of my life, too) that require the most attention at that point in time.

Being calculative and too caught up with ROI in terms of time and effort take up way too much unnecessary deliberation. I’d end up doing less at the end of the day and over the long-term.

Call this a “productivity hack” if you will, but it’s really a habit and discipline that I nurtured over time.

I certainly didn’t wake up one day and decide to stop calculating all my inputs and whether they’re worth the outputs – we’re wired to calculate in our heads whether each action is worth the time and effort investment.

My employer’s success is my success too

Since my first day at my current agency, I’ve been putting in 100% every waking moment I’m working.

I still remember the time where I was worried if I could even pass my probation because I knew I wasn’t and still isn’t a good fit for my current position.

There were just about 5 full-time employees at that time in the agency.

But through sheer hard work and dedication, I managed to make it to becoming a people manager and holding some of the agency’s most prized clients.

The point of sharing this is to prove that my efforts did contribute to the agency’s growth into the current 20 to 30-odd team members, albeit we’re not in a very good position now because of the virus outbreak.

Ultimately, the agency’s success will mean I get to enjoy some of the success too.

We’ll have to do more for less now

During unfortunate times, the ones lucky enough to have jobs and income would have to be willing to put in more effort than usual for less rewards.

I just hope everyone who’s concerned about their own job stability with the right mindset would step up their game just to pull through this tough times.

Those who don’t will be removed from the equation in a natural selection manner, sadly.

About the author

Vance Wong

Brain-picker. Cinephile. Koreaboo.


by Vance Wong


Vance Wong

Brain-picker. Cinephile. Koreaboo.