Maria Katrina Celestino – Receptionist, Administration
I graduated in 2012 taking up Bachelor of Science in Hospitality Management.
Later on, I worked in a Mexican Restaurant for a month and a half. This restaurant offers the best burritos, tacos, nachos and margarita in the town and it also offers good accommodation and exciting activities such as a day of acoustics, Salsa day and so on. Those were the things that I enjoyed about being there and also the people that I worked with everyday, especially with the Mexican couple owner.
Sadly, there was a sudden situation that took me from that work… my Mum was diagnosed with Sarcoma Cancer and she needed me to look after her. I took care of her and sent her to the hospital, and after she received her amputation. During that time I worked as a freelance event coordinator for events such as kiddie parties, weddings, corporate events, birthdays, and while at home I also sold goods online.
This trial did not stop me from dreaming of my goals, instead it gave me motivation and encouragement to move on and help my family. I decided to work full-time and seek help in taking care of my Mum while I was away and that was when the time I found work with a corporate company as a Facilities Coordinator.
I worked with the company as a third-party vendor for 9 months, acting as the first point of service request calls and requisitions through data and voice support, and that’s when I dealt with different types of personalities which made me become more effective in analysing the problem and taking action to solve it. Often, I worked with the permit approval of the vendors who were going to work inside the building premises. At first, it challenged me as I was in a newbie stage but I analysed the process, how I can get an approval, how I would manage the documents and keep it accordingly, and who I would for seek help when needed. And those were the things that drove me to step up, be more accountable, and I came to enjoy what I was working on.
Those nine months were full of never ending learning until it brought me to work direct in the company that I am working for as a third-party vendor. And that was my biggest breakthrough because I prayed for it. I was assigned in the company as a Receptionist / Facilities Coordinator and that was the first time that our client hired a service provider for the company for supporting administrative, facilities management and helpdesk tasks. This brought more challenges for me as I worked with my Senior Facilities Manager in providing Standard Operation Procedure, Business Continuity Plan, Team Manual, Vendor Management, Security Management to meet the service level of agreement gradually.
I am fond of analysing, observing and planning for improvement of processes and diligently working on the things that need to be accomplished.
After 1 year when my Senior Facilities Manager was on Maternity Leave, I was assigned to replace her while she was on leave for 3 months. This surprised me as I did not expect that I had been recognised as having the potential to manage and lead an account. And that is when I learned to manage a team, process vendor invoicing and payment, prepare monthly reports and became a front liner reporting to our foreigner client. Those were the certain tasks that were added to my load that developed my character towards work. And with perseverance and endurance I was promoted when my Senior Facilities Manager resigned and I replaced her to manage the account for 3 years after.
Seven years in total working in that company taught me a lot of things and by God’s grace and guidance, I became more mature to know what is really important and I needed to prioritise.
Learning that working daily is not just about having money to live on, I’ve come be a firm believer that if someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Helping others regardless of the limited resources that you have, as long as you are skilled, learning in progress, we can help unconditionally whether you are inside the work or inside house. In every aspect of life, we are working in a different way as long as you love what you are doing and know that God is the center of it, we will never get tired.
For a copy of Maria’s resume please click here.