In Memoriam (AQ)

Posted on: June 3, 2009

Here’s the blog that we were supposed to publish in our new magazine website. But since the big B doesn’t want anything that mentions Asian Quality, I had to tweak the whole article and somehow make it appear like there was no previous magazine before this whole MS Asia thing came. I hate it actually. So, for my own peace of mind, I am still publishing the original version… here in my own blog.

FROM THE GROUND AND BACK AGAIN

It was never a ‘goodbye’ Asian Quality for me from the moment I have learned that we will have to shut its pages to give way to a new publication aimed at advancing the quality of learning and information sharing that we have been providing the reading public.

As a matter of fact, like a mother to her child who’s just about to graduate, I have never felt prouder. Asian Quality is moving a gallop higher.

On the pages of Asian Quality aren’t only blotted inks that represent words and images. There lies an ingenuous effort to pull together all sorts of information that wold shed a much brighter light on the subject of Quality, Productivity and Business Process Improvement – an area, if not ignored, less noticed in the business arena (or at least in Asia as manifested by the scarcity of publications / print media that caters to the subject with a regional touch).

Armed with only guts, very limited resources and just about enough knowledge on publishing, we found ourselves in the magazine business. I remember writing the following during that particularly difficult stage when it felt like bringing a magazine to life is next to impossibility:

“With this kind of job, I have to do away with my indecisive attitude and forget about myself. I have to be thick when necessary. I have to be resourceful and quick-witted. otherwise, I’d be stagnant. And so I wrote thousands (okay, exaggeration) or hundreds of emails to various people whom I felt are potential subject matter expert writers for the magazine. Most of them ignored my mail while a few wrote back and promised to contribute. But hey, promises are made to be broken… so really, I didn’t hope. I needed a plan B so I relied on referrals. I emailed and made a bunch of phone calls to strangers until I got answers… or more aptly, until I got the articles. I contacted prominent names in the industry and asked / begged for appointments for interview hoping I’d be lucky enough to have these people featured in the magazine. In my mind, we are all people, and given the right kind of attitude, we can reach what we are aiming for.”

And now, with the “re-birth” of AQ, it’s like going through the whole same process again. But this time around, we know exactly what to do.

Establishing a magazine from the ground is far from a walk in the ‘Avenue of Stars’ at Tsim Sha Tsui on a sunny afternoon while sipping a Mocha Frap. It is, by far, the most challenging responsibility I have ever handled since I came out [after college] into the real world. I was somehow convinced that what you learn in college, while they can be helpful, doesn’t necessarily apply.

With AQ, I’ve learned <!– /* Font Definitions */ @font-face {font-family:"Cambria Math"; panose-1:2 4 5 3 5 4 6 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:roman; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-1610611985 1107304683 0 0 159 0;} @font-face {font-family:Calibri; panose-1:2 15 5 2 2 2 4 3 2 4; mso-font-charset:0; mso-generic-font-family:swiss; mso-font-pitch:variable; mso-font-signature:-1610611985 1073750139 0 0 159 0;} /* Style Definitions */ p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal {mso-style-unhide:no; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; margin:0in; margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.4gd; mso-para-margin-left:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:.0001pt; mso-line-height-alt:5.0pt; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri; mso-bidi-font-family:"Times New Roman";} .MsoChpDefault {mso-style-type:export-only; mso-default-props:yes; font-size:10.0pt; mso-ansi-font-size:10.0pt; mso-bidi-font-size:10.0pt; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-fareast-font-family:Calibri; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri;} @page Section1 {size:8.5in 11.0in; margin:1.0in 1.0in 1.0in 1.0in; mso-header-margin:.5in; mso-footer-margin:.5in; mso-paper-source:0;} div.Section1 {page:Section1how to follow my gut feel and deliver within the allocated resources – and I’m talking about manpower, hardware, software, budget, and even skills. Add the fact that while you are compelled to learn by yourself, you can only pray for guidance.

AQ is not a failure. I am not taking offense but some people have the tendency to assume that the so-called ‘folding-up’ of its pages is synonymous to raising the white flag. Of course it isn’t. On the contrary, the very idea that brought forth AQ is the same foundation that we’re using to build this new publication. The same objective applies, this time backed up by a stronger team and higher aspirations. #

The new MS Asia’s website (www.ms-asia.org) will be up in two weeks time! I’m so excited! =)

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