THESE days, it’s easy to underestimate young people in the workforce. Fresh-faced, wide-eyed yuppies can be seen as underqualified or overly ambitious.
But at the ripe age of 28, Alex Aquino—Jpark Island Resort & Waterpark Cebu’s public relations and marketing communications manager—proves that youth does not equate to inexperience.
After graduating Business Management from San Beda College Alabang (as magna cum laude, no less), Aquino went on to be a flight attendant for two years, followed by a series of jobs in some of the capital’s most posh hotels including Solaire Resort & Casino and New World Manila Bay Hotel.
Back in college, Aquino’s goal was to put up his own restaurant or resort, but plans took a change of course when his mother encouraged him to work in a hotel after his stint as a flight attendant. Almost a decade of being in the hotelier industry, he enjoys the continuous learning, always innovating himself and his marketing strategies.
Before he moved to Cebu for a full-time position at Jpark, Aquino frequented the Queen City for Sinulog and vacation. “I found a place where there is a perfect mix of business and leisure. Cebu felt like a second home to me,” he said. When the opportunity to relocate came to him, he jumped on it right away.
Aquino has been with Jpark for two years now, being one of the youngest members on the resort’s management team. In this span of time, he has already taken great strides to bring the Jpark brand forward and showcase it more to the market, both local and international.
Last year, he spearheaded the groundbreaking of Jpark Island Resort & Waterpark Panglao Bohol, the biggest family waterpark resort in the country. Since he joined in 2017, the resort’s domestic market went from two percent to eight percent this year, a promising rate of growth. “This means that a lot of locals are now aware of the brand and what we offer as a 100 percent Cebuano/Filipino brand with global recognition,” Aquino said.
According to him, being a team leader is 60 percent people management and 40 percent skill set.
“Skills can be learned, but people management is the real challenge. As a leader, I always see to it that we work in harmony, and that we sound and work as one,” he explained.
For budding, aspiring individuals who want to work in marketing, Alex urged them to take opportunities, whether it’s for career development or for personal growth; and to not be afraid to try and commit mistakes. “Millionaires were not made overnight. They kept on trying, failing, and then winning.”
Alex Aquino and his thriving career serves as a fine example to his generation that a strong work ethic and bright creativity will get you places, both in the literal and figurative sense of the phrase. (S)