Best of Both Worlds
Rina Paras-Victorio is a fine example of a woman who thrives in her career and in motherhood.
Rina Paras-Victorio is much like any modern mom; she works full-time while running a household and raising her five-year-old daughter. As the chief operations officer in her family's cable and Internet service business, Rina oversees the daily operations of their business. Disciplined and organized, she makes a checklist on what she needs to accomplish and follows a schedule throughout the day. She attributes her hardworking attitude to her experience growing up, wherein she and her siblings were exposed to business at a young age. “My parents used to own a Burger Shop (way before Jollibee and McDonald's existed in Cagayan de Oro) and they would bring us there almost everyday. We all helped out being cashiers or waitresses when we got a little older. We saw how hard our parents worked. My father used to flip burgers and my mom was a cashier, so I believe that made a huge impact in what kind of work or business we would eventually get into.” Rina is straightforward when it comes to her staff, letting them know when she is disappointed with how things go, but admits to being quite flexible when it comes to her staff who are mothers like herself.
Handling a career and raising a family is a juggling act that Rina manages with ease. “I'm not the stay-at-home wife type because I grew up seeing my mom work hand in hand with my dad. I also like earning my own keep. But my husband knows, when I get home, my focus is on him, our daughter, and on keeping the house organized and well stocked with supplies.”
Despite her busy schedule, Rina finds the time to be a full-time mom to Mikaela. “I am fortunate that the business that I am in and the livelihood that I do allow me to be a full-time mom and career mom, all at the same time.” She reveals that with her current schedule, she is able to bring her daughter to school every morning before she goes off to work. She then picks her up from school and they spend the afternoon together in the office. “ We then do our groceries or do errands in between or after work. Since we stopped hiring a nanny for her when she turned two, I found a way to make her independent enough to be with trusted relatives or co-worker, when I need to join a meeting or attend to something important for work,” she explains.
Much like in her work, Rina puts in as much effort and energy into being a mom and wife. She admits to being a disciplinarian, “My daughter knows that when I say 'no,' it really means no. No amount of wailing or crying will change it.” She says that she talks to Mikaela when she does something “bad”, making sure to explain to her why what she did was not right.
Some of the important values that Rina would like to impart to her daughter are “simplicity, honesty and integrity, above all else” and adds that, “I always remind her of how fortunate she is and that she should always be thankful.”
Rina and her husband Ravi run several businesses together. Of this she says, “We're a good team. He's the extrovert—talking to clients,negotiating with suppliers and meeting the staff while I like staying in the background and working on the finances.”
Rina has lived in Cagayan de Oro for most of her life and believes that she has always been a probinsyana at heart. “I never fancied going to clubs or going out at night, so going back home and getting involved in the business [in CDO] was an easy decision to make after college in Manila.”
Describing her life in CDO, Rina exclaims, “I love my life in CDO. It’s urban, in a sense, that it has all the amenities a big city like Manila would have (restaurants, malls, and etc.) but the rural feel of provincial life with the trees and mountains you are surrounded with. Plus, it’s hardly traffic!”•