Mothers know best. This quote held true for Nicole Alexis Tan since it was her mother that pushed for her and her two siblings to be enrolled in Kumon. Initially, her mother only wanted her and her brother, Ethan, to do something for the summer. But as the benefits of the method became apparent in her progress in school, staying long term in the program and aiming for completion were already in sight for Alex.
“Coming from a Chinese family, it was important that my siblings and I were good in school which is why my mom decided to look for a supplementary program to enhance our math skills. Aside from that, my mom knows how crucial it is to have solid math skills since she is an accounting graduate herself.”
Indeed, Alex, as she is fondly called by her family and friends, can attest to how both the academic and character building benefits of the Kumon Program helped her in school and beyond. In fact, she is now a bachelor’s degree graduate in Management, with a minor in Marketing and has a budding career at Unilever Philippines.
Character Development in Kumon
The most significant skills Alex has gained from Kumon are time management, self-discipline and perseverance. For time management, she learned how to balance her time between school and other activities, plus she learned how and what to prioritize. “If I had free time during a school day, I would start doing my worksheets since I know I would be busy with other school work for the next few days.”
For self-discipline, she learned this as she answered the Kumon worksheets which she learned on her own. “I was able to apply this also in school because not everything is taught by teachers. I had to study certain topics on my own which made it easier for me to catch up with what is needed.”
For perseverance, she learned how to just keep on trying until she get it right. “I can’t give up with my workload and with what I am doing because I need to do it. I actually see the effects now that I am working. “
Kumon and Her Career Path
Alex currently works at Unilever Philippines as a Category Operations Manager. She is the link of the sales team to everyone else, specifically she is the middle man to everything. She is a part of the homecare team so she and her teammates handle certain brands. Technically, her team runs the business because they talk to both the supply and the demand side.
“I have certain processes to follow since I am part of the main company; but in terms of training, I am able to apply the training I have undergone in Kumon. I was able to apply the rigor of training modules for promoters in the same way that I experienced the rigor of answering the worksheets.”
Also, the company is flexible in terms of time since they work based on output. So Alex would need to be disciplined in terms of time management.
“Through Kumon, I have developed self-discipline which has allowed me to allocate my time well and optimize my work to finish at a shorter and faster time. I can find easier ways to do things and I can prioritize what to do first.”
Words of Wisdom
What advice can Alex give to current Kumon students who are either nearing completion or experiencing difficulties in their Kumon study?
Never give up and really focus on the learning you will gain from your journey. If you focus on the hardships or difficulties you encounter, you will give in and give up. But if you focus on what you will get after, that will serve as your motivation to continue and complete.
In fact, Alex assures her fellow Kumon students that they will gain a better appreciation of the program once they see and feel the benefits in school or at work. She encourages them not to look at the difficulty now and to not let the difficulty stop them.
“Always keep in mind that you will not only learn the formulas, but you will also develop character.”