Lalen Calayan: Valuing family in the business

By Caryll Arcayan January 08,2018

Family is not just an important thing, it’s everything.” – Michael J. Fox

Everything we’ve learned and gained, we owe to our family. The family is a valuable part of who we are and it is a legacy we can give to the next generation.

Raised by a family of medical doctors who share a legacy of nurturing lives, Calayan Medical Group (CMG) CEO Lalen Calayan knows that it meant hard work, discipline, collaboration, respect, and love to continue the legacy which his grandparents have started.

My late grandfather taught me to give importance in carrying our name through continuing our family legacy. My grandmother, who is my main source of inspiration, keeps telling me to never stop innovating and progressing. Our family business must evolve from time to time and this pushed me to bring the family business further,” said Lalen.

Along the way, Lalen met some challenges within his family, but this did not stop him from pursuing the goal of moving the business forward.

The hardest problem I encountered was when we had a major family squabble. It affected my life and my business performance. Luckily, I was able to overcome it with the unconditional support of most of my family and relatives especially my grandmother, my life partner Selina, my friends, and several business colleagues. They gave me the inner strength to keep going. Of course, prayer works above all and it moves mountains. Right now, it made me realize that as long as you hold the truth and you only do what is right, you will be able to overcome everything,” he said.

Aside from his own family, he considers his business partners and employees an extension of his family tree believing that managing the business is like managing a home.

With his flagship business venture, ML Calayan in Cebu, he also sought a remarkable partnership with Cebu’s powerhouse couple, Amparito and Michel Lhuillier whom he treats as family and business mentors at the same time.

They are very successful people, but believe it or not they still go to their offices every day and start very early. I learned to start my day early because of them, and it made a big difference. I learned gratitude and humility from them also. I always hear encouraging words from them whenever they talk to people, which motivated me to start the day with a positive spirit. I also want to take this opportunity to greet Mr. Michel Lhuillier a happy happy birthday! It’s his birthday on January 8,” added Lalen.

Contrary to popular belief that family and business should be separate entities, the family is at the core of every business’ success which Lalen proved himself.

The best experience I had with ML Calayan is having clients that are like family to me. I was able to establish deeper relationships with loyal clients that are now a few of my friends.”

As the new year brings new opportunities for Lalen, he gears up to new challenges like bringing ML Calayan to the retail industry or entering it into franchising.

I am okay with these plans. I just need to equip the entire organization with all necessary tools so we won’t go astray. Another thing, there is a big chance that this year 2018, I will start a food business venture. Food is an integral part of wellness.”

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