The Looks Department

 

Met up with an university friend Y last weekend. He was quite excited to know that we are in the dating business. He was like, “Hey! Find me a date-la!”

Jamie commented, “Sure, no problem, just sign up as a member, and we will start to find you matches!””Hmm… for you ar, looks must be very important!” Jamie added.Y said, “Aiyah, whatever it is, looks still matter what!”

In this day and age, we soak ourselves in the celebrity culture everyday. No matter where you look, you are constantly bombarded by beautiful people – actors, actresses, models. If you look fatter, or your nose is not as sharp, or your eyes are not as large – you worry that you are as ‘sellable’ as your model-looking friend. Hence, slimming centres and beauty salons are mushrooming – as there’s such a huge demand for their services.

In my line of work… “Oh, Amanda was a great date. She’s funny, she’s intelligent, and we had lots to talk about. We have a lot in common as well. She enjoys travelling too, and she has been to many of the countries I have visited. We exchanged lots of stories.” “Well, as for whether I will ask her out again, I am not so sure really. She’s nice, but erm… I don’t think she’s my type.” “Perhaps you could get me someone who scores higher in the looks department?” And Amanda is not ugly or anything. She’s average looking – like most ladies who walk down Raffles Place (Singapore’s Central Business District)!

Question – Are these guys looking for a soulmate or are they looking for another piece of accessory? Well, of course, not all ladies are angels too. But there’s another blog entry altogether…

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Category: dating101

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Customer Service. Singapore Style.

I lost my personal organizer last Saturday. I still have not come to terms with it. Firstly, I cannot believe I left it in a cab! It's just so unlike me. I always nag Jamie about his forgetfulness, and here I am – misplacing such an important item. I was quite confident that I was going to get it back since it's not an electrical device i.e. PDA, hand phone etc., but an old-school personal organizer. I called up the cab companies to lodge a lost item report. I waited for the Good Samaritan's call, but somehow, the call never came.

So today, I finally gave up, and decided to purchase a new organizer. So – I set out for a search. First stop – Bookstore @ Wheelock. I knew that they have a display of Filofax. Went to the counter and attempted to get assistance. 1st staff I approached – he was like "ya ok, wait" and went on to talk on the phone". I waited. Saw 2nd person. Went up to him to get some help. He said, "oh ok, wait" and proceeded to speak on the phone too. I am a willing customer here, who would most probably buy something, yet nobody would help me. I left the shop in a huff, not before I lodged a complaint.

I headed over to Bookstore @ Takashimaya. Was delighted to see that they have a much larger collection of Filofax. On top of that, I received almost instant service. The lady that I approached came over immediately to unlock the display shelf for me to browse through the organizers. And when I commented that I like a particular design in turquoise, she called up the supplier to ask if they have one in stock. Then she came back to inform me that it would be arriving in 3-4 days time. On top of that, she even offered to call me when it arrives! I was like WOW! The customer service here was on par with most of the fortune 500 companies I’ve come across. My best guess is that they probably implemented a Field Service Management software, of which I was reading the other day on https://www.salesforce.com/products/field-service/resources/what-is-field-service-management/. For an organizer which only cost $40, she was willing to go through such efforts – that's what I call outstanding customer service.

I cannot help but compare the level of service to of course Bookstore @ Wheelock, and the travel agency that I went to earlier this morning. Was there to find out more about the free & easy packages that they have. Was particularly interested in one package, but after the lady checked out the details, turned out that the dates that I have in mind for departure, the air ticket pricing is not out. I asked, "When would the pricing be out?" She's not sure. "Do you think you can call me when you receive the pricing?" Guess what she said?

"No, I can't. But you can always call us back to check. Because we like you do not know when the pricing would be out too." I was thinking to myself… "Hello? Obviously you would know when the pricing would be out, because you will be the one receiving it from the airlines." I just find the situation funny. Here we are – 2 sales people. One who can make approximately $1,000 in sales, and the other $40 in sales. Yet – it's the person who can make $40 in sales who works harder to close the sale and provides outstanding customer service.

Amazing isn't it? Which helps me reaffirm my belief – some people are cut out for customer service, and some people just aren't.

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, AS A COUPLE OF DAYS AGO i HAD GONE THROUGH

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Ms. Sophisticated & Mr. Gentlemanly

 

I was on the phone with one of my partners today. We now regard all our Lunch Actually members/clients as partners. Yes – because we are working on the same side, and we are on the same team – which is to widen their social circle, in view of finding that special someone.

Anyway, let’s call her Ms. Sophisticated. She’s attractive, well-groomed, and she speaks very well. She reminds me of one of those ladies who appear in Tatler. Ms. Sophisticated started telling me about her date. At LA, this is what we call the feedback session where our partners tell us how their date went, so we can help to fine tune the matching criteria. It was her first match, and from the sound of it, it went pretty well! They had a great conversation going, they had lots in common. They swapped stories about family and friends.

The restaurant’s food service was good. Even though the restaurant forgot to split the bill, it was not too awkward (it can be quite embarrassing sometimes, as couples on dates are supposed to go dutch, hence the splitting of bills, if not the guys are always feel as if they are pressured to pay), as the guy offered to pay graciously although, they initially agreed to go dutch. So the guy scored A+ there. Let’s call the guy Mr. Gentlemanly. After dinner, they even went out for drinks. Ms. Sophisticated being the new-age modern woman offered to pick up the tabs this time. And then, Mr. Gentlemanly sent her home, despite nursing a cold and amidst her protests to ask him to go home to rest. What a gentleman! Mr. Sophisticated gave him a whooping 7 out of 10. She said that he was genuine and sincere.

So – sounds like a perfect first date huh? … There’s always a BUT. I knew it was coming.

“So, all in all, Ms. Sophisticated, it went well? Did you exchange contact details?” I asked hopefully. “Yes, we did.” “That’s great then!” “Is there anything you would like to refine in your dating criteria?” I kept my fingers crossed. “Well… he’s… errm, slightly too short.” “Oh.” “I was wearing high heels and I was towering over him. Do you have taller guys?”

It turned out that height is a MUST HAVE for Ms. Sophisticated. I went through her criteria with her over the phone. Turned out that while filling in the forms at our initial consultation, Ms. Sophisticated has put her height criteria as Moderately Flexible. I swiftly changed that to NOT Flexible with a click of a button. So… the search for the perfect match for Ms. Sophisticated continues… Someone like Mr. Gentlemanly but someone who’s taller.

Back to the ‘matching’ board…

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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With or Without Kids

Ever heard of the saying – “Both your spouse and your children are your assets, but remember this – your children are only leasehold properties, whilst your spouse is your freehold property”?

I am not saying that you have to carve out your heart i.e. 50% of your love go to your spouse, 20% go to Child A, 20% go to Child B etc. But what I AM saying is – give priority to your spouse as well, once you have kids.

Some seem to think that having children after the first few years of marriage is a logical next step, as eventually you will run out of things to say to your spouse, so at least you have the children as your “focal point”.

My question is – then what are you going to do when your children leave the nest to lead their own lives. Some cheeky friends have replied – “Oh, don’t worry – you can start focusing on their love lives, their marriages, and their children.”

Personally, I feel that it’s extremely important to date your spouse, even after you have been married for years, and even when you have kids. It’s a matter of priority. Set out a few hours each week, perhaps a Friday night, or a Saturday afternoon – to spend time with each other (without the kids), to find out how each other’s week went, focus on your relationship with your spouse in that couple of hours and not talk about the kids.

I am not a marriage counsellor of course, but I just think it is sad if we cannot have a meaningful marriage if we do not have kids.

Choose your partner wisely then – for what if you and your spouse do not manage to have kids? Then you are stuck with someone whom you will eventually bore of after a while as there’s no so-called ‘focal point’.

Choose someone whom you know you can date for the next 60 years, with or without children.

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Better Be Running

Every morning when I wake up… First things first… I will head over to my PC to check my emails and read the news.

Today, I was greeted by this quote. “EVERY MORNING IN AFRICA, A GAZELLE WAKES UP. IT KNOWS THAT IT MUST RUN FASTER THAN THE FASTEST LION, OR IT WILL BE KILLED. EVERY MORNING IN AFRICA, A LION WAKES UP. IT KNOWS THAT IT MUST OUTRUN THE SLOWEST GAZELLE, OR IT WILL STARVE TO DEATH. IT DOESN’T MATTER WHETHER YOU’RE A LION OR A GAZELLE, WHEN THE SUN COMES IN THE MORNING, YOU’D BETTER BE RUNNING!” Written on a personal computer by a man named Ed, who was dying of Lou Gehrig’s disease. Paralyzed, he could operate his computer only by blinking his eyes

It shook me up.

Better be Running… in business, every minute you stop, your competitor is but another minute closer.

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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“Can you do it?”

Watched the finale of “Daejanggeum” last night.

Now… I understand what the fuss is all about. A truly multi-faceted Korean TV Series. Well, not that I have watched that many to compare with. But – this story really has it all – the good, bad and the ugly. And Daejanggeum – through her perserverance, dedication and resilience truimphed through them all, and found true love.

Talking about true love… her lover’s words really touched me. He told the Emperor, “We ran away from the palace when we had the chance. But I knew that Janggeum’s heart and soul is in medicine – to heal people, so we came back. Because of my love for Janggeum, I will help her achieve her dreams of being a royal physician, no matter what that would cost me, even if it means not having her. That’s my love for her.”

When he was thrown out of the palace, Janggeum ran after him, begging him to stay.

He said, “Now that you have received this position, you must know your place. Your place is with the palace, forget about your personal desires and relationships.”

Janggeum asked him, “Can you do it?” He looked at her, his expression blank, “Yes I can. I have already done so.” And he turned away and walked on.

He did this so that Janggeum will forget about him.

To him – love needs not be owning and having that person.

Love is about sacrifice. Love is about helping the other person grow. Love is making sure she achieves her greatest potential.

That’s love.

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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Prologue

I have been wanting to start this blog for ages, but as all excuses go – I never managed to find the time.

Friends and ex-colleagues have always said to me, “Violet, you have such an exciting and interesting career! Do you have any vacancies? I don’t mind doing some part-time consultation.” I will just chuckle, and say, “Hey, I can’t afford you, ok?!” And we will burst into laughters.

I quit my job in February 2004 and I have never looked back.

Any regrets?

No. I love what I do for a living.

It is not a job. It is a passion, my passion.

Having said that, like any other professions, my chosen career does come with its set of pains and heartaches.

Hence, the birth of this blog – a space where I will share my thoughts, my feelings and my reflections – the life of a modern matchmaker.

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Category: playingmatchmaker, musings

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Violet Lim

VIOLET LIM is a real-life modern matchmaker who has founded Asia's leading lunch dating company Lunch Actually (www.lunchactually.com). Violet is the bestselling author of the dating book 'Lessons From 15,000 First Dates'. She is also an acknowledged dating and relationship expert who has been featured on more than 1000 media coverage including ABC News 20/20, Bloomberg, CNBC Asia, CNN Go, Channel News Asia, USA Today, TV Tokyo and Singapore’s National Day Video 2005 as one of Singapore’s most aspiring people. Violet is happily married to her university sweetheart Jamie and they have two young children.

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