When their children graduate from college, parents who have a family business usually ask their children to join the business.
However, Bryant William Cuison took a different route. The 34-year old business management graduate of De La Salle University opted to work in the corporate world to hone his background in business. He also has a Master’s in Entrepreneurship from the Asian Institute of Management.
Cuison, general manager of Wilkonstruct Corp, worked first with SM Malls for the first three years of his corporate life. He then joined Ayala Land Inc. (ALI) until 2014. “I gained valuable exposure working with these two property heavyweights,” says Cuison.
“In SM, I was exposed to the development of condominiums. Meanwhile, I learned valuable knowledge on property development in ALI,” adds Cuison.
In 2014, Cuison learned from his father that he was needed to join the business because he was told that it was time for him to slow down. “My father asked me to take over the business because he wanted to retire. Together with my brother, we took over the business,” says Cuison.
The Cuison patriarch worked as an architect in several countries until 1990. His return to Pangasinan led him to the establish Cuison Builders. “My father saw vast reconstruction opportunities in the Northern Luzon right after the 1990 tremor,” notes Cuison. Cuison Builders was later incorporated into Wilkonstruct.
Wilkonstruct, built on a strong, customer-oriented foundation, is into general construction services like design and build and project management. Its team of construction professionals has helped the family-owned enterprise grow into a reliable, fast and cost-efficient company.
Cuison says the corporate experience helped him manage the company as the working years in the project management department of ALI helped a lot when their company worked on condominium development.
Some of their projects are a residential condominium in Ayala Hillside, a business process outsourcing office in Ortigas and a pre-school in Mandaluyong City. Other projects include the Splash Corp. office, HBC Direct Sales office, California Pizza Kitchen, Cafe Benê (SM Clark) and CD-R King (Puregold, Pasig).
His younger brother, also a graduate of DLSU, helps him manage the business.
Cuison says his father asks him to give updates on the business during Sundays over lunch. “He always keeps on repeating the tips he has given me when I took over the company,” says Cuison.
“My father always puts emphasis on professionalism which makes sense to ensure the sustainability of our business,” adds Cuison.
The first years of running the business was difficult because Cuison didn’t have a technical background. Gradually, he learned the important aspects of the business such as costing. “I was required to have a faster learning curve because it was necessary,” says Cuison.
His routine officially starts at 9 a.m. by reporting to the office. After checking the office operations, he goes to the field by visiting at least three sites. “It is important to get the situation on the ground to ensure the projects are on the right track,” says Cuison.
“I also entrust competent people to supervise the construction,” adds Cuison.
A believer in the importance of having a sound body and a sound mind, he goes to the gym to have workout for one hour before going to work.
Upon taking over the helm of the business, Cuison introduced a new design of the office and computerized the operations.
It was a different route Cuison took before joining a family business. Working for other companies gave him the experience and the knowledge which he later found useful in running the family-owned Wilkonstruct.