Moving Forward with Confidence
Fill in the blank with an adjective that describes yourself best: I am forward-looking.
Please do elaborate on why you chose the adjective above.
I have always believed that one should be forward-looking and embrace the present and future, and let the past be lessons for tomorrow.
What sparked your interest in running a business?
Ever since I was young, I’ve always been interested in business. I started my first online business when I was twelve! Things picked up and I became more business savvy. I started new ventures, read more books and attended business schools.
My father started out running a small contractor business with two other partners. The company never recovered from bad times and the two partners left the debt-ridden company. Although I had no initial interest in this particular industry, I knew my father was reluctant to let go of his lifelong work so I asked if he would be interested in rebuilding the company with me.
It has been seven years since, and we are grateful that the tides have turned and Newway, our company, has become one of the most trusted and innovative brands of our industry.
Why did you choose to study the Engineering Business Management programme at SIM-University of Warwick?
As a business graduate, I knew I had to pick up engineering knowledge and skills that were relevant to my industry. As my business focused on air conditioning and mechanical ventilation systems, this was an ideal course for me.
What do you think are the key advantages of studying the programme?
It has to be the strategic partnership between the University of Warwick, A*Star and SIM GE. This collaboration meant that we got to learn from the top lecturers in UK, and also the best researchers in Singapore.
The diverse mix of international students from around the world also contributed to a deepened cultural understanding as well as global thinking. This greatly benefits me as part of my work requires me to speak at international conferences.
What business principles did you pick up from the programme and apply at work?
There is a general misconception when it comes to function and performance and I learnt most from the teaching culture at Warwick, and my alma-mater Ngee Ann Polytechnic. Both schools share a distinctive culture that focuses on personal development rather than just functional results.
This made me realise that a high-performance culture has to be purpose-driven and built around motivated people who share the same values. This was the ethos that enabled our business to achieve exponential growth over the years despite the mounting challenges and limited resources.
You graduated as the class valedictorian. What do you think were the factors that were instrumental in helping you achieve this?
It was not easy, especially when you have competitive classmates from autonomous universities and other top overseas universities with first-class degrees. I can only say I was blessed to have the great support of my family, friends, colleagues and mentors to do well both academically and professionally as I juggled between work, study and family life.
What are your plans for the near future?
We have new plans to leverage on our expertise and develop new innovations that offer greater value to our customers. Sustainability is at the top of our minds, and we hope to do more to contribute to the circular economy.
Also, I am honoured to be recommended for doctorate studies by our academic head, Dr Christopher Lim, and remain keen to further my studies when things settle down. Learning never stops!
#IChoseTheSIMPathway #ThisIsMyStory #GlobalHero
Posted online, 07 Oct 2019