Congratulations on your appointment as regional director, Southeast Asia of the Hong Kong Tourism Board. What is your strategy for your first 100 days in the role?
Immediately, we are looking to align our strategic plans at the beginning of the new financial year. More importantly, we also want to focus on creating synergy by pulling our teams across five Southeast Asian markets. I have also had the opportunity to meet up with various industry and media partners across the region. It has been very interesting gaining direct insights into each market, and understanding better how consumers in these respective markets respond to campaigns and plan their travels.
What is your most memorable and significant career moment?
I have been with HKTB for almost six years, and I learn more about the industry and consumer patterns each year. I am now based in Singapore, which is the third city I have relocated to in the span of my career. I have also worked and lived in Shanghai and Taipei. Each move has been very memorable to me as I have experienced different living and working environments, cultures as well as met people along the way.
What is your favourite aspect of the job?
Business travel is a love and hate thing, but meeting people from different cultures in five markets is pretty interesting, and quite inspiring. There is also a sense of hometown pride in working and contributing to the city where I am from, and sharing its wonders with others. Working on different campaigns over the years, Hong Kong never ceases to amaze me with new and different discoveries and places of interest.
What is your go-to method to keep calm when chaos strikes on the office front?
Always step back, look at the problem from different angles and try to be open to different perspectives and solutions. I strongly believe that things or problems can be solved in many ways, and getting members of the team to contribute their opinions and insights is very helpful.
How do you decide on accommodation or which hotel to stay in when travelling for leisure?
It depends on the destination. I would definitely go for the look and feel of the room when visiting a beach as I prefer a cosy rather than glamorous setting when it comes to hotel ambience. However, location would be the main priority if it is a city destination.
What are some of your favourite ways to unwind after work?
When you are always travelling like I am, it is nice to be able to spend time at home and just relax. I usually de-stress by practising yoga or just watching Netflix.
What book are you reading at the moment?
I am currently rereading an old book, The Secret Letters of the Monk Who Sold His Ferrari by Robin Sharma. I find it quite motivational and inspiring, as it encourages readers to view life through different perspectives and examine how our habits can affect our goals.
What would be your typical weekend activity?
Weekends are for me-time. A normal weekend would be hitting the gym, grocery shopping and enjoying a great cup of coffee at home.
This interview first appeared on June 4, 2018 in The Edge Malaysia.