Someone wise and unknown once said, “A mentor is someone whose hindsight, can become your foresight”. The NUS MBA Mentorship Programme is a flexible professional development programme bringing together current MBA students and alumni in an exchange of knowledge, information, insights and experience.
Mentors and mentees meeting for the first time in the 2017 kick off event
Meeting at least three times during a six to seven months mentoring cycle, it helps facilitate the development of relationships between NUS MBA students and its alumni community. This year saw more than 50 mentors including 12 new mentors coming on board.
In an extremely popular Christmas-time movie opening, Hugh Grant says, “Fathers and sons, mothers and daughters, husbands and wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, old friends… If you look for it, I’ve a sneaky feeling you’d find that love actually, is, all around.”
This definitely rings through for Noriko and Jingxiang, Peisha and Yuehua, and Isabel and Miaolei – where our PhD programmes have helped played cupid with these couples. They share about their passion for academic excellence and of course, each other!
A recent survey by BNP Paribas on Global Entrepreneurs revealed that the millennial generation – those born between 1980 and 1995 – are creating more companies in traditional sectors and the new economy. On average, they launch about 8 companies throughout their careers, compared to 3.5 by the older generation. This sudden and strong emergence of a new generation of entrepreneurs under 35 have been dubbed “The Millennipreneurs.”
One of our very own – NUS BBA (Honours) alumnus Jian Liang Low – is a true blue “Millennipreneur”. Since the age of 5, he has been pursuing his passion for entrepreneurship and in his quest, travelled the world breathing in different cultures and personalities. By the age of 19, he has interned in start-ups, founded a few of his own, worked in a venture capital firm, spoke at international conferences and won international competitions – his experiences span across USA, Israel, China and Asia. Perhaps this is why his latest venture Trabble, a personalised, chat-based Concierge service, caters to global travellers who are looking for quick and efficient travel services.
NUS BBA (Honours) alumnus Jian Liang Low, who is passionate about nurturing entrepreneurs
Some 120 recruiters were hosted by NUS Business School’s Career Services team to thank them for their contribution, as well as share and discuss development of talent for a VUCA – Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous – world.
Ms Joan Tay, Executive Director (External Relations) delivering the opening address
As Chief Marketing Officer at StarHub, Alumni Howie Lau leads the branding and marketing strategy of one of Singapore’s largest telcos. It is a challenging task given the dynamic and fast-paced nature of the industry and the diverse needs of his customers. What are some of the tools he keeps in his kit to motivate his team? Howie shares his experiences and views with us:
I heard someone say once: “The beating will only stop when morale improves”. That is not a constructive way to lead. Nobody wakes up wanting to do badly at work. To bring out the best in people, a leader needs to set the environment for the team to perform.
For me, this is where empathy comes in. Empathy involves placing oneself in the position of others. This does not mean giving up one’s viewpoint. It is about finding a common ground to move forward. Used correctly, an empathetic leader can gain the respect and trust of his staff.
Empathy works in at least three areas – goal setting, understanding the business and leadership collaboration.
Last month, a packed hall of students met Bill McDermott, CEO of SAP. With nearly 77,000 employees and 300,000 customers in 190 countries, SAP is the world’s business software market leader. Bill is also the author of “Winners Dream: A Journey from Corner Store to Corner Office”, where he shares his journey from teenage entrepreneur to global CEO.
Bill began his professional career at Xerox, where he worked for 17 years and rose through the ranks to become the company’s youngest corporate officer and division president. He joined SAP in 2002 to lead the North America business, and became the company’s co-CEO in 2010 and its sole CEO in 2014.
However, as a businessman, Bill started his journey at 17, just a little younger than our undergraduates, when he bought his first deli with $5,500 in loans. His promise to his creditors then – if he failed to make any of the repayments as scheduled, he would lose the deli. He paid them back, within two months, a total sum of $7,000, including interest. The deli paid his way through college, and was sold once that purpose was achieved.