Christie, what is your take on the current state of employment and hiring conditions in Singapore?
I remember once, when Minister Mentor Lee Kuan Yew was asked on what Singaporeans are like, and his reply was that we are a hardworking, intelligent and honest people.
In line with his words, I also personally believe that we are able to overcome this current economic crisis if we started to look at the big picture, and join forces to explore more ways of collaboration. For example, in these current challenging times, businesses should look into new ways to empower their employees and give them a sense of ownership, security, and also explore developing new products and services to stay ahead of the competition.
While on the other hand, jobseekers should actively look for untapped areas of hidden business potential to explore, be open to training to learn new skill sets, and do more active networking to expand their job opportunities and circle of useful contacts.
What are some important business observations that you can share?
Firstly, the leaders and managers of any organization must connect with their frontline staff and also lead by example, as this is the best way to achieve productivity and inspire their staff to give their best as well.
Secondly, in today’s challenging business climate, Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) can help a company to foster a positive public image and this can also ultimately create strong customer loyalty and help the company to grow its customer base as well.
Thirdly, even though working life can be really stressful these days, we should always remember to be sincere and have a personal touch when we interact with clients and colleagues as well – this is a fundamental principle to creating a gracious and harmonious society.
Ray Kroc, the founder of McDonald’s – which is today the most successful fast food restaurant globally, was 53 years old and suffering from diabetes when he set up the McDonald’s Restaurants franchise in USA in 1961.
This to me, is a really inspiring success story of a Silver Talent (older workers) overcoming the odds and is definitely a strong motivational story for jobseekers both young and old too.
What is your advice for young people / students to strengthen their career prospects when they graduate?
1) Take up service jobs
(either part time or full time) – this is where you can learn about how to provide good customer service and add value to your job. The reason for this is because in a service job, you are essentially in a frontline position interacting with the customer on a daily basis, and this will enable you to learn how to deal with people effectively, professionally, and also solve problems confidently as they arise.
2) There are no shortcuts in life
– in whatever you do, it’s never a good idea to try and take the easy way out because in the end, you will only get hurt and lose out.
To find out more about Christie’s success story, click here.