Continually building upon one’s strength is a motto which the recent Young ASEAN Managers Award (YAMA) winner lives by, and has worked well to motivate himself and those around him.
Mr Loke Chang Yueh, winner of the recent Young ASEAN Managers Award (YAMA) 2014 and Appointed Actuary at Great Eastern Malaysia, believes that a good manager is someone who can cultivate the best qualities of an individual.
“The key to personal development is building on who you already are because each of us is different and has a unique set of talents and passions.
However, we tend to focus more time fixing our lesser qualities rather than enhancing our strengths. The resulting atmosphere often becomes negative when we forget to notice what is going well and this ultimately demoralises good employees,” he said.
Mr Loke came out top amongst a group of young managers in the yearly competition organised by the ASEAN Insurance Council, which seeks to find inspiring individuals that can motivate and lead others in shaping a dynamic pool of insurance talent in Southeast Asia.
Back to basics
While it is important that the life insurance industry positions itself in ways that appeal to various consumer segments, Mr Loke believes that the fundamental message of life insurance remains a simple and endearing one for all.
“In its simplest form, insurance is based on the concept of risk-sharing. For example, the element of insurance is still apparent in funerals of many cultures where there is a mutual understanding to contribute money to the family of the deceased to help with funeral costs.
The role of insurance as a social protection mechanism by supporting individuals to recover from sudden misfortune by relieving financial burden is often overlooked and has not been well-conveyed.”
Advice to young professionals
Mr Loke believes today’s generation of talent is not only tech-savvy but also holds a desire to make an impact on people’s lives.
In that regard, the social and economic value of insurance should always be emphasised, and insurers should leverage on the latest advancements in technology to stay relevant.
“The industry should focus on promoting their involvement with the latest ideas, for example, big data; and stay up to-date with social media trends to build their brand and image.”
On a final note, he added that aspiring leaders should remain humble and always be eager to learn in order to expand their skill set.
“I believe talent is helpful but perseverance with a healthy dose of optimism and self-control will take one very far. Therefore, one needs to develop the habits of hard work and determination to maximise chances of success; and not solely rely on aptitude.”