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Peter’s Formula For Global-ready Career
HIS CAREER aspiration is to work in a global IT business setting where he could participate in tactical and strategic decision-making. And Peter Seow Kim Chye’s formula for career success is straightforward:
CQ (Competency Quotient) = IQ (Intelligence Quotient) + EQ (emotional Quotient)
Competency Quotient is the display of specialist competency and professional skills in dealing with real world issue. Intelligence Quotient is the knowledge, experience and expertise acquired over the years of investigative and participative engagement. And Emotional Quotient is the display of people-centric leadership that brings people together through active engagements.
Confidence in his career development stems from Peter’s academic foundation. In 2000, he graduated from the SIM Graduate Diploma in Business Administration (Grad Dip BA) followed by a Masters of Business in Information Technology (MBIT) from SIM-RMIT University in 2008.
Refining CQ through education
From his experience, Peter, 42, observes that working in the IT industry requires professionals to have detailed knowledge of the integration of hardware and software with the business model. This integration is a common requirement where businesses are increasing adopting business process modelling to get the best outcome from their IT investments. Specialised knowledge in these areas can be acquired through formal education, such as the courses provided by SIM, which help to strengthen the foundation of each new batches of students joining the profession.
"I chose the MBIT programme to gain better insights in business IT management," says Peter. "I have benefited significantly from the course. The lessons and research projects helped build my competency in developing and delivery IT solutions. Without such knowledge, I would not be able to deliver solutions that meet the business needs.
"In class, we had to make presentations to share our views and research materials. But the learning curve wasn’t steep because we were all studying as a group and helping one another along the way. Most of my classmates were also from the IT industry so we shared common challenges and difficulties. This meant we could share solutions with customisation against each business environment model."
Peter’s attitude towards his studies epitomised the global-ready student. He did well in the programme, winning the IBM Award for Overall Top Student for Masters of Business in Information Technology.
Managing beyond Singapore
As Head of Global Infrastructure with a British MNC, Peter chart out the strategic and tactical initiatives alongside the group’s CIO. His key objectives are to bring about global alignment in the adoption of technologies and ensure resiliency with consistency in the delivery of global IT services. Having strong CQ helps Peter map his career progressively as he passionately pursues his goal of globalisation from Singapore.
"Being tasked with oversight on the operations of the IT infrastructure across five regions requires me to keep myself updated on technologies and to constantly remind myself to work empathetically with people, delivering results along the way," he says.
Search for innovation
On the personal front, Peter says he enjoys surfing the Internet for materials on IT innovations, business management theories, and related themes.
"I’m reading a book, Jony Ive's The Genius Behind Apple’s Greatest Products. The reason for picking this book is that IT innovations are developed by people, for people. We often forget our audience and it’s good to re-capture the endpoint as frequently as is possible. After all, IT exists as a business enabler. That’s a constant challenge to bring out the best of IT in the hands of P-E-O-P-L-E."
Peter also does his bit in developing the next generation of IT professionals. He is currently mentoring three students from SIM. The mentoring adds realism to the students' perspective about working in the industry. In turn, Peter hopes to learn the students’ point of view on innovation, new technologies and how IT enables people's daily lives.
"The students are intelligent and inquisitive about the industry. I would like to help beef up their soft skills by advising them on how to put these skills into practice. I would also be able to help them improve their research methods for their Final Year Project and to provide real world examples of technology adoption."
On a practical note, Peter points out that to be where you want to be career-wise really depends on two things – opportunity and readiness. When opportunity knocks on your door, you would have to be ready, or it simply slips away.
Peter's final words to students and those taking the first step in the working world: "Be passionate in what you do. Once you lose passion in life, you lose life itself."
Peter (centre) plays mentor to SIM students whom he describes as “intelligent and inquisitive”.
– Posted online, September 23, 2014