Ong Khing Wee’s (9<sup>th</sup> from right in the back row) lunches regularly with his staff, using the time to listen to them to get to know them better and mentor them informally
Caption: Ong Khing Wee’s (9 th from right in the back row) lunches regularly with his staff, using the time to listen to them to get to know them better and mentor them informally

Beyond the bricks and mortar business of property development and management, CapitaLand Group has emphasised its commitment to building people both within and outside.

In 2011, to put concrete action to this vision, it launched the Because iCare programme . The company-wide campaign aims to encourage employees to speak up and come up with ideas and initiatives or simply to listen with an open mind, and respond with heart to bring about quality improvements within the organisation.

To recognise the efforts of those who displayed the BiC spirit, the BiC Awards were introduced. This month, INSIDE brings you three award winners who embody the BiC spirit.

Listening Abundantly

Project Director, Raffles City Changning, CapitaLand China (East China), Ong Khing Wee often works during lunch. Since being posted to Shanghai in March, he has been using his lunch hour to get to know his subordinates better and mentor them informally. But the man whom colleagues say is “easy-going and really likes to smile” does not consider it work at all.

“We don’t just share about work. We talk about life as well. Being older, I share my experiences from work, too and offer my advice about their career path.”

Khing Wee capitalises on these informal occasions to impart the corporate vision and culture, too.

“Of the six core values, “integrity” and “fairness” has the most direct impact on our department. We need to have integrity when dealing with contractors, consultants and suppliers. And, in order manage the project effectively we need to gain the trust of our business partners by being fair to them.”

As a result of Khing Wee’s hands-on mentoring style, his team has become more empowered and freer to be creative in their solutions to challenges at work. His fine example has also made them feel an affinity to the company and strengthened their loyalty, helping them to think beyond themselves for the good of the Group.

“The task of building people can’t be dependent only on the company providing training to the staff. Each manager should do his or her part by building people in his or her own way.”

Helping Abundantly

CapitaMalls Asia, China’s Wang Xiao Min is the innovative whiz in her office. The Finance Shared Services (FSS) Executive has been responsible for coming up with several different templates to streamline her department’s work, to help make things more efficient and convenient at work.

“I believe in doing everything with passion and having a positive attitude when facing any situation,” said Wang.

That is why when she encountered a less than ideal workflow, she set about coming up with ways to standardise the work. Two improved systems she came up with – one to deal with deposits from debtors and the other to manage the recording of revenue earned - have since been implemented with great success.

“I worked with the IT department to get the template going. I thought, if I can come up with something to standardise things and make the workflow smoother for my colleagues, why not?” said Wang.

As a result of her efforts, they were able to save on man-hours spent on the job.

“Designing the new form [to deal with deposits from debtors] took about two hours. With the improved system, it now takes only 45 minutes or less to fill up the data for each mall. We easily completed the forms for 40 malls,” reported Wang.

Her concern extends to the individuals in her department as well. Because of her experience, she has been a mentor to newer staff. In addition, she willingly takes over her colleagues’ work when they are unwell or away.

“We will all face challenges at one point or another. I believe we should help one another whenever possible,” said Wang.

Greening Abundantly

Patricia Chichoux, Senior Sales Manager, The Ascott Limited (Europe), is a Green Warrior. In her 14 years with Citadines Genève Ferney-Voltaire, she has come up with numerous eco initiatives: recycling of used grinded coffee beans as fertilizer for the residence's garden; sending plastic bottle caps to an association collecting them for charitable actions; providing each staff member with his own mug to avoid using paper cups; and inviting employees to bring plant cuttings from their own gardens to grow in the residence's garden.

“I believe everything has a second lease of life. Growing up, this was how my parents treated things. I am just continuing their good example. So, every day, it is like a little adventure as I try to see what I can give a second life to,” shared Patricia.

Thanks to Patricia’s enthusiasm, the staff of Citadines Genève Ferney-Voltaire are all now avid eco warriors.

“In the beginning, I implemented the ideas alone but I always encouraged everyone to join in. Now, the whole team is on board.”

Not only does she care for the environment, she care for her colleagues as well. She volunteered to organise a party in the residence for a fellow co-worker to celebrate his 20 th year with the company. When there is a manpower shortage, she is often the first to offer to help.

“I am a mother of three. So, I guess, I am a mother at home and at work,” smiled Patricia when asked why she is so nurturing. “In life as in work, I believe we have to take time to think and to organise.”

The lives and examples of these three CapitaLand staff are proof that caring, thoughtful and generous people are certainly in abundance in the Group.