Shao-Ning Huang is the ideal candidate for our Wonder Women series. For all the ladies who think you have to choose between work or family, turn your heads to our Wonder Woman! She founded JobsCentral in the year 2000 and watched it grow to over 150 headcount regionally in Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Not only is she a successful entrepreneur, she is also a mother to four boys! Truly we are gobsmacked. To us this is a true Wonder Woman, an inspiration to us all.
Q: Women are…
A: Gorgeous but complicated. Be warned!!
Q: How can Singapore cultivate more female entrepreneurs?
A: By having an open mindset and a free market. An open mindset that believe all paths lead to success and success is not just defined by the 5Cs. A free market with abundant flexibility to encourages innovations and creativities.
And we as individuals need to do our part too – we need to learn to embrace risk – risk taking is not something Singaporeans are very comfortable with. And I mean both men and women Singaporeans! I just attended a closed door sharing with about 40 high-flyer young Singaporeans. It disturbed me that out of the 40-odd people (ages perhaps 30+ to mid 40s), there were only two entrepreneurs (me and my husband!) and everyone else were bankers or lawyers or MNC executives.
Q: Would you say that entrepreneurs are the key to Singapore’s future success and growth?
A: Yes definitely the key, especially if we want a success and growth that’s self reliant and independent of others. We become a first world economy leveraging on the global MNCs that HQ’ed their manufacturing and operations here. They are not going to feel bad leaving our shores now that their cost of operations here are high and with all the anti-globalisation political pressures in their home countries. We ought to find our own legs to stand on, and we can’t just rely on our GLCs alone. Private sector driven commercial success will be the key to distribute wealth and also long term growth for the little red dot.
Q: How different are today’s youths from that of 10 years ago?
A: A lot more tech-savvy. They are born into technology. The attitude towards technology is “it’s my life” vs previous decade thinking “it’s a part of my life” vs my generation “technology can better my life”
And because of technology, the youths are exposed to ideas and concepts very early, and the individual’s’ ability to discern and decipher becomes extremely important.
Q: What are your hopes for your children?
A: Grow up happy, and be useful and responsible citizens when they become adults.Q: Tell us a bit more about what you do to help under-privileged children.
Q: Tell us a bit more about what you do to help privileged children.
A: Oh, as a volunteer-consultant, I work with the team to set the key strategies and then execute according to the strategies. I identified the key strengths of our programmes — which is 2 very well designed learning programmes, and how best to execute so that more underprivileged kids can benefit from the programmes, with our limited resources. Then I help to get partners to work with us. My “colleague” in this program is a bleeding heart social worker type. Many a times I have to pull her back and remind her – focus, we have only two of us, we need to do the ONE thing that we do best so that we can be most effective. It’s basically making use of my strengths – big picture thinking, setting the strategic goals, resource planning, then project manage to get to the goals. I have to confess that I don’t work with the children directly… Even though I have 4 kids of my own, I am not the most patient person in the world…
Q: What is your favourite movie?
A: Don’t really have one… But I made it a point to watch all the Miyazaki Hayao Anime movies – I just really enjoy the slightly quirky and imaginative storylines. One recent movie that I really like was the Wonder Woman. It really inspired me to work out!! (I really really really hate to exercise… but the scene of the women warriors training and fighting so inspired me that I feel I can fight too!!)
Q: How do you motivate yourself to get through the hardest days?
A: Basically take a deep breath, look at my kids and also previously my staff. Basically who will suffer if I don’t pull through. Then I will somehow find my energy to start working again.
Whoah, Shao-Ning you have truly inspired us to propell through the week and focus on our work life balance. If you can do it, we will too! Thank you for finding the time in your very busy life to be featured in our Wonder Women series!