Asian Culture in Business

Monday 4 May 2009 0 Comments

We might not be as casual as Google or having a cool boss like Richard Branson (sorry boss, you are not into daredevil activities) but we do have our own culture, which makes FingerTec the best place to work, at least in my opinion. When I started working some 12 years ago, people told me that if you like the toilet, you will work long in that company. Guess what? I have been working at FingerTec close to nine years. Current renovation of the toilet foresees my career in FingerTec for another 10.
Truth be told, Asians have a lot of qualities desired by Westerners. We are warm people, the women are obedient as compared to the same gender from the West perhaps most of our men too :-), we are (kind of) busy body where we like to know what happen to others and prefer to help if they need help and we have the ‘it’s okay’ attitude in many circumstances. In other words, we don’t really sweat small stuff. When the same attitudes are applied to the workplace, we can only make our customers happy.
I recalled one customer who bought cartons of FingerTec products and on top of that order he asked us to source for him a baby stroller. While most of ‘professional’ companies would not even consider, we included the said stroller along with his consignment. It didn’t make us less professional, only a little closer to the heart of our client. When a customer wants us to separate his order into cartons of different items instead of the readily packed products, we obeyed. A bit more tasks on our side but it’s okay. At the end of the day, the objective is to make our customers happy. When a customer asked for a favor to get for his son a birthday present that can be sourced at a better price in Malaysia, we said we try and we did.

The management also borrows the motto of Google, “Don’t be evil” to stress the importance of being nice, not only to clients but also to colleagues and competitors. One bad apple can spoil the whole bunch, some said. And I couldn’t agree more. An evil staff can influence other staff to be slackers, an evil staff can damage the image of a brand and an evil staff can spill the beans to competitors without having any remorse.
We do have some problems and crisis to attend to along the way but we don’t sweat small stuff, we help as much as we could and we don’t act evil. That is the best recipe to get us through the days.
Recently, the company employs an internal auditor to make our work more systematic. Not that we don’t have systems but his job is to make our current systems more methodical. He is astounded by our flexibility and right now is trying his very best to make us “professional”.
But the question is, how business do we want to be when it comes to dealing with our clients? A few things to be noted are, we are not lenient when payment is concerned; we are kiasu* (check footnote) Asians. We don’t want to be taken for granted just because we love to assist; we are sensitive people. We hate false promises; so do other people around the world. The challenge for us is to offer a business that is professionally conducted but accommodating to the needs of our clients.
And we believe FingerTec can because we always want to make things easy and we try to solve it all for you, our valued customers.
I will be in IFSEC next week. See you in Birmingham at Hall 4E, Booth 152.
*Kiasu - Hokkien adjective literally meaning, "afraid of losing".

by Norana Johar, COO, FingerTec HQ

We might not be as casual as Google or having a cool boss like Richard Branson (sorry boss, you are not into daredevil activities) but we do...