The opportunity to attend the Eagles Leadership Conference (ELC) adds up to Andrew Harman’s understanding about entrepreneurship and leadership. The year two UCSI students were given the opportunity to learn from the industry’s best. One of them is an actuarial science student who is also the head of Breadboard – a student-led business incubator. He credited UCSI for giving him the opportunity to learn from the industry’s best.
At first, Andrew said he was overwhelmed from the thought of having to meet high-profile industry players, experts and entrepreneurs, but nevertheless excited with the opportunity to participate in the three-day conference held in Singapore.
“Somehow I don’t feel confident to talk with other people, but through this event there were people who are leaders and they depicted a different mind-set from ordinary people.
“I knew I had to push myself and speak if I really wanted to learn from them. As someone who is quiet, I actually started talking a lot after learning about their experiences and their interesting stories,” he said.
One of the classes he attended was Innovating with Digital Technology. The speaker, Associate Professor Neo Kok Beng, from Harvard University explained how to create and nurture a culture of innovation for corporations to survive and thrive.
“I learnt that entrepreneurs and innovators work differently however it is always a good thing to have both in a business and for me myself, if I want to become an innovator I must make a habit to constantly solve problem by finding solutions.
“For Breadbroad I think it is good to have an open culture by having a degree of flexibility for the members to keep innovating,” expressed Andrew passionately.
In one of the plenary dialogs entitled “Future Leader: The Person in the Mirror”, Andrew said he was intrigued to learn that leadership did not necessarily mean gaining power. He pointed that true leadership entailed responsibility and commitment.
The dialogue was conducted by two speakers, Professor Neo Boon Siong, Canon Professor of Business, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore and Peter Chao, founder of Eagles Communications, Singapore.
“There are three leadership styles; short for triple A – authentic, agile, accountable. These triple A attributes are applicable now and in the future, because technology moves fast. A leader must stay true to themselves.
“You must always strive to be the better version of yourself. Agility, on the other hand, helps leaders to think and act fast. Leaders also have to be accountable, be responsible and try to establish a bond with the team by working as a team.
“Essentially, it’s about we rather than me” he explained.
In the c-suite learning journey, Andrew and other participants were brought to visit DBP Asia X Innovation Hub. At the visit, participants learnt how DBS Bank of Singapore innovated and collaborated with start-ups and the fintech community to leverage on big data, biometrics, and artificial intelligence to reimagine banking.
Ultimately, Andrew said he was grateful for the knowledge and experience he had gained. According to him, he will be sharing what he had learnt with other students at UCSI.