Recently, someone said that you shouldn’t turn your passion into a career, I beg to differ. This spurs me to pen down my first blog to share how each and one of us can be purposeful, be larger than life, especially when you are in the tech industry.
One can never feel dispassionate in the Tech industry.
Tech is a means to an end. It is constantly evolving, and opportunities are constantly arising. It touches our daily lives in one way or another. I love the idea of being able to learn so much, be a part of something bigger than myself, and giving back to society in any way I can.
I recalled vividly the awe-inspiring two-hour long interview when I first uncovered what ST Engineering does. What sticks and inspires me till today, is the deep sense of purpose to innovate brilliant products and solutions to effect change to lives and businesses. The underlying passion made me want to be part of this purpose-driven company, and this gets me going for 18 years since. Till today, the adrenaline of seeing meaningful projects to fruition is stronger than ever.
As I reflect on my thrilling years with the mobility and public safety industry, I know that there is nowhere else I’d rather be. Growth and comfort do not coexist. If I had let my fear of the unknown take over me, I wouldn’t be where I am today, waking up every day and working with inspiring teams to conceptualise, design, and implement large scale critical systems for governments and organisations.
Game-changing Urban Mobility with Digitalisation
With the same deep sense of purpose, and together with a dedicated and like-minded team, we constantly ask and challenge ourselves if the current solutions are incisive, inventive and intuitive to help solve real-world mobility problems.
I had the privilege to be involved in one of the most impactful projects, the i-Transport System – one that sets the stage to best optimise our islandwide road network. This bespoke system provides integrated intelligent transportation Control for the Land Transport Authority of Singapore. The aggregated traffic data at the control centre provides vital traffic monitoring and incident management round the clock.
It was a significant milestone and pride for all, and for me, it was mind-blowing. The project not only improves traffic efficiency but also enhance the travel experience for both motorists and commuters. The project clinched the IES Prestigious Engineering Award (2004), National Infocomm Award Merit (2006) and the Land Transport Excellence Award: Most Innovative Technology Partner (2008).
Fast forward to today, this valuable opportunity given by the Land Transport Authority help make in-roads to more than 60 projects in various cities. As we advance with emerging technologies, from people-centric user experience design to data-driven transport management using artificial intelligence and big data, I am excited as the team works towards enabling the i-Traffic System for Dubai Road Transport Authority, for yet another milestone, in time for World Expo 2020 Dubai.
I also got the opportunity to partner ComfortDelGro in their digital transformation journey. Together, we created the Integrated Taxi Management System and ComfortDelGro taxi booking application. Powered by advanced data analytics and behavioural analysis, we’re able to automate and optimise the match of drivers and passengers. This helps to increase the number of jobs for drivers and allow passengers to reach their destinations within the shortest time as possible.
The questions that we mooted now are whether payment methods can be seamless across different transport modes, how can we enable smarter and even, sustainable mobility with deep learning and autonomous vehicles?
Looking ahead into the next 10 years, I’m excited to witness the flourishing of a seamless multi-modal mobility landscape that will fundamentally alter the way we travel from one point to another. Trains and buses will form the backbone of mass mobility, and gaps in first and last-mile connectivity will be plugged by feeder buses, autonomous vehicles, and shared mobility solutions. Commuters will have flexible access to a range of door-to-door mobility services based on individual needs, supplemented by taxis and other on-demand services.
These exciting possibilities, alongside with the emerging technology, spur me and the team onwards.
In Pursuit of your Purpose – Be Bold yet Humble
I am fortunate to bring my purpose to life, with an organisation that strongly believes in the same conscious innovation to enliven vibrant and connected cities.
It is the cumulation of little things that make big things happen. I believe that as we uncover our purpose that is true to our core values and convictions, we will give it our best shot in our capacity and make a significant difference to the people and things that matter to us most.
It is not a myth to connect our work with our passion and purpose.
As we stay true to our values, I advocate that we be bold and share our ideas, but always be humble and adopt a growth mindset. It is vital to learn from mistakes and surround ourselves with positive people and good mentors, to constantly challenge our thinking and make us a better person.
My mentor, Janet Ang, who was then the MD of IBM, gave me an advice that I now live by. She said, “Work hard, stay true to your values. If you have gone into a space of work that you are passionate about and have a sense of purpose in, I’m sure you will do very well.”
I impart and share the same with my team, inspiring them to dream more, learn more, do more and laugh more. As the line between passion and work fuses, we should all make work a great place to be and a great place to make an impact!