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Big picture, big winners

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"A good entrepreneur should be able to sustain in the long haul. If you believe in this journey, then go all the way." - Robert Yap, executive chairman, YCH Group

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"Most businesses are about finding and creating the people. Creating the teams, energising the team, making sure that there is compatibility and trust. I think these are important." - Piyush Gupta, CEO, DBS Group Holdings

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"As in many businesses, especially F&B, people is the most important factor... Especially with employees, you need to motivate them, make them feel like they're being treasured by the company. A lot of times the management needs to be on the ground with them and lead by example." - Ang Kiam Meng, CEO and executive chairman, Jumbo Group

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"Dream big with clear objectives and always with a sense of appreciation. Don't stop at dreaming but come up with a specific role in a specific period of time. Set vision that inspires us to be better daily." - Shafie Shamsuddin, president and CEO, PT Trans Retail (Carrefour Indonesia)

THINKING about the big picture and keeping up the good fight are two indispensable traits that are key in a business world as complicated, volatile and challenging as today's. These characteristics, entrenched in the winners of the Singapore Business Awards, remind us that such fading traditional values matter even more in the business community now than ever.

For Robert Yap, this year's Businessman of the Year, perseverance helped him drive the growth of his family business from a small passenger transport company to the current 5,000-strong end-to-end supply chain group, YCH Group. "You have to be very committed to something for which you have a vision or are passionate about and you go all the way. You can't give up half way. I've seen a lot of people giving up. I find their thinking very short term. A good entrepreneur should be able to sustain in the long haul," the executive chairman of YCH says.

As chief executive of DBS Group Holdings, Piyush Gupta will tell you it is crucial to have a "helicopter view". Mr Gupta, who has been conferred the Outstanding CEO award, believes it is important for business leaders to have the ability to take a strategic view, and be able to focus on the execution and the details.

Jumbo CEO and executive chairman, Ang Kiam Meng believes that at the heart of many businesses, particularly in the food and beverage industry, the human factor is the most vital. "You just need to take good care of these people (customers, suppliers and employees). Especially with employees, you need to motivate them, make them feel like they're being treasured by the company. A lot of times the management needs to be on the ground with them and lead by example."

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For Shafie Shamsuddin, president and CEO of PT Trans Retail (Carrefour Indonesia), the ability to dream big and push the limit on the individual's intellect are key attributes of a successful business leader. Character, he shares, is the magic to success: "Have the courage to be kind. To be kind is sexy!"

As we celebrate the journeys of the winners in this year's special supplement, we hope you will enjoy your read and be inspired by the wisdom shared in the stories.


Supplement editor: Claire Huang Sub-editors: Naveen Verghese, Agnes Wee Photographer: Arthur Lee Cover design: Simon Ang Advertising sales: Rix Low 9620-1365; Lina Tan 9620-1355

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