Gen.T List Judges Across Asia Weigh In On The Future Of Their Industry (Part 1)
In January, Generation T began the months-long process of selecting 400 honourees for the 2019 incarnation of The List. The first step? Assemble over 100 industry heavyweights from across the region—an expert panel we call the Tatler Tribe—to nominate candidates and help vet our longlist.
We invited Tribe members from across Greater China and Southeast Asia to kick-off events around the region. As well as asking for their nominations, we also sought some insight from these captains of industry, asking how they see their field developing over the next decade and beyond, and what skills its future leaders will need in their arsenal. Here's what they had to say.
Wee Teng Wen
Managing Partner, The Lo & Behold Group
Industry Food and hospitality
"The modern hospitality consumer is searching not just for an incredible product, but an indelible experience to tie it all together. Concepts will become less easily defined as we move from traditional bars, restaurants and cafes to multi-offering lifestyle spaces, clubs and co-living quarters. The hospitality leaders of tomorrow will need to navigate these new business models and work with the right partners, or recruit the right talents to build successful, recognisable brands."
Founder, Kenneth Cobonpue
Industry Furniture design
Location The Philippines
"The everyday challenge is to shift the perception that luxury can also mean 'Made in Asia', not just in Europe. I believe this challenge will be ongoing for years to come—this is a call to action to aspiring designers to pursue their craft with passion and zeal so that they can help the Philippine design industry grow and flourish in the international community.
"The digital age means more opportunities for industries to cross paths, including technology and furniture. There’s invisible technology, lighting, audio systems, and even artificial intelligence slowly being incorporated into furniture now, particularly outdoor furniture. The challenge is to find the balance of staying relevant yet still faithful to your brand and design philosophy."
Asia head of L Capital, the investment arm of LVMH
"It is not just qualifications that are important, it's about the qualities you bring to the table. Being a chief of operations in a business, first of all, you must be well-versed and knowledgeable in your product, whatever it may be. Above all, you must be decisive. You must be able to convert strategies to actions and earn the trust of your team. Younger people today lack the commitment towards self-improvement. They are impatient and they don’t give themselves time to grow, to understand the industry and to nurture their passion. They want everything now. Nothing happens overnight. It takes much more to succeed than meets the eye."
Chairman, Taiwan Broadcasting System
"Regardless of industry, a great leader is curious, with a strong will to learn. He or she has determination, perseverance and the execution skills to accept the challenges that future leaders will have to accept—particularly the innovation challenges presented by technology and the environment. They’ll have to build up their connections around the world."
"At present, I pay more attention to environmental protection and topics such as climate change, intelligent diet, the development and use of new raw materials, and how to gather people around us to pay attention to environmental protection issues. [How to get] more people to participate in the most effective way is also what young leaders need to think about now. You need to have a broader horizon—look not just within your own circle, but consider whether your projects can play a positive role in more fields."
Vice Chairwoman, PT Martha Tilaar Group
"Whatever the industry, I think building character is a common challenge. Young people who achieve instant success actually miss the majority of the learning curve that they need to continue to thrive as a great leader. Sure, they’re brilliant and creative, but they need to be resilient as well as reflective. Their drive to improve and learn should never diminish. Martha Tilaar Group has been in operations for 48 years, but today by collaborating with personalities, indie cosmetics brands can peak after two years—but they can also fall just as quickly."
- Words Charlotte Chiang, Chong Seow Wei, Isabel Victoria Francisco, Lily Ong, Shauna Jay Popple, Karen Wang