'If you stay in the office longer than is needed, you're either inefficient or not right for the job'
Updated: 2017-01-23 08:31
By Sophie He in Hong Kong(HK Edition)
Roy Ng, chairman and chief executive of Star Lite (HK) Ltd, was born in Hong Kong, but he left the city when he was 7 and went to the United States to be with his family.
He tells China Daily he's actually a third-generation Chinese American; his mother's father emigrated to the US a century ago and he was raised there.
He went to the University of California, Berkeley, where he majored in psychology and took Mandarin lessons.
"I chose to study consumer psychology and industrial psychology as I'm a very outgoing person and love to work with people."
He claims to have been very lucky as before he graduated from university, a major retailer on the US west coast started an executive trainee program. Ng was among 35 people who were hired, selected out of more than 1,000 applicants. He was the only Chinese American; it wasn't easy and that's how he got into retailing.
Ng says a very important thing he learned from his parents, particularly from his late father, is that business people should always have integrity and morality.
"When I make money, I always think of these two factors as what my parents taught me."
These values, he says, will show you how to treat people and how people will treat you.
"I also teach my son and daughter these values."
In terms of managing his company, Ng says he always sets examples for others to follow.
"I've opted for a very open-minded management style, with a lot of discussions with my team. I'm not always right, I learn every day, I learn from my colleagues, and that's how you can build a very cohesive team."
Ng stresses that although Star Lite's revenue remains very low, his colleagues still prefer to stay with the company.
"I respect my colleagues' work-life balance. If I see people staying in the office long after working hours, to me that person is either not right for the job, maybe it's a mismatch, or that person is inefficient," he says.
Spending nine hours working every day should be enough, Ng insists, and after that people should go back to their families.
For mainland youngsters hoping to start their own business, Ng suggests they should stay focused on the particular task or work. They should always accept constructive criticisms as, nowadays, they tend to be self-centered, which could lead to failure. Young people should learn from others, from their peers and elder people, and they should have objective views.
"Young people also need to be creative. In business, it's good to be a trend leader because if you're just following trends, you could easily fail, that's how I see it."
Homeware retailer Roy Ng, chairman and chief executive of Star Lite (HK) Ltd, is determined to make a comeback by seizing the golden opportunities in the e-commerce market. Parker Zheng / china daily
(HK Edition 01/23/2017 page8)