Unchanging Principles in a Changing World — Dr Guy Look, CFO & Executive Director of Sa Sa
An award-winning CFO, with over 33 years of local and overseas financial and general management experience, tells us why he values Corporate Governance so strongly.
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality and attitude behind their ventures and stories.
On the eve of Chinese New Year, we had lunch with Dr. Guy Look, CFO & Executive Director of SaSa. He shared personal stories from his 33 years of experiences in financial and corporate management that has led him to strongly advocate for the importance of good corporate governance and investor relations.
For those seeking career advice, Guy shared insightful views on how to pick the right company (his tips: Choose a small-medium size company you see potential in and asked for stock options!) and important interview skills.
What’s a life philosophy that you live by?
“To accept that everything is constantly changing.
The world is constantly changing and I believe it’s important to adopt a positive mentality to accept change. When it comes to business, I don’t think I am lacking any knowledge or skill set. In this rapid changing economy, more important is the ability to adapt, learn and grow.”
What’d you change if you can travel back to your 20s?
“I’d wish I would have learned how to better judge and trust people.
You can learn hard skills such as accounting or finance by yourself through reading and without people teaching. However the soft skills, the human relationships — knowing who to work with, or how to work with people, are not as easily taught. If I was better at that when I was 25, I may be more successful.”
What can people do to impress you?
“The best people can adapt to change with unchanging principles — that’s what corporate governance is about.
I think EQ is important. Some people who stay like a rock and never change are considered inflexible and unadaptive. On the other hand, there are people who are good at adapting, perhaps even too good — so much so that they don’t have any principles.
On Wikipedia the definition of governance is to balance the interests of everybody, including your customers, shareholders and suppliers. This is why Corporate Governance is the key to success, to strike a balance between different parties. At least you won’t end up having any enemies.”
What is one action you’d like the volunteers to take away from meeting you today?
“I’m very happy to be invited to this meeting. Continue with your commitment to volunteering. It’s really good work. Well done!”
Thank you Dr. Look for donating your time to Time Auction and raising 50 volunteer hours to HK Paws Guardian, Society for the Deaf, Food Angel, International Million Trees Forest Project and more.
Like this? Visit Time Auction where you can meet Hong Kong’s most astonishing people by volunteering to charity.
The volunteers would like to say..
Ruby Leung, City University Student
Thank you Dr Look for an inspiring lunch! I agree that having the competitiveness of a sportsman is essential as we have to constantly improve ourself but at the same time do it without cheating.
Rebecca Yeung, Shue Yan University Student
What’s a better wrap-up of the Year of the Monkey with the life advice from Dr. Look? Thank you for your valuable time — this was one of the most meaningful Chinese New Year’s Eves for us! Before the luncheon, I was always curious how can a CFO won that many awards and recognition, now I understood why — because of your high ground on integrity, well-respected personality with principles and your sportsmanship! The new career insight to craft our path in this highly competitive world and useful life advice on relationship management you gave us are information that we could hardly obtain our own. I was also so touched when you talked about your parents’ kind heart and spirit — which are so contagious. Extending the culture of passing on the wisdom to young people in this traditional Chinese festival marks a good sign of start for us! Happy Chinese New Year of the Rooster!