Leong Weng Mun
My company and my job
I started off managing a few residential developments that were newly completed. It was not easy as I had to oversee service providers who were much more experienced than me, but I was lucky to have great mentors who guided and taught me important skills that enable me to do my job well.
My current responsibilities include leading a team in overseeing the operation of the organisation’s newly-completed developments, and another team in working with and resolving issues brought up by council members of older developments.
While estate management is the core of my area of work, it is the customers whom I engage with that make the work interesting. Seeing the smiles on their faces after meeting their needs and resolving their concerns bring me great satisfaction, and further spur me to continue my effort.
How I got my job
I faced a lot of uncertainties during the final year of my degree as I was not sure of the direction I wanted to take for my career. I was torn between pursuing a career in valuation or finance, which deals with numbers; or in operational, estate management, or marketing. However, when I was given the opportunity to join Far East Organization, I took it up readily as I had previously worked with the organisation as part of the industrial attachment programme offered by NUS.
The highs and lows
During our meetings with the management councils or customers of the various developments, my team and I are often asked to assist in resolving different problems. Some times, a single problem could be a combination of multiple issues involving several parties. My team faces many challenges in dissecting such problems, but seeing the customers’ satisfaction when the problems are resolved is the motivation that keeps me going.
Training and support
My supervisors supported me greatly during my initial years by helping me understand my responsibilities and guiding me whenever I was assigned new tasks. My colleagues also provided me with the necessary information to help me perform my role.
The Learning & Organisation Development Department actively organises in-house and external training programmes for us as well. This allows us to pick up the necessary skills to strengthen our technical knowledge in our areas of work.
Work-life balance depends on our ability to organise our time so that it meets our needs. My team and I are often required to meet our customers in the evening, so we would make adjustments to our working hours to allow ourselves suffcient rest in order to perform well the next day. My team and I would also do our best to support and cover for each other to further improve our work-life balance whenever necessary.
Estate management is a multi-faceted work that requires both technical knowledge and soft skills, but I find people skills to be the most essential as my job requires me to work with people a lot (be it customers, service providers, or workers). While we do pick up technical knowledge in school and as we explore different types of work through internship or part-time work, we also pick up the people skills needed to work with people.
We should also be bold and confident. Do not be afraid to take up any tasks that come your way as it is through difficult tasks that we learn new things.