“Persistence, determination and hard work are the keys to success”
The Ban Lee Hin Group has been serving clients for over four decades since its inception in 1974. It has grown from a small, local ironworks into one of Malaysia’s most capable and trusted one-stop providers of construction services, priding itself on being local builders with national reach, with a client-base which consists of well-known Japanese companies based in Malaysia.
The Group’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Dato’ Tony Looi Chee Hong, 42, who holds a Doctorate of Philosophy in Business Administration from Akamai University, USA and an MBA from American Heritage University shares his insights on the business, and effective leadership.
The construction industry is very competitive. What makes your company stand out? We are pioneers in specialist, structural steel work. We have a large presence in the market, and we are deeply embedded in the construction industry, but more than our extensive portfolio, what truly sets us apart from our competition is our people. Our dedication to providing world-class service to our clients, our resolve for delivering extraordinary work, our capacity for innovation and problem solving, and unwavering commitment to improving the construction industry not only make Ban Lee Hin Group a great place to work, but a company with which our clients want to work.
What are the company’s Unique Selling Propositions?
We deliver our projects on time or ahead completion deadline. We ensure all our projects comply with ISO and other international standards and highly focus on safety commitment. We are a company built on a system of mutual cooperation, where our associate companies strive as hard as we do to build a culture of mutual benefit.
Are there any business people you admire? What about them resonated with you? Jack Ma is one of the business people that I admire. We both have the same thinking, that in order to be successful, a person must have four characteristics, which are an open mind, the spirit of sharing, responsibility and global vision.
What characteristics make someone a good leader?
A good leader must be enthusiastic about their work as well as about their role as leader. They need to be confident, and have a positive attitude.
What kind of a leader are you?
I am a transformational leader. I expect the best from everyone on my team. This leads to high productivity and engagement from everyone on my team. I make sure my team is consistently improving themselves, so that they can grow with me.
Do you think the idea of leadership has changed over the decades?
During the past, leaders were very strict. Staff were not allowed to object to his opinion or decision. Whatever he decided is what you had to follow. Leaders nowadays are open minded. They will accept opinions from all levels and encourage their employees to propose any idea and suggestion that can help the company to grow and improve.
How do you tackle human resource issues?
A smart and flexible HR department is crucial. No matter how lofty the goals of a visionary founder or chief executive, it’s difficult for those goals to be achieved without the right people and the right support in place. A key role of HR is ensuring that the organisation has the right people performing well in leadership roles at all levels.