If you could give your younger self some advice for the future, what would it be? We posed this question to recipients of the Volkswagen 10 Years of Service Award. Find out what Billy, Jamie, Vicky and Yadi have to share as they journey down memory lane with us.
Billy Tang, Roadside Assistance Technician.
Hi Billy, could you tell us more about what you do at VW?
I’m a roadside assistance technician and I attend to breakdown calls for assistance. I guess my favourite thing about my job is seeing our customers happy and satisfied after I’m able to help them.
Nice! Looking back at your years at Volkswagen, what are you most thankful for?
I’m very grateful to my bosses for being so understanding. And as for my colleagues, we’re very tight-knitted and we always go for birthday dinners together – we’ve got something planned almost every month! Also, it’s a big perk that I get to drive a Volkswagen while at work. Our recovery car is the Passat Variant, you see! It’s super safe and it handles great as well.
What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I’m into bird and insect photography. And I’m also a handyman in my free time; apart from cars, I enjoy fixing computers too.
Wow, so have you always been into repair work?
Yes! When I was younger, I used to watch people doing repair work. I’d try to figure out what they were doing and challenge myself to accomplish the same tasks faster and quicker.
What’s the secret to staying committed to one company for so long?
Always believe that there’s a solution to every problem and use whatever skills you have to resolve any situation. And always keep calm too, because losing your cool never helps solve anything! (laughs)
Jamie Lee – General Manager, Marketing & Communications.
Were you always set on wanting to market cars?
Actually, the opportunity to market cars came about by chance. I studied Business in university with a specialty in Hospitality Management. I tried out an internship at a hotel for a while, but I felt it wasn’t right for me. So when the opportunity came along, I joined the automotive industry and I’ve not looked back since!
What would you say was your best quality 10 years ago, and how is that different from now?
I think I had a lot of drive in me. When I first joined Volkswagen, it was still a growing brand in Singapore. It’s a dream job for any marketer to journey with a brand that has such a reputable history and heritage. Now, I have a stronger sense of what I want and can do. I think this job has taught me how to always look at the big picture and think out of the box.
What advice would you give to yourself 10 years ago?
I would tell myself to just do it all over again. I wouldn’t change anything because I’ve no regrets about my career.
What do you enjoy most about working at Volkswagen?
Everyone here is family to me. When I returned to Volkswagen Singapore after being posted to Beijing three years ago, it felt like coming home. Also, I had the privilege to work with bosses who believe in Marketing, and gave me a lot of free play, along with their advice and input. One of the earlier projects I worked on was a ‘Beetle garden’ outside! We planted some flowers outside the showroom and placed the Beetle in the middle of it. We even had actors pretending to be gardeners. It was lots of fun!
If you were a Volkswagen, which one would you be and why?
The Tiguan! Because it’s cool and has always been setting standards in its segment. Likewise, I hope whatever we do as a team is making an impact in the marketplace too.
Mohamed Muliyadi bin Nenpari, Technical Trainer.
Hi Yadi! What do you do at Volkswagen?
I’m a technical trainer. I first undergo comprehensive training, before I can conduct technical training sessions. It’s challenging but it gets easier with more experience. Sometimes I feel like a software that’s constantly being updated! (laughs)
What do you do when you aren’t at work?
I love spending time with my family. We often cycle together at Bukit Timah nature reserve. I’ve got three children; my eldest daughter is 19 and is studying engineering at a local polytechnic.
Cool! So I guess she could eventually join you at Volkswagen too one day?
I wouldn’t stop her! (laughs) There aren’t many places where you can enjoy freedom and flexibility in your work. My boss trusts me, my colleagues are supportive and friendly. So why not!
Was it easy to learn the ropes of being a technical trainer?
To be honest, I wanted to be mechanic when I was younger. I’m now actually living my dream, and a little bit more! It was a bit of a culture shock because I’m from a generation that wasn’t used to computers. And as a trainer, I have to use a laptop to carry out my work. But after about 4 years, I got the hang of things and it’s become a passion of mine.
What advice would you give to yourself 10 years ago?
I’d tell myself that I can survive in this trade and make a living from it!
What are some of your favourite memories of working at VW?
At times, technicians whom I’ve trained years ago still recognise me as their teacher when we meet on the street. It’s really rewarding to see technicians pick up the knowledge you share and watch them grow to become even better at their jobs. And of course, I enjoy all the breakfast sessions with my colleagues!
Vicky Poh, Accounts Executive.
What was working at Volkswagen like 10 years ago?
When I first joined the company, our office was located at Great World City. Back then, our finance department was made up of just the Finance Director and me – we handled everything finance-related for Volkswagen Singapore.
Cool, what about now?
It’s always felt like a family! Our family has since grown bigger at the finance department – there are six of us in the team now! (laughs) Culture-wise it’s still the same – everyone is encouraging and always keen to help each other out.
Were there any life changing moments in the past 10 years?
Too many to remember! But if there’s one I can think of now, it’s probably this haircut I have right now! I’ve kept long hair for the past 10 years and this is the first time I’ve had it so short.
What do you like to do when you’re not dealing with numbers at work?
When I’m not spending time with my two sons, I love taking up outdoor activities and sports. I’m often out jogging, cycling or at the gym where I’ve been trying out new classes like hot yoga. I’m a big believer of keeping healthy and keeping things balanced, and I’m grateful to have a job that allows me to pursue these things in my own time.
What are your favourite Volkswagen models?
I’m driving the Golf now and it’s really comfortable and spacious. But I also have my eye on the new Tiguan – maybe that will be my next car!