In March 2018, Forbes published a list of the world’s billionaires and one particular billionaire caught our attention because he is 100 years old this year and still goes to work every single day.
Ladies and gentlemen, this man is Chang Yun Chung, the founder of Pacific International Lines (PIL) with a net worth of $1.9 billion (approx. RM7.9 billion) from Singapore.
In a recent interview with CNBC, Chang revealed that he still visits PIL’s headquarters on a daily basis to ensure operations are running accordingly although he has handed over the position of executive chairman to his son, Teo Siong Seng earlier this year.
“Every day, I write down all my activities in my diary, everything. Every (head of) department comes to see me. I cannot stay at home. (I’d get) very, very bored,” the self-made billionaire said, adding that it’s actually his habit to stay active and to work every day.
His secrets to longevity are:
- Don’t throw tantrums
- Stay away from cigarettes and alcohol
- Exercise regularly
- Practise a healthy diet
Just so you know, PIL is one of the biggest players in the shipping industry with over 18,000 employees on its payroll. Such a huge organisation will inevitably run into obstacles and that’s when the importance of keeping calm comes in.
For instance, one of the company’s vessels was hijacked by pirates off the coast of East Africa in 2009, and his son, Teo, the managing director at that time, was put to the test. After 75 days, an undisclosed amount of money was paid and the crew came home safely.
“In any business, especially shipping, there are a lot of uncertainties. There can be political issues, technical issues, or accidents. It doesn’t help to lose your temper and get all worked up. So, staying calm is something that I learnt from him and I’m still learning from him,” Teo said.
Chang also taught his son to earn the respect of employees through integrity and sound leadership instead of being fierce and bad-tempered. “It’s a very difficult thing to do, but I think I’m slowly learning it,” Teo said.
We could all take a page from this 100-year-old billionaire’s book as some of us in our 20s are already looking for excuses to ponteng kerja. XD
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