The Official Car Sticker

The Official Car Sticker

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

CIMB Future Leadership Program

Recently, we have been engaged by CIMB Group (referred to as "the Bank") to help them manage and run their "Future Leadership Program 2008 / 2009" competition. The grand finale, a game show style quiz, which will be held this Saturday at the Securities Commission, will feature typical game show setups like quiz counters with digital numeric display panels, lighted buzzers, a game host, etc. We will have to design and fabricate the counters and do all the electronics and mechanism for the running of the quiz. The setup will be on this Friday, followed by a dry run of the entire system. Should be interesting.

The competition is opened to under-graduate students from all colleges and universities in Malaysia. They are to form a team of four. Obviously, the participants ought to come from financial services studies, i.e., finance, investment, marketing and business management. A total of nine colleges / universities applied. They are UTAR, Inti, Sunway, Nilai, UPM, Segi, UIA (Universiti Islam Antarabangsa), USM and Taylors. And the challenge has just begun.

All participants were made to wear the "corporate t-shirt".
What we had this morning was the first round, the Business Proposal Presentation at the CIMB headquarters in Jalan Semantan (Damansara area).
The funny thing about this place is that there is super limited parking space for cars. Maybe something like 10 cars fighting for 1 parking lot. So, I had to park far far away into Damansara Heights next to someone's huge bungalow.
But the problem was this...its "no parking" yellow line all the way along the entire road! But due to time, I had no choice but to choose a nice bungalow and park next to it. Later, I was informed by my colleague that police issue summons all the time along that road! Sigh...park liao lar...forget it lar. Kena kena lar!
Anyway, back to the competition. Every team was given a total of 20 minutes to present their business proposal. The case study subject was given to them weeks ago and they are to do research, form their own think tank and come up with great and powerful strategies that CIMB, as a bank, can use to elevate their market share in the banking sector. The subject title was "Opportunities Of Financial Services Amidst Economic Crisis".

Blue Ocean Strategy (BOS) was used and mentioned many times. In fact, the judges were very keen to hear more about the teams' BOS ideas. In a nutshell, BOS is a business strategy written by Professors W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne of INSEAD, a leading global business school. The aim of BOS is not to out-perform the competition in an existing industry but to create a new market space or a "blue ocean", thereby making the competition irrelevant.

One very interesting observation was the mention of Facebook as a tool for the Bank to link themself with customers. Codenamed "Facebook Banking", it is also a platform that the Bank can use to reach its customers as well as prospective customers. Needless to say, updates and promotional news will be channeled through the Facebook network.

UIA spoke about "Diminishing Partnership Concept", a new housing loan concept where the home owner and the Bank jointly purchase the house. USM rallied on "Hybrid Bank Bonds" where returns are higher and safer. Segi says that the Bank ought to be like parents, giving money to companies that need money when they need money!

While the teams do their presentations, those next in line awaits at the "Care Centre" of this CIMB building. And yes, I know, the waiting game is really no fun!

But there was this team that performed exceptionally well, at least I personally thought so. Their presentation was exciting, interesting, interactive, have good ideas, clear points and very practical strategies. They are from UPM. They research shows that 60% of card users are using debit cards. And in the US, the student market spends about US$200 billion a year.

The UPM team presented the "CIMB-V" debit card, a very special student card with loads of goodies like discount privileges at places where students like to go, namely bookstores like Borders, eating outlets, entertainment joints and many more.

While the presentations were made, the other presented teams stayed back at the auditorium to watch and maybe learn something new.

After all the presentations, the Bank's deputy CEO gave a closing address and encouraged the participants to gear up and get ready for this Saturday's grand finale, the quiz challenge at Securities Commission.

The event adjourned after a final briefing from the organiser. I packed my stuffs and started my long walk back to my car. Remember my car? It was parked far far away infront of somebody's bungalow? And as I walk, I began to see white sheets of papers stuck onto cars' windscreens under the wiper blades. It can't be anything else besides SUMMONS!!!

Taking a closer look at one confirms that it is indeed a summon ticket from MPPJ. Every car I walked pass has one sticking on the windscreens. I was like "O SHIT!!!". My car was the last one on the road deep in the bungalows area. [Anyway, this car's road tax expired liao. It says May 23, 2009. Its May 26 today!]

But as I walked on, I noticed that the tickets have stopped appearing on the cars. Maybe because its already into the housing area, cars parked next to bungalows are no longer summoned.

I was happy to arrive at my car and found no white sheet sticking out! But I think I parked my car too deep in and got some fine scratches from the tree's branches on my left side front door. But I think they can be easily removed when polished. Sigh.

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