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Conversations with Executives – Embracing Risk & Change: Stepping outside of your comfort zone
As part of our series Conversations with Executives – Embracing Risk & Change, executives share their triumphs, challenges and wisdom regarding making bold career moves. In this feature, Kavin Janparamakit, General Manager for Beauty Care Business of Henkel Thailand, talks about embracing change in this digital era, drawing on support from loved ones, and pursuing your dreams.
Q: How did you feel about changing jobs in the middle of a pandemic?
In the beginning, when I got approached, I felt unsure. In these unprecedented times, we cannot predict the future, especially when it comes to the business side of things.
When the Page Executive team approached me, they were very professional and came prepared with good briefs and lists. That gave me the confidence I needed to pursue this career move and assured me that I could smoothly start my career in the new company.
Q: What were some of the thoughts and challenges that crossed your mind about making this career change?
At that time, I had worked at my previous company for four years. I knew if I switched jobs, it would mean that I would have to step out of my comfort zone. In the end, I decided to pursue it because this role that Page Executive presented would allow me to learn and grow in my career.
I had many questions throughout the entire process, but the Page Executive team was always there to answer my questions. They reassured me and kept my mind at ease. That gave me the confidence to move forward.
Q: How did you overcome the challenges?
It’s about having faith in myself. I had a lot to think about: Aside from the entire process of securing the new role, I also have to think about the work, the job and my family.
My wife is the one I consult on all my career moves. She was the one who encouraged me to go for this role in the first place because she knew it has always been my ambition to become a general manager. With the help and support of my wife, I know I will rise to any challenge.
Q: In your opinion, which aspect of the virtual interview and recruitment process was different from what you initially perceived?
Virtual interviews are a new thing for me, but it is the new normal for everyone now. In the past, I did all my job interviews face-to-face. This shift to a virtual interview has changed the recruitment process. Now, employers can connect with potential hires from around the world.
When I interviewed for my current role, one interviewer was in Singapore, and the other in China. It was quite a challenge for me to make sure that everyone present at the interview was on the same page. I wanted to make sure that everyone understood what I said, and I wanted to showcase my strengths.
Q: Now that you’ve been in the role with Henkel for six months, what are some of the tips and advice you would like to give to other executive candidates?
You have to be yourself, regardless of the organisation you are applying to. You will undoubtedly have to pick up new terminology, learn new skills, and adapt to the new organisation’s culture, but always remember to stay true to yourself while you are at it.
I also want to encourage everyone to step out from your comfort zone and challenge yourself. Don’t be afraid to take that next step in your career, and when a recruitment agency approaches you, don’t be apprehensive about talking to them.
Q: How was your onboarding process with Henkel? Was it done virtually as well or were you present in the office?
My onboarding process was a combination of face-to-face meetings and virtual ones because some team members were based in different locations. My boss and colleagues in the factory were also based in a different country, so we virtually connect with them. However, for the local operations, we were able to meet each other at the office.
This interview was conducted by Ellen Chang, Research Team Lead at Page Executive, Consumer and Technology practice. She is passionate about unlocking leadership potential and her work focuses mainly on talent assessment and development, driving top team effectiveness, shaping organisation culture and executive search across Asia Pacific. Having studied in the UK, she brings a global perspective and network to helping clients.
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