It has been 18 months since I took over leadership of the group. Since then, I’ve learned a lot but there has been drastic changes to project roadmap, which impact the future direction of the business unit. It is taking a while for us to get clear direction from the top on where this business is going. So a lot of the folks over the past many months has been also thinking about their own career paths and taking action by leaving the team. In all seriousness, there a new companies starting up in Penang, our competitor is hiring to grow their site in Penang, the US-China trade war is putting a lot of focus to make Penang as a mitigation.
When I see people leaving, I also ponder myself whether I should also look out for myself. See, the roadmap change also impacted the program that I worked on (and thankfully already delivered). I look out other internal teams, growing hundreds of people because of new charter. Not to mention new jobs that the above mention factors are creating.
On another hand, I am also starting to explore expanded scope for the team. Talking to our VP that handle customer engagement and some engineering support roles for our sales and marketing team. We already have a few proof-of-concept work that is currently on the way. But all this will take time to materialize, in a way that we can officially position our value and be funded as the team that owns the charter. Also with such incubation schemes, we are more likely to see failures.
This is when I see 2 kinds of leaders. There is one that will see good opportunity open for them to contribute and make use of their skills to grow the career. These are the people who have left. On another side, there are leaders who are job creators. These are the leaders who somehow created hundreds of jobs in new companies and also internal teams so that others can join and use their skills. These are the people who somehow manage to showcase their leadership and create the value that can be derived locally.
I admire the customer engagement VP that I spoke to. He is proud that indirectly, not only has he grown new charter for the team in Penang, he also managed to slowly bring in 3rd party service provider (ie subcontractor companies). So now only is he creating jobs. It is tough now, but I am learning (and hopefully learning fast) on being a good leader from the people and mentors around me. I want to be the leader who creates job.