Category: The New Savvy

5 Things PMEs Can Do to Elevate To Boss Mode

As PMEs somewhere down the hierarchy in a company, many of us may wonder how to improve our leadership skills. It can be difficult when we don’t have a team to manage, a project to lead or an initiative to spearhead. Although our titles can range from junior/senior/lead executive etc, we are nowhere near the level of C-suite executives. How then can we practise effective leadership in our middle-range roles (or even entry-level roles for fresh graduates)? How can we get ready for the day we are officially given leadership responsibilities? I had the opportunity to interview Er. Chong Kee Sen, Immediate Past President of The Institution of Engineers, Singapore (IES), on a plethora of issues revolving around leadership. Photo: Er. Chong Kee Sen Er. Chong started work as a young engineer with Randal Consultants in 1987 after he graduated with a Bachelor of Engineering (Civil and Environmental Engineering). In 1989, Randal Consultants later merged with two other companies to become Engineers 9000 Pte Ltd. He was promoted to Senior Engineer. Eventually he was made a shareholder of the firm and is currently its Executive Director. So in short, he rose from a junior engineer to become a shareholder, which […]

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5 Points to Consider Before Renovating Your Home

If you are buying a new flat, it is essential to set aside an additional S$50,000 to S$80,000 to renovate it according to your tastes. Those who have lived in the same house for a period of 10 years or more would need to spend a substantial sum to refu…

Are Friends Your Roadblocking your Financial Progress?

When Friends Obstruct Your Way To Becoming Rich  Your friends are important to you. Fun times together, enjoyable conversations and the knowledge that you can count on each other are a perfect recipe for a great friendship. Still, it takes all kinds to make the world. You may have friends who don’t share your own perspective on money and financial planning. Maybe you feel pressured to join them in their over-the-top spending habits. But wait! Don’t give up on your own good financial planning intentions to protect the friendship. Here’s how to handle some sticky situations. Friends Roadblocking Your Financial Progress by Their very Presence Hanging out with a particular type of friend can profoundly impact how you handle your own finances. A shopaholic friend can encourage you to spend more and a financially savvy friend can inspire you to spend wisely. Most of all, being with a particular friend can lead you to compare yourself subconsciously with everything related to her or him. This is one of the main reasons why you should find friends who have a good influence on you. If you feel like your friend is better than you in one or many ways, you’ll invest […]

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 Don’t Fall For These 4 Car Financing Traps

Car prices in Singapore are the highest in the world. A recent survey by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) found that the cost of a family car in Singapore was USD153,000. The comparable price in Paris was USD37,800 and only USD22,000 in New York. Why are cars in tise country so expensive? Mainly, government duties and taxes are to blame since the Additional Registration Fee can raise the price of a car by 100% to 180%. Every car owner also needs a government-issued Certificate of Entitlement which can drive prices up by S$40,000 to S$50,000 or even more. As a result of these high car prices, an increasing number of Singaporeans are opting for car loansstudy by the Credit Bureau Singapore found that in 2016, 76,942 new motor vehicle loans were made by the bureau’s member financial institutions. This number reflected a growth of 25.6% over the previous year, and represents 88% of all cars sold in Singapore for that year. However, car financing can be a complex subject and borrowers could benefit by keeping some of the following points in mind when they are shopping for a car loan. 1. What percentage of finance should you take? Monetary Authority […]

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How to Reinvent Yourself Mid-Career : The Art of Career Reinvention

Coming up with the decision to switch careers, especially when you are older and established in your current one, takes a lot of guts. But it is not an impossibility, and neither is success after a mid-career switch. Many others have done it before. But still, we are not going to deny that it is no piece of cake. However, what we can tell you is that there are ways or techniques you can follow that can make your career reinvention more fruitful and increase your chances of success. Think of it as an art; while there’s no one, clear-cut way to do it, there are some skills you can try to improve on as well as tips and techniques you can bear in mind as you make it in the field. Handy Ideas to Help You Thrive in A New Job Plan well. As the saying goes, those who fail to plan are planning to fail. While this is not true in every case, planning beforehand can get you a long way. Better be sure than sorry, right? So how exactly do you do your planning when it comes to mid-career reinvention? Go back to the basics. Grab a […]

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When Gender Bias in Networking Brings Women Nowhere And What To Do About It

“How do I get ahead?” Asks frustrated women in stagnating career paths everywhere. Inevitably, someone will answer, “just network more”. Let’s be frank here. ‘Networking’ is an action, not a solution. And women already excel in it, thank you very much. Women work well in teams – how is that not networking? Women tend to be better at emotional intelligence, and reading social cues – how are those qualities bad for networking? In short, women have the skills in networking, but not the results. So no, I will not accept ‘just network more’ as an answer. It is too insulting to women everywhere. I believe we need to take a closer look at how ‘networking’ fails women, because obviously we are missing out on something big here. According to the working paper of Lily Fang, associate professor of finance at INSEAD and Sterling Huang, a Ph.D. candidate in the same school, 1815 male and female Wall Street analysts in their study start off with an equal number of school-based connections, but male candidates are likely to get more help from their contacts. That is not all. Hiring bias in academic science was exposed after male applicants were viewed as more […]

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Rising Interest Rates in Singapore : Consumers Are Rushing to Borrow

This article originally appeared on ValuePenguinSince the US Fed announced its plans to raise interest rates in December of 2016, interest rates in Singapore have also begun to rise, albeit slowly. For instance, 3-Month Singapore Interbank Offered Rate (SIBOR) has already reached 0.94% in March 2017 after bottoming out around 0.87% in September of 2016. While that may seem small to some people, that’s a relatively meaningful increase of 8%. SIBOR affects almost every interest rate in Singapore, and therefore an increase in SIBOR means greater interest burdens for borrowers. Given that Singapore’s monetary policy is almost solely focused on currency exchange rate stabilisation, further interest hikes expected to come from the US usually means higher rates for Singaporeans too. In anticipation of such at rend, it seems that Singaporean consumers are rushing to finance their big purchases before rates rise further. Below are some of the key trends we observed. Car Loans Are Increasing for the First Time in 8 Years According to our study of household balance sheet in Singapore, car loans have been declining consistently since 2008. After reaching S$17bn in 2008, it nosedived to almost half of its peak to S$9.6bn in 2015. Towards the end […]

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Most Expensive Homes: Singapore vs Cities Around the World

Real estate investors have been keen to buy homes in multiple countries, including Singapore. Previously, we found that the most expensive homes currently in Singapore were worth about S$2,289 per square foot on average. How does this compare to other metropolitan areas around the world? For curious readers, we’ve collected the data on the most expensive homes in a few other major metropolitan cities in thew world: New York, London, Seoul, Hong Kong, and Mumbai. Methodology We searched for the sale price for the most expensive residences by neighborhood in each of the five cities using each country’s respective prominent real estate websites: Streeteasy for New York, Rightmove for London, Naver Land for Seoul, Hongkonghomes for Hong Kong and 99acres for Mumbai. For New York, search was limited to Manhattan districts. Homes for each city were ranked based on 1) price (in USD) and 2) price per square feet which was calculated by dividing price by the saleable area of the home. General Findings On average, Singapore’s most expensive homes was the #3 most expensive compared to the most expensive homes in all 6 cities in our sample on a USD/Sq Ft basis. Singapore’s most expensive residneces cost S$2,289 on […]

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