UNDERSTANDING value is the most important thing you can do for yourself, personally and professionally.
This was told by Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) Research Associate Siti Athirah binti Ali to 80 students during the recent knowledge sharing session at Laksamana College of Business, hosted with Dr Roman Zytek, a former Chief Economist at the Ministry of Finance and Economy (MoFE) and Autoriti Monetari Brunei Darussalam (AMBD).
Siti Athirah discussed her career as an economist, stressing the importance of early job experiences, such as in well-structured internship programmes offered by quality employers. She also discussed the role of job mobility during adult careers.
Siti Athirah, who before joining UBD was an economist at the ASEAN+3 Macroeconomic Research Office (AMRO) in Singapore and at AMBD before that, used her personal experience to encourage students in the audience to continuously seek new career challenges, and develop and execute career plans that include periodic job changes.
She emphasised that by seeking new job opportunities we sustain personal and professional growth, and in this way, improve lifetime job opportunities, both in Brunei and internationally.
Siti Athirah binti Ali delivers her talk.
She encouraged students to save as much as they can when they start working. In doing so, they can accumulate a financial nest egg that they can depend on when they search for a better job or decide to go back to university to increase skills.
Dr Zytek, drawing on his personal business experience and academic research, discussed how Bruneian businesses have been missing opportunities to improve efficiency and productivity, and, therefore, improve their profitability. Such improvements are the pre-condition for sustainable business expansion, healthy job creation, and the overall growth of the Bruneian economy.
Higher profitability not only expands the firm’s internal sources of financing but, even more importantly, by raising company value, it eases access to outside financing and the managerial capital needed for domestic growth and international expansion.
Dr Zytek noted that Brunei’s economy has been missing many high-quality jobs, in particular, at the job market’s entry level. He provided examples of how the United States (US) economy creates numerous, often well-paid leadership-developing jobs that allow youth as young as 13 to gain excellent job experience.