Bringing Out the Best in EveryoneWebmaster
As general manager (branches operation department) at 99 Speedmart, Yong Eng Kwang has brought a considerable depth of business acumen and leadership experience to his key role at the popular neighbourhood mini-market chain.
Talking about his responsibility at work, Yong says, “I oversee the entire operations of almost 2,000 outlets across Malaysia. I believe I have to manage the company ethically, and be fair with employees and customers. Also, I always try to achieve balance in the workplace.”
Achieving balance in life proved difficult while Yong was at the tail-end of his studies. However, this 36-year-old still managed to graduate with distinction from the Master of Management programme this year.
He explains, “I’m really lucky because my wife fully supported me throughout the journey, even though we have two young kids to prioritise too. I always discussed assignments, exams and everything else with her. She has been my best motivator.”
Yong recalls, “In 2019, I had to take a business trip to Manila. I remember spending the night at the hotel, revising for exams that were scheduled right after I arrived back home. One thing is for sure: you have to be willing to make sacrifices if you want to pursue further studies.”
Completing the programme has definitely benefited him. “I am now more disciplined, especially with time. I learnt a lot that can be practised at work. Networking with course mates was a great thing, as was knowing others from different career backgrounds.”
As someone with 17,000 employees relying on his leadership, Yong humbly affirms the importance of having a sense of ownership. For him, this means managing the company as though it were his own.
Yong adds, “I love my job. And by loving what I do, I believe I can achieve more. I always listen to customers, employees, and frontline workers so we can continuously improve. In my opinion, loyal customers and employees are the key to a sustainable and successful business.”
His impressive management qualities and expertise bring out the best in everyone, including the community at large. With Yong’s participation, 99 Speedmart has made headlines for its million-ringgit contribution to the needy, especially during the pandemic.
The chain donated RM1 million to Tabung Covid-19 and partnered with Shah Alam City Hall in its food basket programme for families in the B40 income group. The company also recently donated medical devices worth RM2.5 million to hospitals.
“Our outreach programme, which ran from 1 to 14 July, was another success. We delivered food baskets to needy people affected by the pandemic. We understand what they’re going through, and we stand with them. During the two-week programme, we gave out a total of 13,545 food baskets to the underprivileged community. This was valued at over RM650,000,” Yong explains.
The corporate social responsibility activities have definitely strengthened the company brand, as there has been an outpouring of positive comments on the chain via various social media platforms.
Beyond his official duties, Yong is also personally active in community service. He is a member of The People’s Volunteer Corps (RELA) and president of St John’s Ambulance in Melaka.
Last 15 September, Yong took part in a live talk on OUM’s official Facebook page, through which he chatted with Shah Alam learning Centre Director Ramash Ananth K Ganeson about his job, study experience, and love of giving back.
“I love and enjoy doing community service,” Yong concludes.
By Izyan Diyana Merzuki