Who is Kor?
What do I achieve as a Titaner? How can I achieve this? These have been questions many of us have been asking ourselves. Kor, a familiar name to most of us, has also asked himself these questions before. He is open to changes and constant learning which gave him the opportunity to be where he is today as a Product Owner (PO).
Having been with us for nearly 7 years, and yes, I’m saying 7 years, he has experienced different roles and gone through tough routes. We are honoured to have him share his journey with us from a support staff to being a Team Lead and now a PO.
Journey in Titansoft
It all began a long time ago when Kor was introduced to Titansoft from his friend, Kheng Soon. It seemed like a good career opportunity, but Kor was doubtful about his abilities since he studied in Electrical and Electronic Engineering and Titansoft was a software company. He managed to secure an interview with Yves, our General Manager and eventually got hired. This hiring decision actually made Kor puzzled as he felt that he did not have the relevant skills for the role. He then asked Yves about the hiring decision – ‘Why?’
“It doesn’t matter if you don’t have the skills as long as you are willing to learn.”
With that, Kor became a full-fledged Titaner working as a System Engineer under the Infra department. His duties were to maintain the IT infrastructure within the company. A short time later, production support was added to his list of duties. This additional duty allows Kor to work as a frontline support staff working with customers on their issues. Also, during this period, Kor spent his time refining our ACCORD system through rigorous coding.
The Infra department eventually split up, with those on production support headed towards the Development department (SGSP) while the maintenance of IT infrastructure formed their own department (MIS). Kor chose to work on production support fully. Over time, he was promoted to be the Team Lead for production support. During this time, he learned to manage people (which is never an easy task) and manage a team (a monumental task).
One fine day in 2015, Tomas, SGSP’s Department Manager, approached Kor to check if he would be interested in the role of a Product Owner, a position that requires the person to own the product on behalf of the company. Kor would make a good PO as he has the experience of understanding customers (through his time spent working with them as a Production Support) and the knowledge of all of the products.
Kor spent some time contemplating the prospect of being a PO and some of his thoughts were:
He has already been in production support for a long time and he does not foresee changes being made easily (could have established habits already).
- He has been involved with the Scrum process, which would make him an ideal fit for the role.
- He could progress further in his career in this new role.
- He is able to step out of his comfort zone.
Realizing these thoughts, he made the switch and embraced the role of a Product Owner. Suddenly, his world was rocked again. Being in a new role comes with new and challenging responsibilities. He had to learn… quickly.
Upon embarking on this new position, he immediately realizes that what he knew from his days as a Production Support is actually insufficient. He did not know the product at such an in-depth level that was required of him. However, as with any other Titaner, he faced the challenge head-on and spent a lot of time reading and learning from others to bring himself up to the level that he needed to be. His newly acquired knowledge has not just helped in his work, but even in his personal life too and he cannot be grateful enough for that.
What is his Take-Away?
From his journey, he has gained much insight, from guiding his peers to looking at things from a bigger picture to handling a variety of situations, of which he felt that the most important was:
Never make assumptions and be very specific even if it is something very small or simple; knowing that the so called ‘common sense’ to us may not mean the same to others.
More importantly, he cited that what he has learned can apply not only to his daily work but also to his daily life at home.
Lastly, he has 3 people whom he felt thankful for. Firstly, he was thankful to Kheng Soon for recommending him to our company and Yves for giving him the opportunity to prove himself. The constant guidance from Tomas is also one of the key factors in allowing him to become and achieve what he is today.