Mr Tim Nguyen, a CEO who has built a successful career based on his values, inspired RMIT Vietnam students to define their own core beliefs before moving on with their careers.
Nguyen shared his story at a talk show during Personal Edge+ Week.
Nguyen said he was working as a general manager for a big corporation in England when he stopped his already successful career to take gap time.
“For the first time I was confused,” shared Nguyen, the CEO of Vinasource, a software development outsourcing company head quartered out of Seattle, USA with offices in Calgary, Canada and Ho Chi Minh City.
“I found myself having a lot of responsibilities as a general manager at 25 years old. It all weighed down on my age and my stress level.
“I moved up to a corporate life for all wrong reasons. I needed to find my passion again.”
With that realisation Nguyen began traveling in hopes of gaining new perspectives.
While on a Thai island in 2004, Nguyen witnessed the devastating effects of the tsunami which caused more than 200,000 deaths around the world. Luckily he and his friends were on the other side of the island, a travel decision they had made by chance.
“At that point I knew that I wanted to give back… so a lot of what I am doing today…is to be able to make a greater impact on the community in Vietnam,” said the Vietnamese-Canadian CEO.
“Now I keep moving on with corporate life but with better reasons.”
Since his gap time, Nguyen has gone on to lead a number of businesses on different continents.
In response to many students’ questions about how to communicate with their parents about gap time, Nguyen urged students to have a goal for their gap time: “If the goal makes sense, your parents are going to support you.”
“It’s natural to feel down during gap time because your path is not applied to you anymore. I certainly had some doubts in the gap time but something I found important is reflecting and being self-aware,” Tim added.
“Think about what makes you happy as a person and build your core values around that pillar.”
A number of core values have been integral in Nguyen’s journey: integrity, collaboration, self-awareness, and sharing/humility. Those values still play a central role in his life and work today.
Tim Nguyen’s talk, attended by more than 150 students, was a part of a series of Personal Edge+ workshops which help RMIT Vietnam students to develop their employability skills and to get ready for life and work.
Story: Ha Hoang