I am a ‘third culture kid’: half Swiss, half Chinese, born in one country and grew up in three others. I’m never sure how to answer the “where are you from?” question. Do I say where I live now? Where I was born? Where I grew up? Where I have spent most of my working life? My passport? My heritage? There are so many options to choose from!
I love people, culture and communication, and figuring out the relationship between those three things. Putting yourself in situations where you don’t understand the culture or language, and then finding that you can still communicate effectively is really refreshing. It can teach you a lot about different perspectives. Taking the time to learn how others do things and understand what drives their behaviours and values can teach you a lot about yourself, and refine your own thinking about the world and what is important.
“I love people, culture and communication, and figuring out the relationship between those three things”
The exposure I have had to many different cultures and environments, both when I was growing up and now working at Standard Chartered, has developed my sense of empathy. It has also made me really interested in human behaviour. I use that as the lens through which I look at all professional interactions, particularly problems, because I believe that successfully implementing a solution requires people to behave in a certain way, and you can only influence how people behave if you understand their motivation and values.
One of the things that I love about being at Standard Chartered is working with people across our footprint and travelling to countries all over the world. We are so lucky to work for an organisation that gives us the opportunity to meet customers and colleagues from such a wide range of cultures and backgrounds.