From chef to banker; Paul’s story

Paul always wanted to experience life in a large organisation. After joining Standard Chartered, he’s learning every day

Paul Ong, Associate, Trade Sales, Transaction Banking

Singapore

I’d always wanted to work in an international bank, but when I was 19 and working as a chef, it seemed a dream out of reach. My time as a chef was very enjoyable and I spent a year working at one of Singapore’s top restaurants, where the camaraderie and adrenalin of the kitchen was fantastic. However, I’d always had a love for business and an interest in the stock market. Once I turned 18, I started trading in small amounts in my spare time, fascinated with large corporate organisations and what makes them tick.

When I first applied to work at Standard Chartered, I didn’t think for one moment I would get through the screening process. I was amazed when I was called in for an interview. I put across my case of transferable skills, entrepreneurial spirit and hard work and to my surprise and delight, I was hired as an International Graduate. I was deployed in Transaction Banking, dealing with some of the largest global commodities traders in the world. That was a day to be celebrated!

“In every country I’ve visited, I’ve met colleagues who have welcomed me to their homes or shown me parts of their cities”

I’ve now been with the organisation for three years and I still get a buzz from working on deals, and interacting with colleagues from all over the world. I get a school boy-like excitement to play my part in our client’s success. Our footprint is incredible – I am an avid traveller and have visited more than 10 countries in the last three years. What makes it so special is that in every country I’ve visited, I’ve met colleagues who have welcomed me to their homes or shown me parts of their cities. What an opportunity!

I’m looking forward to building my career at Standard Chartered and I dream of leading a team. I’m constantly inspired by people around me who implement change and make a difference, be it at work or at home. Our team is strong and the camaraderie reminds me of my time working in the kitchen. I can learn from others every day.