From left: Ong Shu Yi, Wendy Huang Shi Qi and Marcus Liaw Jia Yoong from Team Confianza and Miss Nurul A’in Abdul Latif, Markets Leader of PwC Malaysia.
Marcus Liaw Jia Yoong, Wendy Huang Shi Qi and Ong Shu Yi, Taylor’s final year Bachelor in Arts (Hons) Accounting & Finance students who formed team “Confianza” beat nine other teams from other Malaysian universities and Colleges to become the PwC Trust Builder Challenge 2018 Champions on 3 March 2018. The champions took home a trip to Vietnam, internship opportunities with PwC Malaysia and a job shadowing PwC’s Senior Management. Marcus Liaw Jia Yoong also took home the ‘Best Presenter’ award for his ‘natural and calm’ presentation style.
Marcus found the experience a revelation and memorable. “All 3 of us are currently in the midst of our internship. Thus, finding the time to prepare for the competition is definitely a challenge. We can only work on our preparations late in the evening after work. To overcome these challenges, we consulted Taylor’s lecturers to guide us from the preliminary stage and PwC assigned two mentors that were very helpful and provided a lot of insights. We set aside some time daily to prepare for the competition no matter how busy we were and ensured that everything were done properly.”
“As the team leader, getting the team to stay motivated amidst our hectic schedules was also a constant challenge I faced. Thankfully, we were an understanding team and we always encourage each other to hang on until the end,” Marcus added.
From left: Marcus Liaw from Team Confianza, Best Presenter, and Miss Stephanie Ping, Co-Founder & CEO of WORQ.
On top of winning the challenge with his team members, Marcus did not expect to win “Best Presenter” too. “I always hold on to the principle that I should do everything to my very best and the outcome will not disappoint. Being able to win the “Best Presenter” award was an added joy for my team and Taylor’s University. I was overwhelmed with joy when my name was called, as I was not given the chance to watch the presentation of other teams during the finals and make comparisons. I practiced my script in front of the mirror for a few days to be as natural as I can. I also asked my team mates to give their comments on my presentation. It wasn’t an easy task to be able to present naturally but with the help of my team, I managed to pull it off,” he added.
Fellow team member, Ong Shu Yi, said participating in this competition really pushes him out of his comfort zone. However, it allowed him to explore the strengths that he has and increased his confidence in pursuing his goals. “I have learnt the importance of trust in a company and how it can serve as a solid foundation for the company. It takes years to build trust and seconds to destroy it. Without trust, even the most successful company in the world crumble. This experience certainly expanded my knowledge towards how trust can be rebuilt and allows me the chance to utilize the strategies that I have gained into the future. This competition certainly is a stepping-stone towards the next level of success. I am really grateful for this chance to represent Taylor’s University in the competition and I look forward for more in the future.”
Wendy is grateful for the support given by Taylor’s Business School and its Career Service Centre throughout the competition, “They have been a great support to Team Confianza throughout the competition, especially during the Finals. Besides the unique experience, we got the opportunity to effectively utilize the knowledge and skills we learnt from our modules in School into this competition. What we have gained in the classroom made us more prepared with our presentation and delivering of solutions to the problem.”
Dr Vinitha Guptan, Head of Taylor’s Business School congratulated team Confianza on their achievement, sharing that the future is very bright for the three students. “I am proud of their achievement so far and I know that I will hear more about them in future. They have proven that passion and perseverance pay if you put your mind to something.”
She shared that Taylor’s Business School provides its students the opportunity and exposure to real-world experience working on real life projects, and one such example is giving the students the opportunity and mentored to compete in national and international competitions. The PwC Trust Builders Challenge for example, allows the students to be exposed to real issues faced by companies, why trust is an integral part in a company, and what it takes to succeed in business. In addition, students will be able to apply what they have learnt in modules like Business Ethics and Values.
PwC Trust Builders Challenge was organised by PwC Malaysia for Malaysian universities and college undergraduates. The team competition challenges students to display their critical thinking skill and business acumen by presenting a solution to rebuild trust in business. In the recent competition, the case presented was about an employee-turned-whistleblower revealing that a sales agency was deliberately paying its female staff less commission than its male salespeople. When confronted by the media, the CEO states that this was a sound business decision as male employee generally win more sales because the general public takes men more seriously. The participating teams must act as a crisis management team and figure out how to rebuild trust with investors, suppliers, employees and public. Each team have to submit a written case solution on how to rebuild trust with investors, suppliers, employees and public, as well as a 30-seconds video on the topic of “Why is Trust Important for Companies”. Finally, 10 teams were selected to enter the Finals and each team have to present the solution on how to rebuild trust, focusing on employees in 5 minutes, followed by a 15 minutes ‘questions and answers’ session.
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