Harnessing energy key to making profits a shui- in
BUSINESS not going as profitably as you’d hoped? Losses hitting fresh highs? Staff morale slumping to new lows? The problems may be as simple as your business being in a location that attracts bad feng shui, with the office layout blocking the good Qi and even the CEO sitting in the wrong place to maximise wealth and longevity. And the solution?
It could all lie in the way you’re using your prime space.
‘‘ From the time you move into your office, you start a relationship with that environment and its natural energies,’’ says Joey Yap, an expert in the ancient Chinese system of feng shui ( wind- water). ‘‘ We have to learn how to harness the natural energies — or Qi — of our living environment to help us attain success in life, to enhance our health, wealth, relationships and career prospects.’’
To cynics, who may believe good management, sound financial planning and the wealth of the nation are much more critical to business success, the force of feng shui might sound like ludicrous nonsense.
But there’s little doubt an increasing number of Australians are calling on the services of feng shui practitioners, such as Yap, to give them an economic edge.
In one Sydney office, for instance, Yap, the head of Yap Global Consulting, a company with branches in Malaysia, Singapore and Australia, is conducting a classical feng shui audit of the fourth floor CBD headquarters of an education and training com- pany. It’s an open- plan office housing about 80 people, with the CEO sitting at a workstation among the staff, by one of the tall glass windows with its views over the harbour.
There are good things about the place, and bad.
The floor plan is conducive to an educational business, the view on one side is of the water curving which can also indicate the flow of prosperity, and there’s a road coming in from the northeast which is another source of Qi.
The CEO’s location, considering his star chart, is also excellent.
On the downside, however, there’s an office tower blocking the view to the southwest angle, which can stir unrest. A gap in buildings viewed from the IT section is a leak through which rivals can come in to poach people away, and Yap advises that key staff shouldn’t be allowed to sit in this area.
With the help of his Loupan — a Chinese feng shui compass — and a series of complex calculations on the white board, Yap also pronounces that there are difficulties with two administrative staff members. Sitting in the northeast corner, he says he can see the location doesn’t suit their temperaments.
‘‘ There’s a lot of back stabbing problems stemming from this corner,’’ he says. ‘‘ You should either fire those people or shift them from this area into the east sector. Then those problems will die down.’’
The office manager looks amazed, then nods.
It’s a scene being replayed at more and more offices around Australia every year.
The American- born, Kuala Lumpur- based Yap, at only 30 the founder and CEO of the Mastery Academy of Chinese Metaphysics, and the author of 12 books, is growing his empire all the time. There are already representatives in the US, Britain, India and Germany, and he is about to expand from his Perth office into Sydney and Brisbane.
‘‘ People are becoming more and more interested in classical feng shui all the time,’’ says Yap, whose clients have included various offices of HSBC, the Standard Chartered Bank, Credit Suisse, Microsoft and the Sime Darby Group.
‘‘ We find Australians are increasingly open to it, and interest around the world is growing. People want to know how to improve their businesses, their wealth and their happiness, and feng shui offers them a way to work in harmony with the envir- onment to make that happen.’’
The classical feng shui he practises holds that three forces govern our lives: Heaven Luck, a life path fixed by the time of our birth; Human Luck, our education, actions and choices; and Earth Luck, our living environment that can be improved by feng shui.
Fresh from a trip to Tibet, Yap has just finished a week- long course in Sydney for about 40 students.
Yap is also frequently called upon to conduct feng shui audits of public buildings, to see how they may be improved, or their business prospects enhanced.
Strolling around Sydney’s stunning Queen Victoria Building, built in 1898 and refurbished in 1984 as a shopping centre, for instance, he notes how well it’s sited and designed to attract the flow of Qi.
Much of it flows from the roads surrounding the building, the water lying to its north and the shape of the hills around it to pool in the open area at its main entrance, and then rush down along the gentle slope inside the building.
The cafe by the entrance is wellplaced to receive good, fast business, he says, although the Qi simply flows straight past the shop opposite, with its doorway along the side.
Similarly, the Sydney Fish Markets are well- starred, with hills in an ‘‘ eyebrow formation’’ clearly evident across the back, water to the north and a travelling star that means many tourists love visiting.
‘‘ It’s all about living in harmony with the natural environment, and achieving better health, relationships and prosperity,’’ Yap says.
Well sited: The Queen Victoria Building shapes up well
Office assessment: Joey Yap