Spread­ing the breadth of op­por­tu­ni­ties

DR YOONI KIM Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Asia Op­er­a­tions, Novotech, Sin­ga­pore

BioSpectrum (Asia) - - Bio Content -

Dr Yooni Kim, Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Asia op­er­a­tions, Novotech is re­spon­si­ble for over­see­ing Novotech’s op­er­a­tions and project de­liv­ery within the Asia re­gion. Dr

Kim is very ex­pe­ri­enced in Asia’s drug de­vel­op­ment in­dus­try, hav­ing man­aged op­er­a­tions for South Korea, Tai­wan, China, Hong Kong, Sin­ga­pore, Malaysia, In­done­sia, Thai­land, the Philip­pines,

In­dia and Ja­pan.

Dr Yooni has worked at var­i­ous po­si­tions in clin­i­cal de­vel­op­ment, med­i­cal af­fairs, and phar­ma­covig­i­lance at GSK and op­er­a­tional man­age­ment role for North Asia in a lead­ing global CRO. In her vast ca­reer span­ning over 20 years, she has been in­stru­men­tal in mak­ing the in­ter­na­tional clin­i­cal trial in­dus­try recog­nise the value and breadth of op­por­tu­nity avail­able and build a big­ger sized team in Asia.

Speak­ing about the chal­lenges faced in her ca­reer, Dr Yooni says, “A ma­jor­ity of the gen­der/job re­lated chal­lenges and pres­sures I faced dur­ing my ca­reer came more from per­cep­tions of se­nior man­age­ment po­si­tion in the in­dus­try, mostly in Asian so­ci­ety it­self; rather than from within the work­place or in sim­i­lar en­vi­ron­ments in United States or Europe. There many oc­ca­sions when clients from Asia ex­pected to meet a male ex­ec­u­tive and were sur­prised to dis­cover I was fe­male. This was chal­leng­ing when hav­ing to build close re­la­tion­ships based on so­cial consensus with clients. There are now, how­ever, more fe­males in se­nior po­si­tions – and this is why it is so im­por­tant that we, as an in­dus­try and work­place, strive to con­tinue chang­ing th­ese so­ci­etally­bi­ased opin­ions.”

Dr Yooni has spo­ken widely re­gard­ing the cur­rent land­scape of clin­i­cal de­vel­op­ment in Asia, and she is a Key Opin­ion Leader in com­mu­ni­cat­ing to the world the po­ten­tial and ta­lent of Asian com­pa­nies and the ben­e­fits of skilled labour avail­able in Asia.

Dr Yooni says one of her key achieve­ments is to see her team grow into ex­ec­u­tive po­si­tions in the in­dus­try world­wide. “One of my most im­por­tant ca­reer achieve­ments is de­vel­op­ing the ta­lent of my staff. A num­ber of my team started with me as fresh grad­u­ates and have gone on to more im­por­tant roles such as lead­ing clin­i­cal tri­als of ex­cel­lence in Asia.”

“Be­ing able to grow my staff into more se­nior ex­ec­u­tive po­si­tions within Novotech has greatly helped the com­pany’s ex­pan­sion through­out Asia. More than half our Coun­try Heads in

Asia are women. This is quite unique within Asia; and I feel played strong part in grow­ing this next gen­er­a­tion.”

Dr Yooni has phar­ma­cist back­ground and re­ceived doc­tor­ate de­gree of medicine from Seoul Na­tional Univer­sity, spe­cial­iz­ing in Preven­tive Medicine and Epi­demi­ol­ogy. Un­der her lead­er­ship, Novotech is ex­pand­ing its pres­ence and foot­print in Asia, with nine coun­try of­fices through­out the re­gion. Novotech has also launched a new SMO (Site Man­age­ment Or­gan­i­sa­tion) busi­ness in re­sponse to unmet in­dus­try need in South Korea and Tai­wan.

Dr Yooni opines that women need to give equal pri­or­ity to pro­fes­sional life as per­sonal life. “Women are cursed with al­ways try­ing to be su­per­women. They try to be ev­ery­thing to ev­ery­one at all times. This pres­sure is es­pe­cially true in Asia due to coun­try-spe­cific cul­tural and so­cial pres­sures. It is im­por­tant for women to re­alise that you can­not make ev­ery­one happy.”

DR YOONI KIM Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor, Asia Op­er­a­tions, Novotech, Sin­ga­pore

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