Take It From Me

Expatriate Lifestyle - - Contents -

Com­ing to Malaysia

I was ac­tu­ally work­ing for a multi-na­tional com­pany in Sin­ga­pore and part of my job was to set up hear­ing care busi­nesses around Asia to in­crease the num­ber of points of sale and in­crease the gen­eral level of com­pe­tence. I also de­vel­oped a busi­ness-like ap­proach to the busi­ness – which in those days was still pretty much a ‘mom and pop’ kind of model. Whilst based in Sin­ga­pore, I helped set up a hear­ing aid busi­ness in Malaysia and was sub­se­quently in­vited to run it. I did, and ended up buy­ing the com­pany in 2003.

Set­ting up Shop

Malaysia was one of the coun­tries in which we found a ca­pa­ble and will­ing part­ner to in­vest in the busi­ness, as well as pro­vide the hu­man re­source to make it hap­pen. This was around the year 2000 and as men­tioned, I then joined the busi­ness here in 2003. Like all busi­nesses we are fo­cused on en­sur­ing that we have sta­bil­ity and are able to cater to the evolv­ing trends and changes in con­sumer be­hav­iour. We focus on what we do well and im­prove in ar­eas where we need to work harder.

Home Away From Home

Apart from the two weeks of summer the UK has in Au­gust, there are def­i­nitely no sim­i­lar­i­ties here to the weather there. There are many things about Malaysia that many peo­ple from the UK would recog­nise but equally there are stark dif­fer­ences be­tween the two. The two coun­tries have some shared his­tory and ex­pe­ri­ences. Of course the British left their pres­ence right across Malaya – as it was known prior to In­de­pen­dence. I be­lieve there is still a sense of affin­ity be­tween the two coun­tries and its peo­ple.

Malaysian Health­care

I am by no means an ex­pert on the health­care sys­tem in Malaysia – but in my ex­pe­ri­ence the health­care avail­able to ex­pats here is ex­cel­lent, pro­vided you have good med­i­cal in­surance. Costs can quickly spi­ral if you are deal­ing with ma­jor ill­nesses or pro­ce­dures and there­fore it pays to en­sure that you are well cov­ered.

Ad­vice on Hear­ing Loss

The only way to man­age hear­ing loss is to get help for it. As­sum­ing there are no un­der­ly­ing med­i­cal con­di­tions that re­quire med­i­cal in­ter­ven­tion, a prop­erly fit­ted hear­ing sys­tem is both dis­creet and per­fectly ca­pa­ble of help­ing peo­ple in even the most dif­fi­cult en­vi­ron­ments. Many peo­ple put off seek­ing help for much longer than they should – in the mean­time they suf­fer frus­tra­tion, ir­ri­ta­tion and very of­ten strained re­la­tion­ships as a re­sult of this. My ad­vice: get proper ad­vice and make in­formed choices.

Perks and Chal­lenges of Work­ing in Malaysia

I think the big­gest prob­lem fac­ing many em­ploy­ers is the chang­ing na­ture of the work­force. The way we in­ter­act with and man­age our staff is still one of the most chal­leng­ing ar­eas and some­thing that needs con­stant at­ten­tion and mon­i­tor­ing. As for perks – I can eat nasi lemak or roti canai for break­fast!

Din­ing Out

As one gets older we ap­pre­ci­ate peace and quiet a lit­tle more – so ex­plor­ing new bars is not at the top of my list of pri­or­i­ties any­more. I travel to Pe­nang quite fre­quently and one of my favourite restau­rants there is Ke­baya in Seven Ter­races – it’s an ab­so­lute must. It’s a Ny­onya fu­sion restau­rant with splen­did food and ex­cel­lent ser­vice – if you are in Pe­nang I highly rec­om­mend it.

Top Va­ca­tion Spots

There are so many of them! Last year I was for­tu­nate enough to visit Gaya Is­land Re­sort just off the coast of Kota Kin­a­balu; and of course the pretty much un­beat­able Langkawi where I spent a few days at The Datai and it was a su­perb ex­pe­ri­ence. My all-time favourite has to be Tan­jong Jara Re­sort in Tereng­ganu on the east coast of Malaysia – a truly tran­quil en­vi­ron­ment and ul­tra re­lax­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. EL

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Malaysia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.