This article was originally published here: Desmond Ng – CEO of PetCubes
Desmond Ng’s love of dogs made him realise that good nutrition is as important to them as it is to humans, and he created a business to ensure they got it, with minimum inconvenience to their owners.
What’s your story?
TI have always had a natural affinity towards dogs since I was young and surrounded by them, they centre you as a human and keep you grounded on what matters. However, making my passion a profession was never part of my life’s plan.
After working in financial institutions and a family office, I was constantly restless and questioned my purpose in finding meaning in my work. Everything suddenly clicked when the opportunity came with PetCubes. I took the leap of faith and threw myself into it – the possibilities of creating, and the long overdue yet meaningful work to help pets eat better.
What excites you most about your industry?
The growing awareness towards the humanisation of pets and their quality of life. As pets can’t choose what they eat, the responsibility falls squarely on our shoulders to make the choice for them, good or bad. The trend in humanisation has resulted in easier access to healthier, more natural options, allowing pet food to evolve beyond just sustenance, but an opportunity for them to thrive from inside out, increasing the odds in their favour to live a longer, happier life.
What drives you in business to push beyond what other people consider normal?
Having an unshakable belief on the raison d’etre of PetCubes is what drives me every day.
Our resolute purpose starts and ends with our pets’ health in mind, and the wellbeing of every pet is at the forefront in everything we do. Having a strong understanding of the reason why the company exists in the first place is the compass that guides the company forward, and allows it to stay true to its course when encountering the inevitable difficulties and challenges.
What have been the most useful skills you have learnt and applied in your journey?
Agility, especially in this fast-paced, rapidly changing world. It’s no longer just about top-down bureaucracies and a traditional management style. With agility, it breaks the barrier from having a fixed mindset to a growth mindset. Meaningful work gets done with less time taken.
The willingness to empower and delegate are equally important too. Being agile also means being able to empower every individual in your team and to make the most out of your existing talents, providing them with decision-making power and trusting them in making the most-informed decisions.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Making a decision is better than not making a decision at all.
We do not always have the luxury of time when making decisions. In times of urgency, too much deliberation can impede growth, slow the business down and at times, do more harm than good.
Who inspires you?
My dad. His vast experience under his belt provides me with invaluable mentorship on navigating through the wild ride that is entrepreneurship, and life as a whole.
What have you learnt recently that blew you away?
The amazing impact after forming a great team. It adds a whole different dimension to the company, and the goals that felt unattainable are suddenly within reach.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I don’t think I would. There were invaluable lessons learnt from every good and bad decision made that you can only learn in this school called life. We just have to enjoy the waves and you will come out stronger on the other side.
How do you unwind?
To get out on the open road with my motorcycle! Riding is cathartic, and it resets my mind to tackle problems with renewed energy.
What is a major mindset change, belief shift or ‘ah ha’ moment that you’ve experienced in relation to your business?
You are only as good as your team and it’s a fallacy that the entrepreneur can do everything, and do it well over a sustained period of time.
Every individual has unique strengths and the company dynamics really started to shift when we focused on harnessing these strengths collectively.
Everyone in business should read this book:
Zero to One by Peter Thiel.
Shameless plug for your business:
We believe every pet has the fundamental right to eat better. At PetCubes, we do the hard work for you so there’s no need to sacrifice quality for convenience, especially in a busy metropolis like Singapore.
We dive deep into the latest in nutritional science to formulate and update our diets with minimal processing to ensure our pets start to thrive from inside out, one feed at a time. With our in-house PhD wildlife nutritionist, we can segment even further, creating diets that target different life stages and chronic issues, which increases the odds to maximise their quality of life.
How can people connect with you?
PetCubes’ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/petcubes
Desmond’s LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/desmond-ng-42b917180/
This interview is part of the CallumConnects series.