Richard Wentworth Ping has spent more than 30 years changing behaviors, changing mindsets, changing cultures, changing the way people lead, manage and communicate.
What’s your story?
I started the business in 1989 in the UK, moved to Australia in 1998 and set up an office there. I sold the UK business in 2002. I started working in Asia in 2000 and in Singapore in 2004 setting up an office there in 2007. I have now expanded to a team of consultants across the region and have delivered work from India across to Japan.
What excites you most about your industry?
It’s evolving rapidly. Covid has been a curse (no face to face work) but has accelerated how we use technology, how we embrace different ways to learn, to lead, to enact change. If change is the imperative right now, organisational development and L&D is going to be a crucial component. Our time has come.
What is your connection to Asia?
It started with a few gigs in Hong Kong in the banking and investment sector. Then a gig facilitating a conference in Langkawi for a global client. That led to more work and it went from there. My business is mostly word of mouth. There are many consultants, facilitators and trainers out there, so when you do good work people share with others. I expanded my network of associates to most countries in Asia to allow us to offer service where clients need it.
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore, simply because it is so easy to do business there. The language for an English speaker is a big plus. It’s a great business hub, with diversity, superb food, rich heritage, exciting nightlife, nature, hotels. I also love Bangkok, Shanghai and KL.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Nothing lasts forever (This too shall pass). It has helped me appreciate the good times and push through the bad times; keeping things in perspective and picking myself up after being knocked down. Be grateful.
Who inspires you?
My wife Karin. Tim Ferris. Barack and Michelle Obama. Hugh Jackman. Nelson Mandela. Brene Brown. All these people inspire me to be a better version of myself. To be true to my values, not take the easy route, lean into challenges, be more disciplined, be vulnerable.
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
How good yoga is for the body (thanks Adrianne). How to articulate what I do (this after 31 years). It’s been an evolution but the clarity that everything I do is about behaviour change and nothing else really matters is exciting.
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
So much! Take more time hiring people. Be quicker to get rid of the wrong people. Listen to my wife on those people hires. Structure how people were paid differently (I was far too generous). Be more disciplined. Not get carried away with my enthusiasm. Talk less. Listen more. Run better meetings. Structure proposals better. All the things I work with leaders on. You teach what you need to learn!
How do you unwind?
Time with family. Travel (not at present though). tennis, golf, swimming, walking in nature, skiing when I get the chance, reading, theatre, comedy, films, TV shows.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Thailand. Culture, food, people, natural environment.
Everyone in business should read this book:
I’ll name a few:
7 Habits of Highly effective people – Stephen Covey
Tools for Titans – Tim Ferris
Leadership on the Line – Linsky and Heifetz
Dare to lead – Brene Brown
Give and take – Adam Grant
Shameless plug for your business:
Depth of expertise. Great track record. Innovative in approaching the challenges of culture change and leadership. Very personal hands on service. Big enough to handle major change initiatives but small enough to care. Our branding of Enjoy Your Working Life is manifest in how we work. Lots of companies do “what” we do, very few, if any, do it “how” we do it.
How can people connect with you?
Social Media Links?
To hear how entrepreneurs around the world overcome their challenges, search your favourite podcast platform for ‘CallumConnects‘ to hear a 5-minute daily breakdown.
Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built, and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder and CEO of MBH Corporation PLC. He is the author of three best-selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’, ‘Agglomerate’, and ‘Entrepreneurial Investing’.