【IBMBA】 Guest Lecture – What I wish I knew when I first started my career – Korn Ferry Peter Yuan

It is an honour to have Dr Peter Yuen be our guest speaker again in the seminar in business management course hosted by IBMBA. Different from last semester, Peter is going to introduce more about the start of his career. The topic ‘WHAT I WISH I KNEW WHEN I FIRST STARTED MY CAREER…’ sharing with over 50 students in the classroom.

Professor Jeeyeon Kim and IB505 students with Dr Peter Yuan

To start the sharing, Peter introduces Korn Ferry and lets the students know about his view of the practical world. Afterwards, Peter shares about the early year of his career life. In his real-life experience, speaking up and communicating are important. Therefore, he encourages students to ask and talk during his sharing.

Dr Peter Yuen sharing with the students

Dr Peter divided his whole career life into 3 parts, early years-first 10 years-past 10 years. From the first 10 years, he concludes that there are a few elements that are important for him to get what he has now.
● Product, Technology, Process and People, leadership and management are keys to success.
● Persistence and tenacity, when there’s a will, there’s a way.
● It’s all about making choices, tradeoffs and sacrifices.
● Build long-term relationships that matter.
Over the past 10 years, Peter shares what in his mind makes him keep on track of being a success.
● Never stop learning! That is the number one line.
● Finding higher causes: Share, mentor, coach, give back.
● Priority and balance in life, may not be work-life balance but your own feeling of balance.
● Always look to the future and be prepared when the opportunity comes!

Dr Peter Yuen interacting with the students


In the future, Peter would like to apply what he learn in the past. Make his career more colourful and bright by the following statements.
● Have a purpose, define your mission, set your goals, and put passion into everything you do!
● Life is about making choices, and key ones make a difference! Don’t sweat the small stuff.
● Be happy and enjoy the journey, and make meaningful relationships, quality matters, not quantity!
● Never stop learning!
● Life is short, treasure every day, every moment and make it count!

Dr Peter Yuen sharing with the students

During the sharing, students actively interact with Dr Peter. Students are asking different questions to have some advice or feedback from Peter, to make their future career life better. Here are some questions asked by students:

Students asking questions
  1. How do we know how far we can go and how much we can do?
    a. Set a goal and go for it. You will never know how much you can do unless you try to. Peter was an engineer at the beginning, but he want to be an executive. Some of his bosses told him to give up at that time. However, he set a goal and achieve that.
  2. What if I fail when I chase my goal?
    a. Step back, and learn from it. If you don’t fail, you are not trying hard enough. You have to fail to be better and grow. Having faith and passion, if that is what you want, you will still work on it rather than give up.
  3. How to be more decisive?
    a. Ask yourself, will it be the best choice? If yes, make it and believe it. There is no right or wrong to your choice and answer., don’t doubt yourself. We will never know if that is the best choice or not. If you don’t believe in your choice, the decision you make will never be good.
  4. What are the most important things learned from the MBA course, is it worth studying?
    a. For Peter, a former engineer. MBA help to build a wide relationship network with business people. To learn how they think, what is more valuable and what needs to be considered during managing a company. Not only the lecture and lessons but all the people you may meet in the MBA course. It is helpful for people from different backgrounds to become higher-level managers.

Last but not the least, a few takeaways from Peter.
● Finding and knowing yourself
● Set your goals & go for it!
● Never stop learning
● Be passionate about everything!

Dr Peter Yuen interacting with the students


From Dr Peter’s sharing, students have more insight into career life. Not only about what industry or position they want to be in in the future, but is for their whole life. The sharing is useful for everyone in any industry and stage of career.

Dr Peter Yuen receives the certificate from Professor Jeeyeon Kim