June is Head of Asia Equities Research. Based in the Singapore office, she leads a team of sector specialists who examine sector developments and manage equity portfolios in the Emerging Asia region.
Outside of work, June shifts her focus to her role as a mother of four. Her children are her top priority, and she makes it a point to spend quality time with them whenever she can. To unwind after a long day, she loves to sit down at her piano and let the music take her away.
Why did you decide to join GIC?
Back then, my knowledge of GIC and investing was limited. I came across a job advertisement on GIC’ scholarship programme. Out of curiosity, I signed up for the GIC scholarship talk to learn more about the programme structure and opportunities offered. At the event there was an opportunity to mingle with GIC staff from various departments. Through those conversations, I sensed a high degree of conviction that GIC is a wonderful place to work, and decided to apply for the GIC scholarship. GIC staff had told me that “There’s a sense of mission”, “We’re a buy-side firm”; and “We’re surrounded by nice and smart people”. At the age of 18, I was too young to fully grasp the importance of these factors. But over time, I realised that these are extremely important for a long and fulfilling career in finance.
I was fortunate enough to be awarded the GIC Scholarship, which allowed me to pursue my university education overseas. Ever since I returned to Singapore in 2002, I have committed myself to GIC’s mission which is to achieve good long-term returns to preserve and enhance the international purchasing power of Singapore’s foreign reserves.
What does your typical workday look like?
My days are filled with meetings, accounting for half of my time. The remaining hours are dedicated to reading reports, monitoring portfolios and trades, and communicating with my team members. Remaining current with the latest news and trends is crucial for me. During my time as a sector analyst and portfolio manager for the Energy, Petrochemicals, and Power Equipment sectors in Asia, I attended oil or coal industry conferences, frequented industry websites and publications, and searched for business updates and news releases on company websites about new product introductions, for example. While some of this information may be too niche or specialised for investors to immediately act upon, it builds a foundation of industry knowledge that allows us to interpret trends as they unfold and facilitates more meaningful engagement with companies.
What do you like most about working here?
GIC has the advantage of having exceptional access to leading companies and knowledgeable individuals. However, we must come to the table equipped with sufficient expertise and enthusiasm to engage with them meaningfully and learn from them.
How would you describe the learning & development culture at GIC?
During the first five to six years, the learning and development curve is the steepest. At GIC, we empower our junior employees to take charge of their learning and growth in a specialised field. Despite having access to a wealth of resources, absorbing a vast amount of information can also be challenging, especially when dealing with uncertainty and incomplete information. Success requires both aptitude and attitude. The good thing is, the culture at GIC is open and collaborative, allowing for valuable learning opportunities with colleagues. This was true during my time as a junior employee and remains the same today.
What you should know before joining GIC
GIC’s mission is to generate investment returns. Investment professionals need to have strong verbal and written communication skill, critical thinking, and the ability to look beneath the surface and beyond the horizon. They need to be comfortable with risk and uncertainty in financial markets. It’s a place for self-directed individuals with strong learning ability and independent minds. GIC expects its employees to uphold a high standard of professional behaviour.
Drawing on the advice given to me 25 years ago, I am still convinced that GIC is a wonderful place to work. This the same advice I would give to anyone looking for a rewarding career today.
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