A Feature of Canon’s After-Market Support Team
Given that technology is accelerating rapidly, businesses can go obsolete overnight, along with the knowledge and skills that accompany them. As the adage goes, time and tide wait for no man; we have to be responsive in the face of change, or risk getting left behind.
Meet Mr. Tan Chin Tiong, a Senior Engineer who has been with Canon for 17 years. With some resilience and a desire to learn, Mr. Tan has managed to stay ahead of the technological curve when many have fallen behind. Despite his propensity for change, Mr. Tan has stuck to his values and maintained a strong work ethic throughout. Today, he leads a team of 8 under Canon’s After-Market Support services.
We catch up with Mr. Tan to find out what it takes to adapt to change without compromising on values.
As a Senior Engineer, I oversee and manage a team of 8 guys. I’m pretty much responsible for them – their safety, their well-being, even when it comes to making sure they report to work every day. Aside from that, I manage customer calls and ensure the team continues meeting customer’s demands.
I’ll start the day checking up on all the equipment, then do a troubleshooting or recap session with the guys if need be. This will be followed with work-in-progress updates – If there are any pressing maintenance issues that cannot be solved, this will be the time to bring it up. Even though I’m supposed to oversee the team, I prefer a hands-on approach and won’t shy away from direct maintenance work. Technology keeps changing so once you take a step back, you’ll realise you’ve fallen behind the pack very quickly.
My responsibility is to make sure customers are satisfied, and on top of that I have to train a team of different men to make sure we achieve that. When we manage to resolve a particularly tricky task, and our customers are grateful for it – that’s an accomplishment to me.
My team is small, and consists of very different characters from diverse backgrounds, so you tend to get involved in their lives more – we’re a close-knit team. Different people approach work differently, so it becomes my job to facilitate that and make sure we put our differences aside and work together. If any conflicts arise, I make it a point to lead by example.
I won’t solve their problems for them, but guide and teach them till they are able to stand on their own two feet.
I’m grateful for the never-ending opportunity to learn here, back when digital machines came into the market, we could have easily been made redundant – but that didn’t happen. Back then we studied analogue technology, so I had zero knowledge of computers when I first started as an engineer. Canon made sure we upgraded our skills by sending us for courses where we learnt about the computer and computer networking. On top of that, our bosses remained very supportive. It took me a very long time to get to where I am now – both in terms of knowledge and skills, but it’s paid off!
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