How It Started


I wasn’t always like this. I remember a time where I was carefree, I did not quite have ambition and just took life as easy as possible. The tipping point was when I met my best friend in high school, AL. He was a smooth talker, he was really smart, and most of all, he had ambition.

We were actively participating in as many student societies as possible to boost up our co-curricular activity scores. In addition to that, he influenced me to run for positions in ALL of them. We had key positions or played key roles in the prefectorial board, LEO club, boy scouts, etc. and those experiences built the foundation for who I am today.

From the age of 15-17, I learned about in-group out-group dynamics. I had my successes and failures of building a name for myself as the cool kid. I learned about the politics of wrestling for influence and popularity. I learned about challenging authority. And most of all, I learned to hunger for power. 

That might sound dark but these experiences set me on a path to many great experiences and valuable exposure. I brought that mindset all throughout college, university and my working career. In college, I founded the first Alpha LEO club, spoke at Toastmaster meetings and actively participated in Rover Scouts to contribute something back to the high school community. In university, I was part of a long list of clubs and societies and ran for positions as a foreign student. My first job at Accenture was a great fit; Accenture had a great culture of Significant Interest Groups (SIGs) that recruited fresh graduates to run staff activities during our “free” time. I also continued my Toastmaster speeches till I was certified a “Competent Communicator” in Deloitte.

I enjoyed competing for power, the process of proving one’s own worth, and actively challenging those already in power. I was convinced that I needed to be powerful in order to bring the changes I wanted to see. People listened when I was in a position of power, I could influence more people with more power, and the path to power was knowledge.

This reminds me of a quote that was introduced to me when I was just a teenager. I could vividly remember the exact encounter of this quote. It was after school and I was teasing a kid about who he had a crush on (like the childish kid I was). And boy, was I taken aback by this other kid’s maturity level. In all seriousness, he replied, “Why should I tell you who I like? Knowledge is power, and the more knowledge you have over me, the more power you have over me.” And then he walked away. I will never forget that moment in my life.