In a (long) article , I explained why I wanted to change from IT into finance. I moved from IT jobs in Asia into a role as Financial Controller for the retail channel Western Europe of Philips Lighting. That's quite a senior role; in fact, it was a promotion, and I got to move to Europe at the same time (another ambition). How did I change careers, get a promotion and move to Europe at the same time?

Career Advice and Tips: Professional and Personal Motivation

In memory of Ike Siddiqi, who passed away in 2007.

Ike was inspirational, particularly for those of us starting out. For a long time I've had this content on my website, but now I republish it after tidying it up. It is still refreshing and challenging to read. This content is copyright Ike Siddiqi 1997 and published with permission. 

Here are some miscellaneous thoughts - saying - truisms - or Ikeisms. You didn't ask for them, but you are going to get them anyway for FREE. Some are not necessarily original.

Many guide me in my business and everyday life. Some have guided you over the years. Most are simple - "To me very important".

  • Define objectives clearly - All objectives MUST be associated with profitability
  • Management does make a difference
  • People really are important - They really are!
  • Respect people’s valuable time, they will really respect you - Never promise something you can not deliver, you’ll only lose your face
  • Remember your commitments to your colleagues, they will trust you the next time
  • You get productivity through people - Not machines, Planes or Computers
  • Set high standards and achieve them - for your people and for your self
  • A sales/service organisation should be reminded frequently that it has been established to serve the customer, not to serve the company
  • The customer is the most important person in the world - think that way - act like it - prove it, on a daily basis
  • Operate as a "Hands on" value driven manager. Know your job and participate at the lowest possible level of activity
  • Get in the field - with the customer - with the people. That's where the action is!
  • Rule #1 - The customer is always right -- Rule #2 - If the customer is ever wrong, RE-READ THE RULE #1 again!
  • Don't forget the KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) principle. - It's more generally applicable to the majority of people
  • M.B.W.A. - Management By Wandering Around - good for people - shows you're interested in them. You'll learn
  • Discipline is the soul of an organisation. It makes small numbers formidable; Makes success available to the weak, and esteem to all
  • Do it - fix it - try it. Don't plan it to death - take action
  • The team - the spirit - believe in it - live with it - nurture it!
  • Don't ever forget the power of a turned-on group - It's awesome
  • Excellence and the pursuit of it should be a passion
  • The whole world is about making things and selling things
  • The only true edge in competition is service & relationship
  • Fight for what you know and believe to be right - It's not always popular or easy but fight for it
  • From my dad Get hell for doing something, but never get hell for doing nothing
  • Be practical with your objectives, there is a very thin line between "Vision" and "hallucination"


Finance people moving back to Australia

My notes on finance people moving back to Australia. I worked overseas for more than ten years, and came back to Australia in April 2008. This article contrasts my experience of Finance in mainland Europe vs Australia.

Summary of points I will cover:

  • How is international experience perceived in Australia?
  • How is the role of Finance different between European and Australia?
  • Culture shock and/or changes in the past ten years.
  • What parts of your overseas experience should you emphasise?
  • Head-hunters and agencies
  • Resume and cover letter advice
  • Job search etiquette
  • Good websites
  • Networking
  • LinkedIn