Friday, 2 March 2012

~TALE OF A BEAUTIFUL OUTCAST~



Well I met the beautiful Ms Kim today at the office (Yeah, yeah, On CNN ~Smiles~). Ok, I didn’t get to listen in on her interview because of work but I got to Google her and I loved her immediately. She is ‘Driven’ personified. Her story is one of an outcast in far away South Korea who made it big in life despite the several challenges she faced.
She lived a fairy tale life as her father was an energy mogul in her home country. Being one of the girls in a family of 3 girls and 3 boys, she wanted to experience life other than the ‘go to college, get married and be a home maker’ (So, they do that there too ???). She applied to universities outside South Korea and got accepted into Amherst College in Massachusetts.

It took a lot to convince her father to allow her go to school. First, she tried hunger strike and it didn’t work, then she held a banquet for alumni’s of the College that are doing well in South Korea. On the day of the banquet, her father sat with these people and then they asked, ‘we heard your daughter has been accepted into Amherst, Will she go?’ He couldn’t say no. And thus began her long awaited journey into independence. She also attended Harvard University and London Business School of Economics. She defied tradition by marrying her college sweetheart. He wasn't daddy's choice. 

In their custom, properties were willed to the men in the family, thus her brothers got everything. She didn’t mind though, like she says ‘If I had gotten a billion dollars like my brothers, I would probably not be here today’.

After school, she had her first real job with Bloomindales and learnt a lot about branding and retailing. After a while, she went back to South Korea, made up with her father, worked with him (She even helped him secure a deal and he rewarded her with 300,000 US Dollars) and started her company (SUNG-JOO GROUP) importing and franchising fashion companies. She had franchising license for several companies like Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent, Billy Bag, Marks and Spencer’s, Lulu Guinness and MCM.
But then things turned sour and with the financial crisis of 1997, the MCM brand started failing and she lost all her money. She described it as  'bleeding money'. She decided to sell all her franchises and invest her all in MCM. This increased her status from being just a franchiser to an owner.
Today, She makes millions in sales and is ranked one the top women in Asia.
She does not believe in corruption but believes in helping other people . 90% of her workforces are women (I guess I should apply) and they get free healthcare and scholarship for their children. Several NGO’s has benefited from her good will. She says ‘By helping other people, you are earning more than just money’.
In the long run, her father was proud of her. Before he died, he said ‘You inherited most of my business blood, more than your brothers’.

Yayyy, you finished the story....hahahaha....
Well, reading her story got me thinking, how do we become the best???
Oh!!! I know; overcome challenges (they are always there- don’t let them stop you), take risks (FEAR!!! won’t achieve much with it anyway), Out of the box thinking (The world is moving, you’ve got to have that extra something, be innovative, be creative), Globalised view is important (Don’t limit yourself to one ideology, be open to several but remember to filter it ooo).And never forget GOD...

I’m determined to make it big time despite the turbulent times. Aren’t you???
Hastalavista...
Great Weekend...
Mwahhh
So Inspired by the beautiful people in the world...: ))