Joseph Teo has been a Vice-President at Singapore Exchange and United Overseas Bank (UOB), a CEO for an online trading firm and an Assistant Director for the Monetary Authority of Singapore.
"It's been fun," summed up Joseph.
For Joseph Teo, work has to be "fun, engaging, and must continuously bring new experiences and learning". And that is the reason he joined the Institute of Systems Science in September as Member, Process Innovation Practice.
And his expectations of finding gratification on the job have been amply fulfilled.
"I have enjoyed the classes. I appreciate the opportunity to present to a wide audience and to learn from the many different participants, some from countries as varied as Guyana and Sierra Leone. ISS is currently undergoing a period of increased demand and there is a great push towards getting more courses available while fulfilling the demand for courses that we are currently offering."
At ISS, he is teaching business process re-engineering. He is also lecturing on e-Government courses at the Singapore e-Government Leadership Centre. He eventually hopes to be engaged in consulting and research projects in the areas of process improvement and outsourcing.
While Joseph is teaching, he is also learning. He is currently pursuing a doctoral degree.
Working in a research, teaching and consulting position, he believes, is the best way he can make a small contribution towards making the world a better place.
Joseph already has two master's degrees: A Master of Business Administration from Nanyang Technological University and a Master of Science (Computer Science) from the University of Illinois. He obtained his bachelor's degree at the University of California, Berkeley, on a National Computer Board Undergraduate Scholarship and made the Undergraduate Dean's List there.
His career has been as high-flying as his studies.
In his last job, Joseph was the Vice President and Head of User Testing (Operations and Technology Group) and Function Head of Planning and Governance (Technology Group) at Singapore Exchange. There, he led the outsourcing of the data centre and other IT infrastructure operations, centralised IT procurement and developed the organisation's technology risk management framework.
And at UOB, he steered a Strategic Planning Process that sets goals for unit managers involved in people management, customer management, operational efficiency, and bottom-line results. This programme led to UOB Operations obtaining the Singapore Quality Class award and ISO 9001:2000 certification. He also helped to set up a joint venture company between UOB and Bermuda Trust to take on unit-trust back-office processing. He was involved in establishing the organisational structure, business models and service levels of the new joint venture, and assisting in the transition and merger of operations between the two organisations.
His whole career, said Joseph, is marked by his passion for accountability and good governance. He hopes to bring some of that passion, as well as his experience in the battlefield, into the classroom.
"I have the good fortune to have had a varied portfolio in public and private sector organisations, in both operations in the financial sector and in IT management. This on-the-ground experience gives me greater confidence when it comes to offering solutions to practical problems faced by professionals enrolled in our programmes."
Frank and direct almost to a fault, the most important question for Joseph is 'why?'
"I will be convinced by logical argument, but I have low tolerance for contradictions in words or deed."