What’s your story?
I graduated with a doctorate (DPhil) in Anthropology/Cognitive Psychology from Oxford University in 2013. A funded triple-blue athlete, I was also on the British judo squad 2007-08 & 2008-09. I left my position as Assistant Research Professor to start a business in what I envisioned to be an amalgamation of both of these worlds: scientific researcher and performance athlete.I’m British (Irish mother; English father). I’m widely travelled having covered much of Central and South Asia, West Africa, Central America – having lived in Iran, Afghanistan and Nepal during early business start-up attempts. I consider my wanderings the most important education I’ve had.
What excites you most about your industry?
The potential for a rigorous scientific approach, integrity, and cutting-edge protocols to revolutionize an industry that is so often plagued with dogma. And, also to have your heart in something you do.
What’s your connection to Asia?
I suppose this can be attributed to running an experimental study for my doctoral research in China (Beijing)
Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Hong Kong. I like the people here.
What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Stick a reading of Rudyard Kipling’s “If” on your wall for those moments of despair.
Who inspires you?
Alexander the Great, Noam Chomsky (not for his political materials), and my son Bon Horace Iskender (aged 2 months).
What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
I am a father; my father was my father (it’s more of a realisation thing)
If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I’m not sure that’s a valid question with any meaningful answer.
How do you unwind?
Training is my time for meditation: these days strongman, powerlifting, & Olympic weightlifting. And, good food, good company and the occasional film.
Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
I’m working on that one.
Everyone in business should read this book:
“The Red Queen”, by Matt Ridley. Ultimately, it’s all about our finite human nature.
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How can people connect with you?
This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:
Callum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.
Take the ‘Key Person of Influence’ scorecard <http://www.keypersonofinfluence.com/scorecard/>