Start only if you are determined to succeed — Lunch with Carlson Tong, Chairman of Securities and Futures Commission

1fKxIPlXrIdXsiMHvlpqmCw scaled
Lunch with Carlson has raised 124 hours

Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality behind their ventures.

It’s not by sheer chance that Carlson Tong was appointed to lead the watchdog of Hong Kong’s securities and futures markets — a sector that generated HK$35 billion in net profit last year.

As Chairman of the Hong Kong Securities and Financial Commission (SFC), he stands firmly in his virtues of being always being humble and respectful— only giving others work he’d be willing to do himself, insisting on replying emails immediately, and contributing his expertise to community service.

After attaining qualifications to be a Chartered Accountant, Carlson joined KPMG in 1979 and became a local partner in 1989. He then proceeded to become the elected Chairman of KPMG in China and Hong Kong in 2007, and ultimately a member of the firm’s global board in 2009.

Thanks to his natural diligence and rich experience within the finance sector, he led the SFC for over 6 years and handed out over HK$3.5 billion worth of penalties before ending his tenure this October.

Before his departure, though, we were able to meet him for lunch where he talked about his mindful approach to both work and life.

What is your life motto?

“Always respect people. I have been taught when I was small, whenever you work as a team or ask people for help, only request people to do things that you’re either capable of doing yourself or have done so repeatedly on your own before.

Never ask others to do something you yourself cannot.

It is a form of respect. Also, I try to say thank you as much as possible, it is easy to say and shows your respect to others.”

19HrdZGYEHAnXe C6TGLAWw scaled
1PcTB0JkMBB7ePX2NHlUu w scaled
1vMa3mMbKC7isOfNK1GDeyg scaled

Are there any habits you think will improve our lives?

“There are a few, the first being, giving a prompt reply to emails. Ever since I started working at KPMG, I always work on emails immediately, or at least give a reply. I never let my emails pile up. I never understood why people wait for days before they give a reply, a simple “well received” or “thanks, I’ll get back to you later” is already suffice, it is a display of respect.

A second habit I think would improve your life is to not look at your phone and email so often. My habit of looking at my mailbox so often has drawn the ire of my wife many times, as I am always looking at my phone. That’s why I am going to try and make it a habit to not stare at my phone so often. It is important to be “present” when you are with others, instead of being lost in the contents of your phone.

The third habit is to minimize your ego. There is no need to be boastful, respect and praise is something that others give you.

They are meaningless unless it comes from their heart.”

1LAPPg4CEJZ8tQlv32Zmqww scaled
1Lw DCetA NWbHe9QPWP7nw scaled
1jNEux6tpmCpj4qlubBVtiA scaled

Any advice you want to give university students nowadays?

“Read more books and pay attention to the news. Read more, understand more and ask more questions. By doing so you can understand history, it is very important that you do so, as it helps you understand and be prepared for the future. I spend an hour or two every day to read the newspaper.

Also, once you decide to do something, give it your all, don’t give up along the way.

If you don’t think you can do so, don’t start off in the first place.

Perseverance is paramount to success. It is true that luck plays a part in success, but you have to be prepared in the first place and you need to be willing to give it your all, without doing so, it doesn’t matter how much luck you have.”

An action you want everyone to take away?

“Have an action plan for your entire life. I always write down my goals, both long-term and short-term. Whenever I get a new task or job, I write them all down.

Do not aim too high, make them achievable,

else you would become disappointed and might even become depressed.”

1ycM5NeFaL3Ozqp8kb6EYZg scaled

Thank you for generously donating your time to Time Auction, which has raised 124 volunteer hours to HandsOn Hong Kong, Hong Kong Single Parents Association and more!

These awesome photos are brought to you by Sham from KaChick — a marketplace where you can book a photographer anywhere, anytime, for anything!

For more amazing opportunities, visit Time Auction to volunteer and meet inspiring mentors!

This article originally appeared on our blog on Medium: https://timeauction.medium.com/start-only-if-you-are-determined-to-succeed-lunch-with-carlson-tong-chairman-of-securities-and-8dd076a98d52

Updated on 8 April, 2021
Share on

Volunteer Your Skills for Worthy Causes

Ever thought you could volunteer with your skills?

Discover volunteer projects where you can use your skills to support causes – all while building your resume, gaining references and making a difference!
Discover Projects
【2024義工活動】點樣加入義工行列?5大義工服務種類推介
你對「做義工」嘅認識有幾多?好多人都未必熟悉除咗賣旗籌款同探訪老人院之外,仲有咩其他類型嘅義工服務。究竟坊間有邊啲做義工嘅途徑,可以搵到適合自己嘅義工機會呢? 其實香港大大小小嘅慈善團體或非牟利機構  (NGO) 都會招募義工,而非牟利機構嘅義工服務範疇亦非常多元化,包括技能義工 (Skilled-volunteers),善用義工嘅個人技能同專長服務社會。你可以根據唔同嘅服務種類,或者按自己嘅喜好、關心嘅社會議題選擇義工機會。以下係5種常見嘅義工服務範疇同機構簡介畀你參考: 目錄 (一):動物福利 (二):長者服務 (三):青年發展 (四):環境保護 (五):社區服務 技能義工配對平台推介 常見嘅義工服務範疇(一):動物福利 如果你係狗奴、貓奴,或者鍾意動物,不妨考慮做動物義工!除咗有機會親身接觸毛孩之外,仲可以利用自己嘅一技之長,支援NGO嘅日常運作。雖然根據政府公佈的數據,動物棄養嘅數量有持續下降趨勢,但因近年的移民潮影響,保護動物慈善協會表示棄養寵物個案兩年升近三倍。因此,很多關注動物福利的團體都十分需要義工加入服務行列。 義工服務性質:清潔籠舍、照顧動物、活動推廣等 香港動物基金 Hong Kong Paws Foundation 香港動物基金係一間完全依靠慈善捐款同義工支持嘅動物福祉組織,希望拯救被虐待、遺棄同走失嘅動物。 香港愛護動物協會 SPCA (HK) 香港愛護動物協會係本港首間兼顧動物福利各方面嘅慈善團體,提倡善待動物,同時打擊同防止虐待動物。 Bring Me Home (Suppaw) Bring Me Home (Suppaw) 係一個寵物社交網站,亦係香港首個無償動物領養平台。 嘉道理農場暨植物園 Kadoorie Farm & Botanic Garden 嘉道理農場暨植物園為需要支持的農民提供農業援助,幫助他們過上獨立嘅生活; 並為公眾提供休閒同教育體驗。  Team for Animals in Lantau South (TAILS) 南大嶼山動物保護隊為有需要的貓狗提供救援、醫療、絕育、養育、庇護、寄養同領養服務,包括那些 流浪、被遺棄、受傷、虐待同忽視既貓狗,大力提倡動物福利,相信教育可以創造有利於香港動物嘅變革。 立即發掘更多! 常見嘅義工服務範疇(二):長者服務 隨著香港長者人口上升,越來越多關注老人家嘅機構都招募緊義工,希望為老友記送上更多關懷。 義工服務性質:家居維修、網頁設計、文字翻譯等 […]
What It Takes to Build a Global Tea Brand from Hong Kong — Tea Tasting and Lunch with Allen Wong, Founder and CEO at Or Tea?™
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality behind their ventures. Bringing the Chinese tea tradition into the contemporary, global world hasn’t been […]
Your Imagination Is Your Limit — Lunch with Daniel Weinberg, Senior Partner and Head of Corporate Strategy of Optiver APAC
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality behind their ventures. Daniel is the Head of Corporate Strategy at Optiver APAC, overseeing strategic […]
Make Respectfulness A Priority — Timothy Yu, Founder of Snapask
Sometimes the most inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality behind their stories. Snapask has taken Asia by storm — the fast-growing tutoring app that makes learning […]
From Sweeper to CEO — Dinner with Tom Mehrmann, Former CEO of Ocean Park
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality and attitude behind their ventures and stories. If you’ve been to Ocean Park for Halloween, […]
Building Self-momentum from Cancer to Recovery — Lunch with Andrew McAulay, Chairperson, Kadoorie Farm & Botanical Gardens
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career. Andrew McAulay is the epitome of ‘chill’ we’ve all been looking for in our busy day-to-day. During our lunch with him, we were […]
From a Coffee Cart to Luxury Espresso Bars — Dinner with Sanjay Ponnapa, Founder of Fuel Espresso
Sometimes the most meaningful and inspiring conversations happen over casual meals. The Time Auction Blog is a snippet of our meetings with people who have found passion in their life and career, where we get a glimpse into their mentality behind their ventures. To Sanjay Ponnapa, Founder of Fuel Espresso, coffee is not merely a […]
Top