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Navigating The Pandemic: Your Career in Design


Event details

  • Date and Time
    Date and Time
20 Oct 2020
06:00 PM - 07:30 PM
  • Location
Zoom Webinar
  • Event Fee
    Event Fee


Event Recap

Industry leaders, Chooake Wongwattanasilpa (Chief Design Officer & Managing Director, DBS Bank), Jeff Cheong (President, Tribal Worldwide Asia / Deputy CEO, DDB Group Singapore) and Ryan Han (Assistant Director, Wildlife Reserves Singapore) shared their views on staying relevant in the design sector and gave advice on career planning and personal development. The session was moderated by Ms Praise Mok (Deputy CEO, ROHEI Corporation).

Here are some highlights and key points of what was being discussed at the webinar on 20 October 2020, titled ‘Navigating the Pandemic: Your Career in Design”:

Apart from being agile, adaptable and collaborative, what are the other attributes that are important at this particular time?

Chooake: Multi-tasking. Time management. Presenting in a virtual environment.

Ryan: With virtual meetings becoming the norm, it’s important to prepare beforehand to effectively engage clients.

Jeff: The importance of self-care and caring for others in the team as we become more socially distanced.

What is your perspective on the hiring opportunities available for fresh graduates and juniors?

Chooake: Having diversity in the team is also key to culture building, and young graduates are hired for potential – not about what you have or have done, but what you can do for the future.

Jeff: Attitude is important. Fresh graduates eager to make a break in the design industry are encouraged to go in as an apprentice or intern. Eagerness and attitude will show through the way you interact.

What advice would you give to mid-career switchers wanting to enter the design industry with no design background?

Chooake: For people who are considering a career switch, knowing the function and skills that you can apply, and plugging the gaps that you have is the route to take. Don’t be discouraged about having to take extra effort to make the switch; just keep pursuing and you’ll get there.

Ryan: It’s possible to make a switch with the right mindset. There are many courses out there for one to learn. While the journey to start from scratch will be tough, one must be brave enough to do it.

Parting Words of Wisdom from Our Industry Leaders… 

Chooake: Having less of “what customers want” is better than having more of “what customers don’t want”.

Ryan: Business-savvy designers who are adept at product design, data analysis, strategy, prototyping and user research will be increasingly sought after as design metrics gain a more critical role in an organisation.

Jeff: As a creative person, you must continue to maintain your edge. Keep learning and living to absorb new experiences because they’ll inspire you. Get a mentor and shadow the master so that one day you can pass down the knowledge.

Praise: You will always have a way forward if you’re prepared to roll up your sleeves and try whatever is in front of you.

Keen to hear more from our industry leaders? Watch the recorded webinar below now!


Stay relevant. Seize opportunities. Start planning for your career in design now!

Calling all young professionals and students from design and non-design disciplines to join us in this important webinar – if you want to survive and thrive in the post-pandemic world. Hear from industry leaders on how the design profession is transforming and learn how you can equip yourself with transdisciplinary skills that are in demand in the new economy.

About the Speakers:

  • Jeff Cheong, President, Tribal Worldwide Asia / Deputy CEO, DDB Group Singapore

Since joining the network in 2009, Jeff has continuously raised the bar for the Omnicom agency, leading it to A-list status for the past 12 years. In 2013, he was named Campaign Asia’s top 40 under 40 and took home Agency Head of the Year 2016 at IAS Hall of Fame. He also clinched Marketing Magazine’s Agency of the Year for three consecutive years. Just this year alone, 8 out of 10 of Jeff’s work ranked on Google’s Most-resonated Films leaderboard in Singapore for 2020’s first half. Out of which, “Together, We Can for” reached number 2 for Most-emotionally Engaging Campaign for COVID-19 in the world.

Jeff has a neck for driving large-scaled and complex programmes like the War against Diabetes, the Pioneer Generation and Merdeka Generation Package, and the Singapore Memory Project. Since graduating top of his cohort from Temasek Polytechnic’s Visual Communication, Jeff’s love for continuous education led him to established Equator, DDB’s global centre of excellence for innovation with the support of EDB. Equator operates as an in-campus satellite office in Temasek Polytechnic, Nanyang Polytechnic and Hong Kong’s PolyU.

  • Chooake Wongwattanasilpa, Chief Design Officer & Managing Director, DBS Bank

Chooake is the Chief Design Officer, who leads Group Design at DBS Bank to make finance more understandable and actionable for customers. Chooake uses design to solve business problems, improve customer experience, and increase the quality of the products and services. #better-by-design

  • Ryan Han, Assistant Director, Design Practitioner, Wildlife Reserves Singapore

Ryan Han began his career journey as an industrial designer at Creative Technology, where he enjoyed helping to shape its suite of webcams. He went on to develop and teach a design thinking curriculum at the Institute of Technical Education, and helped set up SingHealth’s innovation team before joining DBS as a design coach and practitioner in 2017 to shepherd its digital transformation efforts.

Ryan is now a design practitioner at Wildlife Reserves Singapore and part of the team developing the ambitious mega-nature attraction in the works at Mandai, featuring the new bird park, two new wildlife parks and eco-accommodation.

About the Moderator:

  • Praise Mok, Deputy Chief Executive, ROHEI Corporation

Praise is Deputy Chief Executive at ROHEI, an award-winning learning and development consultancy that has served over 70,000 learners. She leads ROHEI’s transformative and experiential learning design approach. With over 20 years of experience in Learning and Development, Praise has also served as moderator and facilitator in sectoral and national level discussions.

Presented by the DesignSingapore Council, in partnership with SkillsFuture Singapore. Supported by the National Design Centre.

This event is part of the National Design Centre’s “Next Gen” programme line-up for October – November 2020.

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Singapore’s highest honour for designers and designs across all disciplines
One of Asia’s premier design festivals that champions design thought leadership
National Design Centre