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Asia Tour 2017

Wednesday, 9th August 2017


The importance of face-to-face meetings

 

As part of his new role as CEO of Russell Bedford International, last month Stephen Hamlet embarked on a mini tour of Asia that saw him visit five locations in 12 days, en route to this year’s Asia Pacific conference in Bangkok.

The purpose of which was to get to know member firms throughout the region, gaining an understanding of how their practices operate, the business challenges they encounter and their opportunities for growth and development; whilst at the same time learning about what members require from their membership of an international network. Visits by the CEO of a global network to members in each region across the globe is vital for membership development and in aiding empathy for such diversification of cultures. After all, every region is different and, as Stephen learned from his tour of Asia, so is every member firm.

To follow Stephen’s journey around Asia, click on the images below for his personal account of each of his visits along the way.

After a long flight from London, Stephen’s first stop was Singapore and a visit with member firm Steven Tan Russell Bedford PAC. Having received a warm welcome from managing partner Steven Tan and partners Andrew Lim and Kok Siong Wong, followed by discussions on their practice developments, Stephen was off to a great start to his tour. Next stop Vietnam.


Shortly after landing in Vietnam’s capital, Hanoi, Stephen met with the Secretary General of the Vietnam Association of Certified Public Accountants (VACPA) to discuss the profession in Vietnam and Russell Bedford’s presence in the region: an interesting and insightful meeting where many great ideas and future plans were shared around the table. Then on to meet with Russell Bedford KTC partners, Linh Do and Van Anh Thai; a firm overflowing with passion and ambition, and an excellent example of the calibre of accounting practice that Russell Bedford seeks for its network.

Malaysia was Stephen’s next stop and another member visit with Kuala Lumpur member, Russell Bedford LC & Co. A further fantastic welcome from the whole team and a discussion on audit in Asia and the challenges surrounding its future on a global scale.

Stephen’s fourth and penultimate stop took him to Hong Kong where he was delighted to visit Russell Bedford Hong Kong, spending the afternoon meeting managing partner, James Ngai and the whole team, discussing the values of belonging to an international network. On to his final stop - bustling Bangkok!

After landing in the Thai capital, it was straight to Russell Bedford’s Bangkok member firm, A.M.T. & Associates, a firm that has seen much change in recent times. Another informative meeting; yet no time to stop as they got on with preparations for this year’s Russell Bedford APAC Meeting with the help of Chaiyuth Angsuwithaya and his team, which you can read all about here.

As his adventure around Asia drew to an end, Stephen’s only regret, as he boarded his flight for London, was that he couldn’t visit every firm in the region. However, next year he plans to visit more offices in other locations as he continues on his mission to become more familiar with members around the globe, to understand what they need from their membership, enhancing the Russell Bedford network and progressing it to its next level of development. The concluding message being that a global network thrives on people relations, personal contact and face to face meetings; all leading to mutual trust and appreciation.