King’s Road Angkor – The Man Behind The Success

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We sat down for a Q&A with Mr. Ban Vibol, Chief Executive Officer of King’s Road Angkor Premium Office & Property Management.

King’s Road Angkor is a property management entity establish in 2007 for the purpose of developing premium properties for office, residential, F&B, and retail purposes.

Following their recent accomplishments in Siem Reap, we sat down with Mr. Ban Vibol, Chief Executive Officer and the man behind the phenomenal growth of King’s Road Angkor, to find out how he has achieved such great success.

1. Can you tell us a little about your education and past work experiences?

I studied Business Administration and gained my degree from the US, and then went on to complete a leadership and management program from Australia. Currently I am undertaking a post-graduate program in Organisational Leadership from the University of Queensland, Australia.

I began my management career as the Head of Human Resources and Administration at Advanced Bank of Asia (ABA) in the year 2009, at the young age of 26. After two years in this position the bank then promoted me to Director of Human Resources and Administration. Two years later I decided to leave ABA to set up two companies, one based in Cambodia, and the other one is in Singapore, for which I am still currently a board member, aged just 30.

I joined King’s Road Angkor at 34 as the Executive Director, prior to my appointment as CEO by the Board of Directors a year later.

I keep mentioning my age, as I want to inspire other young professionals in the country to accept the challenges they will face to be successful in the corporate world, regardless of age.

2. As CEO what have been the challenges you have encountered, and how have you overcome them?

Wherever there’s challenge, there will be an opportunity, and this is when leadership is needed. As CEO I am not only accountable for the company’s revenue, but also the people within the company, including my tenants, my staff, the stakeholders, and the community around us. I take all of these factors very seriously. All have to be well balanced. For example, I made a bold decision to provide a hyper-premium location to the community market inside King’s Road Angkor, completely free of charge with no monthly rent, and my deep gratitude goes to my Managing Director for his trust in me and for having approved this decision. Selecting the right business model and providing a crystal clear mission statement for this was a challenge for me, but we made it happen and the exceptional results are well beyond the expectations of the board.

To quote the great Chinese General Sun Tzu, “If you know the enemy and know yourself you need not fear the results of a hundred battles.” I had committed only six months to ensure that my team would be stronger, more committed, and moving together in the same one direction. This was our mission, doing so by comprehensively understanding the market we are in, our competition, and of course putting in the hard work required to overcome the challenges we faced and make a great achievements.

3. What has been the key success of King’s Road Angkor?

Providing well-balance objectives and goals to my team, tenants and stakeholders has been a key to the success of King’s Road Angkor. We have restored and created value through the creation of our new Commercial Team. They offer innovative solutions and excellent tenant relation programs to boost the confidence, something we feel we have accomplished. Our number of tenants has now brought us to 95% occupancy, and we have received great comments of appreciation in the reviews we receive from our guests, clients and tenants.

4. What major opportunities and threats do you foresee for development and property management in the future? How do you plan to handle them?

We are encouraging pure and healthy competition, and we are accepting the challenges. Each member of our team has been provided with a high level of professional training here in the country, and internationally, along with personal coaching for stress-free performance, so that their work and duties are a fun and enjoyable, while maintaining the high level of value we offer to our clients and tenants.

5. How do you envision King’s Road Angkor in the next five years?

I would proudly say that, if we are continue at the rate of growth we are enjoying now, we will be the number one out of the top five property management companies in Cambodia in terms of innovation and progressive thinking.

6. How do you build rapport with the management team? What role do others play in actualising your strategies?

My personal style of leadership is to be a good listener, a good father, and a good coach, providing the best advice and direction I can whenever my team are seeking my help. My office is always open for them and my meetings need to be fun and productive. We also implemented a very innovative communication-messaging platform to allow very responsive feedback. I frequently talk to them on a one-to-one basis, while taking a walk or over a coffee.

Delegating a role correctly is a crucial. My background in HR helps me with this. I have ensured zero conflict regarding roles and authority. Everyone in my team is working on right thing, at the right time, suited to the right skills they have.

7. You’ve mentioned the companies CRS in your previous articles. How important do you feel it is for companies to run a Corporate Social Responsibility program in their community?

Each company must have a CSR program that will help communities, and not only focus on revenue. There should be focus on sharing with those less fortunate, and helping those people in need to uplift their daily lives through knowledge and taking care of the environment.

For me personally this is a win-win situation between society and our company. At King’s Road Angkor we are providing more opportunities to create more local jobs by promoting Cambodian-made products and encouraging poor and disabled people to learn how to uplift their lives through our program. We are also promoting the importance of proper hygiene, to eradicate or at least minimise diseases, along with

nutritional advice in the local communities. We are also promoting social awareness to help preserve our environment.

In return, our CSR helps us with brand awareness, client and employee engagement, and the balance I mentioned previously between our company and the community.

8. Any parting words that you would like to share with our readers?

I would like to take this opportunity to talk to our young generation about leadership. Everyone can be a great leader. Leadership can be learnt, you can be trained for this, and you do not have to be gifted or a born-leader. The key is you need to believe in your ability, trust yourself, and study as much as you can all the relevant books and internet resources. Learn from your experiences, especially your mistakes, and turn all that knowledge into a unique opportunity. Remember, where there is a challenge, there is an opportunity.

Indeed King’s Road Angkor Premium Office & Property Management is in right direction under the leadership of Mr. Ban Vibol.