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Nick Wong: being an effective leader in evolving industries

Nick Wong Director of Technology Delivery, Bupa Australia & New Zealand on the technology industry, workplace culture and being an effective leader

Nick Wong
Bupa Australia and New Zealand

Director of Technology Delivery, Bupa Australia & New Zealand

Joining Bupa in 2014, Nick Wong is the Director of Technology Delivery, Bupa Australia & New Zealand. Prior to working at Bupa in Australia, Wong started his career in the UK working within the media and telecoms industry. “I'm originally from London and have actually worked mostly in media and telecoms. I worked at British Telecoms (BT) for eight to nine years, and prior to that I was in media and telecoms at Accenture. I have done a variety of different things but they have all been primarily technology oriented, specifically in the digital space.”

While the sectors that Wong has worked in have some distinct differences, he explains that there are also commonalities when it comes to the evolution of regulations and technology. “While the technology has certainly moved on from the early days, the practices are largely common. I think probably the thing that's most shaped my approach to my role at Bupa has been less to do with technology platforms and standards, and more to do with the expectations people have around what technology can do for them, both internally and externally. A pivotal moment for me that I worked on back in my early days was the introduction of broadband internet, something which was pretty transformational, to have grown up in a world without internet to then be operating in that space.”

When it comes to the traits of an effective leader, Wong details the importance of understanding the role a leader plays within the overall team they are leading. “The purpose of a leader is to get the most out of the organisation and the projects they are a part of, which is only increasing in importance amidst the current global conditions. I’ve been fortunate, I’ve had a number of different types of roles with different spans of control and team sizes, and I think probably you're defined by some of your more difficult moments rather than the easier stuff, as they don't educate you as much as the times when things have been difficult. I think about my career history and the opportunities to learn and I'm always thinking about how we can apply those to my role at Bupa. Over the years my approach to leadership has evolved into one where I am less involved in the lower levels of detail and becoming more aware of the extent to which my involvement helps people on the ground versus the times where I think I am helping but it doesn’t. This awareness has evolved from trying to create an environment where I can help my team in a servant leadership way, which is a really important value to me. This means you have to create an environment where the team feels they can ask you for things or seek your guidance and can also challenge you when you're not necessarily helping them get to the outcome. It is important to be clear on the roles that we play and the role that as a leader you play in helping people be successful and find meaning in their work.”

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Nick Wong | Bupa Australia and New Zealand

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