The majority of us spend a considerable amount of time interacting with others at work—brainstorming, sharing and building ideas together. At Frasers Centrepoint Singapore, we believe that teamwork and collaboration paves the way for success. We saw elements of this as we sat down with Elsie Goh, Senior Centre Manager at Causeway Point, who shared how embracing diversity and fostering ownership has brought about positive outcomes.
Elsie Goh, Senior Centre Manager at Causeway Point.
An early career switch
“I have been Centre Manager at Frasers Centrepoint Singapore’s Causeway Point mall for over two years. I started out in the IT industry and later made a mid-career switch to property management.
Before entering the retail field, I was managing serviced offices. I applied for a leasing role with a local retail property developer and the hiring manager convinced me to consider a centre management role instead, which i did. And over time, the role just grew on me.
Elsie (left), having lunch at Crystal Jade, one of her go-to places for “comfort” food.
Causeway Point is not immune to the challenges faced in the retail industry and we need to constantly keep abreast of trends and adapt to them. Working in retail, I find that we need to understand our shoppers’ preferences, tenants’ value propositions and mall positioning well so as to create the right fit for all parties concerned. In moving towards that goal, we are currently going through a purposeful exercise on “Remaking Our Malls” sprints to rediscover our customers and their evolving habits so we can provide them the best end-to-end services they deserve.”
Diversity of minds unveils fresh perspectives
“Managing shopping malls also involves an understanding of property management which encompasses marketing, operations and leasing responsibilities. I manage these three aspects of the mall with my team.
Collaborating as a team, we pull all skill sets together with one goal in mind — to make our centre successful.
All of us bring diverse skills and experiences to the table that help us achieve better perspective and creativity at work. It is encouraging to see people grow and bond as a team through collaboration. Teamwork is crucial for a centre management work environment. There are over 40 people in my team and we often find ourselves working with others to make things happen. They must be comfortable in working together as a team and possess a good attitude and willingness to learn.
My team members are specialists in their fields with diverse experiences in retail which contribute towards improving our processes and performance. My role is therefore to harness their talents and energies, provide opportunities for them to grow while steering the team in the right direction.
Improving team performance with work ownership
“I appreciate my team members for having a passion and understanding of retail. When they appreciate what they do, they are more committed to give their best. The team currently takes on a lot of ownership, and many of the heads of departments, even frontline staff, are hands on and lead by example.
Elsie (seated, third from right) having a time-out with her team in a lunch-cum-karaoke session.
There have been instances when team members have willingly gone out of their way to help others.
Our staff have been commended by shoppers for going out of their way to help. In one instance, a shopper had dropped her phone into a deep drain and a few members from our Safety & Security team and Mechanical & Engineering teams worked together to retrieve the mobile phone safely within only half an hour and returned it to the shopper. This was not part of their scope of work but the staff felt so closely connected to their work and the community at this mall that they feel ready to help whenever they can.
To me, there is no one fixed way to reach a goal or solve a problem. We all have different experiences and there may be paths we try to avoid based on previous learnings but most of the time, all roads lead back to Rome.”
Elsie (centre) and her two daughters.
“I enjoy shopping and this is one of the reasons I was drawn to working in retail. But my work has changed the way I shop now. When I visit other malls in or outside of Singapore, I find myself observing the latest concepts and experiences and designs that I could possibly incorporate at Causeway Point.
Elsie (right), on a trekking adventure with one of her daughters, and a mischievous monkey looking on and pondering its next move.
Sports and spending time outdoors helps to clear my mind. I enjoy cycling, swimming and trekking. Such activities not only help me feel healthier and better, it also changes my state of mind and makes me realise that some problems are not as big as we make them out to be.”