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Women in Leadership Series: Reina Cheng, MD Hong Kong

Reina Cheng, Managing Director of our Hong Kong office shares her leadership success story.

imageTell us about yourself

I was born in Hong Kong and moved to Sydney, Australia at a young age. I spent my youth in Sydney before moving back to Hong Kong to study a bachelor of dental surgery degree at the university of Hong Kong. When I first started in recruitment, I still worked as a dentist part time on the weekends. Outside of work I enjoy travel, Japan and New Zealand are among my favourite countries and have very good food. I love to bake and cook meals for my family.

What drew you to recruitment?

I’ve always had an interest in sales and account management.  When I was in high school, I saw an advertisement for a fragrance promoter in a department store in Sydney. I went in for interview, got the job and was assigned to one of the fragrance counters handing out promotion materials to attract customers to buy the fragrance. I got a lot of job satisfaction from this role and realised I had a passion for sales. I went on to then become counter manager for the aramis brand which required me to manage the P&L for a particular counter.

After graduation, I wanted to pursue a role that would allow more two way interaction with my clients. Interactions with your clients and patients in dentistry are mainly one way. Most of the time, the patient is not keen to be there (they are likely in pain!) and they can’t talk to you as you are working on their teeth! I wanted a role where I could utilise my skills in consulting and receive the same rewards as a dentist which is the satisfaction of happy clients and candidates which then brings personal financial reward. 

How do you motivate yourself, and stay motivated?

I’ve always been results driven and I understand the need to put in hard work for good results.  I’ve also got an interest in people and how they interact with one another.  I am inspired by people that I meet at work, whether they are a candidate, a client or someone who works for us internally.  This industry can be fascinating and I lean into that. For example, after studying how personality and psychometric testing can impact hiring, I completed a Hogan assessments qualification to consolidate this knowledge.

Describe a challenge you have faced, and how you have had to "make it happen"?

I started on an accounting and finance desk hiring qualified finance professionals in the commerce and industry sector in Hong Kong. I knew very little about accounting and had to learn on the job.  I had great mentors who coached me but I also had to make it happen myself. 

What is an accomplishment that you are most proud of?

I’m proud that I’ve been able to change my career and become a successful leader in the recruitment industry but I’d like to think that the best is yet to come.

What is the most valuable piece of advice you have been given?

Where there is a will, there is a way. If you set your mind to something, anything is possible.

If you had advice for your 18-year-old self, what would it be?

Stay happy and don’t lose your curiosity for life and learning.

How has Morgan McKinley supported your career as a female?

At Morgan McKinley, there is no glass ceiling for females. There is no gender bias or stereotype in our organization. We are driven by good work and strong results.  I’m pleased to say we support flexible hours for working mothers and we have a good representation of female leaders from senior consultant through to associate director across teams in the Hong Kong office.

  • Aug 15, 2017
  • Hong Kong
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Danielle Fullick

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