Tell us what you do for work.
I’m a workplace consultant at a real-estate company where I lead a small team in the Occupier Strategy and Solutions department. We help corporate offices and industrial spaces across Singapore plan their office designs based on their business needs.
In your experience, what are some current workplace trends that organisations are adopting?
Some big trends we’re seeing companies adopt across all industries are collaborative and productive office spaces.
After remote working became the norm during the peak of Covid-19, organisations are now focusing on creating quality offices to bring people back into the workspace to collaborate and innovate; not just as a mandate.
What kind of a leader do you try to be?
A sensitive and open one. Leaders often have an oversight when it comes to the details of day-to-day happenings, so I always make sure that my team feels comfortable approaching me and pointing out any mistakes that I make.
As leaders, our relationship with our team is less about hierarchy and roles—these can change—and more about being collaborators that we can all learn from, so I try to involve them in key decisions as well.
We hear you’re a new father! How has your experience been as a first-time parent?
Life is tougher, but also more rewarding. Before becoming a parent, I tried to prepare myself as much as possible for the arrival of my daughter, but no matter how much I prepared, I’m still constantly surprised by unexpected things. One thing’s for sure, my level of patience has increased (laughs).
The way I work has certainly changed too. I have to be a lot more efficient at work now because parenting is like a second job that I never get a break from, so mornings, evenings, and weekends have become very precious.
Share we us a milestone your daughter recently reached.
She’s seven months old now and just starting to vocalise “baba”, which means father in my language (Persian) and coincidentally my wife’s (Chinese) too! So she’s recently learnt to soothe herself to sleep by chanting “baba” and “mama” (laughs).
Tell us the story behind your matching necklace and ring.
Oh, I love these! They’re customised jewellery that encapsulates my wife’s breastmilk and strands of my baby’s hair, so I literally carry the DNA of my family with me wherever I go.
You mentioned that you like to read in your free time. What genre of books do you gravitate to?
I take fictional novels very seriously. I think they’re so important for all of us, in forming our worldviews and personalities, and in helping us become more empathic people. And of course, they indirectly influence the work that we do and our relationships with others too.
The last book I read was By the Sea, a novel by Abdulrazak Gurnah, who won the Nobel Prize in Literature. It’s a fantastic read!