Meet The Team: Esther Ang, Marketing & Sustainability Senior Manager
Meet The Team: Esther Ang, Marketing & Sustainability Senior Manager
Petite with a ready smile on her face, Esther Ang started her career as a writer for sports and health magazines, as well as websites and marketing collaterals, so when she joined ONE°15 Marina Sentosa Cove seven years ago as the Marketing Manager, she was right where she needed to be. Add to that, it was her second time at the marina—her first stint here was in 2008—making it a homecoming of sorts, and a place she could grow and nurture her dreams. She has since been involved in the marina’s sustainability projects, with the ONE°15 Marina Coral Garden, which she helped launch, one especially close to her heart.
Esther has always believed that sustainability has to start from home, and true enough, she tries to ensure her house is devoid of single-use plastics—even if it means breaking through certain age-old notions of elders. With her two children, aged three and four years, every little game she plays with them has an eco-lesson.
She tries to be green both at home and at work, which is why she has embarked on this role as the Senior Manager of Marketing and Sustainability. Here, she shares about her career thus far, and future aspirations to ensure cleaner waters in the marina and beyond.
What is the best part of your job?
Heading the marketing department, definitely. It is the voice of the company and influences the way the brand is perceived. The challenge is ensuring that our Members and audience get the right message from every collateral, video, advertisement, and event that is put up. When I’m able to elevate the standards of the brand and Members are happy with their experience at the Club—that gives me the most satisfaction.
Is there an advice that has guided you through life?
“Don’t ever think or tell yourself that something is too hard to do. If you put your mind to it, you can do it. Giving up should not be an option.”—my mother said that to me. I was studying business and communications at an Australian university, and I had called her to say that I didn’t think I could make it through. I was 21 and alone in a foreign country—I suppose the culture shock and loneliness got to me.
Her words changed my life, and to date, I will never let anyone put me down or deter me from what I want to do. Because I know that if I want to do it, I can achieve it. Not everything can be yours, it also involves learning to manage one’s expectations. If something doesn’t work out the way imagined, I just must try again. The question to ask should not be to the universe but as to how you can do things better the next time around.
What is your advice to your team?
My role as a mentor is to push people to grow and constantly challenge the status quo. Youngsters now are also more aware, so we have to be very creative about the way we educate and motivate our staff. I tell them that they should be better when they leave the company than when they first joined. If that does not happen, I have failed as their manager.
The world around us is constantly evolving, and advancing, and we have to keep up. We should be on the constant quest for value, both for ourselves and the company, and upskill ourselves. Learning and growing are two things I strongly advocate and believe in.
What about you personally? How has the learning come about for you?
My bosses have never pushed me as much as I push my team (laughs). But I have also been lucky to have had very good bosses throughout my career. I look up to them. My key learning has been from observing them closely—their interpersonal interactions, managerial skills, how they conduct meetings and provide solutions, and steer the team.
What is the learning you value most at ONE°15 Marina Sentosa Cove?
I am grateful for being put in charge of the ONE°15 Marina Coral Garden where I got to learn a lot from our Eco Advisors. Learning about corals and ocean life has changed my perspective on environmental responsibility and influenced my lifestyle choices.
Are you a different person now than when you joined?
As a manager, my leadership and decision-making skills are constantly tested and have been sharpened throughout the years. When I restarted at the marina in 2016, there were three staff under me. Now, the marketing team has expanded to six including myself. During this time, COVID-19 happened, and we were rushing like everyone else to go online. We set up our e-shop and blog, as well as a digital services department, which required a whole new set of knowledge and expertise. Throughout my seven years here, there have been some periods with steep learning curves. But I would put all these towards necessary experiences tagged with valuable lessons.
Who has inspired you the most in life?
My university lecturers in Australia. They used to craft feature stories that advocated rights for underprivileged communities—disabled, LGBT, child workers, etc. One of my lecturers was the media consultant to the then Prime Minister of Australia. I also had an American facilitator who was a war correspondent. My classmates were inspiring as well. One of them wanted to conceive educational materials that she could distribute to educate underprivileged Colombian women who were not allowed to study. That was her objective for joining the communications course. All of them used the pen to advocate societal causes and demonstrated its power. It made me realise what a powerful tool it was, and it has been my best friend since.
How do you manage work/ life balance?
Playing with my two children is the best time of my day—it’s a form of de-stressing for me. My job is quite hectic and switching off can be a challenge sometimes. I try to work out my own work/life balance. I aim to leave at 6pm on the dot from work, so I can spend time with my children before they sleep. Even if it is just an hour before they get to bed, that time is important to me.
I find time to work whenever I can. For example, after my children have gone to sleep at night, when they are taking afternoon naps, during my commute, when waiting at a restaurant, and the like.
What gets you out of bed every morning?
I am blessed to be in a job that I love. There is never a same day at ONE°15 Marina. I wake up to new tasks, new challenges and new conversations everyday!
What are your sustainability goals for the Club in your new role?
Sentosa has formed the Sentosa Carbon Neutral Network (SCNN) with an aim to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030, and ONE°15 Marina has joined SCNN to support their goal. One of my immediate tasks is to commission a study to benchmark our greenhouse gas emissions, develop a roadmap on how we can reduce them by making modifications to our hardware and operations, and obtain internationally recognised green certifications for our Clubhouse and marina.
Ocean conservation is key to us and events such as Blue Water EduFest will remain mainstays. I will also continue to develop the ONE°15 Marina Coral Garden and volunteer programme/engagement with other stakeholders like our Eco Advisors. ONE°15 Marina is green-conscious to the extent that a sustainability role is built within the company, and we are taking genuine steps to reduce our carbon and plastic footprint, and educate our Members and audience. Sustainability is not a single-person effort, it takes the convergence of many people and minds.