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Welcome to the Asian Leadership Series
My name is Karen, from the department of management
And I'm your MC for this evening
Some of you may wonder how this talk come about
Actually it is through a conversation between your case manager and myself
About how much we want to find a young successful Asian business leader
someone who all our undergraduate students can relate to
And the hostess said :"Well, Karen ,have you heard of or heard about the founder of POST PRODUCTION OFFICE LIMITED, Nicholas Tse!"
And I said :" Perfect!"
So, with the tremendous support、with the tremendous support from the POST PRODUCTION OFFICE LIMITED
here we are , delivering to you our first Asian Leadership Series
So…Thank you very much for coming!
So, since this talk is especially for you students, the whole event is going to be hosted by students
So, the format is this
The first 20 minutes or so Mr. Nicholas Tse is going to share some of his experience and insights with us
and that will be followed by an about 45 minutes chatting session between the 3 student interviewers and Mr. Nicholas Tse
and then we’ll be round up by a 15 minutes Q&A session
So may I now invite the 3 student interviewers, Johnson, Mandy and Nathan to the floor, please
So before we officially kick off the event, just friendly reminders of some simple house rules
First , can you please switch your mobile phone to silent mode?
And secondly, no laptop, computer, no live recording
And third, I understand everyone is very excited, but please remain seated during the event
And last but not least, if you want to leave the lecture theater during the event, can you please use the door at back
So without further ado, may I invite professor ROGER KING, director of the Centre for the Business Case Studies
He himself a highly successful business leader,to kick off the event.
Thank you all!
It's really a great great honor and privilege for HKUST to have Mr. Nicholas Tse here
First of all I would like to also thank our president Tony Lee, to be here, and our dean Brandon Chan
And of course many many other honored guests
But most importantly, you students
I think this is probably one of the biggest events we've ever had
Just let you know, Nicholas
When the registery opened and within hours, it was totally full
In fact, this room only holds 400 people
Within a day and a half, we have 1700 people signed up
And clearly, (they) didn't come to see TONY
Nor me
But,anyway, I was asked to say a few words about our case center,Ok?
and many of you may or may not be aware of it
we have a case center here in HKUST’s business school
which is relatively new.
And let me just tell you why we actually started this thing
It was actually the encouragement of our Dean
and basically most of you probably aware of the notion of the case study itself.
For those of you who may not understand, or haven't had the chance
casestudy actually brings in real-life business situations into the classroom by writing cases on that company usually
and but we also back it up with theory, and allow students to actually analyze the situation itself.
So by having said that, there are a lot of other schools particularly Harvard, Ivy and Darmouth, and many many other schools do write cases.
So why should we be writing cases?
Well, one of my colleagues Professor Pang here
And, what we did was before I said to Leonard “Yes we will do this"
because he asked me to do it on a proposal base I might say.
So I said “Well, before we actually do this let’s take a survey
and understand what are we currently doing in our school, and who uses case method.
And so we did was we actually took a survey for all the faculty members that are teaching the MBA program itself
OK. and what we discovered was first of all at the encouragement of the Dean
we actually had 2/3 of the faculty responded to the survey. over 66%
and what was discovered was that students actually like classes that have cases in it.
NO.1,they gained higher scores for class that had that
so for those of you who are teaching this is great news.
The second thing is that (they) actually like the professor that’s teaching it.
And the third thing was…
how come we always study western company cases
why don’t we have more Asian cases?
And therefore our main main focus is now on Asian.
In fact, my colleagues and I,Karen Lee as well have now coined the concept----
Asian cases, by Asians, for Asians.
No,it’s not to say that someone from Harvard they ask for a case we won’t give it to them
But I would hope that in a few years, they would actually come to us and ask for cases
Why? Because a Harvard professor their thinking-class is very very western
They don’t really understand how businesses are conducted in this part
And hence that’s our primary goal here
And we are also very very lucky that many of our faculties now have been supporting the concept itself
and in fact even though the 10 years system in the school
doesn’t necessarily recognize those centres involved in writing cases or even teaching cases
but we are moving along that long.So this is the purpose of that
and in fact, many of our cases we are able to invite honoured guest to come
but more importantly in the classroom sometimes.
And I recall one of my cases
the individual that came to the class, this is the person that actually in the case itself
he said to me
“Roger, you know what? This is great!
I’m getting so many good suggestions from students
In fact, it’s the cheapest consulting service I’ve ever had”
so you know the whole idea is you need to participate for you students in this room
And it’s a great great opportunity to analyze real-life situations
So I’m sure again you’re not here because you want to listen to me
So it gives me great pleasure
and Nicholas really needs no introduction
but here today he’s coming as a entrepreneur
a business was founded, several years back
when he was only , guess how old? 22!
That was only yesterday right?
And he has a very very successful business now
He has an office here in Hong Kong of course, as well as in Shanghai. I understand. Right.
So, without further ado, I would like to invite Nicholas to come up.
That's not for me, right?
Hello. Thank you for the warm welcome.
And…Ladies and gentlemen welcome and thank you for having me on campus. This is truly overwhelming,Really.
I’m instructed to deliver a speech in English
So therefore I will be speaking in English
But if any of you prefer to speak in Cantonese or mandarin, please feel free to do so
I do hope that at the end of the session
both parties,you and I, will gain something out of it
and leave behind some,what? kick-ass memory, all right?
Wow, this is really intense right now, for me.really.
maybe because this is my first time to show up as an entrepreneur, in front of the crowd
What is very odd is that I’ve been doing this most of my life
I have been giving speeches and performances, and talks around the world
The crowds ranging from 30 people to 130,000 people
but never have I been so uptight
and nerve-racking
Maybe it’s because I am simply put in front of a crowd of academics
And I feel that I’m now actually out of my……
I do feel I’m talking to another caliber I’m left out
So the first point is really to tell you
I dropped out of school in grade 10
And I urge you really to go through your education
Most of you I think have gone half way, right?
Might as well go all the way and grab that damn piece of paper!
If I had the chance to take all the wealth and so called fame and glory that I have now
and buy back 15 years of life
but keep the knowledge that I have now
and relive the physique I had 15 years ago and trade places with you right now
I would make that trade in a heartbeat, really,seriously
I dropped out school when I was…maybe in grade 10
and ever since I set foot into the so called business world
There has not been a day that has gone by without me hating myself and regretting
that I did not fully commit to my education
Maybe fine arts, agriculture, architecture, ceramics…
who knows, I don’t know
MBA. But, I dropped
And every day that has gone by, I do regret
Some of you may not feel it right now.
But that diploma when you are trying to close a deal with someone
it means just that much more
When you are trying to convince someone to an idea, concept, something new
that piece of paper will just mean that much more
and people will judge you
and they’ll doubt you that much less
That is reality, and it has been hard for me
but…so I think I’m here to hopefully convince you to
go through, go to the education, go all the way
grab that piece of paper before you leave. OK?
Do not walk the path I’ve ever gone through
So and for the people who did not know
I have been running a so-called post production business for the past 9 years
And that’s what I do apart from the acting or the singing part, the entertainment part
There’s also the business part of Nicholas Tse
We are based on Hong Kong right now
We have a subbranch in Shanghai, it’s going very well
We are going to open in Beijing in the end…hopefully the end of May.
Can I say that, please?
Because we are in a rush and everything is really….
so I’m looking at my colleague whether we can pull it off at the end of May
When I say post production it’s actually to a lot of people a very foreign term
So what is post production?
Post-production is… I mean by
audio dubbing, online editing, offline editing
compositing, animation, computer graphics…all that good stuff
Actually, everything you see right now on television,
advertising Broads, or in the cinema, or even on the Internet
Every visual image you see right now
is actually…it has…it should have undergone the process of post-production
in order to achieve a certain standard of broadcast quality
And just by saying that I’m very very happy to say that
it has already obvious very high demand
or else I will not be here today
And so…for a more visual explanation of what I do
I would like to show the company reel
and…These are some of the brands that we do represent in Hong Kong or in the mainland China right now
Some of you may recognize or may not recognize it. OK?
Thank you. That’s some of these brands that we represent at the moment
but…what you have just seen is the pretty side of the production
I would actually like to show you some of
the before and after
as to actually how we make a living
So what I’m about to show you, is a…something called the Canon G12 model.
It is an advertisement shot 2 years ago by a very famous crew
But, why don’t I show you?
Here you see in front of the green screen, just a…
it’s merely a model holding a camera.
And all it is…
I'm sorry. It’s just actually a track back show of this model
it’s not quite up to the entertaining part…
This is the source that we got when we first accepted this project
We have taken the initiative to talk to the producer and director and say…
hey, why don’t we do something more interesting
and something that is to the next level…
graphic wise and so…
can we please show the next layer?
So with audio and visual enhancement...
each layer by layer, you can see, that inch by inch…
this is what we do to enhance the visual effect…for the outcome…
After 1160 and some more layers and modelling put onto this image
you got the finished product…
That’s it. All right,that’s one more full version or finished version.
There you have it. And that’s what we do for a living
For people do not know, post production… that’s what we do
and…so any question so far?
Why don't I ask you a question?
Who in here wants to be successful?
Raise your hand if you wanna succeed
Coz I’m sure as I'll do.
What's preventing you from raising hand?
Second question, and the more important one: who’s lying?
Because I’m pretty sure you go out there and you ask people
“who wants to be successful?”
99% of people would tell you: I want to succeed
I want to be the best basketball player
I want to be the best hockey player; I want to be the best artist, engineer, whatever…They will talk
But most of you want to succeed
But are you truly being honest to yourself?
Where has you found your passion? you know your strength and weaknesses?
where to place yourself in the market, how you want people to see you and how to project yourself in a market
I founded this company because…
at the age of 22 and 3, between that time, I was on set, on a movie set
And, I saw the director go up to the CG, computer graphics guy in the department
and ask them:“ could we… actually, I wanna do this… take the computer graphic image and do this… ”
and, he hesitated, froze, and I thought,:wow…
So, that stalled for an hour or so
But, ticking, tick tick tick, all that is money
And he called back to his headquarters
and asked for the allowance to say: They want to do this and that, so can we please…
After days of freezing, multi million dollars was lost during that process
And at the time I was releasing a lot of music videos
I was doing a lot concerts, advertisements, and movies
I wanted to enhance the visual effects myself
and I thought: wow, this should be our realm
That’s our profession, why are we doing so poor in it?
So then
if some of you have read through, may have read through my interviews
that I did sell my property, for a certain amount of money to invest in this business
I started off with 4-6 people
and I bought 1 or 2 second hand machines to start it off
And, luckily, I am here today
But, what message I wanna get through is
it seems like Nicholas Tse gambled everything away for the future
I didn't
It is a gamble, but…
before I bought those second hand machines
I actually calculated and talked to a few producers and we signed contracts
for 3 movies, 2 advertisements, and 3 music videos
so that we’d cover my one and a half years overhead, ahead of time
So if I was to fail, I somewhat had a safety net that I won’t just kill myself.
I sold my house, sold everything, what do I have left?
So I did have a bit of a safety net
I don’t want to give the wrong message out to the public that…
“he just sold everything, so we can do that too.” Please do not. OK?
So, when I was saying, be honest to yourself if you want to be successful
Because, some of us say we want to be successful
but we don’t wanna succeed more than we wanna sleep
We don't wanna succeed more than we look cool,and go to the ..tonight
we don't want to succeed more than hanging out with friends,going to a cinema
you must be honest to yourself and find your ultimate passion
so therefore, are you willing to sacrifice all these temptations to prevent you from practicing your art?
I don't believe the saying of “Practice makes perfect”
to me, there is no perfection, there should always be room for improvement
practice to me, practice makes permanence
you will only have a much higher probability not to mess thing up, but there is no perfection
That's to me
Any questions, so far?
These 3 guys are actually really intimidating right now
Because it feels like that at any moment they’re gonna chuck some intellectual question
like ninja’s darts
this is the question from us.
you basically answered about half of questions already, so
because the angle you sitting, the angle you sitting
So, really thanks for your brief introduction
and a warm welcome to today’s Asian leadership series again
so just before our conversation begin
would you prefer us to call you NIC or just Nicholas (yes...)
so, ah, NIC, as we know that you have established a very successful company
and we know, we have saw a sample work from Canon
we want to know what is the greatest challenge when you starting up your company?
The greatest challenge really is to earn the trust of clients at the age of 23
because it is a human natural instinct not to believe in
someone 10 or 20 years, younger than you
and to establish that trust is a reputation
but that together, it takes time
And we started offer really miniture size work
and earned the trust of some directors , and said:
"you know, are you guys ready to go to the next level? "
I personally say yes
but then what I've learnt is that saying yes doesn't mean anything
because no one wants to fall
and it is a cruel world out there
People will start blaming stuff, and say well, nic, he screwed it up, it’s not me
So, what I’ve done, I've changed through these years
I don't say yes any more
I go back and ask my team:" Do you think you can do this?
and if so, why don't we do a 30 seconds demo to shut their mouth? "
So the hardest part, the hardest challenge is to
I think for any business is to earn the trust
actually, mentioning that
I myself, I …
ever since I was little, I love Hong Kong action movies
I still do, I really do, it’s all my passion
being honest to myself, I can tell you, I love action movies
and I am willing to put my life on the line, literally
if it takes, and to protect HK action
So 10 years ago ,I made myself a promise
that if I'm gonna be in this business
I wanna, I wanna be an action star
at least participate in one of Jack Cheng's cool movies, or the Jet Li movies or the Donnie Yen movies
And, I will show you this, actually
it is more a present to my son
it is a 2 minutes video for his first birthday
some of my favourite stunts
please do not try this at home
because what you’re about to see for the next 2 minutes, I have been training for12 years
and a lot of luck is involved
that’s why I'm saying practice only makes permanence
because the more I do this in this chance, I will die
Jumping off the 41st floor is never wise, but I did that 19 times
Yea, and that was only one or 2 feet away from breaking my neck
That’s the Convention Centre
It’s funny they say you can put these paddings on, but wherever you hit, it never hits the pad, it hits you.
Now I tell you my son will not understand this message for another 20 years
Thank god I'm still here one piece
but that's how far I'm willing to go for what I love
Of course, I'm not asking you to go jump off buildings
I've actually seen this video about ten times. (really?) yeah!
It still gives my goose bumps every time I watch it. It's very emotionally touching
but shifting the focus on these students
and you have definitely found your passion, but how would you advise us for finding our dreams and our passions?
like I said, I think be honest to yourself
No… I don't think anyone can answer that question for you
it's what you feel every day
you have to live with it, you have to smell it, you have to feel it, you have to touch it
it's everything around you
something that never bores you, I guess
if you are hesitating for something
give it a second thought
but I'm here mainly to trial and error
and I guess that's part of life
you only start losing things when you start growing
but that's contradictive, philosophical part of life
so like when we 12 ,we are so eager to be 18
and say that I am old enough to stay up, I am old enough to go clubbing
I am old enough to click the porn button
but ,but when we do get older, like I am now, we lose the standard
we stared losing a lot of reflexes, speed, power, all of that
then, we start treasuring stuff
but ,what you love the most, ask yourself
I don't think anyone can really tell you that question ,or the answer
well ,but like sometimes if we find our own dream
we may not follow, like we cannot listen to our hearts ,because…
our social norms, or expectations from our parents
so what if I…can you give us students on really pursuing on your dream and stick to your mind?
I don't think anyone…
unless your dream is something that is so destructive that you’re hurting someone else
I don't think anybody would stop you from pursuing your dreams, right?
if it’s not something constructive, or something we don't normal, I would say…
it should be OK, you are not trying to kill someone
and make a statement
that's what I did in my stunts
you know ,I didn't just go about, talking to the director saying , I wanna do action movies
someone jumped off. I trained
and then I started going little stunts, I started to train weapons, my fitness
the whole thing, it has to start from scratch
so you want to prove someone wrong, prove them wrong
regarding this as Asian leadership series for you
we invite you to talk about your passion, your leadership experience
then what do you think is the one key leadership quality that you think is the most important to you to success?
one of the most important leadership qualities, I think
is to know yourself
and to place the correct people in the correct position
you know, really, after I’ve started this company
a lot of people say, they ask me
right to the point, what the hell do you know about post production?
And, to be honest
if you ask me to sit in front of a multi million dollar machine
and ask me to… will I do as well as my staff
I will not. I will fail. I will crash
But, I don't know how many of you follow football, but…
for example, let’s say, last night Chelsea and Manchester United play a game, all right?
see we’ve got people’s reactions now.
The manager of Manchester United, MR. Ferguson
he is not going on the field doing corner kicks and free kicks or saving the ball
he is placing the correct people in the correct position
if Rooney scored a goal
is it purely Rooney's glory that he scored the goal
or was it also because MR Ferguson placed him in the correct position
so he had the chance to be assisted then to score?
So I think to place correct people in correct position to do their work, do the jobs
and to inspire, to dedicate, to motivate
all that together seam through your staff
Being honest to yourself, your work and your staff
All the things together, I think is good.
Speaking of your human resources, cooperation
we have about 350 students sitting here today
and they might just happens to be interested to applying for your company
feel free, please, please, please
Just maybe! Just maybe!
So, For qualities of your employees, what’s your specific qualities of your employees you’ll be looking for?
Creative thinking
Because in a business like ours
it’s imperative, that every job is unique
we cannot duplicate jobs
Actually I’m not quite happy with my business model
because of that, because it makes very tough, whereas…
We’re not in a job, where robots and machines, can just keep printing and make money of that product
Each job is unique. So when I look for people, in our staffs
I look for creative thinking
motivation, energy
that they want to bring into the image, and of course, technique
and maybe some inborn sense or talents
You have many staffs in your company
so how do you encourage creative thinking in your company?
We have over 130 staff now
and after opening Beijing we might raise the number a lot
I actually, I participate in their daily routine of their lives
It might surprise you, but actually sometimes I cook for them
I make them desserts
Some of you may have read on newspapers
we just had just went on a pretty fancy vacation
Do you have the video here? OK
I gained weight
That’s a very amazing trip
As we can see from the video
we know that you actually have a very good relationship with your employees, your workers
I’m wondering what is your company’s philosophy regarding work
Do you often go to like overseas trip with your employees every…?
Yes, I do. Yes, I do. I try to participate as much as I can
And…trips like this is very good to come by these days, and…
I’m not just throwing a multi-million dollar trip for them
and say hey, you know, take this, go and enjoy yourself
You got to be part of it
You got to be live through their eyes
see what they are going through, solve the problem before it actually hits the rock
Before the collision starts, solve the problem
and you will earn the utmost respect
The difference I think between a world class company and mediocre company…
if you are feared…
your staff will only work as hard as to do not get fired
but if you are respected
not only will you have staff, you have a team
Not only you have the team, you have an army
And they will go that extra mile, they will push that extra mile for you, for the company
And that is the difference between a world class company and…just…that’s not bad.
You’ve mentioned earlier that trust is important in your company
so how do you build trust with your employees among Shanghai, Beijing, and Hong Kong.
We have a…we actually take turns
We send some of our senior partners and our senior engineers
up to mainland China, and we trained new people
Our business is actually very creative and human based business
whereas we need a lot of people
That’s whereas the next challenge for me lies
is to find people like you, who are young
who have potential to enhance better graphics
And have that motivation to say “I can take this up to the next level.”
I think the whole business is…
I think the whole world is asking for people like you right now
Steven Spielberg in 2011, last year
and now he’s decided he is gonna dump in 1.5 billion dollars into Shanghai
doing post production in dream works
To me, yes, that is scary, that is a big pressure
but I’m happy that…just to know
that there’s such a high demand, so therefore…supply is also needed, so…
Could you explain to us your vision standard of your company?
We or I, myself
I hope to…I really hope to give something back to the society
in terms of visualize
since I’ve been in this entertainment business for over 14 years now
I want to give something back to what is being broadcasted
and to…this is my time to but re-educate the next generation, my kids
to know what is a better quality, look at Korea, look at Japan
We have always been following the footsteps of their images
I think it’s time for us
and that’s why we are here today for Asian leadership
to tell the western people that: hey!
I can tell you right now
that if you want Nicholas Tse to do Titanic 3D, I can do it
just give me that time and give me that preparation
Post production alone cannot make a piece of blank paper into magic…
We need the whole process of preproduction along with us to merge together
then we can…I’m pretty sure that we can achieve 3D Titanic
Don’t think that we can’t do it. We can
But ultimately…I’m looking for education
If there’s a kid like me, a random kid like me in Hong Kong
that wants to learn about animation or that likes to play video games
I’m sure a lot of you do
You have different angles and visions of things that people don’t have
So times that by the number of the population in the whole mainland China
Only if 1 percent of mainland China people wanted to learn animation or post production
that would mean 130 million students
How can we not do 3D Titanic, I’ll do 8D Titanic
We’ve already talked about your vision
and we’ve also talked about how you build trust with your employees
how do you ensure that you share the vision from different offices in Shanghai, in Hong Kong, or in Beijing?
Each year I gave annual speech to them
and so far I’m very very thankful to say that
we have reached each year’s goal
We have moved from…
Our office was in a basement, a building in Causeway Bay, last year before April 2nd
And after April 2nd we moved to a quite luxurious building right now
in Cubus No.1, 5 storey building
And…what is means, each year we’re meeting our goals
and then two years ago, I announced that we are the first company to cross border with mainland China
to have a sub branch in Shanghai and in Hong Kong
And we have achieved that goal
And within a year, I’m very proud to announce
that we are going to open in Beijing
which is no other company, post company has done in the history of Hong Kong
So for the staff, I always tell them
I’m not asking you to work for me, I’m asking you to work for yourself
And it is important to make them feel like that they are at home; they want to go to work
and they see their future. Not am I only getting the salary paid
Wow…This guy is actually… he’s making every promise come true
And for them, that is so important because
they are not… everything is coming true
and they see further
And I think that is very important for everyone.
Working in creative media industry
I suppose there could be some divergent opinions amongst your work
When you actually face such type of situation, how would you settle those disagreements?
Uh, well, you know, Post production is really a passive
sadly to say very passive business
We...for the past maybe few hundred years, I think
post production is to do what we are ordered to do
by the producers or the directors of people who shoot these commercials
But we have managed somewhat to turn it around
to take the initiative… to actually
go to the meeting with the directors, and say
is this what you are trying to achieve or what are you trying to achieve
why don't we go this way?
So now we are participating more into the pre-production
to ensure that we'll get good quality out of the post production
That is mainly what we do
Has there ever been a time when other companies try to steal employees from you?
Since I guess, there could be some intense competition to get the right talents
Yes, there has been and
I think it was about five or six years ago
One of our competitors
was willing to pay five times the payroll for 20 of my staff to walk away from my company
I'll tell you the truth, I mean, 5 times the payroll...
I myself will think twice
But out of twenty people, only one left
I don't blame anybody for leaving; they must have their own reasons
But I am very proud to say that we kept 19 of them
And I did ask why. I said so…
really, you know, why are you staying. What is it that makes you stay in my company?
I am not paying you any more than other people?
And they replied simply that, "We are happy when we’re here…
we feel like home. We know how to bring a smile to our work".
That actually shocked me quite a bit
on how the new generation values their life today
Not only do they wish for a high salary
but they need to be respected, loved, cared for and feel this is our home
There was once when we were moving to our new company actually
I called on a vacation. I said, "Guys, stop today, we are not gonna work”
They said, “what are we gonna do? "
I said," we are gonna go look for our new office together”.
And they were actually quite shocked
And the whole army of us just, you know, we were strolling through all these buildings
And they asked why are we looking at this?
Because you are the ones who are gonna be sitting here 8 hours per day, not me
I want you to feel like you are at home
I want you to wake up and feel motivated to say
" I want go back.And fix that, I think I can do better."
These little things accumulate to a better crew
That's really inspiring
So it is inevitable that there are ups and downs in our life
So how do you stay positive?
Uh, stay positive
I consider myself very lucky
And we all should
All this you have right now is really a privilege
I remind myself that every day
the fact that I am just alive, you know those crazy stunts…
I am thankful
I just keep reminding myself that every day
as simple as that
As a final question to wrap up from us three
What is the most important message you want us to take from this Asian Leadership Series?
You know all this is great
I don't know how you feel. Thank you for all this warm welcome
But all this 謝霆鋒 Nicholas Tse stuff, right?
I am not asking any of you to totally embrace this guy's personality or the way he works, or the way he does his job
not to replicate or duplicate, but to find yourself
or pick up from this guy, what is useful to you and your lifestyle
make compatible and find yourself
So from me, I hope that you can find a little bit of use, to put into your lifestyle
and create your own dreams
because my dream is to make belif believable
and I will keep on doing that for a long long time
Although I said that was a final question. I do have another one. Uhh…
you’ve actually mentioned a lot of qualities, you talk about being charismatic
how you lead your team, how you make them like you
Or, you don't make them like you, they just like you
You talk about bringing them to different places
So what are some really important leadership qualities that a leader must have?
Well, another one I would say is to…
Set as an example
you can talk all you want
I can talk about stunts as I want
but when you are really put under the spotlight
and you don't know your stuff
I don't care how much you talk, you can talk forever
but can you make that jump?
If you have been training for it, you can
But that for me is an ultimate test
Whereas in business I may lose money, I may lose a job or two
But there, if I was not really honest to myself
I would lose a leg, I would lose an arm, I would lose my life
It's……it’s knowing your staff
like I said again, practice makes only permanence.
Thank you very much for sharing with us today
Thank you for really encourage our students to pursue our own dreams, our passions
and although we’ve asked quite a few questions, I’m sure the audience here have many more questions to ask you
So we will now give the question to the floor
Just as a reminder, today’s section is focused on entrepreneurship, leadership
This is important
keep in mind that today’s section is focus on entrepreneurship, leadership and management
So questions fall out of these categories will not entertained
Originally, we had about 20 minutes for Q/A sections
so keep your questions brief and to the point
If they drag on for too long
I’m sorry but I’m gonna cut you short and I’m gonna get the questions from some other students
so please be respectful to the audience
Just another thing
when we hand you the microphone after asking a question please pass it back to the staff members so
other people can get a chance
Thank you for your attention and we will now start taking questions
Hi, Hi Nicholas very nice to see you here
Actually we all know you as a very successful actor and singer, am I right?
instead of being an entrepreneur
So I just want to ask
how did your great fame affect your occupation, your business?
Is there any negative effect? Because there must be some negative effects
Thank you very much!
That is an awesome question
You know, I was gonna say about the category that the questions are gonna come by
I was gonna say if anyone was gonna asking for an autograph
I would sign you the autograph
if you can ask me a question that was a starter
because after all we’re all in the study of MBA
so why not study in negotiating
But I like that question…Yes
I did not launch to the public that I had this company
that I have this company until April 2nd last year
So I have been actually going undercover for 7 years
and it has been really hard
that’s actually what I forgot to mention
It is another challenge for me to be such low-key. And to still participate in the company
and why I kept it a secret was because
I just thought if I really wanted to prove myself as an entrepreneur
first I do not want to use my fame, so-called fame to assist it
And also I do think that would actually harm it in a way
because the press just gonna eat me up
He’s another so-called actor who is trying to do a business
but how successful am I really?
I myself I want the real answer
and therefore I kept it a secret
And I hoped my clients are coming in because that
they know they can rely on PO
and rely on me as the CEO
but not as… “Oh, I’m gonna give him a better credit
because he just participated in my action movie”
No I did not want that
It has been painful
sitting in the office
seeing all these people, all the directors come by and say:
“Oh you~ Hey~ You’re here for?”
“I’m here for dubbing…”
“Eh~ Oh~ You’re here again~”
“I’m still here for dubbing…”
I have been going there for 8 years
and then thank whoever’s up there that’s looking after me
Then last year I can present to the public that this is my company
and they completely thought that you were dubbing for 8 years?
You think I’m mad? Ya~ It’s true
Any other questions?
Hi, Nicholas~ My name is Johnny
and I know that you were doing really great at the age of 22 in the entertainment industry
I wanna know what motivated you to establish the post production at the age of 22
cause you were enjoying a lot of fame and money
So you should have sacrificed quite a lot
so what motivated you to establish the company? Thank you
Like I mentioned before that
little crisis I saw on set with the movie things with the hesitation, with the post production
I was quite upset
and ultimately I do want to give something back to the society and, say you know, I hope in the near future
Well a lot of times when I was trying to sell a concept or an idea for my own music video back to the time,
I was always banned
I was always given the answer saying: You can’t do that
----that’s too expensive and we don’t have the technology
we've got to go to Hollywood for that
I said , Really?
Well, Korea just did one quite similar
I don’t think they went to Hollywood for it
I was you know I was pissed off
that we are relying so much on the western technology
Whereas We have, to be honest, even today
we have exact same machinery that they do
It’s just the culture that is different
What's the difference between Brazilian soccer and China soccer?
We got the same balls, right?
But it’s the culture that they live it, they breath it
you know each kid is… all they have is a soccer ball and they play it every day
like our badminton. It's the same
it’s different in culture but I wanted to make a difference
I wanted to make a statement
Yeah, go ahead
Mr. Tse, was there ever a time
you wanted to… like you felt yourself drifting away from the business
like when your company wasn't doing well
and as a start-up I guess it’s very tough looking for projects and clients
And how do you take time off your acting work to, you know; spend time to your company?
And was there ever a time you felt like giving up or just very tired of this whole thing?
No, I have not. And I do feel tired sometimes as do my stuff
but as much as we love our jobs…
No we have never thought that you know…
there’s not a second that has slipped by my mind that I would give up this business
because I believe simply I believe
and I see it’s a very logical business
China last year became the third most movie-productive country in the world
first being India, second being the States, third is China
We made 716 movies last year
that’s almost 2 movies per day
how much post production is needed
if that much of hours of movies are made each day
It’s a very logical business
if so much pre-production is made then there must be space for post-production
and I don't doubt at all. I see a great future in this business
The lady in front
You have mention about the challenges your company had before
how about the great success of your company?
It’s doing OK~
I really don't dare to say it’s anything right now
it’s nothing compare to lot of my idols like DreamWorks or Pixar
but we’re getting there
and I do believe that if no one’s gonna start it off might that it might as well be me
So we’re trying we’re trying
Hi, Nicholas~ You have been successful in different areas
like you’re a very good actor entrepreneur
so how do you manage your time so well? Like you must be very busy
I must give this credit to my staff
A lot of time I’m on the way and not in Hong Kong, or I’m not in mainland China, all over the places
And we have established a trust
a kind of a harmony that we are in sync
we know what we want to achieve
So this I give all the credit to my staff
when I’m not here. They would make the harsh decisions
and we’ll, through the internet, we will communicate
And we are just obeying our rules
The guy in shirt at back
Hi, Nicholas~ I’m called Nicholas as well
and I hope I will be as successful as you one day
So we all know about you glory and success
And I would like… I’m curious about what mistakes you have done before for you as a leader
And what have you done to rectify your mistake as a leader? Thank you~
I…… I like that question. It’s hard…
I have a tendency of rush
As to all kids should, actually, maybe when they’re 22 or 23 right?
We kind of rush into things
and when I first started this business
I did not go all the way to know it each and every part or department of how they run the business
or I……I had……I had the picture of it
But then it came to the part where
I had to buy really expensive machinery
When I was buying the second-hand piece of a colour corrector
I did not……actually I brought a broken piece of machine
and that cost us quite, pay a heavy price
And we had to……The maintenance for that machine cost us a lot
and luckily we were able to survive out of the crisis
but yes I did make these mistake
and I failed a lot of clients, I failed a lot of staff to trust me or not
whether or not to trust me anymore
Of course I was cheated also, but you know
you can never really blame anybody but yourself as a leader
Yes I did fail in buying a wrong piece of equipment. Yes, I did
Yeah, the lady in red
Hi, Nicho~ Actually I’m from Shanghai and I……
I’m wondering where is your office
No, no…
Actually I was wondering Is there any difference between starting a new business in Hongkong and especially like in mainland China
I don’t think we should draw a line between any country
especially that we’re as one now
If you hold on to the same principles
may it be Hong Kong, or mainland China, or the states, or Africa, I think it should be the same
And my office is in the 紅方工業區
is it very luxurious?
It’s OK; we might expand in the summer
Hello? Hello? Can you hear me?
Hi, Nicholas. Do you have any short term or long term plan on your company or on your personal life?
I remember that you are like action movies, are you still going for that?
Do you have any plan in the future to have you own film shot?
sorry this is irrelevant to entrepreneurship, so…
——That’s all right.——Is it OK?
Actually you know it’s kind of related
and although it’s kind of a… it’s not a business secret but……
a lot of people think why did you all a sudden open a post-production company when you’re an actor
Does it sound that ridiculous?
Am I jumping from acting to cooking? I am not
Actually if you think about it deeply it’s quite linked together
if I have enough bargaining power and trust between the directors and the producers
to say look my company can handle this now
What about I participate in your next movie, and I do the post?
Now, isn’t that a win-win situation?
So do I have plans? Yes, I do have plans in making new movies
and I hope that I can bargain the deal that I can also handle the post production part
if……we have all seen that you know the last real big success in Hongkong----《桃姐》.
We were really lucky to be able to o the colour correction part
although I wasn’t in it
But hey we got to the Venice Awards.
The lady in the back
You were 30… I’m sorry; you were 23 when you founded your company. (MC:22!)
So you were so young, did you ever feel like you missed out on life?
And how do you deal with these regrets?
I tried to think that I lived my life fully
That’s why I’m going for every… call me greedy
but I’m going for every opportunity and yet why shouldn’t you? Right?
A lot of people ask me that question do I regret anything
Like I said I would take I would fully commit to my education if I have the chance to buy back 15-year’s life
but I don’t
I think I have lived my life fully
I have two very cute sons and they're healthy
I have……I’m just grateful
I hope everybody should think out of the box sometimes
I’m getting lots of questions whereas “how to pursue a dream?” or
“Is this OK?” “Are we going too far?”
“Where do you draw a line between reality and visions”
Leonardo Da Vinci In 1493 I think, it was 1493 that’s a “Judy air screw”----
What we know today as a helicopter
I’m pretty sure back in the time then people call him crazy
“what? That thing flies?well whatever…
Well, 500 years after, we are… I mean it’s a very well-known transportation device
It's 1493
So don't doubt yourself
you may get a lot of negative inputs or comments
My mom, my families told me
they were seriously, in words
“You won’t make it, you won’t be a successful businessman.”
I got tons of those
And my dad you know all worried because…
it’s just very seldom for one leaving entertainment business actually make it from the scratch in the business world
But that’s me, that’s the rebellious side of me
I like proving people wrong
Sorry we’ll only have time for about two more questions? The lady in the front row there
So Nicholas, I wonder…you mention that you have a competitor in Shanghai, right?
So how are you going to lead your team to defeat your competitor?
Yeah, competitors are everywhere
And I……I like the thought of friendly competition
Only through that will the clients know who is better
and that makes us to excel, to thrive more for excellence
If anything was monopolized by only one grand name
they won’t fight
There is no one to be in the race, you can walk that marathon and still win
if you are the only walking or running, right?
We just do our job as we should every day
Regardless if there is a competitor
if there is Steven Spielberg‘s DreamWorks coming into Shanghai or not
I’m just doing my job, as should my staff
Our last question will go to the guy in the black shirt
Hi, Nicholas, my name is Ken
as you mentioned the skill of post-production in Hong Kong is not that far from the western industry
The only difference is in terms of culture
So I want to ask do you have any plans to bring the Post Production Office to the international market by overcoming this barrier.
right now, I have to say I don’t have that ability yet
because I have put my efforts and investments into, first, handling our whole China
But I do believe that…
you know… what’s that movie called? 《金陵十三釵》right?
Christian Bill came to us, you know he China-based movie
So you know if you ask me about that, that’s something really far away
but I hope one day or maybe through IPO
will I get the chance to go overseas and reach that goal
but me alone I really can only do that much
Our last question will go to president Tony Qian. Will you do the honours?
Nic is a surprise
now can I ask a question not tied to entrepreneurship?
Everybody wants to ask that kind of question
Sorry, sorry, I won’t entertain this, but I don’t know if he is feeling generous? (BOSS: Please)
You know some of us who sitting here are a little bit older than most of the people here
And some of us grew up with movies related to your family
So, no, but I wasn’t gonna ask about that , I was gonna ask
there must be a lot of family pressure, you know, maybe implicit
to live up to the family fame
You know, maybe founding a new company
finding your own place, making your own name
I just wonder how …your view on this, how you live through this?
Must be a lot of expectation that a lot of our students also feel
Before you say you have to find your own passion
a lot of our students also feel the pressure from our family. A lot of family expectation
So for you with the particular family you have with the fame
you must feel that ten times more than the typical student
I want to hear what’s your view on this?
Uhh, it is a good question, really
but I used to hate that shadow that overpowered Nicholas Tse
because I am the son of whom and whom
but I have learned maybe because I started working at the age of 15 or 16
and now did my parents do anything wrong?
I have learned to accept and actually be proud of who they are
I used to really hate that shadow….
But as you grow, and you go through crisis and all that crap
You learn, when you get hit, and life will hit you as hard as he wants to
No one will stand by you as close as your family
And it is through these little problems and crisis
where I have found a way to relieve that shadow as being whoever’s son
and embrace it and love it and say:"yes, I am, so what?"
We are both doing OK as a human being
And in this business and the entertainment business
I am proud now to hold my father or my mother’s hands and say
we’ve done our part in this business
So really, I know, cause I have kids also
And sometimes when I think about it, I ask myself
Wow, I’m under a lot of pressure
I was under the eyes of 6 million people in Hong Kong watching me grow up as the son of Patrick Tse
Now that I think about it, what‘s really unfair is for my kids
because now they are under the… you know… the lens of 1.3 billion people in China
My kids are under more pressure than I am
But what I hope they will learn from this is
if they can just simply grow as a human being
and not let my shadow overpower them too much
Now that’s being a man
now that’s being able to live life as you should
Why let anything stand in your way
especially if they’re are someone who loves you and that’s unconditional love
They expect nothing in return. I bet anything
simply because you are sitting here today; they want the best for you
This is HKUST, man!
That officially ends the Q&A Session, Karen, back to you
Ok, let’s give them a round of applause
I have to say, Nicholas, this is the second time I meet you. The first time we did a video interview with him
And that will be showing in the fourth-coming classes
And there was truly inspirational, even though I heard it twice
So thank you very much. To show our appreciation
may I invite Dean to the stage for a gift-giving ceremony?
Please remain on stage
May I now invite President Tony Chan and Professor Roger King, and also the three students interviewers, please join Nicholas for a photo
I can see there are lots of photos
I think Karen, Renee and George should come here
Ok, Thank you very much
Most of all, thank you all for coming to the event, give yourself a round of applause
Now I am sure many of you are very interested in joining Post Production Limited, right?
This evening the senior managers are going to stay behind to answer questions, so you can explore job opportunities with them
Yes. We have Amanda, Diana who is the managing director, Also, Michael is going to join us with the director
So for those who would like to talk to them, please come down later
And in the meantime, in the meantime, I am afraid this is the end of our first Asian Leadership Series
And I hope to see you again. Goodnight
So for those students who would like to talk, can you please come down?
It’s a free format thing. Anyone wants a job?
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Nicholas Tse gives a talk at HKUST

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VoiceTube published on March 2, 2013
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