Alumni Interview: Germaine Thai, Strategy & Operations Manager at Grab Malaysia

Recently, Sri KDU Schools managed to catch busy-bee Germaine Thai, Strategy & Operations Manager at Grab Malaysia who happens to be Sri KDU’s former head prefect in 2009. Read Germaine’s interview below!
“Growing up in Sri KDU Secondary School has given me a multitude of skills and plenty of opportunities. Having spent years in an institution that has always pushed for holistic education, focusing on supplementing academics with co-curricular activities has pushed students like me to step out of their comfort zone to really deep dive into our own individual strengths and weaknesses. The many activities and events held in school like Paramount Championships or Performance & Awards Nights have truly supported me to build confidence and step outside of my comfort zone. Because of this, I was fortunate and lucky to have secured the Maxis Scholarship for my undergraduate studies!
Not long after I pursued my career at Grab Malaysia, in which I am now the Manager of Strategy & Operations where I oversee the growth and operations in 25 cities outside of Klang Valley. This includes planning incentives, pricing, and growth strategies while ensuring the acquisition, as well as retention of driver-partners, are taken care of. My team at Grab is constantly working on initiatives that can help our partners, especially those who were greatly affected by the pandemic. When the pandemic first hit in March 2020, Grab extended the GrabFood delivery services to the 4-wheel driver-partners on Grab. This allowed them to continue earning despite the sudden lockdowns, which caused a halt in the transport industry. In my line of career, it helps that you’re attentive and structured, especially in your thoughts and ideas. When I was in the debate club and editorial club during my time in Sri KDU, it helped me structure and align my thoughts well. It helped me convey and express my ideas and thoughts in the best manner across clients and stakeholders that we have today. But being a manager isn’t about managing but leading and showcasing from the best of examples. I was not a natural-born leader but having been Head Prefect back in Sri KDU has taught me to lead others by example. But above all, I personally think that having a passion for learning is important. The working field evolves very quickly with technology nowadays, and students especially fresh graduates must be willing to persevere and keep a keen, humble attitude of learning to continue adapting to change.
Students today are given ample resources and information, all at their fingertips. Sri KDU Secondary School has always tenaciously worked on trying to provide the best quality holistic education possible for its students. I am grateful that beyond the SPM syllabus I had in 2009, I also get to widen my horizons with compulsory classes for Mandarin and ICT which have proven useful today in my career. I believe this has greatly impacted my way of working now, especially in my industry and line of work. Students of Sri KDU are resourceful and have the initiative to succeed and I wish all the best to the students and future graduates of Sri KDU.
Remember, the grass is greener where you water it. Rather than waste time thinking that something better is out there, put your thoughts and efforts into doing your best at something, and success will follow.”