Traditional strategies for personal and commercial success cannot longer sustain the pace of modern life. The future of work requires high levels of creativity, an ability to process vast amounts of information, and consistently produce relevant, impactful outcomes.

The situation was every leader’s worst nightmare: Archana Patchirajan, founder of an Indian technology startup, had to call her staff into a meeting and give them some devastating news. Due to a stark lack of funds, Archana would have to let them go. She could no longer afford to pay them.

16-year-old Tedx Speaker, Kailash Sarma, is a student of passion. After enduring severe bullying in primary school, an experience that shattered his self confidence, he discovered the art of public speaking as a way to rebuild himself and his self esteem.

We live in the Asian Century, with China as the growth engine, and the next 50 years will see many industries disrupted by Chinese consumerism, innovation and aspiration. Many services industries, including healthcare, retail, luxury, travel, education and food are already affected by the rise of China’s middle class, together with their massive investment in technology, R&D, e-commerce and AI.

All business leaders and managers need to be aware of the likely impact on their industries and organisations from these disruptive forces and the opportunities it creates for them to develop a new cultural mindset and a China engagement strategy.

David Thomas is an experienced and dynamic speaker who will bring this topic to life at your next conference or event and a thought leader who lives and breathes the China growth story at ground level.

Past speaking engagements include:

  • Telstra Young Leaders – The future is China
  • ING Top Brokers – Bringing China to You
  • Westpac – Doing business in China and India
  • CEO Institute – The 8 critical steps to developing your China Strategy
  • The Executive Connection – China in the Asian Century

Whilst IQ, and more recently EQ, were once regarded as the highest and most sought after qualities of leaders in western organisations, future leaders will be selected and judged by their levels of “CQ” i.e “Cultural Intelligence”, including their ability and aptitude for managing teams from diverse backgrounds and nationalities, overseeing cross-cultural communications, and handling cross-border negotiations and transactions. Very few of these skills are taught in western educational institutions and much of this has to be learnt from experience, trial and error, and listening to those who have done it all before.

David Thomas has spent the last 30 years living, working and managing relationships in the Asia Pacific region, including leading numerous missions, delegations and study tours to China designed to support western leaders on the ground and to highlight and address some of the cross-cultural challenges for their business and their teams, which always makes the difference between success and failure.

Past speaking engagements include:

  • Property Profile Group Asia Day – Developing an Asian mindset
  • William Grants & Sons, UK – Three Cups of Tea
  • First National Annual Conference – Doing business with Asians
  • Louis Vuitton – How to sell luxury products to high net worth Asians

Once known for its fake handbags, copy watches and pirate software, China is now leading the world in science, technology and innovation. Chinese brands like Huawei, Alibaba, Lenovo, Haier and Tencent are disrupting traditional industries (notably retail, e-commerce and IT) by leveraging their access to over 400m middle class consumers, spending billions in R&D and launching new products and services on a scale previously unheard of. China’s ‘Made in China 2025’ plan is intended to completely transform their manufacturing industry with a focus on clean energy, healthcare and communications, and China’s ambition is to lead the world in new industries such as renewable energy, driverless and battery operated vehicles and advanced medical products.

David Thomas speaks to business leaders, entrepreneurs and investors around the world about how their industry is being impacted by what’s happening in China, how they can take advantage, who they need to speak to and what they can do about it. He draws on over 30 years of on the ground experience, connections and knowledge and draws on case studies, anecdotes and examples to bring his presentations to life.

Past speaking engagements include:

  • Thiess Directors Conference – The Future of the Mining Industry
  • Magnitude Principals Forum – The Future of the Financial Services Industry
  • Australia China Young Professionals– Booms Bust and Baozi, the future of finance in China
  • MSI Regional Conference– The Future of the Legal Industry
  • CPA Australia – The Future of the Accounting Industry

David Thomas is well known within the Asia Pacific region for his passion and experience for investing and doing business in emerging markets, notably the four “BRIC countries” (Brazil, Russia, India and China) plus the growing influence of China as the engine of global economic growth and the rise of the Asian middle class. Having lived in Asia for the last 30 years, he literally lives and breathes emerging markets. His broad and diverse experience includes:

  • designing, organising and leading research and study tours for professional asset managers to each of the four BRIC countries
  • for five years on the Advisory Board of the Emerging Markets Masters Fund, he has direct hands-on experience of investing in emerging markets (includes overseeing asset allocation, fund selection, currency and stock analysis etc.)
  • regularly travelling around Asia working with entrepreneurs and investors to review and select new opportunities in emerging businesses

Past speaking engagements include:

  • AMP– fundamentals of investing in the ‘BRIC’ and ‘MINT’ countries
  • Deloitte – the importance of BRIC for European investors
  • Westpac – doing business and investing in China and India
  • PNG Investment Conference – what can PNG learn from the BRIC countries?
  • Colonial First State - Investing in Emerging Markets – local v global

Plenty of take-home value, zeroing in on the enormous potential and opportunities for Australian businesses in the key areas of Education, Healthcare and Tourism.

David delivered a great speech at the Business of Real Estate conference this year on developing positive business relationships with Chinese, by understanding culture - insightful & interesting.

Engaging and delivered in a relaxed manner and was well received by our clients. His insights into the China economy and future plans were enlightening even to our China delegates.

Back to Top /**/