Why I love electronics industry (3): I become smarter

Colley Hwang, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0


It's fun to have so many talented people around in the electronics industry, where you don't have to deal with the uninitiated. But how can this fun be sustained over time? When you work with smart people, you are always asked difficult questions, and over time, you become smarter. I suggest that young people should look at the long term rather than the short term when choosing jobs, and those jobs that can make you smarter should be your first choice. The electronics industry is not static, and whoever can adapt to the diversity of situations will be the winner in this field.

When I was the head of MIC in the 1990s, some companies wanted me to join them. But I always thought that compiling data and analyzing the industry in depth was both my specialty and my interest. My choice may not be suitable for others, but it may be the best choice if I can express my own opinions.

I have only done two jobs in my life. The first job was to go from being a junior researcher with no much experience to being the boss of MIC, leading 100 staff members. The second job is the continuation of research work, only that the boss who pays for it has changed from a government to private investors. And actually I have been doing the same thing: analyze the industry. A good friend of mine in the electronics industry said that if you do the same thing for 37 years of your life, you are either too stupid or too smart. I think I have made the right decision. A rolling stone gathers no moss - at least I think it's true in my profession.

Secondly, don't choose a job that sees over division of labor. If all the jobs are precisely divided, then you are likely to be one of the small screws, and over time, you may go from smart to dumb. My work requires multiple capabilities and experience accumulated over the years. I run my business with my "life", and as time goes by, I slowly have become smarter.

A client's concerns can be addressed using experience from previous dealings with their clients. You may be doing the same old job over and over again, but I am leading a life that is evolving with the times. How can I be tired of it and why should I complain?

I once talked to a good friend who graduated from National Taiwan University and who also obtained a PhD in electrical engineering from UC Berkeley about how to run his life. I said that for talent like you, it is easy to find the best job. But in your workplace, all the people around you may be either your former classmates or schoolmates. You've been working hard, but it's hard for you to get out of your circle and have a taste of diverse experience in life.

But my work, it may not need the best talent to do it. But you need to develop services catering to the top clients, which will naturally lead to return for your company and self-satisfaction. Your competitors may lose their patients and fail to survive the tough times, but you stand out as long as you are willing to do it, even though you a "second-rate" talent.

Colley Hwang, president of DIGITIMES Asia, is a tech industry analyst with more than three decades of experience under his belt. He has written several books about the trends and developments of the tech industry, including Asian Edge: On the Frontline of the ICT World published in 2019, and Disconnected ICT Supply Chain: New Power Plays Unfolding published in 2020.