Bossing It: Peeradon Gabriel on the power of positivity

Advertising executive with more than 20 years of experience, Yell’s managing director, Peeradon Gabriel, is driving effective strategic change for his roster of automotive and retail clients. After spending time in several agencies in the international network, Peeradon brings to Yell his extensive experience in advising global and regional clients and established Yell Singapore in 2019 to drive business development to capture the APAC market.

Here, Peeradon talks about how he learned to be a good leader, the importance of transparency, and what he considers to be the most helpful resources throughout his career.

LBB> What was your first leadership experience?

Peeradon> My first leadership experience was quite exciting, and I knew that preparing myself and my team well was essential to earning the client’s trust. I knew I had to take charge and lead the team to make sure we could win and achieve our goals.

LBB> How did you decide what kind of leader you wanted to be – or what kind of leader you didn’t want to be?

Peeradon> I learned what makes a good leader from my bosses and their way of thinking. They always looked at things positively and acted as a motivator. They build a support team and help them develop and grow in their careers. For me, the right mentor is the key to success. Mentoring helps a team grow and strengthen in many ways. It is also important to be authentic.

LBB> What experience or moment gave you your greatest leadership lesson?

Peeradon> Failure teaches the greatest leadership lessons. You learn and grow from failure, analyze what went wrong and find ways to overcome it.

LBB> Did you know that you always wanted to take on a leadership role? If so, how did you work for it and if not, when did you start to realize you had it in you?

Peeradon> Yes, I have always wanted to take on a leadership role. I work on it with work KPIs established between me and my superior. I always try to find new solutions and new knowledge. I revisit past work and identify what could be improved to better deliver the next project.

LBB> Regarding “leadership” as a skill, to what extent do you think it is a natural part of the personality, to what extent can we teach and learn?

Peeradon> I think personality is an integral part of leadership. Leaders can learn from their own mentors and adapt to their own style. The most important thing is to be authentic.

LBB> What aspects of leadership do you personally find the most difficult? And how do you work through them?

Peeradon> Gaining the trust of team members is the hardest part for me. Having an open line of communication is one of the most important parts of effective leadership, so it’s essential that the team knows you’re there for them at all times. Coaching also helps, letting you see what could be strengthened and how you can equip your team – making them proud of themselves when completing tasks.

Leadership develops through practice – as well as through support, coaching and mentoring. Thanks to this, others like me can overcome challenges and become good leaders.

LBB> Have you ever felt like you failed when you were in charge? How did you approach the problem and what did you learn from it?

Peeradon> Yes, I approach it in a very simple way and admit what is wrong, offering a solution to fix it immediately.

LBB> In terms of leadership and openness, what is your approach there? Do you think it is important to be as transparent as possible in the service of authenticity? Or is there value in being careful and thoughtful?

Peeradon> I think it’s very important to be as transparent as possible and as authentic as possible. When everything is clear, it helps everyone get around quickly and easily.

LBB> As you developed your leadership skills, did you have a mentor, if so who were/are they and what did you learn? And on the other hand, do you mentor budding leaders and how do you approach that relationship?

Peeradon> Yes, I had a great mentor who helped me accelerate my leadership skills. I could always ask them for their advice on how to deal with situations. They were also ambitious, genuine, caring and positive. I believe that if you look at things positively, you can find the best solution.

LBB> The last few years have been really tough – to put it mildly. How do you handle the responsibility of leading a team through such difficult waters?

Peeradon> I return here to the positive perspective. Leading with optimism helps me and my team get through tough times – and having the ability to listen to the team, sit down together, and find solutions. Constantly connecting with the team, solving problems together, really helps.

LBB> How important is your corporate culture to the success of your business?

Peeradon> For me, corporate culture plays the most important role in the success of a company. gauthenticity puts the team at ease and allows them to focus on the job during difficult times.

LBB> What are the most helpful resources you have found to help you along your leadership journey?

Peeradon> My own mentors, the leadership team and the Yell team help me along my leadership journey. We work closely together and support each other in all aspects.

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