IT has been a long road to success for LCL Corp Bhd group managing director Low Chin Meng.
Poverty forced him to leave school and start work as a carpenter at the age of 15.
He joined Federal Furniture Holdings (M) Bhd as a site personnel when he was 18.
“That was where I learnt about the wood and furniture industry,” Low said, adding that it was also where he learnt the English language.
In 1985, at the age of 23, he left to start his own company with two partners, and LCL, derived from the surnames of the partners – Low, Chua and Lim – was formed. His partners have since left the business.
The business, started in a small room in Kuala Lumpur with one staff, has since grown into a Bursa Malaysia second board company with three factories and staff of 400.
“I am very happy with what we have managed to achieve today. I am very proud of my team and appreciate what they have contributed to the company. So, satisfaction, to me, is when my staff are happy,” said Low, who hails from Kajang, Selangor.
He believes in creating a sense of belonging among the staff. The company premises are equipped with a gymnasium, cafeteria and karaoke lounge.
“It is good for employees to be able to relax in the office. This helps when contracts come in, and they have to work extra-long hours,” he said.
Low, who describes himself as an ambitious guy and one who likes to plan ahead, said: “I always make it a point to write down what I want to do tomorrow – at least 20 items. My 'to-do' lists are still with me, I can even trace them back to eight years ago.”
Ever the businessman, Low has even managed to turn his interest in food into a business. He has opened restaurants in Kajang and China serving Malaysian fine dining and fusion food, and is in the process of opening restaurants in London and India.
“I like to try new things; and when I travel, I collect new recipes and try them out,” he said, adding that another two restaurants would be opened in Beijing soon.
His guiding philosophy in life is to be happy in whatever he does.
“Frankly, I do not need a lot of money to be happy, but believe in living a meaningful life. I am a forward-looking person and I like to see things happen,” he said.
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