4 Key Insights from Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd’s Chief Executive

Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd (SGX: S63) is an engineering conglomerate with interests in various industries. There may be interesting things to learn from the company.

The engineering firm, known as ST Engineering for short, has four business segments, namely Aerospace, Electronics, Land Systems, and Marine. This puts the conglomerate into a variety of sectors including defense, information communication technologies (ICT), and global maintenance, repairs, and operation (MRO).

Recently, Tan Pheng Hock, ST Engineering’s chief executive, was featured in an interview series by bourse operator Singapore Exchange Limited  (SGX: S68).

I’ve picked out four key insights from the interview that may be useful for investors.

1. Innovation that tests your own limitsclick here

2. A blend of skillsclick here

3. Broadening your circles

““We have to invest for tomorrow. It’s increasingly important for me to be aware of new technologies that could either disrupt or shape our future – give us a fifth arm, so to speak,” he said, referring to ST Engineering’s four core businesses in aerospace, land systems, electronics and marine.”

Tan has been working to expand ST Engineering’s presence into new areas. This could come in the form of newer technologies like robotics and 3D printing. During his tenure, Tan has also shifted ST Engineering’s focus from a Singapore-centric company into one with a global customer base.

4. Speed of execution matters

““Maybe we could have moved faster, been more outward looking, in terms of growing our business. But hindsight is always 20:20, right? So far, the outcome is reasonable, satisfying, but the pace could have been quicker,” he said.

“Speed does matter – it makes a difference whether you are ahead of the game or lagging behind.””

Some industries may change faster than others. But it is the onus of the company to set the pace of change within its own confines. Tan appears to be cognizant of ST Engineering’s need to move fast or risk falling behind its competitors.

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore contributor Chin Hui Leong doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.