Kha Ngo Tan
Interview with Kha Ngo Tan

"I am a person of innovation. At work, I always try to apply new methods to make tasks smoother and easier to accomplish."

Kha Ngo Tan 
Banking Manager
Saigon Thuong Tin Commercial Joint Stock Bank (Sacombank)

Executive MBA Batch 2021

Please tell us about yourself and your family.

My name is Kha, I was born in Phu Yen – a small province of Vietnam. After graduating from high school, I went to the University of Economics, Ho Chi Minh City (UEH) to study for my Bachelor's degree. I had a beautiful time at the university, where I met good friends and teachers. As an active student, I became a member of the Board Management of my university’s Communication Group. 

In 2014, I graduated with a Bachelor of Finance and Banking degree and started to work as a seller of BIDV Insurance Company (BIC – as you can find it in Vietnam). After that, I turned to another path by applying to Sacombank where I am working presently. From an apprentice staff to an official staff member, from a retail banking officer to a corporate banking officer, and now I am a deputy manager of the transaction office. It has been a long journey. It was a wonderful time of learning and development for me. 

Now, I am staying with my wife and three year old daughter in Tuy Hoa city – a beautiful beach city in Phu Yen. And at almost 30 years old, I decided to study higher by applying to the MBA program.

What drew you to the program you are studying at UniAthena? Do you think it will help you to realize your career goals?

I started looking for an MBA program this August and there are 3 factors that shape my decision to enroll:
Firstly, the MBA program must be studied and taught online. Due to COVID-19 circumstances, the university in VN closed down, and I had to find an online course. However, there is no university teaching MBA online in VN right now, so I decided to find an MBA program in a foreign country like the US or the EU.

Secondly, the MBA program must be accredited or at least taught by a high-quality university.

Lastly, tuition and fees must be lower than $8,000, because I don’t have a great deal of money. I do understand that other MBA programs in the US and EU have tuition and fees over $20,000 per year and that exceeds my budget.

One night, while I was surfing Facebook, I saw an advertisement for UniAthena related to the EMBA program, and I was very excited about the program information. After several emails and messages to the admission officer, I decided to study at UniAthena because it met all the three criteria. 

I believe this EMBA program from UniAthena will help me in my career goals.

 What would you like to learn next? What are your next career steps?

I think studying MBA is a huge step in my life. I have no idea what to learn next, maybe, after finishing this program, I will have the answer on my own.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

In my spare time, I usually read books, play guitar, and especially, play basketball – I used to be a basketball player when I was in university.

Suppose you had to live alone on a deserted island for a month. What are the 3 things you will bring with you?

Living alone on a deserted island for a month may be hard for me. But if this happens, I think I will bring a knife, a book, and a guitar.

If you face a problem at work, what is the first thing you do?

The first thing I used to do when faced with a problem at work is determining the core of the problem. When I know that exactly, I can solve it easier and faster.

What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your life? How did you tackle it?

I can’t remember the biggest challenge I have faced in my life, but if I describe it as a word, I think that must be "doubt". 

I am a person of innovation. At work, I always try to apply new methods to make tasks smoother and easier to accomplish. In life, I always find another way to communicate and solve problems with less stress. People often dislike and doubt me just because I do things differently.

However, when I prove to them that the way is right and I did it well, people are convinced and they tend to believe me more in the future. So, the key is believing in yourself and your success will prove that you were right.

If you could only change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

I would like to be more meticulous.

What did you want to become when you were a child?

I remember when I was 10 years old, I used to say that some day, I would become a chemistry scientist.

What is the last book you read and the movie you saw?

The last book I read is The Balance Scorecard by Robert S.Kaplan and David P.Norton.

The last movie I watched is The Banker.

Who is the person you admire most and why?

The person I admire most is Michael Jordan, the most famous basketball player in the world. He is not a genius, but he practiced basketball anytime, anywhere to become the best basketball player.

And the result, as we can see, he became inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. I used to be a basketball player and I know how hard it is to become a good player. So, like people always said: “where there is a will, there is a way”, Michael Jordan is a symbol of grit and willpower and that’s why I admire him so much.

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