The 23 young participants were selected for the yearlong program for their potential to become some of the country’s future business and community leaders.
Hang Seangheng, who works for QuanDat but one day wants to launch his own business, said the weekend allowed him to share ideas and build connections with like-minded people.
“Being in an environment where people have great ideas and are willing to share them has helped me better understand the kind of things I need to do to build a successful business,” he said.
“Leadership is one of the keys and this weekend has taught me how I need to become a leader in everything I do, both in my current job and as I look to set out on my own one day. Leadership isn’t about doing everything yourself, it's about building a strong team around you that will work towards a shared vision.”
The weekend involved lectures, group work and case-studies on how to create successful businesses, and it had a strong emphasis on developing responsible businesses that have a positive impact in their community.
Mr. Yves Schaeffer CEO of EZECOM said this corporate social responsibility aspect was one reason the company was drawn to sponsoring the program.
“We were one of the first companies in Cambodia to establish a corporate social responsibility program and we’re really excited to see the next generation of business leaders develop a firm understanding of what this means and how to apply it,” he said.
“To be a responsible business, you first need to be a successful business. When I look at the young talent in this program I’m excited about the future of this country, not just in terms of the exciting businesses they will launch but also in terms of how they will go about running them.”
Hub Academy Coordinator Laura Smitheman said the program goes far beyond classroom learning. As well as the ability to meet and build lasting relationships with their fellow Academy attendees, participants also have the support of facilitators, mentors and colleagues as they field test the leadership, communication and research skills they are developing.
“The aim is to work with young people who are passionate about responsible business but don’t know where to start,” Ms Smitheman said. “So, we give them all the business tools they need to allow them to really understand opportunities and obstacles, and to show them how social innovation can be used to develop their ideas.”
She added that the academy is already demonstrating results with one Hub Academy team called Krumpet.com announced as one of the 120 social enterprises to watch for in 2016 as part of the DBS-National University of Singapore Social Venture Challenge. This team is tackling the issue of medical information transparency and accessibility in Cambodia.
EZECOM was founded in 2007 to serve the rapidly expanding business and home user internet market in Cambodia. Today it is a leading provider of a wide variety of innovative communication services, including fiber optic, VoIP, virtual private networks and other Internet-based solutions. EZECOM owns the fiber optic company Telcotech, which will bring very fast and more reliable Internet to Cambodia next year through the Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand undersea cable system.