Consultant Spotlight: Daniel Chay, Legal Practice | Kerry Consulting

    Consultant Spotlight: Daniel Chay

    Senior Consultant, Legal Practice

    Daniel Chay

    In our Consultant Spotlight Q&A series, we take a magnifying glass to the day-to-day responsibilities, opportunities and challenges that our consultants experience while working at Kerry Consulting.

    In this edition of the series, Daniel Chay, Senior Consultant in Kerry Consulting’s Legal Practice, sits down to discuss his time serving in Singapore’s army for National Service, and how it draws parallels to his time as an executive recruiter.

    Daniel Chay, Kerry Consulting’s Legal Practice

    “I personally think that if our purpose is in the business of making someone else’s life better, we are headed in the right direction.”

    Q: For context, tell us what National Service in Singapore is, and why is it so important?

    A: National Service (NS), is a 2-year mandatory conscription for every male in Singapore when they are called for enlistment. We contribute to our nation in various ways and channels (i.e., Internal Security, Civil Defense, Army, Air Force etc.). Singapore is a small country; we need everyone to play their part and contribute to our nation’s defense.

    Q: What are some lessons that you learnt during your time in the military?

    A: Enlisting in the 1st Commando Battalion certainly changed a lot of my perspectives in life. I learnt discipline, teamwork and built mental fortitude. I recall a situation where we had to jump off a Chinook from over a thousand feet high – I was scared to death! Having faced such fearful situations that people would not normally put themselves through, I learned to contain my fear and push myself beyond my perceived limits.

    Q: Was there any specific reason for wanting to become a recruiter after you were operationally discharged?

    A: To be honest, I never expected or planned for recruitment to be my career path. I only discovered more about recruitment when my mentor in university introduced me to speak with someone from a boutique search firm. That’s when I became intrigued, and my interest sparked.

    Q: What are the main things that you enjoy about being a recruitment consultant?

    A: I enjoy the aspects where I get to build genuine, long-term relationships with people and provide them with strategic career consultations and solutions.

    “As a recruitment consultant, you are often wearing multiple hats – a career consultant, coach, business partner, service provider, as well as a friend to confide in.”

    Q: Can you draw any parallels between serving in the military and modern business?

    A: Serving in the military taught me one of the most important life lessons – to never take things for granted. In the military, I was constantly reminded that our national security and comfort was something had to be earned and protected. Similarly in modern business, we have to constantly and consistently evolve, protect, and anticipate the worst-case scenarios in order to stay on top of things and out of grasp from potential mishaps.

    Q: What are the sorts of things that a recruiter may be fearful of?

    A: We are fearful of many things – Candidates/clients pulling out on offers, the economic impact on the recruitment industry – the list goes on. However, acknowledging these fears is a hallmark of a good recruiter as it drives us to work harder to close any gaps in the process. Learning from your wins, mistakes and your mentors and peers is crucial to overcome these fears!

    Q: What makes a profession in recruitment special? 

    A: Ultimately, in any profession that one may choose to take on, they must find their purpose. I personally think that if our purpose is in the business of making someone else’s life better, we are headed in the right direction.

    Daniel Chay

    Consultant, Legal & Compliance

    Consultant, Legal & Compliance