Written by Jeeheng Yew
A proud Parisian at heart, Benoit called Singapore his home in late 2008. His career in tourism and hospitality brought him around the world, particularly to Asia, where he headed the sales and marketing for a prestigious hospitality brand. With more than 20 years of work experience under his belt, Benoit has definitely seen the best and the worst in his everyday life. As my respected mentor for almost 3 years now, giving me lots of Good Advice along the way, I wanted to share with you the positivity that Benoit brings every single day.
To start the ball rolling, I asked Benoit to describe himself in one sentence. I paused and had to rewind at a rather unconventional answer:
“The measure of success is the positive impact one leaves on people, so I try to be successful every hour of every day.”
In a society where success is measured by the number of likes or followers on the social media utopia, that is perhaps the first piece of good advice for us.
As a man who has probably seen and experienced it all, I was very curious to hear what was the best piece of advice anyone has ever given to him. Again I was surprised that it was not a personal advice, but rather from a bestselling novel:
“Even though one does their best, one cannot be appreciated and liked by everyone else.” Roman Emperor Hadrian in Marguerite Yourcenar’s Memoirs of Hadrian.
Benoit adds, “I started heeding it by the time I finished reading the book and every week of my life since then. So many people try hard to be what they are expected to be, rather than who they want to be. When you accept that you can’t score 100% and that is okay, you are immediately more empowered and free to live your way.”
Turning the tables around, I wanted to know what is one advice that Benoit often gives to others. For an impatient and scurrying person like me, this is indeed something Benoit has to remind me time and time again: “Don’t worry, be happy”. And now I am reminded of this popular facebook video “Why Worry?” by Gaur Gopal Das. If you have not watched it, you probably should.
My impression of Benoit is that he is always smiling and beaming with an infectious positive energy. Heartily charitable and never hesitating to lend a helping hand, I concluded the conversation by finding out what keeps him motivated to do good to society:
“Seeing good people do the same and seeing the difference they make… I like to think that on my modest scale I produce the same results and it makes me happy making people happy. Everyone’s happy then!”
What a simple dosage of happiness and positivity for the day!
Before I sign off, I just want to take this opportunity to thank Benoit for all the good advice and guidance every step along the way. It certainly motivates me to discover the good in people, to do good and to do more for everything and everyone around me.
Merci, par ton padawan