By Jennifer Chen, Editor – The Peak.
Even though there’s one more month until the close of 2014, I am already in the year-end review frame of mind. That’s because the major events at The Peak culminated in the ground-breaking November issue. For the first time, we featured not one but 10 personalities on the cover, in a special three-page fold-out to boot. These individuals form The Peak’s Power List 2014, our annual, rigorously curated line-up of power players who embody a particular theme. In 2012, it was Soft Power, which spotlighted a communicative style of leadership over an autocratic one. Last year, it was New Power, featuring personalities under 40 years of age who are leading the charge in their respective industries.
This year, in conjunction with our 30th anniversary, we focused on the Power of Grit, celebrating the mental toughness and sheer will to overcome obstacles and come out tops. The theme allowed us to investigate the stories of successful men and women, to glean insights and learn of experiences that our readers can identify with and be inspired by. To do that, we had to keep the list short, because it takes time and numerous meetings to narrow down the personalities. Arranging in-depth interviews and photo shoots with 10 extremely busy individuals is a different challenge altogether.
The selection process started early, 10 months ago in February, when we asked Peak readers for their nominations. More names were added from our extensive research, and there were contributions from industry experts and input from think-tank Singapore Institute of International Affairs, which we worked with to curate the list. The criteria were clear: We wanted a diversity of stories, from a wide spectrum of industries. From women, as well as men. People who had overcome adversity – whether due to financial or political circumstances, economic downturns or disability – to forge a path to the top. Even so, there were some tense moments as we debated whom to include. Yes, this person is heavy-hitting but is his or her story intriguing? Is he or she over-publicised? Do we want to surprise readers or keep to well-known names?
The identities of the individuals were revealed at a dinner at Equinox Private Dining Room on Nov 6, attended by 100 guests made up of readers, industry supporters and the personalities themselves. On the Power List 2014 are St James Holdings founder Dennis Foo, Serial System group head Derek Goh, founder of stem-cell bank CordLife Steven Fang, Ad Planet chairman Adrian Tan, head of Singbridge Corporate Chong Phit Lian, founder of MindChamps Holdings David Chiem, managing director of PeopleWorldwide Consulting David Leong, Scanteak boss Catherine Lim, CEO of Paradise Group Eldwin Chua, and boss of Sheng Siong Group Lim Hock Chee. An abundance of Courvoisier kept guests toasting into the night. It was the first time we hosted an event to celebrate the Power List but hopefully not the last.
In all, it’s been a jam-packed year for The Peak. We celebrated our 30th anniversary in July with the launch of our coffee-table book, 30/30: The Game Changers and a gala attended by over 400 guests. It was also in July that we revamped The Peak website www.thepeaksingapore.com with daily updates and online exclusives. For a comprehensive browse of The Peak, however, there’s the tablet edition, which replicates the print issue, in addition to offering exclusive features, videos and behind-the-scenes content. That’s not all.
In January, watch out for the launch of The Peak Wine Club on our website. The subscription service will introduce oenophiles to new wines every month, hand-picked by a dedicated sommelier. If it sounds mysterious and exciting, it is. You don’t know what you will get, but you know the tipples will be stellar.
December is traditionally a quiet month for magazine production as newsmakers wind down their campaigns and give their e-mail a rest. But, with our embrace of online platforms, and the frequency with which news are updated, it’s full steam ahead into the new year.
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