• Madani Sahari

Raya brings back memories of automotive sector

The Hari Raya festivity will always beckon you to come home to where you were born, with your elderly parents and family members ever so delighted to see you.

It is the time of the year that all the nostalgic memories will come back to remind you of your roots and the progress that you made in life.

This Raya season was my turn to return to my home, alternating with my wife’s turn last year in Perlis.

Distance apart, Raya can only take place on one side of the family, Sarawak or Perlis, but the understanding that has been established thus far posed no problem as Raya location is an alternating affair.

This year we were back in Sibu, my hometown by the mighty Sungai Rajang in Sarawak that had seen many developments over the past few years.

It was here I was raised and completed my secondary school.

Rooming around town on the Raya Eve, looking for breaking fast goodies, I recognized the many changes that have taken place. Those places that I knew selling my favorites have also changed.

Some goodies sellers that I recognize were still operating, while a few seem to be no longer around. 

Perhaps already off for Raya preparations.

Responding to my question on how businesses are, slumber reactions indicate the businesses were not like before. The reason I discovered was due to influx of new operators selling similar goodies, but in volume.

The goodies are now creatively packed and mass produced selling at cheaper prices. Only those who know the originators of the goodies remain their loyal customers.

My above short Raya story brings two issues to my mind – nostalgic reminder of our roots and creativity that change our lives.

Relating these to the development of our automotive industry, nostalgically the industry was at its height when I entered the workforce.

I was grateful that the sector was given full support by the government, which has created many jobs for graduates as young as I was at that time. It was a period where as young engineers, we had a lot to learn and to catch up with the incoming technologies.

I had the opportunity to serve in a few of the vendors supplying components to our national cars and the experience taught me many and are very useful in my current job.

Those were good days where the younger generation work and learn, while trying to make the best of our automotive industry.

Thirty years have passed and the nostalgic memories of my early employment in automotive have not faded, but strengthen my determination to continue to be involved in automotive in one way or another instead.

The present has changed the landscape of our automotive industry, liberalization and globalization keep knocking at our doors demanding adjustment to be made for us to be part of the international business community.

Managing automotive related ventures are more complex than it was used to be and we must be resilient in facing the challenges.

Strategic and creative management is more crucial than ever and calls for competent and capable industry leaders to spearhead creative ventures to face the challenges.

Suffice to say that understanding and knowing the origin of our automotive industrial endeavor, its past history and evolution may help us to drive forward in managing the current industry.

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