How do you use technology to improve citizens’ lives? Tell us about your role or organisation.
I use electronic and digital tools in managing and leading my organisation, which is working on the matters which can improve the citizen’s lives in Myanmar. Basically, digital technologies such as video conferencing and virtual communication tools are used in my daily work.
As a director general of the Department of Social Welfare, I am playing a very crucial role in policy formulation, program implementation, and managing my teams. My department is working on the social welfare services and assistance for all citizens, especially for vulnerable groups of people. In doing so, I lead my teams in providing clear directions in which they should move ahead.
What has been the most exciting thing that you worked on in 2017?
2017 was full of exciting things for me. To be exact, launches of cash transfer programs in Myanmar made me most excited this year. It was a historic move in the area of social protection for a country such as Myanmar. It was so exciting to me to be a person to play a key role as a policy maker and an implementation chief at the same time. These programs will definitely be able to promote the lives of the people who are residing in the country.
What tool or technique particularly interests you for 2018?
In fulfilling its roles, my organisation has been expanding its services, scope and geographical outreach. Definitely, 2018 is going to be a year that brings new programmes and touches for my department.
Taking this point into consideration, management information systems will be an interesting tool for me to make the right moves and keep our endeavours on the right track. Particularly speaking, management information system can give us a clear picture of current situations and future directions.
If you were to share one piece of advice that you learned in 2017, what would it be?
It would be the word “visionary”. It was what I have learned in this year. As an influencer in the government sector, we need imagine how an organisation should develop in a changing world with complex situations. Without having this kind of far-sighted vision, it would be very difficult to cope with challenges.
What was the greatest challenge that you overcame in 2017?
The greatest challenge that I overcame in 2017 was managing demanding situations in my role as a leader of the government organisation which provides social welfare services and assistance in Myanmar. In a country like Myanmar which is in transition, the demands were huge and unpredictable but the resources available were so limited. The challenge was how to utilise these limited resources in the unending areas that needed interventions.
What book did you read in 2017 that most interested or inspired you?
It was a book titled “Why Nations Fail”by Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson. Mainly it was about the origins of power, prosperity, and poverty, which the authors tried to prove and falsify. I could learn so much from this book, mainly about different approaches in understanding why nations fail.
Who inspired you in 2017, and why?
It was our State Counselor, Her Excellency Aung San Suu Kyi. There were many reasons: mainly, her dedication, commitment, and tireless efforts she made her whole life inspired me alot. She is a democratic icon and a national figure of Myanmar.