Businesses in Cambodia have grown rapidly over the past few years. Restaurants, hotels and shopping and entertainment centres all over Phnom Penh have given the city a new, modern look. Kouch Sokly, 34, a very successful businessman and managing director for CBM Corporation Co, sees Cambodia as a country with a wealth of opportunities.
CBM, which operates fast food chains T&C Coffee World, Pizza World, BB World, and the Khmer Food Village, has been bringing fast-food to Cambodians since 2002.
Every day, Sokly oversees hundreds of workers and tries to increase profits for his company and employees. To ensure that CBM stays on top of the competition, he strives to come up with new and creative ideas.
“To be a leader, I have to make the right decisions. I decide what to do and what not to do in order to direct the company in a brighter direction,” he said.
From the early morning until the end of the day, Sokly remains very busy. Usually he jumps straight from one meeting to the next, discussing and consulting ways to develop his business for his various clients. “I don’t feel that I am busy, and the most important thing is to manage your schedule well, and get used to your daily routine,” he said.
Having more than 10 years experience, Sokly has dealt with especially difficult sectors. Financial management and plan drafting, HR skills, and strong communication are all skills he has practiced to expand his business. He is well rehearsed in all the techniques to inspire others to work hard for him and his company.
Sokly mentioned that since his business grows by the day, he can no longer supervise all sectors of the company, so he has hired qualified and hard-working people to help him. “Managing my employees is the most difficult work I face, and selecting workers is a crucial process,” he added.
“Taking risk is necessary for me to accomplish those things I desire,” he stressed. He mentioned, however, that CBM has never taken a risk without serious planning beforehand, and that proper market research is the key to his business.
“I always try to do something uniquely, so that all my businesses are attractive and well-known,” he said. Sokly mentioned his affinity for communication and observation, for he is usually traveling abroad to find new ideas to bring back to Cambodia and upgrade his restaurant in a modern style.
“You will not be considered as a successful person if you do not help others succeed,” Sokly stressed. He added that even though he is busy with work everyday, he still manages to volunteer at? the Junior Chamber International to help Cambodia’s youth and to share his knowledge and experiences so that they might benefit.
It is therefore hard to believe that Sokly dropped out of school at the tender age of seven. He explained, “I wanted to find my own future and to do what I wanted, and that is why I decided to give up my schooling at a young age.”
CBM will soon operate two additional brands, one a Chinese fast food restaurant and the other a bakery shop which will open around May or June of this year. Sokly expects the new businesses to be as successful as his other four brands.