Although there are currently not enough jobs in business and management too employ all the Cambodian university students studying those subjects, it doesn’t mean that it is hopeless for graduates with business degrees. The rise of Khun Bolin at U-care pharmacy, where she is now the business unit manager, shows how some of Cambodia’s most well-developed companies are hiring local management.
Khun Bolin explained that initially U-care had a French manager and she worked in a lesser role within the company. She said the owners of the company chose a foreigner at the outset because they felt that they could not find a Cambodian who had the education or skill set necessary for the job. After a few years learning to run the company, Khun Bolin is now in charge of all of the operations and has overseen the expansion of U-Care in Phnom Penh and Siem Riep.
Although she has reached the top rung within her organization, she continues to work hard to improve herself and her company. Despite the fact that she has three children she finds time to go abroad to find new products and go to pharmaceutical fairs as well as staying in touch with suppliers and industry experts to make sure U-care meets international standards.
Khun Bolin says that she has seen the role of Cambodian’s within Cambodian companies change over the past decade, however, she still sees some inequality in the working relationship between Cambodians and foreigners. Even if they are in high positions within the company, Khun Bolin says that they tend not be be confident in their opinions. “In the meetings [Cambodians] tend not to share ideas because they have they think that their ideas are weaker,” she explained. “But they do have great ideas.”
Not only does Khun Bolin show that a Cambodian can rise to the top of their organization through dedication and hard work, she is proof that a Cambodian woman can succeed in her career while raising a family. Nest time you need medicine, head to U-care, and next time you need inspiration, just think about Khun Bolin.