Simpson Marine has developed a brand new ‘Female Focus’ interview series that profiles some of the exceptional women working across the company.
Today we profile Angel Zhou, China General Manager. Enjoy getting to know Angel more and if you have any more questions for her, please feel free to contact us directly.
Q: What keeps you motivated and driven?
A: Always gaining more industry knowledge and experience acquisition. This is in order to be able to comply with the requirements of even the most demanding clients who seek comprehensive information about yachting. This can range all the way from yacht technicalities, to marina berths, registration, cruising plans, crew, regulations, and more.
Q: Who has been the biggest influence on you in your work and/or personal life?
A: Professionally speaking it is Mike Simpson, founder of Simpson Marine, who taught me everything from scratch and introduced me to all the different brands and boats. As I learn, I was able to follow him at the boat shows and note down all his comments and explanations on yachts, parts, etc. Mike made me the first female broker in the company at that time.
Q: What are some values you live by?
A: Professionally: I feel I’m lucky as I can make money from something I love doing. I have a daily appreciation of my life.
Personally: Live in the moment, Carpe Diem
Q: What do you hope to achieve in your work?
A: I want to bring a Chinese cashless payment system and our quick and easy e-commerce and small mortgage system to traditional boating procedures in charter and management. China is leading the way with online payment processes and we really do live in a fully cashless environment. I would like to apply this to boating.
Q: What is your idea of success in the yachting industry?
A: An important reward of being a yacht broker is financial stability and materialistic security. If you are a successful broker, then you can enjoy a good life – that is what I can call success.
Q: What one piece of advice would you give to aspiring women who are keen to join this industry?
A: To be a successful female broker in China is very demanding and sometimes you need to sacrifice your personal life with little time for your loved ones. It is a very tough balance to be a broker and a mother/wife. So one must think carefully before engaging in this kind of role.
Q: How did you get involved in the yachting industry?
A: It was back in 2006 in Phuket at the Kings Cup Regatta – I attended the event on the invitation of China Cup. It was my very first experience with sailing, boating and racing and I immediately fell in love. After that event, I started to work for the China Cup and had a lot of opportunities to sail in China.
Q: What is one change you would like to see in this industry?
A: E-Commerce cashless payments for easier purchases and charter bookings. Plus, small mortgage availability for young people to help them easily get into boating at an early stage in their adult life.
Q: What would you say is your biggest achievement in your career with Simpson Marine so far?
A: Having worked for 13 years at Simpson Marine, I have been lucky to have scored top sales positions for at least 10 years. So I would say my biggest achievement would be excelling in my sales results.
Q: What inspires you within what is undoubtedly a male-dominated industry?
A: I don’t consider the difference between sexes in any industry including boating. Women should be treated as neutral, I’m not a feminist and I don’t treat women in a special way. I love the sun and sea so being involved in boating seemed like a perfect fit for me.
Q: What is a must-do on a yacht for you?
A: Definitely water sports as I’m an avid enthusiast of wake surfing, paddle boarding, diving and free diving and I want to learn kite surfing next.
Q: Describe your perfect day on a yacht.
A: My ideal day on the water would be to cruise somewhere scenic. I would go ashore in the morning, visit the local town or village and have lunch there to taste some local flavours. In the afternoon I would return to the boat, moor somewhere nice and swim, enjoy water sports with wake boarding, kayaking, snorkeling and diving. Then a quick shower followed by a delicious dinner, enjoying nice wine, listening to good music, watching movies on board, and talking with friends. This is my perfect day on a yacht.