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Honour Singapore
Seeking the Well-Being of the Nation
Chairman’s Letter: July 2020
Dear Partners and Friends of Honour (Singapore)

I hope this note finds you and your family well and in good health. Thank you for standing with us as we continue in our mission to promote a culture of honour and honouring for the well-being of our nation. I write to provide a few key updates on Honour (Singapore) and, if you would allow me, to share some personal thoughts for these uncertain times, which I hope you would find helpful.
Our film initiative is currently focused on Honouring our Frontline Heroes – which is our way to appreciate and highlight the good work of all our frontline heroes who are selflessly toiling away to keep us safe and healthy in this time of COVID-19 pandemic. We especially focus on those connected with the frontline who have not received as much attention as the more obvious cases. Over the last quarter, we have had more than 1.8 million online views for 12 films on frontline heroes, and it has been heartening to see so many expressions of appreciation and gratitude coming in, in response to these films.

We also already have a good number of Honour Films which show ordinary people recognising the work and contributions of people we don’t normally think about.

You can find all the films on our website at www.honour.sg or on social media at www.facebook.com/HonourOurSingapore/ or www.instagram.com/honoursingapore/. Do share these films to spread the message of gratitude and the virtue of looking out for others. And you are welcome to download the films to share the messages – no need to check with us beforehand.
During Circuit Breaker, we launched a new initiative “Do something good, do something kind, today” to appreciate and recognise acts of goodness and kindness, with the support of Singapore Kindness Movement. It is a call to action (Do Something Good…Do Something Kind) with urgency (Today). Doing Good and Being Kind requires thinking of others and thinking of the value of anything we do. They are acts of Honour.

This initiative is simply to encourage everyone to do whatever they can, each in their own way, to do good and be kind. The idea is to "legitimise" acts of goodness and kindness to increasingly be the way we think of each other and treat each other, not just between people that we know, but between people we run into in our daily lives, be they neighbours or fellow commuters or food centre customers or work colleagues etc.

The initiative will be carried through a variety of channels, the objective, all the time, being to encourage action. An important component would be creating a significant presence on Instagram as a prime means of reaching out especially to the younger part of our population.

We invite you, your organisations, your network of contacts, to contribute stories of whatever you see and whatever you do which is good and kind. This way we encourage each other, as well as give ideas to one another, on how we can “Do Something Good, Do Something Kind, Today”.

If you have any stories to share of what you do or see which is good and kind, please tag us @goodkindsg or use the hashtag #goodkindsg. Alternatively, you can email your story to us at Good.Kind.SG.IG@gmail.com and we will get it posted @goodkindsg.

There are many good and kind acts taking place daily. It is a matter of keeping our eyes open and our ears alert. We need to crank up the momentum to have good and kind acts – which are all acts of honour – become the norm in these days of high social and emotional stress with Covid-19.
Homegrown gaming firm, Razer Inc, and other sponsors, are giving out five free #RazerForLife surgical masks to every adult Singapore resident (aged 16 years and above) through a network of vending machines across the island. #RazerForLife masks are certified to international standards and proudly made in Singapore on a fully automated mask production line. You may claim one free mask monthly from now to November.

Honour (Singapore) supports this wonderful initiative of generosity, and commends this act of goodness and kindness. For more information, visit www.razer.com/campaigns/razerforlife/forsgbysg.

In addition, we are also very happy to learn of a local manufacturing company, Eco-Sam, along with many other organisations, who are helping vulnerable groups of people who are especially affected by Covid-19. In the case of Eco-Sam, they have locally produced and donated hand sanitizers to needy households in Singapore, various hospices, special needs centre and senior centre. Again, we commend such charitable acts and looking out for each other.
This is a challenging time for everyone and we in Honour (Singapore) feel with you during these times. But while I know this is not the best of times to appeal for donations to keep Honour (Singapore) going, may I appeal, if you are in a situation to be able to help, that you join us in our One Thousand Friends of Honour (Singapore) programme, where we request for a donation of $1,000 per year from individual donors, or $5,000 per year from business and corporate donors, with the facility, of course, for you to stop at any time. Please forgive us if we should offend you with this appeal, but I am directing this appeal only to those of you who can consider helping us out despite the times. All donations qualify for tax deductibility as Honour (Singapore) has IPC (Institution of Public Character) status. Should you have any queries over this programme, you may write to us at admin@honour.sg.
We are living in unprecedented times with the global pandemic where the situation is ever changing and fast evolving. The challenges faced by our generation and the next generation is ever more complex and uncharted. The question is how to successfully navigate these uncharted waters for the success of Singapore and Singaporeans, so that we leave for future generations of Singaporeans a Singapore that offers them hope and promise. Wisdom is knowing what we need to change and what should not be changed.

Please allow me to share some thoughts with this illustration that you will be familiar with.

How to boil a Frog
To boil a frog, do not put it in boiling water. It will jump out immediately. Put the live frog in cold water in a pan. Put the pan over a low fire. Let the water heat up slowly. As it gets to boiling point, you will notice the frog is no longer moving. It is dead. You have successfully cooked the frog by boiling.

I am told the above instructions work because frogs are cold-blooded – this means their body temperature is the same as the surroundings, unlike us human beings. We are warm-blooded, meaning our body temperatures remains more or less constant, and does not follow that of our surroundings. We shiver in cold weather to keep our body temperatures up. We sweat in warm weather to cool ourselves down.

The frog’s body temperature follows its surroundings. If you put the frog directly in boiling water, it will sense the heat immediately and jump out. But when you heat the water slowly, the frog keeps adjusting to the rising temperatures. When the heat is too much for the frog to take, it is too late. The frog collapses and dies.

Simply reacting to changes in the environment is not leadership. Leadership is making good things happen that on their own would not happen. It is about change, but changing the right things in the right places at the right time.

Fatal Failures
All fatal failures in organisations are the result of failure to learn from the past, failure to adapt to the present or failure to anticipate the future. Look at the history of nations and companies. Study wars and battles, crises, and bankruptcies. Isn’t it so?

Failure to learn from the past is failure to learn from mistakes – our own mistakes as well as the mistakes of others. It is best to learn from others’ mistakes, but often people are not satisfied until they make the same mistakes themselves.

Failure to adapt to the present is a failure to see that the practices of the past are no longer the best. The rules and practices must be brought up to date. When conditions change, organisations must change also.

Failure to anticipate the future is the most frequent cause of failure. The more successful an organisation, the greater the chances its people will be so proud and comfortable they are surprised by events they have not prepared for. Success today does not guarantee success tomorrow.

The Lesson of the Frog
Think again about the frog. Its body temperature keeps adapting to the surrounding slow change in temperature. The frog does not realise that the temperature can rise so high that it will collapse under the heat. It fells nice and comfortable at this point on the road to death.

The lesson of the frog for us is this: Look around. Be alert. Imagine the future. Don’t be complacent. Take precautions. Prepare for danger. Make use of the opportunities.

The future will surprise you only if you don’t bother to think about it. Do not allow the comforts of today to lull you into thinking tomorrow will always be the same. Change in good time. “Never waste a crisis,” so it is said. May you see the opportunities also in these times. I wish you and your family, and your organisation the steadfastness and wisdom for these times. Should you be interested in a more comprehensive presentation on leadership, you may wish to watch YouTube at https://youtu.be/-PLTww2p1TI. It is a recording of a webinar organised by stars, a Swiss leadership foundation for leaders of the next generation, in which I discuss the topic of leadership.

Knowing what to change and what not to change is where smart leaders distinguish themselves. As explained in the webinar, preparing for a situation of known knowns, is different from preparing for a situation of known unknowns, and dramatically different from preparing for a future of unknown unknowns. The way to prepare for the unknown unknowns is to foster a culture that makes for survivability and sustainability. And Honour is a critical part of a winning culture.

I look forward to hearing your ideas and feedback as to how Honour (Singapore) can better perform its mission. Do get in touch with me at LimSiongGuan@honour.sg.

Take care. Be safe. Keep well.

Wishing you all my very best,

Lim Siong Guan
Founding Chairman
Honour (Singapore)
www.honour.sg | info@honour.sg
© 2020 Honour (Singapore) Limited
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