Interview with Justine Moss, Managing Director of Jay Jay Communications

Justine Moss

Managing Director, Jay Jay Communications

Justine was one of two radio presenters who interviewed me on 93.8LIVE on 20th March 2012. You can read about my experience here. 🙂

1) Besides radio and golf writing, you do a lot of training and coaching too. Why did you decide to be involved in all of these and which of these are you most passionate about?

I’ve enjoyed diversification in my work from day one – I got bored in any job if I found myself having to do the same thing every day.  So when I set up Jay Jay Communications I knew I needed to have lots of variety.

The jigsaw puzzle of the Jay Jay portfolio came together organically over time – some were very intentional and others I fell into.  I really enjoy everything I do in the business and that gives me balance, energy and the ability to remain fresh.

2) You’ve worked with a number of high-profile organisations in Singapore. Which was most memorable and what did you help them to achieve?

Over the years, I’ve had the privilege of working with some wonderful local enterprises, such as A-Star, Health Sciences Authority and Singapore Exchange.  These have been in the areas of voice coaching, media training, business English, presentation skills and intercultural awareness.

What I really enjoy is seeing my clients improve in the areas they have challenges in such as voice or media presence.  I love seeing the results – be it an improvement in their vocal clarity, tone, projection or pace, or greater presence and impact in their presentation and media skills.  I feel a tremendous sense of satisfaction knowing that I’ve helped them communicate more effectively.

3) You’ve lived and worked in Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, and the UK. How do Singaporeans fare with regard to media skills? Are we more or less savvy in handling the media as compared to the people in the other countries you’ve lived in/worked with.

I think that, on the whole, Singaporeans fare quite well with regard to media skills.  We are fortunate in that the media here, and in some other Asian countries, tend to be less aggressive than, say, Australia, USA or the UK.  Having said that, many people I’ve interviewed here are well researched, knowledgeable and have done their homework.  This is a great asset as the trick for any interview, whether it’s print, television or radio is to be prepared and to deliver your key messages with confidence and ease.

4) What do you love most about being a radio host/presenter and are there any misconceptions that people have about this profession?

One misconception is that people think it’s just all about having a nice voice.  That helps, of course, but there are many more elements to working successfully in radio.  You have to think on your feet, plan ahead and utilise your voice in a way that shows interest, is natural and conversational with a good variety of tone.  And, very importantly, especially for newsreaders, is to never sound like you’re reading a script. That can be tricky sometimes, especially when you receive the script 5-10 minutes before going to air.  It certainly keeps you on your toes!

5) What advice/tips do you have for people going for their first interview on air (how to calm those nerves, or things people tend to overlook, etc.)

In my work as a voice coach, one of the first things I teach my clients is how to ‘breathe’ properly.  By breathing from the diaphragm, rather than from the chest, one is able to sound richer. It helps with voice sustainability and the ability to breathe well for long interviews. The bonus is that it also calms the nerves.

Another tip is not to speak too fast – this can make you stumble and listeners may not catch all the key messages which you’re aiming to deliver.  I remember when I first started out in radio in 2000, I would pretend that it was only my mum listening to me and this helped me relax.  Don’t go into the interview thinking about all the thousands of listeners out there!

Grace says: My interview on radio went so well because of Justine and her co-presenter, Sarah. I really can’t thank them enough and I’m grateful to Justine for sharing her tips on handling radio interviews with ease here. 🙂

*Great news for all: I’m conducting another Blogging Workshop in June – the final one before I fly off for my holiday! I have added a bonus segment on how YOU and YOUR BLOG can get featured on radio too! If you’d like to attend, register your interest by emailing me at now. 🙂


Andrew Chow’s 7 Life Lessons about the Entrepreneurship Journey

‘7 Life Lessons about the Entrepreneurship Journey’ by Andrew Chow

*With graphics added by Grace*

1. Invite a mentor, not hire a coach. A coach is responsible for your performance while a mentor is interested in you as a person. You can always hire a coach but it is hard for you to invite a mentor into your life. He has to be genuinely interested in your life and your personal development. Both of you should like to spend time with each other a lot.

2. Building a quality Database is the second most important task for an entrepreneur other than maintaining healthy cash flow. This is probably the biggest asset an entrepreneur can enjoy in the initial phase. Learn to build the database by networking, event marketing, strategic alliance, referral and crowd sourcing on social media platforms.

3. Keep yourself gainfully occupied between the time of Sowing and the time of reaping. You should continue to sow as a lifestyle. If you keep sowing as a momentum, reaping will happen continuously too once the first fruits appear. What you sow may not be what you reap. Who you sow to may not be the same person you will reap from. Where you sow may not be where you reap as well.

4. The best business friend an entrepreneur can have is members of the mass media. As advertising loses its effectiveness in startup business, public relations can position an entrepreneur in the minds of the target audience faster and have him be seen as more credible. The art of media pitching is something everyone can master through practice and a little creativity.

5. The toughest call in an entrepreneurship journey is making a decision to move on after a failure. It is about activating your exit plan. It is about taking stock of your resources and an audit of where you are in the business plan. Take your time to reflect on the mistakes you have made and write down lessons learnt in order not to repeat them.

6. The hardest part in any business operation is getting from generating Ideas to actual implementation. It requires determination, creativity and innovation. The management of ideas becomes very important. Know who to share the ideas with. Share ideas without sharing its concepts. Ideas are generally cheap, implementation is always expensive. Ideas are from visionaries but an entrepreneur also needs to be a manager to implement them.

7. The way to effective marketing of an entrepreneur’s business often lies in his personal branding. Once your name and what your forte is has become deeply rooted in the minds of people around you, you literally multiply yourself many folds. Personal branding is about building your profile, knowing which partners you want, which publication to produce, what media to connect with, which charity to serve and also what awards you want to win to showcase your spirit of enterprise.

Interview with Andrew Chow, Social Media Strategist *Includes: 8 Ps of Personal Branding for Entrepreneurs*

Andrew Chow,

Social Media Strategist at Ideamart.

Andrew is a speaker and trainer whose lifestyle I admire – he works only 10 days a month! During our chat, he shared with me about how he was involved in ‘Romancing Singapore’ and the dating business for 3 years, during which he learnt how to “romance the media” by essentially being his own PR guy. He now speaks and trains others with his insights on Social Media Strategy, Media Management and Personal Branding. *You’ll find an entire segment below about Personal Branding for Entrepreneurs. 🙂

I asked Andrew about how he knew that this was what he wanted to do in life, and how we can come to such a realization about our own purpose in life.

“Draw out your own future, visualize it. What are you going to bring – gameplan, mentor, foodpack? Life is very simple: you are a traveller. You’ll likely have to step out of your comfort zone. Even though I’ve never sung at a karaoke session before, I went to sing at a charity concert! I’m also going to produce my own album too! The proceeds can go to a trust fund I may name the ‘Andrew Chow Trust Fund’ and it can be used for Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) purposes. Rub your rough edges against other entrepreneurs. Most importantly, love life – when you love Life, you’ll look younger too.” 😀

And if you recall how the late Steve Jobs mentioned that we can connect the dots when we look back on what has happened, Andrew has his own method of doing this…

“I have my own report card every year which states my 10 top moments of each year. It’s all about work. I take notes everyday about what I do. After 10 years, I’ll be able to find those dots.”

I think this idea of a report card is pure genius. I’ll certainly want to have a glowing report card end of 2012. 😀

Now, carry on reading to find out more about Andrew and how you can excel in your personal branding as an entrepreneur…

Personal Branding for Entrepreneurs

In a nutshell, Personal Branding is the process of how we market ourselves to others via all kinds of channels, not limited to just social media.

It is not about achieving excellence but communicating that excellence. Many of us are great in what we do, we are just very weak in telling others how good we really are. My life is a living testimonial of how a good personal branding has transformed my life.

The story of Andrew Chow

In 2005, Only 50 friends on Friendster and Plaxo ,  Google : no mention of “Andrew Chow‘” for first 5 pages . I was never invited to speak in any free workshop let alone a paid speaking engagement. There was not a single interview or article about me from the press and media. I only tried to attend a structured networking session once in 3 months. Naturally, 100 of my business cards will take a year to deplete.

Fast forward to 2012, my Facebook account is maxed out with 5000 friends, I have a page with over 2500 fans all over Asia. My blog is ranked top 500 site in Singapore by Now, I am recognized as a Thought Leader on Social Media and Public Relations Strategy. On the social media front,  I have acumulated over 10,000 profiles from 3 social portals.  In 2011 alone, I was invited to speak in Asia and as far away as in Dubai, UAE. There are now over 220 features and interviews about me on local and regional media over the last 6 years. I have also become a multiple business awards winner.

Road Map of Personal Branding

It is really very simple. Who are you? What do you do? Why are you so unique?

The advantage of good personal branding is that I rarely have to sell. My credibility is almost never questioned. People look forward to working with me or my company. Others do the marketing for me through word of mouth

The fundamental criteria for success in Personal Branding is to be committed to do it consistently. Focus on what makes you special and shows Thought Leadership with the right platforms which make it viral.

8 Ps of Personal  Branding

1.      Create your Profile on different social media platforms

a.      Twitter: Do you know who else is similar to you?

b.      Blog: What do you blog about that others are interested in?

c.       Linkedin: How many quality recommendations do you have?


2.      Develop your own Portal for Network for networking and alliances

a.      How do you keep track of your inner circle?

b.      Do you have a system to track all the name cards you collect every time?

c.       Are you using mobile technology sufficiently?


3.      Work with the right Business Partners

a.      What are the business associations which will give you the most leverage?

b.      What kind of endorsement can you get from business groups?

c.       Who are your best partnership in terms of IT, customer service, printing, etc


4.      Position yourself for more Public Speaking

a.      Own your own voice and platform

b.      Developing several key notes you can deliver every time

c.       Speak with charisma


5.      Publish a book

a.      Authors have authority

b.      A book is a gateway to more public speaking

c.       Your thought leadership is consolidated


6.      Master the art of Media Publicity

a.      The media is your best business friend

b.      All press and media is interested in human stories

c.       You need media if you are managing a crisis


7.      Serve the Public by serving Charity and taking on Corporate Social Responsibilities

a.      You are blessed to be a blessing

b.      Serving charity and CSR is a form of brand communications

c.       You will reap what you sow


8.      Claim your Prize

a.      Look out for the right award to win

b.      Award winning is a form of authentication to your personal branding

c.       Winning awards will give you more opportunity for public speaking, publishing a book and more media attention .


Come back again soon for Andrew Chow’s  ‘7 Life Lessons about the Entrepreneurship Journey’.

Interview on 938LIVE ‘A Slice Of Life’ Hour – 20 March 2012

One of my New Year’s Resolutions for 2012 is to get featured on radio. Interestingly enough, I didn’t have to wait till year’s end. I was featured today on 938LIVE’s ‘A Slice Of Life’ hour! 🙂

‘A Slice Of Life’ is usually hosted by Eugene Loh. But as he’s currently on leave, I spoke with his colleagues, two lovely and (very!) talented DJs – Justine Moss and Sarah Cheng De-Winne. Outside of DJ-ing, Justine is a golf writer and Sarah is an accomplished singer-songwriter! (Yes, I should have been the one interviewing them! 😀 )

The Interviewer Gets Interviewed

Today’s radio interview was my first and just being at Mediacorp was a lot of fun.

I alighted from the cab at the Radio Gate, only to realize I should have gotten off at the gate leading to the Reception.

And it was quite a walk before I finally found the Radio Building and the 938LIVE studio on the ground floor.

Just as I entered the building, though, I spotted Gurmit Singh walking towards me! We had a really nice chat before he left the building. He’s really approachable and friendly! 🙂 The chat really helped the nerves settle while I waited for the DJ to come look for me.

The interview went incredibly well too. I’ve just listened to the repeat broadcast and got it recorded. I’ll be uploading it soon so do look out for that. 😉 I spoke mainly about the concept of Possibility Thinking and how it has been very helpful for me, especially in my profession as a Blogger.

I’ll leave you with a quote – one that has been so very inspirational for me: “If you want something badly enough, you’ll get it”, said one of my Secondary School teachers. 🙂

Have YOU been referring to your New Year’s Resolutions regularly and working towards achieving those goals?

[Vid] Interview with Michelle Chong, director & star of movie ‘Already Famous’

I had the honor of meeting up with Michelle slightly over a week ago and asking her questions about her new movie mainly. We also spoke about her criteria for a life partner. XD

Here’s a little of what you DON’T get to see in the interview vid! 🙂

(above) I imitated Barbarella’s “Tanks everybody! Tanks!” and amused Michelle. LOL

Here’s my videographer friend David with Michelle:

And here’s my photographer friend Jiahe with Michelle:

Without these 2 friends of mine, filming wouldn’t have been possible. Thanks guys!! 🙂

And here’s a pic with all of us:

Yes yes, here’s what you’ve been waiting for… the video interview with Michelle:

You can watch ‘Already Famous’ starting this Thursday. I’ve already bought my tix! Get yours quickly before they’re all sold out! A movie you won’t wanna miss! 🙂

Find the latest news about the movie and its stars at

Book your tickets here:

Enjoy the movie! 🙂

*Update* Review of ‘Already Famous’

(Thankfully I’d bought my tickets early ‘cos they got sold out at multiple cinemas across the island! )

I think the movie’s worth watching as the selection of the cast is fab. I particularly liked Chua Enlai, the lil fat boy, and the calefare lady who says she often acts in bomb scenes. Everyone seemed to be doing what they do best – e.g. Pornsak hosting, Pat Mok being funny, Nat Ho looking very handsome. 😀

There was no lack of laughs either! Plus, there are some wise words shared by the characters, which I’ll be thinking about. To paraphrase what David Gan said – it’s ok if people call him effeminate or say nasty things about him, that as long as he’s doing better than them, he’d have succeeded.

Also, the old lady who acts as Michelle’s grandma shares that we should do what we love to do (i.e. what our heart yearns to do) while we are still young. And when we are old? We watch the young ones pursue their own dreams. And there is no point in living to a ripe old age if one is not doing what one loves.

Alien Huang’s character also tells us that few people can become famous overnight, just as few people can hang on to their dreams till the end. Michelle’s character had wanted to give up midway, and…

You go watch the rest! 🙂

** 2nd Update**

I sent a couple of questions to the Chairman of Michelle’s Fanclub. I’m just too curious about what it takes to be an ardent fan of a celebrity. And Hwee Shan fits the bill – she has a gazillion photos taken with celebs like Michelle Chong, Michelle Chia and Felicia Chin.

Here’s Tan Hwee Shan with Michelle:

Hwee Shan: “I’ve liked Michelle since 2006 but seldom went to her events till 8 March 2011 after which I created a Fanclub for her & Michelle Chia – M&M Official Fanclub”

Hwee Shan’s currently unemployed but ploughed into her savings to customise the Already Famous tee and board. She’s wearing the tee here:

Yes, I believe that IS Michelle’s car in the background. Swee!

When asked if there is anything about Michelle that people generally don’t know about, Hwee Shan said “She’s too friendly and she will chat with friends on twitter and even reply tweets when she doesn’t even know the person. Also, she’s not proud.”

Interview with Jaime Teo & Daniel Ong from Twelve Cupcakes

Here I am with Dan; Jaime was busy then but here’s a pic of the gorgeous couple from Twelve Cupcakes’ Facebook page:

Twelve Cupcakes can be found at:

1) United Square, #B1-60

2) Millenia Walk, #01-52

Questions for Jaime

1) What is unique about the cupcakes sold here?

They are all homemade and fresh from the oven. You’ll also find that the cupcakes are fluffy and moist. 🙂

2) What do you love about this business?

Firstly, I didn’t expect the business to take up so much time. We found ourselves in a sink-or-swim situation.

I love baking. Back then, I found that due to the small quantities I baked, I didn’t get to ice enough at home. But now, we have to ice so many cupcakes. (We sold 5,000 cupcakes in the first 2 weeks of business) So, be careful what you wish for! 😀

3) Any thoughts of expanding this business? (Grace: when I interviewed Jaime, there was only 1 outlet – the one at United Sq. Now, there’s another at Millenia Walk)

Dan’s the business savvy one but we’ll have to expand because we are not meeting the demand.

4) Are you afraid that the cupcakes business will go the way the donuts business did, i.e. being popular for a while then fading away?

It is something we can’t prevent, right? Like I tell everybody, eat all things in moderation.

(Jaime invites you to view her showreel here)

Questions for Dan

1) How many people do you hire? (As mentioned earlier, this interview was conducted when there was just one outlet)

We have 10 part-timers; 13staff. I’m actually the one who bakes all the cupcakes. And you MUST try our peanut butter cupcake. It is THE best peanut butter cupcake on the planet!

By the way, we really can’t handle anymore publicity. I’m just voicing my happiness (not complaining, ok) that the mall’s complaining that we are closing too early. It’s ‘cos our cupcakes are all sold out!

2) So what’s the secret in baking these yummy cupcakes?

 You must not over-beat the batter. Plus, we bake in small batches so they stay fresh. Also, you must know that Jaime’s been baking for the last 5 yrs!

Grace says: This interview is an interesting one because my initial email to Dan didn’t get a reply ‘cos his email inbox was flooded with mail. So I took matters into my own hands and “invited” myself to their store for the interview.

Jaime was there and she got me quite tongue-tied because she was looking fabulous despite being a mother of one and having been busy in the kitchen the entire day. Plus, I didn’t see any traces of makeup but still she looked gorgeous. Unfortunately for me, she didn’t think the same way, and told me to take a picture only with Dan. XD

And later on, it was interesting because I didn’t know about the 2nd outlet at Millenia Walk till I was there to interview someone else. And I walked by and saw Dan outside the new store (it was Opening Day too!). I was pleasantly surprised that Dan knew who I was (though we’d met only once) and he knew my website address ( though I don’t remember telling him. LOL!

Anyway, pop by, try the cupcakes and speak to the lovely couple if they’re present. 🙂

I tried the peanut butter cupcake:

I rate it 4/5.

Why just 4? ‘Cos the portion’s too small! It just looks big in this photo. XD

Cupcake Flavors you can find at Twelve Cupcakes:

And here’s how much the cupcakes cost:

Take my advice: One will not be enough. Get AT LEAST a box of 3! And go early, before they’re all sold out! 🙂

Interview with Carol Chiam

Carol Chiam

News Presenter, Principal

(*Note: Grace did the English translation of Carol’s replies in Chinese and takes sole responsibility for any meanings lost in translation.)

1) What prompted your change in career from newscaster to principal? And what do you love most about the work you do now?
Many people get the “seven-year itch”. After the 7th year, I asked myself then whether I loved presenting the news, and how long I wanted to continue doing it. With this in mind, I learnt new skills and was involved in the production work of other departments.  At the 14th-year mark, I was well-equipped but overworked. Coming home to 2 kids still studying in primary school, I wondered if it was indeed a good idea to leave them in the long-term care of the maid. I tendered my resignation. I love the freedom now, and have more time for church activities both locally and overseas, and the luxury of time with family.

I continue doing what I’m trained in, and without financial woes, I do as I please. When I need a break, I take a holiday and I visit my ex-colleagues to reminisce. Such joy!
2) (According to what I’ve read online) You’ve done many interviews previously, with former President Ong Teng Cheong and celebrity Gong Li, among others. Which interview was the most memorable, and why?

Mr Ong Teng Cheong was a Minister when I interviewed him, and not a President yet. I’m hard pressed to recall how it went though. (But I cannot forget how the ex-President and the First Lady seemed so in love on screen)

As for Gong Li, our filming crew took 30 minutes to get our equipment set up for the interview. She emerged from her room and allowed us to interview her for only 15 minutes. I came to understand what it meant to work with an international celebrity. The process was smooth though there was one question which was perhaps too direct – something along the lines of whether the position of female movie stars would become shaky with age. She was taken aback but did not reveal any unusual facial expressions. Of course, her subsequent awesome performance in ‘Curse Of The Golden Flower’ was a credible retort.

3) You are fluent in both English and Mandarin, so why the particular fondness for the Chinese Language (over English)?

It’s just that I’ve had more opportunities to utilise Mandarin in communication. I’ve been interested in languages since young and like many Singaporeans, I learned to speak a few dialects just by hearing them being spoken. I studied in a primary school where the language of instruction was Mandarin but my father had me transferred to a secondary school which taught in English. Initially, my grades suffered but subsequently, I got better grades and began to love the English Language. I then had a most fulfilling 3 years learning Japanese in University. Last year, I was in Thailand for missions work and spent 3 months to learn basic Thai, and could understand about 40% of the spoken language. I find opportunities to master new languages most exciting!

Watching as the younger generation here places less emphasis on Mandarin, my mission of keeping this language and culture alive gets ever more important. Whenever I meet a young person who flaunts his/her command of the English language while ostracising the Mandarin-speaking educator or elder and keeping the latter out of the conversation, I immediately converse with this young person in English. The person is usually surprised. To use language well in order to increase social cohesiveness and be a blessing to the masses should be the ultimate aim of mastering a language.

4) What is your opinion about the standard of Mandarin spoken by candidates at the election rallies?

MPs Low Thia Kiang and Sim Ann used highly appropriate Mandarin expressions, were engaging in their delivery of the speeches and occasionally used excellent phrases.

5) How would you go about helping a young student who is from an English-speaking family, and who has consistently flunked Chinese as a subject in school, gain a passion for the language?

Rote-learning will kill the student’s love for learning. There should be structure and adherence to the syllabus but we should ditch the textbooks and take lessons out of the classrooms. This could inspire greater interest in learning, and spur the children to use alternative ways to discover Mandarin’s outstanding qualities.

Grace says: Wow! You cannot begin to imagine my relief at finally being done with translating this. What a daunting and challenging task! I am in awe that Carol is so outstandingly bilingual but more so that she is such a kind and generous soul.

I apologise for any misinterpretations of what she has written. I have done my best to help my non-Chinese readers! This just goes to show that I have a lot more to learn.

A big thank you to Carol for being an inspiration and spurring us young “English” folk to start looking for our Chinese roots and getting reinitiated back into the culture. Let’s not miss out on what is rightfully ours! 🙂

Stay Tuned for more exciting interviews and updates.

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*This weekend, I’ll be blogging about my Batam missions trip (helping out at orphanages, painting a church, among other things) & introduce you to a group of very special people. So come back and enjoy the weekend with me!

p/s: If you have not signed up for Wednesday’s ‘How I Made 114K At Age 24’ Sharing Session, email now! See you there!