PR World Awards

Ken Ip | Embrace your strengths and accept your weaknesses

Creative Strategist | Brand Builder | Board Advisor | Author | Angel Investor | B.S.C. Group Limited |Hong Kong

An awarding-winning marketing and brand communications strategist, Ken has held a number of senior roles from corporate consulting to public affairs advisory for leading multinational and conglomerates. Ken was formerly the Head of Marketing at Atkins, one of the world’s largest engineering and design consultancies. He was also recently the marketing head for the 145 year-old design practice, Leigh & Orange.

A popular keynote speaker, columnist and Associate Professor, Ken is a regular contributor on the topic of B2B Marketing. He is also the author of two best-selling titles, “Life Hacks” and “Growth Hacks”.


What do achievements mean to you?

Let me try to answer it with a different angle. What is my ambition?? Is to make a positive impact the lives of 1 million people, through the work I do, the books and articles I write, the events I speak to, or simply through interacting with my at personal or working level. 

What excites you most about the work that you do?

I often tell people that I do two things, and two things only. I’m a story teller. I tell stories, to connect brands with audience, and audience with brands. In parallel, I play the role of someone who acts like a celebrity agent. To help ensure my “clients” are seen or being exposed in the right place, at the right time. Getting audition for leading roles and opportunities to shine at the Oscar, so to speak. And Author just came naturally as I evolved as a marketing professional. It complements what I do, and adds creditability to my personal branding. 

Do you have a mantra or motto that you live by?

When the going gets tough, the tough get going.

What makes you yourself

Being comfortable with yourself, embrace your strengths and accept your weaknesses. 

Recent successes

Transforming my company from a traditional business to omni-channel in under 30 days, and able to deliver the annual sales target in less than 4 months, all during the difficulty period of Covid-19. 

“A leader is someone who has a clear vision, (knows the way) follows that vision, (goes the way) and helps others to find their path.”

— Ken Ip

What was your journey like to get where you are today

A lot to do with luck I would say. But then again, there is the common saying that goes fortune often favours the brave. It’s kind of my mantra all these years. However, I’m not advocating that someone goes around blindly and take on any risky endeavours. On the contrary, it is the knowledge of calculated risk that is essential to move up in the corporate ladder. 

How do you stay motivated

Music and Martial Arts. I’m also an amateur jazz musician and kung fu instructor. 

Goal yet to be achieved

I really wanted to complete a PhD, connecting the shared philosophies behind martial arts and business. 

Definition of leadership

A leader is someone who has a clear vision, (knows the way) follows that vision, (goes the way) and helps others to find their path.

Best mentor

Books. The authors are all my mentors. 

One word that best describes you

pseudo-philosopher

What are you really into outside of work?

I took up piano at a very young age. Then I gradually progressed and venture into other genres – jazz, rock and even Punk. Had my own band one time, and I can play guitar, bass drums, and even beatbox a bit. 

As an Asian kid growing up overseas, you get picked on quite often. So my parents decided I should learn something as self defense. I first took up Wing Chun, which I’m now an instructor, and I’m also a decent boxer. I believe all these keep me grounded and be respectfully, to myself and others.

Most influential book read

The Magic of Thinking Big.


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