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The philosophy that Sung-Joo Kim has pursued since the establishment of fashion distributor Sungjoo Inc is Christianity based on faith, hope and love (Corinthian 13) and Noblesse Oblige. Based on these beliefs, the company philosophy of transparent management and giving back to society were established, and each year the group returns ten per cent of its net income to charitable causes. Sungjoo Inc is now redefining itself from its beginnings as a small company in Korea into a global enterprise. It is this timeless philosophy that firmly supports the company amid formidable changes. Sungjoo Inc also owns and markets a global luxury brand business, a feat that no Korean has been able to achieve. Being a female entrepreneur, Sung-Joo Kim has challenged every notion considered to be the limits of a woman and has overcome all difficulties. She stresses the importance of establishing a personal strategy. Here, Sung-Joo Kim explains how you should begin by drawing the big picture and suggests the following method for developing such a strategy.
  • Positive
  • Proactive
  • Flexible
  • Integrity
  • Creative


In order to achieve something, you need to be able to envision clearly the results in your head. The more precise the picture is and the more convinced and committed you are to the picture, the more it is possible to achieve that dream. The Bible says, “Now faith is the assurance that what we hope for will come about and the certainty that what we cannot see exists.” If you have solid faith about the future in your heart, your dreams will come true. Such faith stems from the unlimited spirit of positivity. Negative thoughts like “I am not good enough,” “I don’t have the good qualities that others have,” “I can’t do it!” will not get you anywhere. Not having negative thoughts does not mean that you need to insist that you are perfect and try to deceive yourself. You need to accept your present self – be it good, bad, too much or too little. You need to start from knowing exactly where you stand at the moment.


Koreans, with their culture of listening to adults, sometimes demonstrate a weakness by not having a proactive attitude. Society has perhaps made us into passive people. However, a passive person has no choice but to be dragged into wherever a situation leads them. If you are passive, you will live a life totally different from how you dreamed it. Be proactive. Take on challenges and have a critical perspective. You should not be forced into a situation but try to take charge of a situation by yourself.


A flexible attitude comes from not obsessing about yesterday. Situations always change. The world does not always move as we wish. Things often turn out differently from how you planned them. If your predictions turn out to be wrong, you should always be able to revise your direction and move forward. An individual’s philosophy, values and plans are like maps that help you find your way in life. Just because you have used the map for ten years or even twenty years does not mean that it has more authority. A map has to be redrawn when a road is newly built. The big picture you drew should always be revised to fit the situation.


Integrity is a very difficult word to translate into Korean. This is because the word has many good concepts condensed comprehensively within it. The first is truth. The first meaning is about adhering to the truth in human relationships with principles and rules. This not only has a partial but a holistic meaning. You have to be consistently true to your thoughts, words and actions and you need to pursue completeness. The word is also connected to the notion of being faithful. Since facing temptations that are not right is also included, the notion is also concerned with passion.


In a narrow sense, creativity is about being able to come up with fresh ideas. However, I’d like to use the word to refer to a much wider meaning. In a sense, creativity includes all of the four values mentioned above. When faced with a problem, creativity helps you to accurately identify your strengths and weaknesses, change the basis of your thinking and let you have the wisdom to convert your weakness into strength. Creativity is also the ability to actively address issues. Creativity is not a mystical ability to come up with something out of nowhere with a bang, as in a magic show. It is also not something that you are born with but a skill that anyone can develop through effort.
These five are basic qualities. Based on them, we should also be equipped with the tools that befit the realities of the 21st century.
That is the "global mind and capability." We now have to work on the global stage. For that reason, you cannot go along with the times without a global mind. Confidence of being "the best in Korea" will become meaningless in a day or two. Capability not only includes the professional knowledge and technology required in each other's field but also basic abilities such as English and computer skills. You won't be able to survive in this age of Internet network by flunking in these common subjects. The times demand the ability to quickly absorb and digest new knowledge and information and adapt them to your life.

We have come so far by discussing that an individual must also have a strategy. New, let's go through the course of establishing a strategy once more. You first need to draw of establishing a strategy once more. You first need to draw a picture that incorporate your present state, your optimal model, forecast on the situations surrounding you and a general timeline. Then, you need to identify what you need to be equipped with in order to realize the picture into reality and plan specifically on what needs to be achieved in short-term, mid-term and long-term perspectives. Last, you have to realize your dream by building your abilities based on a positive, active, flexible, sincere and creative mind. Now, it's time for you to establish your own global strategy.