“At Feruni, it is all about happiness, a place where talent is developed and opportunity is created for everyone across the organisation. Here at Feruni, we do what we love and we do it together like a family while making a positive impact to our community. Our driving force is simply believing in being a part of something bigger than ourself."
- C.C. NGEI (Managing Director of Feruni Ceramiche Sdn. Bhd.)
By Gerald Chuah
FERUNI is a rising star in the world of designer tiles and flooring. Although the company started business five years ago, it has become a brand name that is synonymous with quality and confidence. It is not only progressive in terms of product knowledge, design and branding; it has a sound philosophy and innovative ideas when it comes to building an effective work culture, designer showrooms, and marketing campaigns. Its dynamic approach in the traditional business makes it stand out in the marketplace to meet the rising demands of discerning consumers and modern homes.
Behind the brand name is the managing director C.C.Ngei, the brainchild and founder of Feruni Ceramiche Sdn. Bhd., whose single minded determination and spark of genius, has brought this dream to reality. A recent visit to the newly opened showroom in Petaling Jaya speaks volumes about the vision and integrity of this man, his organisation and their business model.
As the writer and photographer arrived at the HQ in Petaling Jaya for an interview, their names were flashed on the LCD screens with a welcome message. These are examples of the personal touch that makes Feruni a business leader that is ahead of its competitors today. A walking tour of the office reveals a Happiness cafe where staff can enjoy free coffee, there is also a gymnasium, a pool table, a library, a cosy corner, a talent corner, audition room, and auditorium amongst others.
The modern office is well-designed in a borderless concept without partitions, and comes with geometric shaped tables to help enhance the environment, to generate creativity. Ngei believes that work and play should be boundless, and the open office concept will help to encourage the free exchange of ideas, over a cup of coffee, or while seated on a comfortable sofa.
Ngei said: "How we feel directly influences our work performance and environment. Having a fun working atmosphere that is more lively, exciting and less stressful makes everyone more alert and active. Having fun at work relaxes our mind and sharpens our senses to power up our creativity. By freeing our mind we will eventually free up our thinking ability, where an impossible problem will shrink to a simple solution. The ties between departments and staff are knitted more closely while putting away our differences for a harmonious and fun working environment.
He added when there is transparency at work, people will be more responsive to contribute ideas and going the extra mile. It all starts with the belief that home is where the heart is, and it is important for the staff to first feel the wow factor, before they can wow others. When there are no boundaries between work and play, there will be less resistance in the workflow, sharing of ideas and communication. As a result, things will move much faster with less friction, stress and frustrations.
Established in 2010, Feruni Ceramiche is one of the leading brands in upmarket ceramic and porcelain tiles. Feruni provides high-quality tiles from various ISO 19001 accredited plants located in Malaysia, China, Italy & Spain.
Driven by the passion to transform tiles from just wall and floor coverings into a lifestyle element for any space, Feruni offers customers a boundless selection of tiles curated from all over the world.
Due to their vast experience spanning more than two decades in the industry, they have never failed to incorporate talent,skills, and knowledge to deliver products and services of the highest quality to their customers.
Today, Feruni has seven retail stores across Malaysia which offer a lifestyle shopping experience, and possesses a firm foothold in residential and commercial properties throughout Asia.
Q. How do you position yourself as a trendsetter in the traditional and competitive tiling industry?
Our industry is very traditional and the progress has been very slow from product design to showroom concept. When Feruni first came in, we call ourselves the trendsetter, because we have changed the entire process from what we do to how we do it, from our product design to our showroom concept, so that customers can experience an entirely new process.
Q. Can you briefly share how Feruni started and the "Man Behind the Brand" which is you?
Feruni started five years ago, the whole idea came about at the end of 2009. Also at that time I split with my previous partners in the trading business. After that, I asked myself, "Will I continue to run the trading business because I've been in the industry for 20 years. Do I want to continue with the old ways of doing things because I do not feel the motivation anymore".
I didn't have the urge to move forward, until I found a group of people who actually think we should do something different, and probably inject new life to ourselves and the industry.
That's how Feruni came into existence, because we wanted to transform the entire industry from the very traditional to a more vibrant lifestyle kind of industry. After a short five years in the business, I think we have started to change the landscape of the industry, and how people perceive us. I think we are very passionate, and I hope we can continue to attract more Gen Y people to join this industry and continue to bring it forward.
Q. In the early part of the tour, you talked about work life integration to create a unified and motivated workforce. You wanted a borderless environment, so there is no separation between work and play, to encourage your staff to share ideas and exchange knowledge freely and openly. Why do you think this open concept is effective in today's workplace?
In the past, people talk about work life balance and why we need to separate the two, but the truth is we get a lot of inspiration and ideas during our vacation and playtime, as the most creative ideas happen during these times, like chit-chatting, attending seminars, or going for vacation overseas.
About work-life integration, generally it is rather difficult for one to change hats between the two all the time. For example, when you do something that you really like, you don't feel like you are working, because this is a part of your life. Imagine if your working life is not happy, 50 percent of your life is going to be destroyed. So make your job something which is part of your life. The driving force is to be part of something bigger than yourselves, and you will have the commitment to give back to society and create a positive impact at the end of the day.
Q: At Feruni, people are your greatest assets, how does the `10 Core Values' contribute to work-life balance and build a powerful and efficient workforce?
Most often our learning process stops or slows down as we step into working life. We seek growth to expand our horizon steadily as humans are learning creatures. At Feruni, we encourage continuous learning from each other and to share our experiences.
Learning is the life source of innovation that provides us with more perspective while instilling confidence and the ability in adapting. “Learning One Thing A Day" will empower us with knowledge in the most ideal manner to deepen our character and to be more inspiring.
How we feel directly influences our work performance and environment. Having a fun working atmosphere that is more lively, exciting and less stressful makes everyone more alert and active.
Having fun at work relaxes our mind and sharpens our senses to power up our creativity. By freeing our mind, we will eventually free up our thinking ability, where an impossible problem will shrink to a simple solution. The ties between departments and staff are knitted more closely while putting away our differences for a harmonious and fun working environment.
FERUNI'S 10 CORE VALUES
Feruni's culture is shaped by 10 core values. These ground rules establish the foundation and guiding principles for decision-making actions and a sense of community for both their personal and professional lives. Ngei said he is optimistic in finding the perfect balance between personal values and the organisation's values to create a unified and motivated workforce, resulting in the fulfilment of "work life integration".
At Feruni, what matters most is how good we make people feel. We are committed to delivering a “wow” factor to our customers, fellow Ferunians, our family, our vendors and our partners in the long run.
2.COMMUNICATE WITH HEART
We seek communication among Ferunians with the best intention in our hearts and with a selfless notion when we are doing so. It forms a positive bond between one another with honesty, good faith and trust.
We celebrate and embrace diversity, individuality and each person’s awesomeness! We are committed in providing support to every Ferunian to grow personally and professionally, while we foster changes for the good and become a role model in our community.
4.WE CARE FOR EVERYONE LIKE FAMILY
We are a team and a family who support each other by sharing every success and overcoming any hurdles. The best team does not only work closely with each other but also interacts with each other outside the office environment to nurture care that goes far beyond the co-worker relationship.
We embrace changes and and are driven by them to stay ahead of competition. We accept challenges with an open mind, constantly seek adventure and have fun exploring new possibilities to create innovative solutions on top of being efficient and effective.
6.EMPHASISE ON FINE DETAIL
The level of care, passion, focus and attention narrows down to our emphasis on fine details. Breakthrough achievements, the greatest acts and outstanding products are made possible by enhancing our quality on every level and in any field.
7.PRACTISE INTEGRITY, HONESTY & TRANSPARENCY
Being “true” to ourselves guides us in making the correct decisions and to bring out the best versions of ourselves. The greatest achievement is to be respected as a trustworthy person with admirable virtues.
8.EAGER TO SHARE
Feruni fosters an “eager to share” attitude by sharing knowledge, experience and skills. We offer assistance and volunteer to help every Ferunian to get on the right path to reach their ultimate goals.
9.HAVE FUN AT WORK
Having a fun working atmosphere relaxes our mind and sharpens our senses to power up our creativity. The ties between departments and staff are knitted more closely while putting away our differences for a harmonious and fun working environment.
10.LEARN 1 THING A DAY
At Feruni, we encourage continuous learning from each other by sharing our experiences. Learning is the life source of innovation that provides us with a better perspective while empowering us with the knowledge needed for self-improvement.
FERUNI CERAMICHE SDN BHD is located at No.12, Jalan 51/213, Seksyen 51, 46050 Petaling Jaya, Selangor.For more info, call Tel: (603) 7784 7277,Fax: (603) 7784 7727,
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org,or visit the website at: http://www.feruni.com.
Operation Hours: Monday-Friday (9am-6pm), Saturday (9am-5pm), Sunday (10am-4pm), and closed on Public Holidays.
empowering us with the knowledge needed for self-improvement. empowering us with the knowledge needed for self-improvement.