Tagged: Kim Moon-Soo

Meeting the Governor

We had a very interesting meeting with Kim Moon-Soo, Governor of Kyunggi-Do last Saturday evening. Several things stand out in my mind from the event.

1. Having gone to meet the Governor based on some small talk with him about me being a promotional representative for the province over a year ago after he spoke to a meeting of Hanyang University alumni, it was interesting to see how my associate hooked in a presentation of his other business, and even invited yet another business associate who also appealed to the Governor for assistance on his business, all the while insisting that we were together one and the same organization. And this all came about because a business associate of my business associate is friends with the younger sister of the Governor's wife!

2. I was surprised at how gracious the Governor was for our visit. We had assumed that we would get just enough time to present our situations briefly and then it would be over…15 minutes, maybe 30 minutes tops… But as it turned out, we spoke to his wife for about 45 minutes before he arrived as he was coming from a dinner meeting and then, starting around 9:45pm on a Saturday night, he gave us a full hour of his time. In particular, as the meeting went from the expected (to talk about my possible role promoting the province) to the unexpected (my colleague's request for intervention on their business approval), to the really unexpected (my colleague's colleague's request for the Governor's support in attracting a musical event to the province), he listened very patiently and interrupted very little. At times, he asked carefully what exactly it was he could do to help and gave clear indication about how and when he (or his office) would follow up.

3. The upshot from my side of the meeting is that his office is going to contact me at the end of August after my trips to the US and India to discuss the possibilities and he even mentioned that there are many areas in which we should be able to work together. He seemed duly impressed with my Korean ability and long-term living in the province of Kyunggi.

4. Even once the meeting was over, the Governor spent a good 5-10 minutes distributing various literature to our group, signing for each of us a book he's written, etc. And as we were going out at almost 11pm, we noticed that he had yet another group of people waiting to talk to him! It made me wonder how tedious it must be to be constantly appealed to for this or that "opportunity".

Stay tuned to find out where this "opportunity" leads.



Get this…

Last year, along with a long-time Korean friend and fellow
student, I attended a Hanyang University alumni breakfast where Gyeonggi-Do Governor
Kim Moon-Soo spoke about future provincial development plans. After the
meeting, I went up with my friend to meet the Governor and we exchanged a bit
of small talk and business cards. We also greeted his private secretary and
chatted for a moment, during which time my friend made the suggestion that they
give me a role of some sort in promoting Kyeonggi-Do Province, which the
secretary politely agreed would be a great idea and that he’d get back to us on
it… which of course, he never did.

Fast forward to today….

My friend has established a small non-profit organization in
Ansan which is working to provide various social services, and they’ve just set
up office in a spare office building on the “campus” of a small hospital in town
and are planning to work together on some projects with the hospital. He invited
me over to see the new digs, and unbeknownst to me, scheduled for me to arrive
at, well, right in the middle of a meeting he was having with a director of the
hospital. As we were talking, he just happened to mention the situation in the
first paragraph above and, lo and behold, the director exclaimed, “Oh! The
older sister of my close friend is the wife of Governor Kim Moon-Soo!”… To
which my friend replied, “Um… Do you think you could check with the Governor
about having Steven be a spokesman for the province? After all, his secretary
had already agreed to the idea but didn’t follow-up with us.”… The Director got
on the phone straight-away, called the Governor’s wife and set up a meeting on
Saturday morning for the three of us with the Governor and his wife at the
Governor’s residence…

The Korean word for describing the feeling in a situation
like this is “황당하다” (though you’d never know it from the dictionary

I’ll post an update over the weekend about how the meeting goes! J