“Focus. Find a way to take everything you’ve learned and experienced and apply it.” Meet Beedie Luminary Mentor, Todd Yuen
Work Title / Company:
President, Industrial at Beedie.
Why did you decide to become a mentor with Beedie Luminaries?
I’ve been very fortunate to have some great people support and guide me throughout my career so the opportunity to hopefully do the same for someone else was something that really resonated for me. More importantly, I’m a huge fan of the entire Luminaries program so I wanted to do my small part to support it.
What was your favourite subject in school?
History and English.
What was your first job? What was your biggest takeaway from that experience?
I packed boxes in a clothing factory when I was 13. My mom wouldn’t allow me to buy a mountain bike with my savings, so she said if I wanted one, I had to get a job. Unfortunately, I had a workplace injury so my takeaway was it wasn’t a lot of fun packing heavy boxes when you’re 13 so I’d better pay attention in school so I could hopefully have the opportunity to do something I was excited about.
What are the three qualities that got you where you are today?
I think/hope that I’m really good with people and connect easily with them. My communication skills are strong. I work my butt off.
Do you have a “favorite failure” of yours?
Decades ago when I was a broker I had the opportunity to pitch a big client. It was very early in my career and this client needed to move to a much bigger building so it was a huge deal for me. For the first meeting I unfortunately mis-timed traffic so was 15 minutes late which wasn’t a great start. Worse, the other broker competing for the business was Darren Cannon who to this day is one of my closest friends. Darren had the first meeting and he showed up completely prepared, with a fancy book of options and he was on time. I had nothing prepared as I thought it was an introductory meeting. For all the right reasons, Darren got the business and went on to do a big deal. I never again went into a meeting or any business situation unprepared. It’s the worst feeling in the world. I do still struggle with being on time though. But I’m working on it!!
What book(s) have greatly influenced your life?
When I have time to read I really read for pleasure. I really respect people who read for self betterment or improvement but that’s never been me. So I’ve always gravitated towards subjects that allow my brain to turn off for a bit. I read a lot of biographies, spy novels and other books you’d read on the beach on vacation so I’d be lying if I told you that there was a book that really impacted me. I will say that the Steve Jobs biography was fascinating to me. The way that man’s mind worked. Incredible.
What would the title of your autobiography be?
“He should have taken more vacations.”
What advice would you give to post-secondary students as they prepare to transition into the working world?
Focus. Find a way to take everything you’ve learned and experienced and apply it. Education is an incredible thing. The trick is taking all of that and combining it with who you are as a person and applying it in an effective way to your chosen field of work. Be humble and be true to yourself. Don’t try to be someone you aren’t.
What / where is your happy place?
Any time spent with my almost four year old boy who is, in my opinion, the greatest human on earth.
What is a dream you have that you’ve yet to achieve?
Convincing my boss that I can retire someday!Back To Top