David Koo at Everest Base Camp
In our “Meet the Team” series, we profile the people who make Global Rescue what it is. David Koo, based in Global Rescue’s Bangkok Operations Center, offers a glimpse into his role as an Operations Manager, the business culture in Asia, and his time in Tibet.
What is your role at Global Rescue?
I am working in the role of Operations Manager. I ensure that the Operations Center is operationally ready and runs smoothly. This includes ensuring the readiness of our Asian teams and providing case direction and oversight for active operations, assisting the Directors in making decisions, and providing leadership to the team.
What do you like most about your job?
My staff! I work with a talented multinational team. We learn from each other and from the experiences that each of us brings to the table. Furthermore, this job is unpredictable. Every request that comes in is different and sometimes you really have to think creatively to develop solutions.
Give an example of a recent mission you’ve handled.
Our Operations team recently managed a commercial stretcher transport from Doha (Qatar) back to the U.S.A. This transport involved coordination across cultures, and very long transport durations. A Global Rescue Senior Specialist paramedic was at the member’s side during the hospital stay, and then was with her all the way to her home hospital. The team handled the logistics from start to finish.
You are based in Thailand. What do you think is the greatest benefit to Global Rescue members in having a Global Rescue operations center in Bangkok?
I think it is very important for Global Rescue to have a presence in Asia. The business culture in Asia is very different from the West. We place a strong emphasis on first developing a relationship before a business deal. We like face-to-face meetings over a meal and having multiple interactions before we get down to business. For example, the annual deployments of Global Rescue staff in Nepal is a great example of how having “boots on the ground” helped to foster relationships and to ensure the best possible operational handling of cases.
What is the coolest place you’ve traveled to and what made it interesting?
I really treasured my three years in Tibet during which I trekked across the region, rode on top of a delivery truck from Tibet to Chengdu, stayed overnight in a nomadic tent, trekked to Advance Base Camp, and stood in awe of mount Everest with only one thought in mind: “People must be out of their mind to try to summit Everest.” Now I oversee the coordination of rescues from the mountain. Sometimes we circle back to where we started.
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