“I may wear many hats but only one turban!” Harmandar Singh Naranjan Singh tells a Malaysian business weekly as they trace his career path during an interview at Mercy Malaysia’s office.
Ham, as he is known in the advertising circles in Malaysia and neighbouring countries, is on the cover of The Edge Malaysia weekly pullout.
The brand communications guru, writer, academic and exco member of humanitarian agency Mercy Malaysia talked about how his role has evolved over the decades.
“I liked writing for advertising and that there was such deep thinking required to make complex things seem simple when it comes to delivering a message,” Ham said in an interview.
“That naturally drew me to it. I do a lot of thinking; even when I am not writing, I am actually ‘writing’ in my head, so when I get to the computer, I already have my first few paragraphs [mentally-written].
“I have always been that kind of a thinker and I found having to come up with advertising concepts to be in line with my depth and pace,” says the man who was a weekly columnist with The Star and New Sunday Times for 11 years,” he said.
Born in Bukit Besi in Dungun, Terengganu, Harmandar’s family moved to Selangor when his father got a job at Associated Pan Malaysia Cement Sdn Bhd in Rawang, Selangor. Despite having left the east coast state in his adolescence, he says he is a true anak Terengganu at heart, according to the report.
Harmandar, who has a way with words, soon discovered that the advertising industry combined his affinity for prose with idea creation, which he not only enjoys but also has a knack for.
The founder of Sledgehammer Communications is also an adjunct professor at Taylor’s University lakeside campus to the School of Media and Communication.
In November 2018, Ham was inducted into the International Advertising Association (IAA) Malaysia Hall of Fame as the association celebrated its 25th anniversary in Malaysia and its 80th year globally. Ham served as IIA Malaysia president from 2011 and 2012.
Go Gobind book presented at Malaysian CMO awards night (Asia Samachar, 28 Nov 2018)
Harmandar Singh inducted into Malaysia advertising hall of fame (Asia Samachar, 19 Nov 2018)