“Would you be my mentor?”

Author: 
Richard Dal Monte

The story of Felix Louis begins on Canada Day.

More precisely, Louis’s story — a story of entrepreneurship and education — starts back home in Malaysia with a dream and a vision.

His father’s dream was to settle in Canada. Joseph Louis tried it in the 1970s but couldn’t convince his wife, Louisa, to come along with the kids so he went home. More than a decade passed before he moved to Vancouver again. This time, Louisa and their three boys — 20-year-old Gerard, 16-year-old Felix and Eleazer, 12 — joined him on July 1, just in time for the fireworks celebrating their adopted nation’s birthday.

“My dad brought us here and his vision was for us to get a better education,” says Louis, a Royal Roads MBA grad. “And that’s what I did.”

Indeed, education has been an integral part of Louis’s life in his adopted land. Even after his father passed away suddenly — just one tragically short year after achieving his Canadian dream, leaving his mother to care for the three boys — Louis went to college and took marketing management courses at BCIT, all while holding down multiple jobs and exercising his entrepreneurial spirit working with a variety of businesses through most of his 20s and early 30s.

And at every step on his educational journey, “I sought out people I felt like I could learn from. I would just walk up to people and say, ‘Would you be my mentor?’”

One such mentor, calling him “a natural entrepreneur,” urged him to pursue a Master of Business Administration (MBA). Taking that advice to heart and doing some self-reflection, “I just realized that business and economics and how business works just come naturally to me.”

But Louis knew he still had much to learn. Thus, in 2004, he enrolled at Royal Roads University, earning an entrance scholarship to study for an MBA in Executive Management and management consulting — in fact, it was the latter specialization that attracted him.

At Royal Roads, Louis, who is one of the former students and current faculty members featured in the university’s Boldly Different  marketing campaign, learned from both instructors and fellow students who were established business leaders, reveling in the mix of theoretical and practical education — and finding more mentors, some of whom he’s in touch with to this day.

Since his graduation in 2006, Louis has done a variety of things: taught classes at BCIT; started, built and sold a security firm providing services to clients as diverse as hotels and politicians; and worked as a management consultant brought in by companies to maximize their strengths, and find and fix their weaknesses. He also acts as a venture capitalist, investing in companies looking to grow and evolve.

When consulting, he uses the tools he picked up while working on his MBA, including the doctor-patient model. “You look at the anatomy of your body: your arms, your feet, your torso… I look at a business, the entity itself, like that,” he explains. “I look at your finance, I look at your marketing, I look at your operations, I look at your strategy. I look at your body strategically and break it down.”

He credits his Royal Roads experience — along with subsequent study he has done in the areas of negotiation, mediation, conflict resolution and conflict coaching — not only for what he learned but, also, for giving him the confidence to take on a variety of projects and challenges.

And all of that education has helped Louis fulfill his father’s dream.

This is one of a series of articles on the people featured in Royal Roads University’s Boldly Different campaign. If you want to take your career further, earn a new credential, experience personal growth – or all three – with a boldly different education, contact us to learn more or to speak with an advisor.