In Technology


Title: CEO and founder

Company: Possbly Pte. Ltd.

Age: 40

Education: Bachelor's degree in law from the University of London

Achievements/Awards: Presumably, the first person and first woman to launch a social media platform in Singapore

Shirley Xue Li Lim

Dress shirt, Hairstyle, Eyelash, Coat, Sleeve, Collar

What led you to a career in technology?

During my early 20s, I started a company and quickly realized I needed a website and digital marketing skills to reach more customers. I taught myself HTML, PHP, JavaScript, and other programming languages to build a website and improve my SEO and SEM skills. In just one week, I had a website up and running, and my business took off. My passion for technology continued to grow as I advanced my knowledge in technology. Years later, I founded Avernixx Pte. Ltd. in Singapore, offering business management software and customization, website development, and digital marketing services to all types of companies. After more than a year of development, I also launched

What motivates you to go above and beyond in your current position?

During the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, I learned from the daily news how many people lost their jobs, affecting their incomes. Large, long-standing brands were closing down around the world. So, I decided to use my knowledge of technology to build a new social media platform where everyone can leverage their talents, knowledge, and creativity to make sustainable incomes with monthly membership fees or tips for each content, from their followers. Thus, Possbly was born, which stands for unlimited possibilities. 

What role does sustainability play in your life both personally and professionally?

Sustainability is one aspect of contributing to the greater good of society. Its focus is on a happy community, a healthy environment, and a profitable business.

At a personal level, I volunteer my time to provide free guidance on web developments and business strategies to small companies' founders and key personnel with the hope of creating a positive impact on their businesses. I also volunteer at animal shelters, providing free pet grooming services, which has nothing to do with technology, but I believe that each pet will have a higher chance of adoption if they look neat and clean. I also uphold the lifestyle practices of reusing and recycling for environmental good. 

At the business level, I adopt sustainable practices, such as employees' education on social responsibility, encouraging employee volunteerism with extra paid time off for employees who wish to volunteer, and sourcing equipment and supplies from brands that have good sustainability initiatives. 

What is the most fascinating lesson you have learned while working with technology?

One of the most fascinating lessons or, rather, most valuable life lessons I have learned while working with technology is to never give up. This is especially true when I bump into bugs I need to fix while coding for customizations. If I can't solve it within a few hours, I don't give up. I take a break, move around the office, or maybe sleep on it. Eventually, l always find a way to resolve the issue.. With this can-do attitude and never-give-up spirit, I believe no goals are unattainable or problems unsolvable. 

What is unique about you personally?

I would describe myself as being an open-minded, affable, optimistic, and independent individual.

“ ... technology companies need to take a more holistic approach to their business practices and policies, and consider the impact their products and services have on society and the environment.”

What is unique about you professionally?

My unique professional traits include positive attitude, strong interpersonal skills, adaptability, integrity, and high emotional intelligence to handle challenges and stress while dealing with people effectively.

What is your most admirable quality?

My ability to think critically and solve complex problems.

Why are diversity, equality, and inclusion necessary for this industry?

Diversity, equality, and inclusion are important in the technology industry for several reasons.

1. Better decision-making — Having a diverse workforce with different perspectives and experiences can lead to better problem-solving and decision-making. This can help companies create more innovative and inclusive products and services.

2. Company culture — Companies that value diversity and inclusion are more likely to attract and retain top talent from diverse backgrounds, leading to a more well-rounded and skilled workforce. It can lead to a more positive and respectful company culture, which can improve employee morale and satisfaction.

3. Increased market appeal — By creating products and services that are inclusive and accessible to a wider range of people, companies can expand their potential customer base and reach new markets.

4. Legal and ethical aspects — Ensuring equality and nondiscrimination in the workplace is not only a matter of mutual respect and social etiquette but also a legal obligation in many countries.

Hence, these values can potentially lead to better product development, a positive workplace culture, a wider potential customer base, better talent acquisition and retention, and compliance with legal and ethical requirements.

What aspect of the industry has the most potential for growth, and how can we accelerate that?

I think there is a large potential for growth in four main areas.

  1. AI and ML
  2. The IoT
  3. Cybersecurity
  4. Recruiting and promoting more female employees

For AI and ML, they are becoming increasingly important in a variety of industries — from supply chains, health care, and finance to retail and manufacturing. Advancement in these technologies is making it possible to better automate processes, improve decision-making, and enhance the customer experiences.

For cybersecurity, it's now an essential and basic feature for any smart devices, online website, web applications, and web portals. There is always room for advancements in data protection. With lower pricing, we can accelerate the adoption of cybersecurity by small business owners.

The current growth of IoT is expected to continue and has a high potential for growth as more and more devices become connected and generate data, which is now evidentially seen in consumer electronic products.

To accelerate growth in these areas, investment in research and development is crucial. Private companies and public sectors can consider working together to support the development of new technologies and their further integration into various industries. On top of that, creating a supportive regulatory environment and promoting digital literacy and skills training via campaigns, such as workshops, online courses, and webinars can also help to drive growth in these areas.

In the area of recruiting and promoting more females in industry, we need to conduct more online recruitment campaigns as well as digital literacy and skills training courses.

Where does the industry need the most improvement, and what can we learn from the current shortcomings?

From my personal point of view, I think the technology industry needs the most improvements in areas of cybersecurity, privacy, and sustainability.

With increased reliance on technology, cybersecurity is becoming an extremely important issue. In this day and age, data breaches, cyberattacks, and cyber crime are common, and technology companies need to focus on developing more robust and up-to-date security solutions to keep data safe.

This rise in technology has led to growing concerns over privacy and the use of personal data by technology companies. Companies can adopt a transparent policy about their data collection practices and ensureusers have control over their personal information as far as permitted by applicable laws.

The technology industry has a large carbon footprint, and there is a growing concern over the environmental impact of technology. Companies need to focus on reducing their carbon footprint and developing sustainable technology solutions, such as adopting cloud computing solutions.

From these shortcomings, we can learn that technology companies need to take a more holistic approach to their business practices and policies, and consider the impact their products and services have on society and the environment. In this way, companies can build a technology industry that benefits everyone.

When you imagine the future technology, what does it look like?

I think at this rapid rate of technological advancement and development, I would imagine the future of technology to be sleek, efficient, and affordable, where it will be a world filled with advanced robots, virtual reality smart devices, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, smart homes and cities, advanced medical technologies, advanced computing technologies, and advanced manufacturing technologies with sustainability standards intact. Thus, future technology I think would be expected to be highly interconnected, with smart devices and systems communicating seamlessly to provide enhanced experiences for consumers.

What advice do you have for women and other minorities who are currently working in the industry but don’t necessarily feel like they belong?

My advice would be to seek out allies for support; build a strong network via events, conferences, and online forums; advance your skills and knowledge by attending workshops and courses; and seek out mentorship to provide guidance and insights, so you will become more confident and feel more that you belong.

Always remember that giving up is not the solution, but figuring out your area of weakness can help you grow and perform better. 

As minorities and women, your differences in cultures and thought process are what you can bring to the table to make a difference. It is not a disadvantage but an advantage. Use that to your benefit at work. 

Hence, regardless of whether you are a woman or a minority, you got this, you can do it! 

What advice do you have for young girls who may be interested in a future career in technology?

My perspective on the advice is to embrace learning, as the technology industry is a fast-paced environment and constantly evolving, so it's important to motivate yourself to stay educated on new advancements.

Technology is a really a broad field, so it is important to decide on an area of specialization and put in your effort to focus on building expertise in there.

You can also start working on your personal project to develop your skills and build a portfolio of your work to present to your potential employers.

Last but not least, do not be discouraged in this still male-dominated space, be brave to share your unique perspective, to bring your own creativity, and ideas to anyone. Stay motivated and persevere, especially in difficult situations, and never give up on your dreams. You can do it!