At certain points in our lives we make decisions which put us on a completely different trajectory. For Christine Greybe, president of executive search firm DHR International, the first such moment came when she quit teaching and tried her hand at recruiting in her native South Africa. 'Teaching didn't fulfil me. I was ambitious. But I didn't understand the institution around it, [such as] the lack of creativity, and politics of the other teachers and the principal,' says Greybe, who ventured into human resources after two years of teaching. 'I worked as a recruiter, and thought if I had [experiences in] teaching and recruiting, then someone would hire me as an HR generalist. In the end I stayed in recruiting.' She loves creating opportunities for clients to use her services and finding candidates who meet their needs. 'I enjoy the interaction with people. I take energy and motivation from others,' says Greybe, who has been in Hong Kong for 19 years. Greybe considers the global financial crisis in 2008 the most challenging time in her career. The search industry lost 50 per cent of its revenue globally, she says, creating pressure on performance, cash management and the motivation of people. 'We had to motivate people to keep focused on growing the business, while worrying about how to not retrench anyone,' she says. Greybe's schedule involves frequent travelling, meeting tight deadlines and working across time zones. She also has to make time for her family and friends, and the many passions and hobbies she has, such as running and photography. Blessed with a talent for time management, the ability to focus and a calm demeanour, she manages tasks effortlessly. 'I think of what adds value [and] balance what I need to do. If we have peak time and work is a priority, then I will do less sport or less socialising. But I always make sure I have time for friends and family. My husband is wonderful. He is very patient.' Elgin Antique Watch 'This is a birthday gift from my husband. The watch is 80-plus years old. My husband bought it in New York recently when we were there.' Omega Constellation 'My husband bought this in Japan, where we met. That makes it very special to me.'