Craig Keary, the 260th person I’ve met on my quest to have lunch with 500 strangers, was on the last flight out of Beijing in early 2020, back to his home in Tokyo, just before the country shut its border.

It was a sign the world had changed forever.

At the time, Craig was a frequent visitor to China as AMP Capital’s Asia Pacific managing director. Living and working in Asia, Craig had to help his company rapidly transform from one in which work was done independently at home rather than collectively in offices across Asia Pacific.

The best way to steer through a crisis is to make smart decisions. And the best way to make smart decisions is to be humble, level-headed and intellectually flexible – exactly how I’d describe Craig.

In April 2021, Craig started a new role, as CEO Asia Pacific for Ignition Advice, a software-as-a-service business for institutions seeking to help more customers access financial advice in a fast and scalable way.

As I discovered during our lunch, Craig cares deeply about equality and the transformative power of education. One thing he values about Ignition Advice is that more people get access to quality financial advice to increase their financial wellbeing, which can only be a force for good.