In this profile of the month, we sat down and had a deep discussion with the General Manager of Courtyard by Marriott Bandung Dago, Andi Bagistav Oddek. Being a General Manager at a relatively young age makes Andi have an interesting and contemporary leadership style. The man who currently is waiting for the birth of his first child tells a lot about his experiences and his views on how a leader should behave and act especially during pandemic.
First of all Mr. Andi, welcome to Bandung. Before this interview, I had time to read your profile, it’s amazing. But before we discuss it all, how did you get into hospitality at first?
Not on purpose, actually. I was born and raised in Jakarta. After graduating from high school, I tried to apply to several state universities. At that time, I tried to register for Universitas Indonesia’s Mandarin Literature and UNPAD’s English Literature. I inherit the talent from my mother to be able to quickly absorb and understand foreign languages. At that time, I was accepted in UI for Mandarin Literature. I thought that my next move was to work as a Chinese-language news anchor in a private TV station.
Interesting facts. So what made you switch to hospitality?
So in addition to the two universities earlier. I also signed up for STP Bandung for a “special reason” that motivated me to learn about the world of travel. Coincidentally, STP is also owned by the government and the tuition fees were very affordable, so it really helped my family’s financial condition. At that time, my parents didn’t really believe that I was going to school outside the city, because in the past I could be said to be easily swayed. But at that time I instilled the belief in my mind that “this is the time that I need to be responsible for myself”. To make the long story short, I chose STP and majored in travel business management. This was the most valuable moments where I was introduced to the hospitality industry.
Can you tell us what you did at the beginning of your professional career?
During job training, I even took a training opportunity in the MICE world, at PT JIEXPO. After graduating, I was offered the sales position there too and I finally took the opportunity. During the year I worked there, I learned a lot about how a venue provider works in MICE Business, I also learned how to coordinate an event. It’s quite fun because I got to be involved in some of the big events and see some celebrities in person.
Learned in Business Travel Management, and then worked at one of the biggest conventions in Jakarta. How interesting is the beginning of your career!
Yes, no one knows the way of life. I was just doing the best I could that time. Until, I got the opportunity to work as a front office in a hotel in Bali. So here, I started to learn a lot about hotel industry. It turned out that this is a cool job. For the record, I used to not be interested in working in Bali, because I thought Bali was the place for vacation. Oh well, it’s funny that I finally chose to work there.
I also read that you have worked in Africa. Can you tell me about your experience?
Oh, after coming from Bali, I got the opportunity to work at the Four Seasons Resort Seychelles. A country with beautiful beaches, although after I learned that beaches like that can also be found in Indonesia, precisely in Belitung. I worked there for about 2 years.
For the last 15 years, you have worked in operations and sales. What makes you enjoy the world of hospitality?
For me, the fun thing is meeting new people and getting a great spirit from them. The world of hospitality has also taught me to be sensitive to my surroundings, whether it’s sensitive to guests or sensitive to co-workers. It doesn’t matter if the person is an extrovert or an introvert. Because for me, the two things are just quite the opposite in how to find ideas. Extroverts can get their ideas from a fun atmosphere and meeting lots of people. In contrast, introverts get ideas through the quiet process of communicating with themselves. However, these two characteristics are both able to work professionally and be sensitive to their environment. In my personal opinion, this job is a job that can bring a lot of good for us, because we work to please other people, whether it’s pleasing guests, co-workers, or owners. The reward is really great.
Very interesting perspective. If I’m not mistaken, the position of General Manager at Courtyard by Marriott Dago is your first chance as a General Manager, right?
Yes, it is true
I want to make all the personnel in my current team become….. (to next page)