In this edition of the profile of the month, we talked with the General Manager of Mercure Bandung City Centre, Tomy Yovan Andriansyah. He has been in the hospitality world for 25 years, with a wealth of experience and life lessons that he has, he has managed to reach the peak of his career. He shared his views and experiences while working in the hospitality world.
Q : Can you tell us about the beginning of your career in hospitality?
A : Actually, I kind of like celebrating my 25 years in the hotel. I started at the end of September 1996 for the first time at Le Meridien Hotel in Jakarta. The first hotel I worked for, my silver year working in hospitality. Actually, I didn’t have any plans to go there, when I was in Vocational High School, I was more likely to take a tour and travel because my hobby was travelling around Indonesia, around the world, so I took that major. After graduating, there was no desire to go to college, wanted to work straight away, finally got my job at a hotel, but in the end, we enjoyed it.
Q : Did you work at the hotel by coincidence or what?
A : Yes, most of the graduates from my school are accepted to work there. They also received a lot of training from my school, finally, I was accepted there, working casually as a daily worker and learned from zero again there. I spent my 8 years tenure at Le Meridien Hotel Jakarta in the food and beverage department. There’s something extraordinary because I never thought about being able to work in a hotel because I wanted to work as a travel agent, work in an office, or have a friend of mine work on an Airline. But life brought me to serve in the world of hospitality.
Q : When you were in college, why did you choose economics, not hospitality?
A : So, after almost 5 years, I kept working like this, stayed at one place, then I had a friend at that time, in fact, my younger classmate who worked together at the same time he took college, I saw that he seemed to be enjoying college, studying. Then, I tried to venture into college the next year; he became my trigger, an inspiration for me to continue my studies. In the end, I took the accounting course, which incidentally I didn’t know anything about. But because in his mind I wanted to study, I wanted to fight.
Q: Talking about accountings, do you like calculations and dealing with numbers?
A : I don’t like calculations, so I ended up going to college with a schedule from morning to evening, working at night, it was a bit battered. In the third semester, I started to strategize, looking for friend who was smart in accounting but lacking in English subjects because English used to be scary, so we ended up exchanging knowledge with each other. In my last year of college, I finally got the opportunity to work abroad in Dubai. It was great to be able to learn a lot of things, it turned out that our knowledge was nothing, that’s where I ended up studying. When I went to Dubai, I had not graduated, I was still doing my thesis, I had only returned to Indonesia for 4 months to take leave to complete my thesis, and then returned to Dubai. Finally, after 1 year, my thesis was not approved, I wanted to start from scratch, and it was difficult again. In the end, I chose to resign in Dubai, 3 months later I graduated in 2005. I had to start looking for another job and be accepted again in hospitality, because my basic knowledge was working abroad, so I was finally offered to be a supervisor. I have been in the food and beverage industry for 8 years. In Dubai, I entered as a butler. In Indonesia I finally entered the room division, the front office department. I didn’t think about becoming a General Manager back then, I was just thinking about becoming a captain. Finally, I suddenly got a supervisor position and I needed to build my career.
Q : Where did you get your thoughts if it’s time to build a carrier?
A : Actually not from anywhere, I just thought I left a hotel whose status was permanent, then I learned again from various experiences until I finally became a supervisor and others, so there’s nothing to lose. I also spent a long time in Palembang in 2009, from assistant front office manager, front office manager, to director of rooms, the last position was the number two position, who will replace the General Manager if he is absent. From there, my desire arose because I had been there for quite a long time, 3 years, then I saw that my co-workers who were contemporaries had become General Manager, then finally in 2011, I tried to apply at Accor Hotel Balikpapan at that time and was accepted as Executive Assistant Manager. From there, I just followed the path, learned a lot, absorbed as much knowledge as possible, added experience, and in 2013 I was promoted to Hotel Manager in Solo, I got the position of General Manager which I first got in 2014 at Aston Hotel Balikpapan. Then in 2018, I returned to Accor, and entered Mercure. That’s why I’ve been in hospitality for 25 years and just became a General Manager, most people have 10 to 12 years to become a General Manager. Yes, I enjoyed every process. Be resilient, tenacity, never back down.