Leo Wibisono Arifin, Conquering the Working World with Generalist Skills
It is not necessary to be a specialist to be successful, a generalist can also rise up to the peak of a career. That is what Leo Arifin Wibisono, a Tanoto Scholar alumnus from Institut Pertanian Bogor, has proved.
Leo, who graduated from Department of Food Technology of the Faculty of Agriculture Technology of IPB in 2013, currently serves as a Senior Manager at Indosat Ooredoo. Previously, he was involved in the field of consulting by joining several leading Singapore-based firms.
Since his time in college, Leo aspires to be a management consultant. To become a management consultant poses a challenge to him, because by becoming one he can have a role as a problem solver in complicated problems within a company.
“I am happy to work with senior managers and help them solve management problems,” said Leo, who was awarded with 1st Winner of the Students of National-Level Achievements by the Minister of National Education in 2011.
To realize his dream, he took a gap year while in college. He utilized this pause period to focus on honing the skills needed as a management consultant, while at the same time to build a network.
For Leo, pursuing a career beyond the field studied in college is challenging. But he focused on developing the skills needed to succeed in this new field.
“As tips for other Tanoto Scholars, when we study in our chosen major, we also have to learn universal learning which can be applied in any field. At that time, I focused on learning how to think analytically as well as improve problem solving and communication skills,”
After graduating in 2013, Leo joined one of Singapore’s leading management consulting firms. It turned out that his generalist capability was very useful in the world of consulting in which he was involved. He was entrusted to handle the projects of several companies in Singapore, Indonesia, China and Australia.
The project he is most proud of was one that successfully managed the merging of two giant technology companies.
“A project involving merger and acquisition has a complex process because it involves a large number of stakeholders. The company concerned was only willing to work with the best banks, the best law firms, and so on. It was appealing to me because of the opportunity to work with the best people. In addition, 70-80% of projects that involve mergers and acquisitions usually end in failure. However, in this case, I am grateful to have helped them in the merger,”
After three years of being involved in the consulting world, in 2016 Leo returned to Indonesia and joined Indosat Ooredoo as a Senior Manager. Here, Leo gets a chance to build his own team and help young promising people develop their talents.
On the sidelines of busy work, Leo still takes the time to do social activities. He is still active as a volunteer at Young Leader for Indonesia by plunging himself to teach marginal children. He also provides free consultations for pilot enterprises and Small, Medium-Scale Enterprises.
“My capability in the field of planning turns out to be useful for small entrepreneurs in developing their businesses. In one smallest example, I can help them prepare a business plan for them to be used to seek additional capital, “
Success in your endeavors, Leo!