The Challenges of a New Office!
Living in a foreign country, far away from her family has turned Maya HC Kandou, today the General Manager of CEO SUITE, into an independent and hardworking woman. She reminisces with interest, her initial work experiences from a baby sitter, to a restaurant cashier to the manager of an apartment complex; humble beginnings but all large contributors to an enriching life in Washington DC, USA.
“I’m not the kind of person who hops from a job to another, because work for me is more than getting the job done, it is an ongoing development process,” she opened an interview with Bisnis Indonesia.
Her current station as the General Manager of CEO SUITE, the Region’s Finest Serviced Office provider with its five branches rooted all over Asia in Jakarta, Singapore and Kuala Lumpur, has indeed given Maya a chance to prove and improve herself in many ways.
Recollecting those days as a student in a foreign land, she continued, “while at the Bistro in Washington DC, I was not only working as a cashier, but was required to do bar-tendering and simple accounting all at the same time, until I received a promotion to become the restaurant manager.”
“Six years in the US, I spent five years part-timing between work and college, and often had to work many late nights with little free time to spare even during weekends, as I had to work hard to fund my study,” said the alumni of Strayer College, Washington DC.
And work hard she did, unlike some of her college mates who were born with a silver spoon, Maya had to pay for her own tuition fees and college expenses all the way until she graduated with a Master’s degree in Business Administration! She then found a permanent job in Dittmar Company, the building manager of Courtland Towers Apartments. But her homeland drew her back in 1996. And as if she was granted a reward for all her hard work, upon her return, the career path for this mother of one took off on an ever-steady footing – with each career move progressing into faster-paced, and more upmarket environments.
Even as a fresh entrant into the Indonesian workforce, Maya joined Wisma 46 as the tenant coordinator for Jakarta’s tallest building with 50 stories of offices and retail lots, having to manage a total of 200 employees, supervise four separate divisions consisting of public relations, customer relations, promotions and tenants’ office renovations.
It took four long years before Maya assumed more extensive responsibilities as Property Manager for BonaVista Apartments in Jakarta. Her job was mainly to oversee the smooth operational functioning of 308 apartments on a 12-acre land. At her capacity, she had to supervise eight departments with a total of 150 employees!
It took another year before CEO SUITE came with its bait of an irresistible offer!
“The Instant Office industry in which I am currently involved in is my biggest challenge so far in the corporate world. The offer of a General Manager position to supervise 2 centers was simply irresistible,” she explained. And on-board she joined CEO SUITE, now the Region’s Finest Serviced Office provider, and Maya has no reason to look back since.
In Jakarta, CEO SUITE runs two centers, one located on the 39th floor of Wisma GKBI and the other on the 17th floor of Tower 2, in the Jakarta Stock Exchange building. Each center, Maya conveys, consists of 50 ready-to-use office units, with a variety of sizes to cater from 1 to 20-man workstations.
“All the office suites come fully-furnished and serviced, complete with all the state-of-the-art technology and equipment necessary for today’s businesses conducted in the global environment. Professional bilingual secretarial support is readily available to ensure the smooth running of any business’ daily operations, without the headaches of language or culture barriers.”
“Still a pretty new concept in Indonesia, the Instant Office concept enables new investors and representative offices to set up an office instantly without having to go through a complicated process. No renovation, no staff employment – everything you need to start your office today is provided for in an Instant Office at CEO SUITE”, explains Maya enthusiastically.
Maya believes that her previous work experiences in the management of office and residential buildings have increased her understanding of the actual costs of renting and operating a conventional office space. Truly convinced about the real value of an Instant Office, this is her advice to new venture operators, representative offices and businesses with small staff count, “via shared facilities and resources with many other such businesses, investors can reduce their start-up costs and monthly expenses to a significant extent”, this she names as “cost-efficient resource management”! With ready infrastructure for high-speed internet, audio/video conferencing and other IT peripherals, an Instant Office is fast gaining its popularity over conventional offices with the latter often offered as bare units.
Carrying the Indonesian flag, CEO SUITE has since expanded into other parts of Asia including Kuala Lumpur at Menara Maxis, KLCC (beside the world’s tallest twin towers), and Singapore at Singapore Land Tower in the heart of Singapore’s financial district. “All our centers are located only in high quality, grade A buildings in the business hub of the city. We are looking next to be expanding into Shanghai and Korea!” adds Maya, proudly.
Supervising two centers in the golden triangle of Jakarta with a total workforce of 30 may appear to be an easier job than managing an office building or apartment complex with many stories/units, but Maya finds her current functions at CEO SUITE to be more challenging, and rewarding. No matter how hard or challenging her scope of work entails, Maya seems to have found the secret to managing it all. “Happiness comes along with positive thinking. It is not difficult to start a relationship with anyone, at work or socially, just be nice and do good things for others!” beams the General Manager.
If there is anyone who is positive, confident, friendly and always ready to lend a hand, Maya is certainly the person, someone who knows how to enjoy life and stay away from trouble!