INTERVIEWER: Jonathan Bii
“Every individual needs to be superior and to find differentiation. If you’re still a student, do not just be an ordinary student, do something to add value to yourself, and be an expert in it…”
About the Interviewee
Haris is a friendly, dynamic and hardworking person with a high passion for challenges and working good in a team as an open-minded leader. His organization skills led him to be actively involved as a committee and member in several campus organizations, either educational or non-educational. He is currently enrolled in Indonesian Student Association for International Studies. An organization which comprises students from universities in Indonesia whose main concerns are international issues. He has been working at Uber Indonesia for the past one year.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Haris, you are barely out of college and you landed a job at a massive tech Company! How did that happen?
Haris Bashori: First of all, I was an active person in Campus, and I like organizations (national and International). I took it for granted that it was something everyone would be excited to do. I was just so impressed with work-life but I could tell there was a difference between it and campus life. I got linked from my close friend to apply for some big international company. So first step I took was as an Intern, because I needed to learn how to be a coworker in a big company. I have seen in past jobs that when resumes came in, basically it was a draw of luck as to who got called in. So many people had similar skills the employer sometimes went by things such as resume appearance or randomly choosing 3 out of a hundred similar but great resumes. It’s tough! After that I got an interview session and study case, it was something new for me and challenging! To be honest, since last year, I didn’t know Uber worked so much with tech. I thought it was just an online transportation company. It was really amazing to not just see how much tech is here, but also to see how people are involved here, too. It has inspired me a lot. They have a great chance to find new role models. They especially love to hear from interns working in tech about what their life is like both at work but also the journey they took to get into the position where they are today. They love to hear about people’s college experiences, they love to hear about ways that technology intersects with different fields, so Uber is great because they think of it as this transportation thing, but behind it, it’s all powered by technology. It’s an opportunity for them to see that in action.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: What does your typical work week look like?
Haris Bashori: That’s an interesting question! I love Monday, I like to meet first thing on Monday to discuss our priorities for the week, then meet again in the middle of the week to check progress, and meet once at the end of the week to discuss goal setting for the next week. Never sounds boring. Also, never give a description of your ‘typical’ day as ‘typical’. Color it vibrantly. Even if all you do is make copies of documents for your boss, make it sound like the most ‘interesting’ job you held (unless you are changing careers, if that is the case, concentrate on the good things (only) and see how you can translate that experience into the new role you are applying for).
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: How does your job in Tech Industry relate to your background in Criminology?
Haris Bashori: I know it’s not related but the thing is, I do not make it a reason, every individual needs to be superior and to find differentiation. If you’re still a student, do not just be an ordinary student, do something to add value to yourself, and be an expert in it.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Now, what have you found interesting about your transition from University life into the work environment?
Haris Bashori: Awareness and respect for generational differences. The company that I worked for may have a lot of young employees, but this doesn’t necessarily mean your office will be just like your college campus. Be conscious of the negative stigmas associated with “millennials” and break away from them. Not everyone you work with cares about social media, or even has social media profiles. To build a rapport with co-workers from other generations, take interest in things that are important to them rather than talking about who you’re following on Instagram or what happened on the latest famous award show. I have to manage my time, so it will be “Work-life-balance” I have to expect my social schedule to change. Working eight or more hours each day takes some getting used to. Don’t expect to be able to go out with friends several nights during the week, or stay up until midnight (or later) every night like you did in college. Early on, create healthy work habits that will contribute to career success. Eat well, get enough sleep and maximize your free time to keep a work-life balance.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: You told me in the briefing you interned before in a tech start-up, what are your observations of the tech industry in Indonesia? Did you also notice any differences in how massive tech companies like Uber and other tech start-ups run?
Haris Bashori: Working in a startup can turn out to be unusual and rewarding in terms of the work environment, perks, job satisfaction and on the other hand it can be extremely challenging in terms of the work pressure, patience and amount of dedication required. You can’t treat a startup to be just like another (corporate company). Informal atmosphere, flat hierarchies, open mindedness are few aspects of the work culture. Even so, you have the freedom to take decisions and you can see the amount of difference your work is bringing at ground level which brings immense satisfaction.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: You are very pro-active especially in school, Outstanding student in your faculty, attending conferences across Europe and Asia, what has given you access to all this opportunity? Is it your network perhaps? How can others get access to these forums?
Haris Bashori: I tried to apply for any forum and conference in international issues because I’m really interested in that. In other ways, I got a chance to share my culture on a cultural mission all around the world because I’m really proud of my own culture so I need to promote and share it with the other countries. All of that is just because I’m an active student in College, my organization skills and passion to lead as committee and member in several campus organizations, either educational or non-educational and also I got many friends from around the world who are interested in international issues as well, so they contact me to join with them. The thing in my head is I must be good at balancing academic and non-academic activities; do not be lulled or burdensome in one of them. I should be able to sort the priorities and prepare to sacrifice something to get something bigger.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: Now that you are on vacation in Egypt, you’ve probably used Uber here, how is Uber Egypt different or similar to Uber Indonesia?
Haris Bashori: I used Uber in Egypt, besides the products (because in Indonesia we’ve got UberMotor and Hop-on, UberX, UberBlack and UberXL) the differences are drivers (mostly) not being fluent in English so you need to use translate apps or translate tools. They are too kind with foreigners actually hahaha, and the last one is, in Indonesia especially the big city has heavy traffic in rush-hour but in Egypt it doesn’t really have a traffic jam, so that’s why I’m happy to ride Uber, hahaha.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: A lot of students go through stress when transitioning into career life with all the uncertainty, how did you cope with that stress and what tips can you give to students starting their careers?
Haris Bashori: I know not everyone, especially the younger generation, gets the opportunity to get the same education and get the chance to join various prestigious events or conferences like the others. But the thing is do not make it a reason. Every individual needs to be superior by finding differentiation. If you’re still a student, do not just be an ordinary student, do something to add value to yourself, and be an expert in it. When you’re just out of college, it’s easy to get a big head about what you can do in the workplace. Unfortunately, chances are you’ll need to clean the proverbial toilet for a while before you’re given any real responsibility. This means you need to show off your work ethic even if you’re stuck doing tasks you don’t like. Everyone’s workplace is a little different, but when it boils down to it, we all face the same set of challenges at a new job. You’ll probably need to start at the bottom of the totem pole even if you’re an experienced worker and integrating yourself into the company culture is a lot harder than you think. Keeping your expectations in check is a good place to start.
HR Revolution Middle East Magazine: What mantra do you live by and what’s the next step for you?
Haris Bashori: Sticking to the concept of ‘Nothing is Impossible’, I believe that a human being alone creates a limit on him. If we believe that we can, then the universe will support. There will be more energy that will encourage us to make it happen and I strongly believe successful people know that they are responsible for their life, no matter their starting point, weaknesses, and past failures. Realizing that you are responsible for what happens next in your life is both frightening and exciting. So in the next year I would like to continue my study (Master Degree) in Asian Studies or International Business major because it’s really interesting for me. I will try to apply scholarships in USA or Netherlands, and some of the requirements is you must have working experience at least one year. Wish me luck!