Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Malaysia Tourism Board, Disappointing


Malaysia Tourism Board invited over 190 journalists from all over the world to witness the opening of Floral Festival 2007, which was part of the Visit Malaysia 2007 program.

From Indonesia, 17 journalists from 10 media – 7 printed media, 3 tv stations -- followed the 5 days trip in Malaysia (Jan 25th to 30th). I got a chance to represent SCTV to go there together with Anca Leksmana (producer) and Bambang Triyono (cameraman). Being invited by the Malaysia Tourism Board, I had a high expectation that it would be a fun and easy trip, in the sense of we would get easy access to explore interesting places in the country.
However, it surprised me that in most of the places written on the itinerary, we couldn’t shoot anything! Actually, when we just arrived at the hotel, the first thing I asked to the Senior Tourism Officer of Malaysia Tourism Board was a simple letter stating that they invited SCTV to come to promote the country for Visit Malaysia 2007, in case we needed it. But, to write such letter, the officer said that they needed two weeks time! Geezz.. Why does it take so long to write a simple letter? I understand bureaucracy might be complicated, but couldn’t they make it simpler to ease the work of the journalists?

So, we were there for 6 days, had an itinerary on hands that looks fabulous from outside but useless. For example, there was a shopping tour program for 5 hours in 2 shopping malls and IKEA. But then, in these malls, it was forbidden to shoot anything. As journalists who work for a TV station, what’s the point going there if we couldn’t record anything? We came to Malaysia to work, not for holidays. We are not tourists.

Another small example, we were scheduled to have lunch at a revolving restaurant at KL Tower. We also couldn’t shoot there and the manager even had no idea that a TV station from Indonesia would come. Being in KL Tower, the 4th tallest tower in the world, it would be such a waste if we couldn’t shoot some scenes from the top of the tower. So, we contacted the PR of KL Tower by ourselves. I got her number from a French journalist who works in KL. We got a good response from her as she realized that it would be a good exposure for KL Tower. Unfortunately, it was Sunday and it was such a short notice. She could only assign a customer service to take us to see the facilities that they have and shoot there. If we contacted her earlier (on the workdays), then she could have arrange a tour to the top of the tower, which is not a public area. Wouldn’t it be amazing?

She wanted the Tourism Board to contact her to confirm that it was true SCTV came on behalf of their invitation. So, we asked the representative of the board to call her. Apparently, she already contacted the Tourism Board in KL herself. And this caused a little bit of a crisis in the board (Malaysia and Indonesia offices). The representative of the board from Indonesia who brought us there, called us up saying that her boss was angry at her and now she looked so stupid and unprofessional in doing her job. So, she warned us not to contact any parties directly in the future. Oh great! Being journalists on a TV station, our job is to get a good picture and produce a good show. If the board didn’t do their homework in arranging permit to shoot in any places, then as journalists, it was our instinct to contact the party directly. Especially, when we could get direct access to the party (journos always know how to get direct access, right? ;))

Being a PR myself, I couldn’t believe how the Malaysia Tourism Board didn’t understand what the media needed. A TV station doesn’t need to go to IKEA and eat at a fancy restaurant if they couldn’t get any story (and picture) out of it. Plus, there are so many nice places in Malaysia that actually we could explore for 5 days, apart from staying in Kuala Lumpur only! Too bad the board didn’t allow us to go outside KL (only to Genting Highlands and Putrajaya). They should’ve created a program highlighting the best spots in the country and most importantly, arranged a permit in each of the places so that we could shoot there freely.

Plus, we got a tour guide that had no experience in guiding the media. She made our days even harder as she always forbids us to shoot here and there, even in Petaling Street (China Town)! Ckckck.. (but we tried to convince her that it was ok to shoot there and if anything bad happens , we wouldn’t blame her. Oyeah, we also managed to drag her to take us to Batu Caves Temple after the Genting Highlands trip. Batu Caves wasn't included in the itinerary, but we had to go there, otherwise we wouldn't have enough images/stories for the show due to all the limitations)

So, 5 days in KL, we felt frustrated. Frustated by the board and… by the tour guide! Hopefully, next year the board does their homework well and knows the needs of each type of the media. If not, it would be such a waste to invite many journos from all over the world if they couldn’t maximize their work during their stay there.

Now you know how frustated we were when filming the show. This is a behind the screen story ;). The "Melancong Yuk" Malaysia episodes will be aired on Saturday, 3 February and Sunday, 4 February at 6.30am in SCTV.
It will be 2 different episodes, full of hard work and lots of candid shots. So, make sure you watch both of them! ;)

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

An Ernest Talk About the Music Recording Industry

Last Friday, we had Ernest Prakasa, Radio Promo Executive of SonyBMG - Indonesia for our sharing session.

For most of the Mavericks, the subject was very interesting because we haven't had much knowledge about the industry itself from the perspective of the companies. However, for some it was more personal. Yasha is also a manager for a musician, while Mersa, apparently had once submitted a demo to SonyBMG and never heard any news about it from them! At least Mersa's career in PR looks more promising than that...

So the Mavs learned that music demo tapes and CDs that people submit gets dumped in a storage room of the Artist and Repertoire department. I can imagine that while it seems that its just a messy room with thousands of dusty CDs and CVs, it's also a room of broken hopes, of the thousands who wish to one day become popstars or rockstars.

We also found out from Ernest the general idea on what they really do for the artist. He said that SonyBMG handle the marketing and promotion of the album and its songs, while buliding the image of the artist is the responsibility of the artist management. The label can only give advice about the image building, he said. Previously we thought that image building is part of the label's responsibilities.

I think SonyBMG as a big company do not think that PR as an important part for the company. We discussed a lot about how they handle the information published to media. Ernest say they cannot do much in managing information about their artist. For example, they cannot do much when in a press conference for an album launching, the media only interested in the personal life of the celebrities, not in the album launching itself.

I think as a company, it is time for them to start caring about it. They must give the media information that has value for both sides, and not simply do a one way pitch.

Another interesting story about this sharing session is that some associate were really eager to know how they can be signed for an album with SonyBMG. Hmmm, sounds like some of the associates have secret ambition to be celebrities. So when's Indonesian Idol gonna start the audition round for Jakarta?

The Brand-Free News

It was around 3:30 am in a newsroom of this TV station I used to work for. I had the graveyard shift and was really trying hard to look completely awake and alert that night, especially at the top of the hour as all eyes in front of their television were on me.

I found an interesting news on APTN about how a customer found a finger inside a bowl of chili at a Wendy’s chain in Las Vegas, if I’m not mistaken. I ecstatically told the producer about it, saying that this is news that would get people’s eyes open at that time of the day. So there I was translating this story for my script, getting the video edited to be aired for the next Headline.

This was supposed to be my highlight of the day. Yet when I was on air, my script had changed. There was no more “chili”, no more “Wendy’s”. My damn script was edited!

After the show, I went to ask my team what happened to my script, and apparently one of the producers did not want to include brands in the news, although it was shown on the footage. It was said that such a thing would mean advertising (good or bad) for the brands.

I went to one of the UN offices the other day and they shared with me all of these programs that need funding. Other than the US-AID, AUS-AID, and other funding organizations, corporate sponsorships are badly needed. I also had been in the position where I had some great ideas for an event, yet I had insufficient funds to realize the concept, and needed sponsorship from product or corporations. The products and corporations, ultimately, need public exposure by such cooperation. Fair enough.

Recently I spoke with an old friend who now works for a newspaper that belongs to a major publication group. He said that this media group is very strict, if not too anal, about news coverage that involve brands. He said that invitation faxes that bear sponsors logo would easily get thrown in the trash bin. I’m really sad to hear that.

Why are brands censored by the media? I believe that the audience needs to know the details of the news, for reference, for inspiration, as a warning, or anything. Should the brand or company do bad things, of course it should be made public. Yet when they do good things to society, why not give them credit for it?

I know for sure that editors do get the heat from the sales department for “promoting” brands/services in their content. Hell, I was once guilty for that when I was in the advertising sales dept of a youth radio. But what happens when editorial team gets a cut of the sales? A TV station is already doing that, and when I offered them a famous and respectable guest for a show, I was asked to talk to the Sales department. I mean… come on…

Another case is when I spoke to a local TV about providing a guest speaker from Maverick to talk about Crisis management on current issues on their program. The exec producer immediately told me that he couldn’t have the company’s name credited on the Title (under the name of the person), and that it could only be a “Pengamat Komunikasi” or “Praktisi Komunikasi”. So I replied “Don’t you think your audience would want to know who they’re watching, what this person does, what company is he/she from?”

There are so many people out there who are dubbed experts and not many people are actually aware of what their real occupation and field of expertise. Ong Hock Chuan calls it Expertitis in his unspun blog.

So, if you’re in the media and you’re still censoring out these brands… Relax. News is news and the people have the right to know. What do you think?

Monday, January 29, 2007

The Power of Mailing List

Everybody now talking about blog and blogging, even some companies have blogs to communicate with their stakeholders. But many people forget about the mailing lists which can create quite an impact to brands or corporate image.

I remember some cases that has happened in Indonesia such as Mizone and Top One Oil. I had been receiving lots of e-mails from my many mailing lists about how Mizone used some preservative in their products long long ago before the issue became a national issue.

The same case happens with Top One Oil. As the many versions of the commercial were airing on TV with all of its celebrity endorsers, I had been receiving many negative e-mails about the product. But I personally thought that the company responded really late to the issue. It seemed that they only did so AFTER it became a big issue in society.

And why do companies respond late to this kind of issues generated and distributed through the mailing lists? I think there are two possibilities: The BOD or the Communications Department of these companies don't think that it would grow into a big issue, or they cannot simply oversee all mailing lists, since there are millions of maling lists on the net.

This can be dangerous as the issues could get a snowball effect. Forwarding the emails is just a click of a button, and these emails spread like a virus. Some of the 'viruses' can mean death to these companies.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

A Night Out

Everyone was excited. Bets were being made and the whole atmosphere in the Maverick’s office last Friday was bubbly because we were going Go Karting. That’s right! 20 Associates were ready to get onto those mini cars and show what they got. Everything seemed to go as planned. We all met at the Speedy Karting at Hanggar Teras in Pancoran. Amiauw the Operation Manager was so kind to give us tips and tricks about how to succeed in the sport. Everyone was listening attentively and you could tell that some were ready to jump into these little cars and drive off.

You can see from the photo that they were in the mood to go racing. Team #1 consisted of Ong, Herry, Rini and Rommy. Every team was meant to go for 6 rounds but when Team 1 was out there racing along and the rest of us cheering them, it suddenly started to rain. I could not believe it. It had to rain that Friday at that particular time when we wanted to have a night out. Errr…..
The winner of that short race was our good old Rommy who had the skills and the body weight to keep him close to ground ;) second came Herry and then followed by Rini and who would have thought that Ong came in last. Maybe he was just being modest. Who knows.


Since we could not continue with the racing we had to quickly think of a Plan B. Clearly the Pizza that I ordered was not enough for 20 people (I know I know…I’m sorry guys) so Ong decided that we will have a feast at Bebek Bali which is located at Taman Ria Senayan. After a long wait, the food finally arrived and it was yummy. By then we forgot that the rain ruined our night out and instead enjoyed the cozy atmosphere with all of us at one table. We chatted, laughed, ate lots and took silly photo. I hope all of you enjoyed yourself and lets see what we decide to do for next night’s outing! Until then!

Friday, January 19, 2007

Yet Another Lifestyle Magazine in Town: 69++


I just read this new magazine called 69++, a free magazine that was launched last night. My colleague Indri went to the launch last night. On the cover, it states that it is a lifestyle and shopping magazine. I personally think that 69++ is quite a cool brand for a lifestyle magazine, but then I changed my mind when I saw the cover of the magazine. I don't wanna judge a magazine by its cover, but I'd have to say that this magazine looks very serious.

When I saw the cover of magazine, it really reminded me of the cover of “Jurnal Perempuan” magazine. "Jurnal Perempuan", if you didn't already know it, is a magazine containing articles on women's rights. And when I started reading the pages, I concluded that the content of the magazine is not that of a lifestyle magazine.

Most of the issues in the articles of this magazine are too serious for lifestyle magazine. I thought I was the target market of this magazine, since the rate card bookmark inserted in the middle page state that this magazine is for 25-45 years old, urban dwellers, established, and dynamic. But how come I don't feel like the content of the magazine is for me?

The other thing I noticed from this magazine is that it has a Tempo magazine style of writing. I was informed that the editor in chief was a Tempo journalist, but I also recognized the style as I know that Tempo is one of the pioneers in Indonesian media to use the literary writing style.

I hope that the next edition of this magazine will contain more lifestyle information. And someone please do something about the layout. For a lifestyle magazine, it surely needs that STYLE element. I know that first editions are always tough, but if a magazine want to survive, it really must adapt with the customers expectation. This one fell short of mine.

The Highlander: Not for eternity

Have you ever been to The Highlander pub at the Grand Kemang Hotel?
I’m not a regular customer myself. I went there once to enquire prices for a private party. And since then, they included my email in their promotion mailing list. No probs… at least until yesterday, when I unexpectedly received this rather ‘abnormal’ message…

--------------------
To whom it might concerned

Dear Sir/ Madam,

I wrote you this e-mail in regards to letting all the highlander costumers know that all of you being fraud by The highlander scottish pub and restaurant.

Recently they just put the beer price up, without further notice from the restaurant management. The steak measurement is way bellow standards, they serve only 80 gr of steak instead of 200 gr, they put a lot of vegetable instead of meat inside their pies.

They put 21% of service but they are only paying the hotel management 17,5%, they never pay tax, they paid all of their staff under goverment standards of payment, they didn't provide the staff with medical insurance, they let one of their kitchen staff died becasuse of the air circulation in the kitchen area is bad, the gas in the kitchen always leaking, etc

PLEASE IF YOU TOLARATE THIS IT MEANS YOU ARE SUPPORTING LOOSE CRIMINALS,...STOP COMING TO THE HIGHLANDER, AND SHOW THAT YOU CARE
--------------------

The person who sent this email to me (and to 45 other recipients) is definitely disgruntled. Anybody out there knows what had happened to this Scottish-themed pub?

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Counterfeit medicines: another health hurdle

Yesterday, I went to an Anti-Counterfeiting Workshop for Pharmaceutical Products held by the US ASEAN Business Council. Guess what? I found out that in 1995, 60.000 people in Nigeria were inoculated with fake meningitis vaccine. The most extreme was that in 2001, when 192.000 patients in China died after taking counterfeit drugs.

Would you believe this?! It bound on me that this counterfeit drug is a serious matter. Consuming counterfeit drugs would result in sick people end up sicker, wider epidemic spread and prevention failure (in case of fake vaccines), numerous unwanted effects, and in extreme cases, death

Too bad we do not have the exact numbers as counterfeit drugs are not always identified or reported, unless there are casualties involved. But are we gonna wait ‘till someone dies?

Apparently, the National Agency of Drug and Food Control (BPOM) has taken steps to put an end to the problem. BPOM has made a number approach to tackle this 'obat palsu' matter. They are trying to break the supply chain, conduct national joint operation and investigation (with law enforcement agencies), carry out comprehensive investigation and mopping up what is already in circulation, strengthen the infrastructure, and break the demand chain (increase public awareness).

However, in my opinion, BPOM shouldn’t be the only one taking on the responsibilities (as stated otherwise in Detik.com, 15 January 2007, "Obat Palsu Beredar Luas, Pemerintah Yang Tanggung Jawab"). The legal drug manufacturing companies, wholesalers and retailers, as well as health professionals should also make efforts to put an end to drugs counterfeiting.

The International Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Group (IPMG), for example, has put up a national award for anti counterfeiting journalism. The award is a form of appreciation from the industry for journalists’ efforts in providing beneficial information and increasing public awareness on counterfeit drugs.

Well, the simplest and safest way to combat this problem is to buy medicines in legal, registered pharmacy.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Larger than Ekskul

The whole FFI fiasco is getting more interesting as the mainstream media have been picking it up, not just the infotainment shows. Yesterday morning I took time to watch the Bayu show on Liputan6 Pagi SCTV where Mira Lesmana as a representative of the Masyarakat Film Indonesia (MFI) duked it out with Remy Silado, jury of the FFI. Tonight, let’s watch it again in SCTV’s Topik Minggu Ini.

At a glance, this might seem like a battle between the young filmmakers against their seniors. The seniors, in this case, happened to be represented by those who were members of the FFI jury, which had created the controversy when they picked the film Ekskul as Best Picture in the recent FFI awards show.

Last Wednesday the MFI held a press conference in which members and past winners of the Piala Citra returned their trophies in protest of the victory of the film “Ekskul” an Indika Films production. They claimed that the movie, besides other factors, have illegally used original score (that’s usually the orchestra music in a movie) from movies such as Gladiator and Munich (by composer John Williams and Hans Zimmer).

The battle between the young filmmakers (according to many media, although Mira Lesmana is actually 40) vs the veterans, reached another level when critically acclaimed veteran actor/director/producer Deddy Mizwar also joined the “movement” and returned his Citra trophy. Suddenly it’s not so much of a young vs old battle.

This morning, I saw a “creative” infotainment program comparing film clips of the movies “Ekskul” and “Munich” containing the same part of the musical score, to prove that the local production did use the music of the latter. Of course, no production company or composer was credited during the public viewing (usually done by placing a credit title at the bottom of the screen, such as “Munich - Courtesy of Universal Pictures”). I also wonder if international music publishing companies (with local reps here) will do more of this and start legal battles with the media who illegally use their copyrighted products.

So I recently spoke to a member of the MFI, who really was trying to straighten out the news, that this whole movement is NOT about the protest to get Shanker BS of Indika Entertainment return the Best Picture Citra trophy, but rather to reform the local regulation on films, filmmaking, censorships, etc. so that Indonesia ultimately can advance culturally through the film medium.

I guess the general public will never really understand what exactly is going on in that industry unless the media starts touching more on the real issues rather than just the most controversial aspects of it. The MFI has received much attention by having Indonesia’s top young actors and actresses on their side and giving up their trophies, but so far, the public attention has not been on the broader issues that they want to bring up to the surface. The Mavs are just really curious on the communication strategy of the MFI to reach their objective.

Let’s just see how this circus turns out.

Maverick Click of the Week: Not just an ordinary Tea

When we drive up to Puncak, West Java, we get to see signs on the side of the road selling Teh Benalu. This has nothing to do with this week’s Click of the Week, unless you’re just like me who really dug the word plays in the Da Vinci Code. Yes, based on Hanny’s recommendation, this week’s pick is the blog of Jalu of Tabloid Soccer. This blog is entitled “Kang Jalu tea… “ (get it?)

If you’re Indonesian, then you’ll know right away that Kang Jalu is Sundanese and there is no such thing as the Kang Jalu brand tea.

Enough with that Yasha-ism joke, we picked his blog because although it has not been run for years, the entries are really fresh (and not soccer related). By reading his posts, we can feel his excitement about blogging as his newfound passion. However, he’s still got questions on how his blog could be known by others in the blogosphere, as reflected in this posting:

Namun, hingga sekarang, saya masih bingung, bagaimana cara mempublish kepada orang-orang, terutama teman dan rekan, bahwa saya sudah punya blog ini? Memberi tahu URL nya mungkin cara termudah, tapi bukan itu solusinya. Sebab, sebagian besar teman dan rekan saya itu, bukanlah pribadi yang doyan membuka blog, apalagi kalau teman cowok. Jelas malas lah membuka blog saya ini...


Perhaps one of the ways is to regularly write postings and updating it. Another way is by blogwalking and expanding your blog network. Or tirelessly let your friends know that you have a blog, and perhaps one day get your blog picked as the Click of the Week ;>

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Betawi Albino

It is certainly not easy for me at times to live in Jakarta. When people look at me they see the young female bule and probably think that I have no idea about Indonesia's culture and politics. But once I open my mouth they don't seem to be able to close theirs.
People here are so shocked when they find out that I can understand and speak the language that it is annoying when you are in the middle of telling them something, while they are still in shock hearing me speak bahasa gaul. Someone asked me once where my family is and I would start with "bokap gw ....". I can't just continue as they are obviously not listening anymore but rather go: "ya ampun, kok bahasa indonesia lo bagus bangat sih!" I don't want to come across as arrogant or anything like that, but I have heard that so many times now that it is getting on my nerves. It might be weird at the start when you meet me, but will you people please get over it.

I personally believe that any bule in Indonesia who is living here for more than a year should be able and willing to speak some Indonesian. We are in someone else’s country, so we should respect that and learn their language. The majority of bules don't even make an effort, and it has become a norm. It really bothers me that the majority of expatriates think that it is not worth while to appreciate the Indonesian culture.
From a business perspective, I think it is crucial.
I have met a lot of bule businessmen in Jakarta and Balikpapan who get a great salary simply because they are Caucasian. I start chatting with them and they just go on and on bitching about the locals. I find this straight out offensive and I can’t believe they have the audacity to even say such things when they should be in actual fact thankful for getting paid so much money compared to their Indonesian counterpart.

Maybe this sounds all a bit aggressive from my side, but I have witnessed this so many times, that I think it is time to share my observations and thoughts with you on this topic.

(I have lived in Jakarta now for 5 years and have to thank anak2 IKJ for teaching me while nongkrong at TIM for a couple of years. That's where i learned my bahasa gaul. The Indonesian language has become a part of me and I’m proud of it!)

Friday, January 05, 2007

PR Consultant Turns TV Host


Apparently, being a TV presenter isn’t as easy as I thought. Four days of shooting in Sukabumi – Pelabuhan Ratu – Ujung Genteng were so colorful and full of unexpected things. Being appointed as the new presenter for "Melancong Yuk!", a traveling program in SCTV, I had to walk for miles in a slippery and stony path; swam in an icy water under a waterfall and waited there until the cameraman finished taking different angles of the waterfall (damn it was freezing cold!); woke up at 5.30am and be ready to take some shots or continue our journey (note: wake up early isn’t my thing at all!); sat quietly at the back of a military truck in the middle of a stormy night “only” to find giant turtles that were laying their eggs; almost carried away by the current when I had to learn surfing; and many more…

Apart from that, speaking in front of the camera itself is another interesting subject. For this program, I asked SCTV that I wanted to write my own script. But then, writing and speaking are two different things. “Cut!”, “Retake!”, “Action!” were the most frequent words came from the program director every time I slipped my tongue or lost my words (yeah, it happened many times! Hehehe…). Plus, while thinking on what to say, one had to be aware of the body language, intonation and facial expressions (oh, having experienced all these things, now I have a different opinion toward movie stars!)


Nevertheless, I had lots of fun and learned a lot from those four-days trip. It was definitely a whole new experience for me. And I guess, the whole crew (Gunawan as the Executive Producer, Iwan Gunawan as the program director, Bondan as the cameraman, Vino as the audioman and Mas Ahong as the driver who took us everywhere) also enjoyed the fun, especially when seeing me falling down into a giant turtle’s hole when it was just finished laying its eggs!!! Hahaha… Fortunately, the giant turtle already covered its eggs with earth, so there were safe ☺. But it was me who left in shocked! And instead of helping, everyone just couldn’t stop laughing. Gosh… I bet it was funny as hell.

On top of that, I felt so grateful that Maverick gave the flexibility that enabled me to take this opportunity offered by SCTV. Many thanks to both Maverick’s partners, Ong and Mbak Lita. Their permission reflects that as a company, Maverick encourages its consultants to grow, not only as a PR practitioner, but also as an individual.

Also thanks to SCTV for choosing me as the new presenter for “Melancong Yuk!” :).

My first gig will be aired next Sunday, 7 January 2007 at 6.30am on SCTV. Don’t miss it yaaahh!!! You can also see it at .

Note:
“Melancong Yuk”! airs every Saturday and Sunday at 6.30am on SCTV.
I will take turn with a male presenter, Ferly Junandar, to present various interesting places that are perfect for holidays ;)

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

New Faces in Maverick


Maverick welcomes three new associates today, its first day of operation in 2007. They are Tuhu Nugraha, Dorte Luedecke and Mersa Siswowaluyo.

Tuhu is a graduate of Padjadjaran University majoring in International Relations, and continued his Master’s degree on Management at Gadjah Mada University. As a student Tuhu was active as a coordinator of various student activities and won several prizes in debates and speech contests. He is also the Chairman of Smart Corner Club MM GMU, a live weekly radio talkshow discussing a variety of business topics.

Born in Germany, Dorte got her BA degree in Media and Communications at the University of Melbourne, Australia after completing her IB diploma in Jakarta. In Australia, she interned at the Melbourne Fringe Festival and worked on a TV pilot program. Fascinated by Indonesia’s culture, politics and media, she returned to Jakarta in April 2006 to see what it’s like to work here. Since then she has worked as an Event Consultant in corporate and government events such as the Balikpapan Expo ’06 and the Indonesia Infrastructure 2006 – Conference and Exhibition.

Mersa is a familiar face in Maverick, as he’s been working in the media tracking division, before joining the consultancy side. Mersa holds a BA degree in Economics from Western Michigan University and is pursuing a Master’s Degree in Business Law at Universitas Padjadjaran. Before joining Maverick he had a wide range of employment experiences, that range from being a resident assistant, a luxury car salesman, and a freelance marketing consultant for several domestic mining companies.

The three of them are eager and excited to start their career in Maverick. Or as Dorte put it, “Maverick is well known in the PR circle and it made me curious to find out what it is that makes Maverick, Maverick,” Mersa, who’s been around Maverick for four months may have the answer. He said, “I felt Maverick was a good choice for me to be part of, mainly due to their no non-sense approach towards business and their result oriented culture that get things done when and where it is needed.“

Well guys, we are as excited as you are to roll out the new year with kick ass work. And for that, we have assembled an eclectic and complementary mix of talents like you are. More importantly, we put our heart and soul in doing our job, and that what makes Maverick, Maverick.

Maverick blog in "Top Ten Blogger Indonesia 2006"

Today's our first day back to the office and Ong suddenly informed me that Fatih Syuhud has listed our blog in the Top Ten Blogger Indonesia in 2006.

What an honor, and this is quite a New Year's present for us all. Thanks Fatih!

This is what Fatih wrote:

My friend, Ong Hock Chuan, is the founder of the blog, calls it the Corporate Blog. It's written collaboratively by all guys in Maverick, a media and PR consultant. I wonder how Ong still has time to blog in between his must-be hectic activities. A good example for any other Indonesian entrepreneurs to learn to get rid of the "I am very busy" culture.


Actually Ong has been more active in his unspun blog than the Maverick blog, but he has been overseeing it as well.

Anyway, Maverick bloggers will be conducting a major activity this month, so make sure that you keep checking in.

Again, happy new year!