Could you tell us a bit of Habitat Group? What makes you different from any other PR company on the island?
Habitat Group is actually a Food & Beverage Services Company; we do 360 degree F&B business development from planning to running. One of the divisions is Marketing &Communications, which I manage. Even though we offer Marketing, Social Media and Public Relations to non F&B institutions, but naturally we’re at our best in F&B. What’s the difference? Well, we’re not only those “common Marketing people”, we have solid experience on technical sides as well, such as graphic designs, photography, website developments, SEO, etc. And one more thing, when it comes to media relations, we write the way journalists do, we don’t use “PR style” language. On top of that, as an F&B management services company, we actually run our own restaurant as a flagship, it’s called Habitat on Monkey Forest road, Ubud.
Being in hospitality world for quite a while now, what do you think the main traits for anyone who wants to be a good Public Relation?
PR is a saturated role; everyone can be one, really. But, you can stand out by understanding and learn some extra skills in related aspects, such as graphic designs, website development, etc. You would also be more appealing if you can stop sugarcoating everything too much. There are ways to tell the truth without jeopardizing brands you represent.
If you were stranded in an empty island, name three things you must have with you and why?
I’m certified in jungle survivalist, believe it or not. Never experienced surviving on an empty island, but I went “flying camp” across forests and mountains for weeks without proper logistic. A vivid experience I’d never forgotten. So, if I had to go through a similar situation like stranded on an empty island, I think:
- Knife is the first thing I’d love to have. This will help you create a lot of stuff you need to make your life easier – including, hopefully, a boat!
- Not only that this tool will give you more room to move around even during the night, it also comes handy in sending signals when needed.
- Can I say a handsome friend? I wouldn’t mind having one. Haha. In a serious note, a lighter. That would really be a big help. You’d need to make a fire at some point, for many reasons. Making a fire with those dramatic techniques like what you see in TV series is way far from easy, if not nearly impossible.
You have been staying in Bali for quite some times now. What things that have made you particularly fond about the island?
- The diversity. The island is a hub where people from all over the world come for various purposes. Everyday, I literally meet different people. Moreover when I’m in charge at our restaurant Habitat, it allows me to learn a few new things everyday too.
- The respect. People on the island generally respect each other. You can get the freedom you wouldn’t get in other parts of the country, to be yourself. You don’t have to dress up and put make up on every time you step out of your door. As long as you use your common sense on how and when to behave, you wouldn’t get judged only by the look.
- The opportunity. Related to point 1, meeting countless people from all over the world is a gold opportunity for any business entity. You just have to open your eyes and ears wider to come across valuable opportunities.
If you could pick a dream destination anywhere in the world, where would it be?
I’m a mountain person. If the dream destination were for a long stay, I would choose Nepal, a bit chaotic but very colorful. I felt in love with the country the first time I stepped my foot on. A simple lodge overlooking the Himalayas is all I need to enjoy life.
If it were for a short visit/holiday, I’d choose Greenland/Iceland, simply because I haven’t been there. I love nature and street photography as well, and the places there seem to be all eye candy. Not to mention the northern lights which have been in my bucket list for a long time.
Name one figure that has inspired you the most in life
To be honest, I don’t have any idols, and nobody has inspired me significant enough to be worth mentioning. But I did learn something intense and deep from the female monks I met in Nepal: You don’t have to speak the same language to know and care about any human beings. Striving in life should aim to get a better quality life – not to get a bunch of gold. Less expectation actually delivers more satisfaction.
If you could bring one fictional character to life, who would that be?
Hahaha! This is the hardest question for me. I’m too realistic to even like a fictional character that much. Oh well, I think I’d choose Doraemon for his magical door that can take you anywhere you want.
Where do you see yourself five years?
I believe I would still be based in Bali, even though I would travel more by then, for both business and leisure. And Habitat would have 2 more sister restaurants by then. Cross your fingers for me.