Jusuf Kalla’s Statements during Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series 2013 Part 1

Jusuf Kalla attended the Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series on 30 April 2013 at University of Indonesia. Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series is a joint effort by Tanoto Foundation and University of Indonesia to prove that young people in Indonesia have the capabilities and potential to be a successful entrepreneur. Tanoto Foundation was founded by Sukanto Tanoto, an entrepeneur from Indonesia, Medan. His son, Anderson Tanoto was present at the event together with Jusuf Kalla.

Jusuf Kalla and Anderson Tanoto at Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series 2013
Jusuf Kalla and Anderson Tanoto at Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series 2013

More than just a hindsight, statements made by Jusuf Kalla during the event has many strong relevance to the current leadership that he holds, as a Vice-President of the world’s 10th largest economy by share of world GDP in 2011. Details can be found here.

On Entrepreneurship, Jusuf Kalla mentioned that even though the government manages, provides the facilities, and develops the infrastructure, entrepreneurs are the ones who build the country. Without entrepreneurs, the country will not run. This is in line with Sukanto Tanoto’s belief in running his business – it is important not to rely on special privileges from the government and use it as your main success factor. A business has to own a strong competitive advantage in order to outlast and outrun competitions in the long run.

Jusuf Kalla also mentioned that Entrepreneurship is an attitude that requires adjustments to a particular situation. Similar to Nike’s slogan, it is about ‘Just Do It’, because more often than not, when we think too much, it is not going to happen. JK’s emphasis on “Just do it”, flexibility and result orientation is aligned with RGE’s “Think, Act, Learn” and “Achieve results through systems”. Sukanto Tanoto believes that these 3 principles are the basic foundation of building a strong enterprise.
Lastly, JK mentioned that entrepreneurship is a combination of several key characteristics; one of the most important ones is to be logical. However, that does not mean that formal education is not important. As emphasized by Tanoto Foundation’s active involvement in the education sector, Sukanto Tanoto and all business under RGE are strong advocates of education.
With these understandings in mind, we can see that Jusuf Kalla knows the Importance of entrepreneurship as the foundation of the country’s economy and he knows that there needs to be a practical and tangible support provided to build the entrepreneurs landscape in the country through practical experience and education.

The Distinctive Entrepreneurial Style of Anderson Tanoto

The son of distinguished Indonesian business leader Sukanto Tanoto, Anderson Tanoto took responsibility for his own career and secured a position with Bain & Company’s Singapore officer as a consultant at a young age. Since then, he has developed his own unique entrepreneurial style that has allowed him to realize success. A member of the Tanoto Foundation Board of Trustees, Anderson Tanoto maintains a dedication to giving back to the community. Recently, he spoke at a tutorial organized by the Tanoto Foundation in Jakarta to encourage and train new generations of entrepreneurs. During this event, Anderson Tanoto discussed the entrepreneurial style of his father.

At the Tanoto Entrepreneurship Series Event, Anderson Tanoto highlighted three key points for entrepreneurial success. These points are informed by his father’s successes and include lessons that he implemented to make his own achievements.

The first principle of entrepreneurship is survival. Sukanto Tanoto began building his business empire, the Royal Golden Eagle group, at the age of 17, and he persevered with a spirit that taught him never to give up on his dreams. Even in the face of adversity, he believed in himself and continued to move forward, despite setbacks.

andersonThe second principle emphasizes growth. For a company to succeed, it requires a solid infrastructure. Growth depends on a reliable core. Thus, entrepreneurs must focus a great deal of energy on developing systems marked by good governance and sound operational processes. When entrepreneurs pay constant attention to the larger business model, they can ensure that their company grows at a sustainable rate. Growth, of course, also depends on a great product. Entrepreneurs realize the most success when they aim to produce not just a good product or service, but one that is better than any other on the market.

Thirdly, entrepreneurs must constantly look for new opportunities. Once a company has become established and has achieved stability, the entrepreneur can continue development by taking calculated risks. During this stage, entrepreneurs can and will fail, but these failures are excellent learning points. Because of this, entrepreneurs should see failure as a lesson, not a mark of shame.