Many who know Ayu Kristiana would agree that calling her a “tough cookie” would be apt. A tough cookie with a soft centre. Over her eight years at Discova in Bali, Indonesia, she has proven to be not only a well-respected, multi-talented, tenacious leader, but one who cares deeply about people, whether her family, colleagues or the communities we work with around Bali.
Ayu is next in our profile series on exemplary leaders in ‘Discova Women in Leadership’. Learn about her leadership story and values here.
“Overall, it has been wonderful. Even when the going gets tough, I see it as a learning experience. The most challenging part has always been people management. For me, using facts over feelings in driving the team is the key in making tough decisions on people.”
“The opportunity to make an impact and change people’s lives. Having been part of Discova Indonesia for eight years now, directly involved in a few community projects, specifically the Manggis Organic Farming Initiative, has been spiritually rewarding. As well as the successes I’ve seen of our Team Leaders, who are mostly women. For me, it’s tangible proof of the importance of equality.”
“I have been fortunate in my career journey to know many leaders and mentors who have been incredibly influential in my life and hope to do the same for others.”
“And especially in Discova I am so lucky to meet these great leaders who played important parts in my professional development.
Peter Christiansen [our Director of Operations], for his faith in giving me the opportunity to join the company in the first place. Understanding the local culture enables him to be both a good friend and a professional mentor. Eileen Yee, who challenges me and drives me to better understand obstacles and issues. She is a good mentor and leader because she truly listens.”
“And in my personal life, I’m grateful of course for my husband, for his unconditional support and for teaching me how to use facts over feelings in solving issues or making decisions when it matters most.”
“Because women are important pillars of a strong family and community. In most parts of Indonesia, especially in Bali, their dedication very rarely receives the recognition it deserves. Positively influencing them through projects and skills enhancement is critical in raising their self-esteem and dignity, which are important steps toward achieving eventual equality with the men in their local communities.”
“For me, equality means that everyone, regardless of gender, age, ethnicity, or position, must receive equal respect and opportunity – both in their community and professional life. Equality must include, but not be limited to: equal access to education, equal pay for the same job, same opportunities to become leaders, and the ability to express his/her opinion within the company hierarchy.”
“Diversity means that everyone is unique and each of us has different skills, strengths, and personalities. However, each of these unique individuals can play important roles in creating a colourful community and professional establishment.”
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