Jeffrey Kounang’s openness to new experiences and commitment to strategic growth have shored up his credentials as Thiess’ first local President Director of Indonesia.
Raised in Jakarta, and with more than 20 years with Thiess, Jeffrey is the first local appointment to the top role in Thiess' Indonesian business.
He oversees all of the Indonesian mining operations, with some 7,500 employees and production levels in excess of 250 million BCM per year.
“I’m extremely proud to hold this position. It isn’t just about my personal achievement, it’s about the nation and people I represent,” Jeffrey said.
Jeffrey was appointed to the role of President Director as part of Thiess’ ongoing strategy to grow business in Indonesia.
He said it was Thiess’ commitment to local procurement opportunities and upskilling its workforce that has helped advance his career.
“I have had the opportunity to work on several different projects and in a variety of leadership roles since joining Thiess,” Jeffrey said.
“It’s the ongoing training, mentorship and responsibility that has helped give me a better view of how we do business at every level.”
But it’s Jeffrey’s humble attitude and desire to develop his commercial end-to-end leadership skills that have helped prepare him for the role.
“I don’t come from a strong educational background. I believe I got this job because of my character rather than wealth of knowledge and that’s something I’m very proud of,” he said.
“You can always gain knowledge through training but it’s your principles and attitude that can take you all the way.”
Focus on efficiency
Since joining the Thiess business in 1998, Jeffrey has aspired to bring practicality, quality, sustainability and innovation to Indonesian mining operations.
Moreover, Jeffrey said it was important to him that local leadership drives these objectives.
“I’ve always aimed to make a difference by being clear on expectation, inspiring the team to adapt to changes, working smarter, keeping people informed and taking the lead to go the extra mile,” Jeffrey said.
“Everyone is unique and can help bring fresh ideas to the table. Locally, we are committed to seeing the industry grow, and by working together, we can make this happen.”
Leading by example
Jeffrey believes in discipline, persistence and is committed to meeting the highest standards in terms of safety and quality.
“My father is my biggest inspiration. He came from a military background and has taught me how to survive and never give up no matter the situation.
“He always said it’s not about where you are but about what you are that makes you strong.
“I encompass this into my everyday duties. I believe safety begins in me, if I drive safe behaviour and positive leadership, it will set the standard for others.”
Looking ahead, Jeffrey will continue reviewing Thiess’ Indonesia operations at each site and setting new milestones to ensure ongoing profitability.
“We have reviewed our business plans with a strong focus on real returns and breakeven cash flows, and we have smoothed out all production profiles,” he said.
“We will continue to run our Indonesian business to create value for stakeholders and deliver operational excellence.”