Monday, March 21, 2011


Speech of Tan Sri Sanusi Junid at the IPMI (Indonesian Institute for Management Development) Convocation Ceremony on 9th December 2004 in Jakarta, Indonesia

(This speech is reproduced in view of requests by students, from Malaysia and Indonesia, visiting this blog)
Assalamu’alaikum Warahmatullaa hi Wabarakaa tuh.

And Good Morning to everyone present.


The Honorable Pak Bustanil Ariffin,

The Honorable Pak Letjen Tan Sri Datuk Paduka Rahman Ramli,

Members of the Board of Management of IPMI,

Invited Guests,

The Academic and Administrative Staff of IPMI,

Parents of Graduates,

Fellow Students,

Ladies and Gentlemen.


1. I must first of all thank all of you, particularly the sponsors, for making my presence here, today, possible.

2. I must also congratulate the graduating students who are receiving their scrolls this morning.

BANKING – 1963 to 1978

3. As a student of banking in the early sixties ( around the end of 1963 ) I was informed what a banker is supposed to be.

4. He is one who studies law but not enough to be a lawyer.

5. He also studies economics but insufficient to be an economist.

6. He studies accountancy without necessarily qualifying as an accountant.

POLITICS – 1974 to 2004

7. In 1974 I was invited to contest in a Malaysian General Election which I reluctantly accepted but avoided the offer to join the government.

8. I was at that time simultaneously a banker and an elected Member of Parliament.

9. I lasted thirty years as an elected representative from 1974 to 2004.

10. I was unfortunate not to start off with a degree in management, I merely picked up knowledge in management as I go along the way.


11. As graduates of this university, with specific focus on management, you have a better start than I had, as you have chosen the right profession for your future and the future of Indonesia.


12. Over the years of my career as a banker and a politician, inside and outside the government, as a back-bencher, I have seen in the national and global arena –
  • the rise and fall of political and corporate leaders 
  • the growth and collapse of corporations 
  • the successes and failures of ministries and departments 
  • the effectiveness and wastefulness of national and international programs


13. In summary I would say that a leader cannot succeed if he cannot manage, or have someone managing for him.

14. A nation or an organization is considered very lucky if it has a leader who is also a manager.

15. Nations of course need leaders to show the way.

16. For institutions and corporations to succeed in reaching their objectives or destinations, they need managers.

17. If a leader is said to be successful in being able to show the right direction with the right objectives, then a manager is successful if he can successfully trudge along the way in the direction determined by the leader, in order to reach those objectives.


18. As the line of demarcation between a good leader and a good manager, in ordinary circumstances, is so slim, I tend to assume that when one says that a leader is either born or trained, it is actually the training or schooling in management which is said to be leadership training, just as some junior colleges call it business training when the training given is in book-keeping and salesmanship.

19. The struggle or competition between the concepts of leadership, management, business and entrepreneurship do create job opportunities in education.

20. Just as the ingredients in the subject of banking is a mixture of law, economics and accounting, the ingredients for leadership, management, business and entrepreneurship are different intensities of focus, in the varieties of mixtures, in the subjects taught in business schools.

21. We should not waste our time in splitting hairs, over such matter, but move on to the impact of leadership and management in a nation or an institution, business or social, political or economics, in which graduates of IPMI is going to be involved.


22. I have simply divided management into efficient and effective management.

23. In an efficiently managed office all the books and documents are in order. All government requirements pertaining to taxes, employment and returns are fully adhered to.

24. But there are limited profits or no profits at all.

25. On the other hand an institution with effective management earned a lot of profits but the books are not in order and the filing system could be in a mess, while the legal requirements are not attended to and there could be restlessness among the employees.

26. The worst case scenario is where a business institution is both inefficiently and ineffectively managed.

27. Graduates of IPMI should strive to provide both efficient and effective management for the future of Indonesia.


28. Moving on to leadership I volunteer to suggest that a leader should be a ‘problem solver ‘.

29. This definition of leadership disqualifies quite a number of chieftains from being called a leader if he is not solving any problem.

30. During this age of :

‘a friend can do no wrong’ and ‘an enemy can do no right’.

31. In this age of:

 ‘media domination upon the unschooled minds’ and ‘the wealthy dominating the media’
  • a sinner can be turned into a saint
  • a traitor can be turned into a patriot 
  • a corrupt personality can be turned into a champion of anti-corruption 
  • a suppressor, when in power, can be a champion of  human rights when in need of power 
  • a trouble maker in a country can be a celebrity in a neighboring country
32. If a leader is just a being with a lot of followers then even cats and goats can be called leaders if many cats and goats are behind them.

33. If a leader is just a human being with a lot of followers, then Ali Baba is a leader as he had forty thieves in his team.

34. If that is the case then one should not be proud to be called a leader as integrity is not attached to its definition.

35. But, when one defines a leader as ‘a problem solver’ then one has to look at the institution, nation or corporation, that he leads.

36. What are the problems of the institution?


37. In the 2nd WW the Fuhrer of Germany, Adolf Hitler was obsessed with ‘Lebensraum’ or ‘Living Space’ for the German people. In his effort to solve this problem he became a menace to Europe.

38. Japanese leaders on the other hand, were obsessed with dominating countries with raw materials, which they do not have, for their industries. They became a menace to Asia.

39. Hitler and his team of German leaders, just as the Japanese leaders can probably be called leaders as they were trying to solve their national problems of securing living space and raw materials respectively.

40. But they were bad leaders or bad problem solvers as they have chosen the wrong methodology and thereby brought disaster to their own people.

41. They were also bad leaders because the problems which they tried to solve were imaginary problems, or mere excuses for military adventures, and that they were unable to solve their problems in civilized ways, even if their problems were real.

42. In retrospective, they are not leaders at all, even to their own nations, as the problems they tried to solve did not exist, just as in recent times, there were no weapons of mass destruction, threatening the USA or Israel, to rationalize a war against Iraq.


43. Despite all these lessons from history of WW II, we still see similar tragedy happening today.

44. National leaders, in trying to solve their national need for oil and gas brought untold disasters to nations which posses them.

45. They cooperate with undemocratic countries, to install democracy in countries with leaderships that they cannot manipulate, in order to secure oil and gas, for or through the companies that they own, while fabricating lies of the existence of weapons of mass destruction and linking their targeted victims as being friends while those victims are actually known as being enemies.

46. They endorsed state terrorism in their war against terrorism.

47. For solving his national problem of securing oil and gas the person involved might be called a national leader, but should not regard himself as a world leader for bringing problems and sufferings to the world instead of solving them as leaders should do.

48. The leadership quality of a person is nullified if in the process of solving his national problem his company also earn exorbitant profits from investments in weapons industry, when the nation is led into war, or having investments or owning directly or indirectly, oil and gas companies when the nation at war is trying to take control of nations with oil and gas resources.


49. In the early 80s we saw an economic crisis in the world when companies were closed up and nations were on the brink of bankruptcies.

50. It was at this time that I noted the world as being split into 5 groups, that is

-         The English Speaking Democracies

-         The Communist World

-         The Arab Muslim World

-         The Christian World of Latin America

-         The Non-English Speaking Democracies

51. Unfortunately, Indonesia did not fall into any of these classifications.

52. All the 4 groups from (1) to (4) were having economic problems.

53. The English Speaking Democracies were having seminars and conferences to find solutions to their similar problems. Implementing their resolutions they landed among new problems but also of similar nature. This was so as they were guided by English language text-books for their education.

54. The Communist World on the other hand was also in trouble.

55. Their scholars and leaders were influenced by books with communist orientation.

56. The communist methods at problem solving were different from the methods used by the English Speaking Democracies, but they have similar problems among communist nations.

57. The Arab Muslim World was having political problems due to excess funds from oil and gas. They bought weapons from the East and the West, wherever available or possible. They used these weapons against one another, among themselves.

58. The Catholic World of Latin America had problems due to excessive spending of money which they did not have. They spent other peoples’ money. They were trapped by the IMF.


59. But the Non-English Speaking Democracies were different.

60. They are:

-         Japan

-         South Korea

-         Taiwan

-         Germany

-         France

61. While all the other group of countries was having economic problems of similar type in their respective classes, the non English Speaking Democratic Countries were booming.

62. Let us leave out Germany and France for our present analysis.


63. Let us look at the Japanese. When one talks about Japanese economic success one cannot avoid identifying the successes of Japan from the successes of such Japanese companies as Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Marubeni, Sumitomo and Dai-Ichi Kangyo which is currently absorbed by C. Itoh.

64. These five Japanese were identified by the Financial Times of London as the five largest companies in the world on 31st December, 1991. It was the most embarrassing discovery to the corporate world of UK and the USA..

65. Especially, when the Japanese lost in WW 11 to the Allied Forces led by the UK and the USA, but in 1991 the 5 Japanese companies defeated the companies of the UK and the USA.

66. They appear to have won the peace.

67. This embarrassment necessitated the consolidation and amalgamation of the UK and USA companies which took place since 1991 till the present day.

68. What is the underlying background to the successes of these 5 Japanese companies?

69. Was it the Japanese knowledge of science and technology?

70. I don’t think so, as more books are available in science and technology in the English language than in the Japanese language, which is the language of the UK and the USA.

71. Was it the Japanese management know-how? I don’t think so as even Japanese, such as Kenichi Ohmae, is recommending American management method for Japanese companies.

72. If you think that the Quality Control Circle is the catalyst for Japanese corporate success, you have to realize that all those thousands of Japanese companies which failed also practiced QCC.

73. The five companies Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Marubeni, Sumitomo and Dai-Ichi Kangyo were all incorporated in 1873, that is 5 years after the Meiji Restoration of 1868.
74. With the Meiji Restoration the, Japanese Army was modernized using modern weapons and the traditional Japanese warriors, the Samurais, were sidelined to civilian life.

75. As the Samurais were not happy being sidelined from politics and the army they decided to serve their country in the global business arena.

76. The Ronins, who are Samurais without the Shogun, were not armed with knowledge in management neither did they have scientific and technological know-how; but they had the Bushido spirit of the Samurais.

77. This Bushido spirit comprises of 5 values which the Samurais upheld with great religious obsession. These values are:

-         Trustworthiness

-         Courage

-         Discipline

-         Diligence

-         Loyalty

78. With these core values accompanying their management efforts they acquired knowledge, they managed well and they succeeded.


79. In the case of South Korea their development began with President Park Chung Hee.

80. Park Chung Hee became the President of South Korea on 17th December, 1963 after winning the election in October, 1963.

81. He visited Malaysia immediately after his installation and attended a briefing at the Ministry of National and Rural Development whose minister, at that time,  was also the Deputy Prime Minister, the late Tun Abdul Razak.

82. It was at this briefing that he learnt of the Malaysian rural development effort and did better than us.

83. On the board in the operation of the Ministry of National and Rural Development was a sentence from the Holy Quran which reads –

‘Innallaha la yu ghairuma bi qaumin hatta yu ghairuma bi
 anfusihim’, which means

‘God Shall Not Change The Fate of Man Until They Change  

84. It meant self-help to President Park Chung Hee and that was the idea that he promoted behind his ‘Saemul Undong’ program.

85. President Park read and understood only one sentence of the Quran, but managed to plan and execute a program for the benefit of his people,  whereas we read the whole Quran many times but never knew how to make a successful effort out of its teachings and wisdom.

86. President Park did better because, after being inspired by that one sentence of the Quran, he motivated his people based on his study of history, particularly the history of the Shilla Dynasty period and the seven years war with the Japanese between 1592 to 1598, when the Japanese, under the leadership of Toyotomi Hideyoshi were twice defeated by the Korean Admiral Yi Sun-chin with his ‘Turtle Armada’.

87. The motivating element that led to victory during the Shilla Dynasty and the seven years war was the Hwangrang-do, or ‘The Way of Hwarang’.

88. In 576 ‘The Way of Hwarang’ was perfected by the Buddhist monk who introduced the ‘Five Injunctions for Mundane Life’.

89. The contents of these five injunctions are basically similar to the Bushido spirit of the Samurais.

90. Just as the Bushido spirit, originally used in fighting, was used by the five Japanese companies to succeed in their business and economic activities, the Hwarang spirit which brought victory to the Koreans during the Shilla Dynasty and the seven years war led by Admiral Yi Sun-chin, President Park Chung Hee used this Hwarang spirit to drive the economic growth of South Korea.

91. Park Chung Hee instilled the Hwarang spirit in the management personell of his government and the South Korean industries.


92. While North Korea and China were lulled into economic mediocrity by the Western Jewish Thinker Karl Marx , Taiwan’s economy was growing because of the Jinsheng spirit which is similar to the Bushido and Hwarang spirit of Japan and South Korea respectively.

93. Taiwan’s management was also driven by the same core values.


Dear graduates,

94. You walk away from this hall today equipped with this very important knowledge in management.

95. You noted from my speech today that President Park Chung Hee only learnt one sentence from the Quran, that is the need for the Ummah to help themselves.

96. If you ponder closely the five values in the

-         Bushido,

-         Hwarang and

-         Jinsheng spirits

 you will find that

-         trustworthiness or amanah,

-         courage or keberanian,

-         discipline juga disiplin,

-         diligence or kerajinan and

-         loyalty or kesetiaan

are all values highly propagated by Islam.

97. But these Islamic values are practiced by the Japanese, the Koreans and the Chinese.

98. It proves that by just reading the Holy Quran and knowing the core values will not help us to progress, as they say in Arabic,

‘Al ilmu bi la amal, ka syajari bi la samar’, or

‘Ilmu yang tidak beramal laksana pohon yang tidak berbuah’.

99. In English we have a saying,

‘Words without deeds is a garden full of weeds’ or

‘Kata-kata tanpa amalan adalah taman yang ditumbuhi lalang’.

Dear graduates,

100. The above values are all Islamic values and Asian values.

101. You might not agree with everything I have said earlier.

102. In the West there are only rights and wrongs.

103. Its either you or I.

104. President George Bush once said ‘if you are not with us you are against us’.

105. As Asians we know that even if we totally agree with one another we might both be wrong, just as we might both be right even if we disagree with one another.

106. Whatever our disagreements, on one thing we must agree today, and that is the core Islamic values found in Bushido, Hwarang and Jinsheng, ingrained in the Japanese, the Koreans and the Chinese, should be put into practice together with your knowledge of management.

107. In that way you can lead your institutions towards greater achievements, and avoid the disaster that has befallen such companies as ENRON, that was led and managed by executives with management know-how but without the core values.

108. I thank all of you for being a good audience.

Wabilla hi taufik Walhidaa yah Wassalaa mu ‘alaikum

Thank you.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Salam YBhg Tan Sri,

An inspiring speech indeed. I do notice that you were consistently passionate with the Hwarang, Bushido spirits which comprises values such as amanah, berani, disiplin, rajin dan setia. Without a doubt those were good values for the leaders.

I believe I fully understand most of the values that you've said but I believe those values were best related to leaders, what about the followers? To be specific mereka yg makan gaji like me for example.

As you are aware Tan Sri pekerja bawahan yg makan gaji seperti saya our set of jobs were pretty much different from our bosses we dont involve in planning, strategizing, oraganizing, managing or leading. Our task is mainly routine task, to execute what has been told to us.

As a pekerja bawahan we often come across to this problem of loosing appetite in our task. Since our task and job is merely routine this dilemma or problem often come across. How can we overcome this problem /dilemma?

Perhaps as an experience, knowledgeable and well read person maybe you can provide us some advice.

Salam hormat,