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Alfie, from South Mahakam 3, on using Total Attitude in managing team


Alfie joined Total E&P Indonesie (TEPI) in 2006. In 2012, he was appointed as the Project Manager for the South Mahakam Phase 3 Development Project, which showcases TEPI’s commitment to maintaining the decline rate of the production plateau in South Mahakam. Alfie successfully completed the project six weeks ahead of schedule.

Managing and Adapting to Change

The South Mahakam Phase 3 Development Project is a key undertaking implemented to offset production decline. The two gas fields are located approximately 35 kilometers southeast of Balikpapan and 58 kilometers south of the Peciko field, with water depths ranging from 45 to 60 meters. The project consists of the installation of additional wellhead platforms and the drilling of seven wells that will be exported from the Stupa platform to the Senipah onshore terminal. The project’s total investment is US$120 million, which consists of the project’s construction-approved expenditure of US$114 million, with the remainder of the investment for the survey and basic engineering.

At the beginning of the project, Alfie never presumed that he and his team could finish the project sooner than expected. He had to deal with a rocky start when the official approval of the Plan of Development (POD) came three months late in November 2011, and number of issues followed. His move to Balikpapan made coordination with the Jakarta-based project’s engineering design contractors more challenging. He also had to deal with human resources issues, such as the resignation of some engineers.

“But, TEPI management was committed to making the South Mahakam Phase 3 a fast-track project,” he says. Such reassurance and support gave him the confidence he needed to kick off the project and tackle any obstacle in the way of the project’s progress.

Listening to the Needs of Team Members

In managing his team, Alfie uses Total Attitude as guidance. “For instance, I have two strong-willed and definitely bold team members,” he says. As a leader, he needs to be a fair judge and referee when there are differences between team members. “I’ll listen to their concerns and try to persuade them to look at their differences from a larger perspective,” he adds. This approach allows the flow of communication between two arguing sides. When they begin to put themselves in each other’s shoes, they are able to understand that they need each other in order to achieve common goals.

“I don’t want to be a leader that my team members fear; rather, I'd like to be a figure that they respect,” Alfie shares his leadership wisdom. “If they respect me, they will perform their jobs willingly, and they would go the extra mile to do them. But if they were afraid of me, they would have to be told what to do and would hardly be willing to do beyond what was asked,” he continues.

Keeping Safety a Priority

Managing such a huge team is of course no walk in the park. Two contract managers support Alfie in managing a total of 120 people working on the project. Each Contract Manager is assisted by their respective Offshore and Onshore Site Representatives. The Onshore Representative leads a team to perform construction and commissioning works , while the offshore representative manages jacket, topside and pipeline installation. They rotate every two weeks. Alfie also receives support from a dozen team members in Jakarta. At the peak of activities, especially during load out, there are roughly 1,100 people working on the project, he adds.

At the end of the project, there was a total of 2.8 million man hours worked with zero long-term incidents (LTI) recorded. “We are very committed to ensuring that health, safety, and environment (HSE) measures are enforced. I always remind contractors not to take shortcuts that would jeopardize our HSE,” Alfie says. Efforts to keeping safety a priority resulted in making the project the recipient of the Best Safety in East Kalimantan District (EKD) 2013 Award.

Despite all the challenges and obstacles, the project was completed and ready for drilling on April 20, six weeks earlier than scheduled. The planned date for TOM was on June 1, 2015. “Without everyone working together, mutually supporting each other, this project would never have been accomplished,” Alfie concludes.


“We are very committed to ensuring that health, safety and environment (HSE) measures are enforced. I always remind contractors not to take shortcuts that would jeopardize our HSE,” Alfie says.

Short Resume


Feb. 2012 – to present

South Mahakam Phase 3 Development Project - Project Manager (PJC/SMK 3)


Dec. 2010 – Feb. 2012

Head of Project Control & Contracts (PJC/SER)


Sept. 2009 – Dec. 2010

Package Manager for FPSO Modification of GirRI Project - TOTAL E&P Angola, Blok 17


March 2006 - Sept. 2009