Michael Ariel: the entrepreneur who never sleeps

Anna Johnston
June 25, 2020 · 2 min read

Startup founder and former deputy head at one of the fastest-growing hotel chains in the world won’t stop now

It took just one core MBA course at Nexford to give MBA Entrepreneurship scholarship winner Michael Ariel the push he needed to launch his not-for-profit business, Masmaikel. Now, his startup is helping Indonesians become more proficient in English.

“I believe this opportunity will be part of my story.”

Native Indonesian Michael has an intrepid zest for life. Until April 2020, he worked full-time as Deputy Hub Head at OYO, one of the fastest-growing hotel chains in the world. At the same time, he balanced his studies 100% online and built his education business on the side. Ever the hustler.

“I like to learn,” he laughs. “I’m easily bored. I go the extra mile for things I want to pursue to execute my vision.” It was Benjamin Franklin who said there would be enough sleeping in the grave.

Quality education: "It's rare" 

Earlier in his career, Michael worked at EF English First Adults Surabaya, a Swedish company, as a center director managing the English school’s operations, sales, and partnerships. There, he was exposed to low English proficiency rates in Indonesia – often stunting education opportunities and career progression. Education became his passion.

Michael was exposed to other master’s programs prior to Nexford. “I started taking a one-year Master of Management program at one of Indonesia’s top universities (BINUS University Jakarta). I didn’t complete it, because I was drawn to Nexford, which is a better fit for my life. I truly get a real-world education. I’m not merely attending to earn a degree.”

Inspired by doers 

Michael is a go-getter. He looks up to the likes of Malaysian-born entrepreneur Vishen Lakhiani, co-founder and CEO of Mindvalley – and the author of The Code of the Extraordinary Mind. Michael also has experience working at GOJEK, Indonesia’s darling startup success story. So it’s no surprise that Nexford’s four-process model matches Michael’s approach to life: Do, Reflect, Develop, Apply.

Michael says: “Because today’s world competition is getting tougher. I work with colleagues from the best universities and top companies internationally. I need to keep developing otherwise, I’ll be stuck in my career.”

The global pandemic grounded the hospitality sector, where Michael worked full-time with OYO. “This crisis has impacted everyone,” notes Michael.

“I’ve improved my leadership skills, helping me achieve better results while jointly seeking and sharing the same vision.” And what could be more important than helping lead others at a time like this?

Looking to advance in your career? Discover Nexford’s MBA 

About the author
Anna Johnston
Anna Johnston

Anna Johnston is an award-winning Head of Content, who tells galvanizing stories with a creative team at Nexford.

Anna was the overall Award 2020 winner for the business case: Satya Nadella at Microsoft: Instilling a Growth Mindset, with Professor Herminia Ibarra and Aneeta Rattan. She is formerly a writer at London Business School, consistently ranked among the world’s best its MBA.

Anna’s work has been published in Forbes, Thomson Reuters, Huffington Post, HR Magazine, the Financial Times, and thought-leading firms such as Accenture and McKinsey & Company.

Anna is a speaker, coach, and presenter. More information about her can be found on LinkedIn.

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