Leonard Ariff Abdul Shatar, Group Managing Director of Chemical Company of Malaysia Berhad (CCM), tells us his four tips for job seekers.


“The CV should reflect the individual. Don’t just pad it with your academic qualifications. Companies rarely want to hire bookworms. We are looking for individuals who are also engaged with the society they live in,” says Leonard Ariff Abdul Shatar.

Fresh grads should also emphasise their extracurricular activities, including any work done either full time or part time.

“I like to read the CV back to front. Some of the candidates that I have interviewed had worked as part-time hairdressers or make-up artists. Some even have worked in fast-food joints. These are all interesting talking points. I want to know how they fared and what their experience was like.”

Don’t ask about salary

During question time, don’t touch on salary straightaway. It can put off the interviewer, especially when the salary you are expecting does not match what the company is offering to you.

“Only 20 per cent of what you study is relevant to the job; the rest is what you will learn on the job. The company has to invest a lot in retraining you. Ask questions about the company to show your curiosity about the place you might be working in the future,” advises Leonard.

Brush up on general knowledge

“One area which is weak among our fresh graduates is general knowledge,” says Leonard. Know what’s happening in the country, in the region and around the world, and how it will impact on the industry you want to work for.


One of the trends among the millennial is to job-hop frequently. How do employers see this? “Jobs for life don’t exist these days because of the competition to get skilled workers,” explains Leonard.

“When I see someone who has changed jobs often, I observe whether he or she is doing the same job at a higher level or doing something totally different. Normally this type of people would change jobs every three to five years. As they move, they acquire new skills. I see these people as wanting to learn new things and take on new challenges. These people are different from those who have changed six to seven jobs in four years. Those people mainly do it for the money. Those are job-hoppers I would not be interested in.”

Share this article: