Sina Amini and ‘Team Transformers’ Announced as Top Winners of Maybank GO Ahead. Challenge (MGAC) 2019


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After an intense 10-day competition, the Top Winners of the Maybank GO Ahead. Challenge (MGAC) 2019 were revealed at The Party in Kuala Lumpur yesterday. MGAC, Maybank’s award-winning, multi-disciplinary talent acquisition and recruitment programme, which is in its 8th instalment this year, remains an innovative recruitment platform to spot, build and nurture diverse, global talent.

Maybank Go Ahead. Challenge 2019 winners celebrating their wins as the competition comes to an end after an amazing journey with 60 finalists from across 12 Nationalities!

Sina Amini from Iran was named the Global Champion of MGAC 2019. Sina Amini from Monash University was awarded an opportunity to pursue a two-week internship at any Maybank office around the world. Meanwhile, ‘Team Transformers’ comprising Finalists from Malaysia, Cambodia, the Philippines and Thailand emerged as the Global Champion, and walked away with an all-expenses paid trip to attend the Future Festival Chicago – a innovation conference that gathers all of Chicago’s top innovators to experience future trends while prototyping disruptive ideas using the same award-winning innovation workshops used to help NASA prototype the journey to Mars. ‘Team Dark Knight’, with Finalists from Malaysia, the Philippines, Indonesia, Iran, and Cambodia was the 1st runner-up and won an all-expenses paid trip to the Web Summit in Lisbon, Portugal where Fortune 500 companies, ground-breaking start-ups and world class speakers will gather later this year. The 2nd runner-up went to team ‘The Guardians of the Galaxy’ comprising finalists from Hong Kong, Singapore, and the Philippines who will be attending the Singapore Fintech Festival. This Festival will bring together key executives and decision makers from global financial institutions and corporates, innovators and technologists from FinTech start-ups to unicorns, investors, and academia.

Team Transformers emerged as the Champion team for the Maybank GO Ahead. Challenge 2019, and was awarded by Maybank’s Daniel Wong Liang Yee, Group Chief Compliance Officer, Nora Abd Manaf, Group Chief Human Capital Officer and Mohd Suhail Amar Suresh, Group Chief Technology Officer.

“MGAC has taught me that you can do whatever you want if you put your mind to it and you’ve got to be open to taking on new challenges. The simulations we experienced have taught us to be resilient even when things are not in your control but having the Maybank team and our assessors guide us definitely helped us to keep moving forward and grow as individuals and a team,” said  Lee Dai Wei, Team Leader of Team Transformers.

The ultimate reward for the shortlisted Finalists is a conditional offer to join Maybank in its entry-level pipeline programme, the award-winning Global Maybank Apprentice Programme (GMAP). The two-year rotational management trainee programme offers best in-class development, on-the-job training, and assigned coaching by Maybank’s senior management and the opportunity to undergo international assignments at any Maybank office in the 18 countries it is present.

Sina Amini was awarded the title of Global Champion in the Maybank Go Ahead. Challenge 2019 by Nora Abd Manaf, Group Chief Human Capital Officer at Maybank.

“MGAC has definitely taught me a lot at every level – from the campus levels to the global finals which felt like 60 years packed into 10 days. The experience and steep learning curve that I’ve been on in the past 10 days was a real eye opener and such an incredible experience. I owe it to Malaysia because it was the first country that I came to after leaving Iran. Malaysia has always been the country I’ve come back to as it’s helped me grow so much in the past years – and that’s very crucial for me. I’m excited to continue learning and ready to start my journey with Maybank Malaysia!” said Sina Amini, Global Champion of MGAC 2019.

The Best MGAC 2019 University Award, an award for universities with the highest number of student participation in the MGAC University Leaderboard campaign, was also awardedat the event. With close to 2,000 of their students joining MGAC 2019, INTI University was announced as the winner for this award category.

This year’s Global Finals provided an invaluable opportunity for the Finalists to learn how to manage a full business cycle of companies in various industries, such as Airlines, Automotive, Robotics, Food & Beverages, Conglomerates, Fashion and Artificial Intelligence. It was aimed at providing them with first-hand experience in growing and sustaining a business in challenging environments. From the ideation process, soliciting funds, conducting market research and managing crises to solutioning to meet community needs, they were constantly on the go. 

A gamification concept was also integrated into MGAC 2019’s business case challenge as a unique new element to enhance the participants’ user experience. The Finalists were given an office space to work, had to arrange for their own lodging and transportation using the game portal designed exclusively for the Global Finals. Finalists were awarded points based on their individual and team performance, and these game points were in turn used to trade in for their lodging.   

Also aligned with the gamification concept, a unique differentiator of the Resurgence Mode that was introduced this year enabled the participants whose journey was cut short in the Campus and National Levels to be able to fight their way back into the Global Finals through nomination by other Finalists. The reality of bouncing back when a door is opened for one is critical in life and a key skill.

MGAC 2019 also featured Non-Player Characters (NPCs) comprising Maybank employees and the general public who played the roles of agents to interact with the participants as supporters allies, bystanders or even competitors. 

In the ‘Back to Basics’ challenge held on the 1st and 2nd of August, the Finalists were taken to the Jungle School Gombak to make them appreciate the Malaysian Indigenous lifestyle. Each team was assigned an Orang Asli mentor to guide them through activities such as fire-starting, jungle food-foraging and fishing, leaf-weaving, tent set-up and toilet-making. The Finalists also had to catch their own fish and cook it for dinner. 

On the final day of their challenge, the MGAC Execution Day commenced and put the public into player mode. In  the #GameofChoice, Finalists designed a game to gamify solutions to company and industry problems. They then took to the street to rally the public to try out the games that they had designed. They were scattered across nine different locations in Klang Valley, as they competed in pushing for the best game and to acquire most points through game plays, downloads, review, and social media engagements. Teams were given power cards to use to their advantage, for example, bonus points and point multipliers. The final #GameofChoice showdown was held at Lot 10, Bukit Bintang and the winning game was displayed at Lot 10’s The CubeMGAC 2019 has seen an astounding 300% increase in participation from the previous year, clearly reflecting the popularity of the competition and its new approach amongst the new generation of hires. This year, Maybank received over 35,000 applications from more than 105 nationalities. 

Yearly, the competition reaps multiple local and regional awards with MGAC’s unique proposition and competition model. For four consecutive years since 2015, the Challenge won top prize for the ‘Best Recruitment Innovation by a Corporate HR Team’, ‘Best Candidate Experience by a Corporate Team’, ‘Best Graduate Recruitment Programme’, ‘Best Regional Recruitment Programme’ in the Human Resources Asia and HR Excellence Awards both in Malaysia and Singapore. MGAC was also recognised as the ‘Best Innovation on Campus’ at Malaysia’s 100 Leading Graduate Employer Awards for two consecutive years in 2016 and 2017. 


About the Maybank GO Ahead. Challenge 

The Maybank GO Ahead. Challenge was inaugurated in 2012 – an international student competition that challenges their intellect, stretches their creativity and tests their endurance. The challenge puts the best mind together on a platform that is fully designed in house by our very own Global Maybank Apprentices to seek for the right talents to be part of the organisation. 

MGAC welcomes University students and graduates from any discipline and nationality to be challenged. 

About the Global Maybank Apprentice Programme (GMAP)

The Global Maybank Apprentice Programme is an exclusive two-year management trainee programme where Maybank Apprentices will be given a holistic learning experience with customised on-the-job rotations. Apprentice will undergo international assignments to enable them to be familiarised with Maybank’s global network operations. The programme is aimed to accelerate Maybank Apprentice’s growth into management role, upon their graduation from the programme.

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