With half my voice
Hernán Leal Barrientos was born in the city of Osorno on November 8, 1966, into a traditional middle-class family. He studied at the No. 1 Men’s School in Osorno and at Osorno College, where he graduated as an outstanding student in the area of mathematics.
Although his parents wanted him to study medicine or law, at a very early age he discovered his aptitude for finance and business. This is how he finally arrives at the Pontifical Catholic University of Valparaiso, where he chooses to study Business “Ingenería Comercial”. Later, he did an MBA at the Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez, and then continued at the Harvard Business School, where he graduated from the “Owner President Management Program (OPM).
His professional career began at the COSTA Food Company, which gave him a foundation for later building his own company. His high skills, little by little made him stand out in the business world. This is how he later assumes the Management position of Administration and Finance of the multinational company Hoechst in Chile, to later become the General Manager of the North American company Hussmann for the Southern Cone, and finally hired by the Dávila Hospital, to occupy the position of Finance Director.
The latter was the springboard for Hernán to realize his dream of creating his own business through FASTCO, a company that offers financial services and has now become a recognized multinational company with offices in different Latin American countries, employing nearly 2,000 workers.
After fulfilling this great professional achievement, he began a new search that will lead him to face new challenges. This is how in 2012, after a trip to Nepal where he got to know the Tibetan culture, he discovered mountaineering, a sport discipline that has become one of his greatest passions until today.
After years of demanding preparation, he began the challenge of climbing the 7 Summits, as the highest peaks of each continent and the two poles are known. It was in this process that he reached the summit of Aconcagua in South America, Kilimanjaro in Africa, Denali in North America, Elbrus in Eastern Europe, Everest in Asia and Carstensz in Oceania. These last three summits were reached by the entrepreneur in 2017, and in January 2018 he managed to reach the summit of the Vinson Massif in Antarctica. With this last summit, Hernán reached the goal of the 7 Summits and became the seventh Chilean to complete this great challenge. But that’s not all, because in May 2018, he achieved an important record, becoming the first South American to climb Mount Everest and Lhotse in the same expedition, in memos of 48 hours between both summits.
Then, in September of the same year, he conquered the summit of the sixth highest mountain in the world, Cho Oyu, with this feat he reached 3 summits of 8 thousand meters in less than 6 months.
With the intention of sharing these experiences, mostly extreme, he decided to create two new ways to share his experiences. The first one was to start giving motivational talks, with which little by little he has been cementing a solid path of messages, which have remained in the minds of students, entrepreneurs and thousands of people who have seen in his model, a formula for internal and professional growth. Thus, Hernán has been forging a name among the most recognized “Speakers” in the country.
The second was to create a noble project to teach people to believe and feel that everything is possible with will, discipline, commitment and perseverance. This is how the “Route of Dreams Expedition” was born, an initiative sponsored by the Ministry of Education, through which it travels to the most remote places in Chile, motivating children, young people and families to achieve their own goals. Its first flag was raised at the Visviri boarding school in March 2018. Since then, hundreds of children have been carrying a flag of hope which is to DREAM BIG.
Another area worthy of note in Hernán is his commitment to others, which does not remain in words, but he always goes further with concrete actions. This is how, after learning about the reality of the “Las Creches” girls’ home, he decided to support it, a situation that today places him as one of the Executive Directors of this noble entity. “I have worked for more than 20 years for me and my family… it was time to do something for someone else.