Being Human! Being Human is a registered charitable trust working in the areas of education and healthcare for the underprivileged in India. I saw this and thought, wow! How seldom do people advise others on just being human or better yet what we are meant to be, given that we have enough challenges around the globe caused by reckless humans.
But if you think of those two words Being Human and recite it to yourself, you may start to reflect on all the things you do, say, hear or feel in your everyday life. That, in my opinion, is what leadership is all about and that is one very important ingredient for entrepreneurs.
As the world gets smaller every year mostly through the blessings of social media, more and more young people are realizing that the best way to influence an audience is by being human. The crazy trends of selfies and spontaneous videography of our daily lives is showing people that, hey I’m not just a leader because of a title but because I do the same things you do, eat the same food, go to the same spots on a weekend and listen to the same music.
The disconnect between leaders and their followers will be a thing of the past, its almost become boring and “not cool” for leaders to be isolated. But there’s also the fear factor, because all you need is one disgruntled employee to post something in the digital world that makes the leader look bad and that message going viral. In the past few years there have been some very high profile senior executives who’ve suffered that fate.
As I mentioned in my book Just Read It, being a leader, being human is all about having the right attitude and having your emotional and social intelligence in check.
Once you’ve reached that point of self- actualization, you’ve won the hearts and minds of those who look upto you. And this is the message that needs to constantly be communicated to the youth who are now the catalysts for change in our communities and they would fall in deep waters if they get over excited and over confident when they attain a position of power.
And like Scott Hamilton said, “The only disability in life is a bad attitude”. It couldn’t have been said any better! Balancing the youthfulness, energy, charisma and assertiveness is a talent only few have mastered. I have personally come across one man, that now at the age of only 32, managing a portfolio of over USD 100m at the Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, is slowly making local, regional and very soon international headlines.
Sultan Al Mutawa Al Dhaheri, Acting Executive Director of the Tourism Sector has revolutionized the direction of the tourism sector’s strategy, and has simply broken records for the Abu Dhabi emirate. Rising occupancy rates, generating higher revenues are just some of the successes but his true success come from the spirits he’s lifted of all his employees.
Never, have I come across a young man who’s a father of two, owns a furniture factory, pursing his graduate degree at the London Business School and in the midst of it all, working whole heartedly for his country to be so humble. (Although we do still pick on him for not buying us lunch) when I asked Sultan what was the secret to his success? He simply said, having the right people and the right system in place. The number of times he mentioned these two, I almost feel that it’s the first words he quoted when he was born.
And absolutely he has developed both the people and systems in the organization that now he’s left a legacy behind. One that can be admired, benchmarked or even envied upon. As young followers, we have to observe and learn from our peers such as Sultan and try to adopt those skills that were the formula for success.
The other point I’d like to highlight to aspiring leaders and entrepreneurs is consistency. I almost want to stop writing any further from this point. Consistency to the ones that look at the glass half full is a considered a blessing and to the ones who see the glass half empty, consistency is a curse. Sustaining a certain rhythm at a work place can be quite challenging to the ones who don’t have strong self-control and self-awareness. This trait goes even beyond the desktops but at home as well.
Carrying the same dynamism and energy to everything you do, at every place you go, will reflect on your work and the people you lead. That is why, focusing on this quality is crucial before taking that major step, reading books, spending time alone, exercising, eating well and sleeping well are very good steps to ensure you don’t breakdown in the boardroom.
Recently I have been selected to be a member of the Global Shapers Community in Abu Dhabi which is an initiative of the World Economic Forum.
There about 23 members in Abu Dhabi which can all be found on www.globalshapers.org , my fellow shapers are a group of highly skilled, highly educated individuals who are all motivated to contribute to the community where they live and work.
But the one thing that everyone in the group had in common is passion. I never vocalized this to any of the members, but they’ll probably get a copy of this magazine and read it for themselves. Each member is passionate about what they do in their daily lives and when we meet once a month, that passion can be felt in the room.
This is another important ingredient for success. Lastly, I once read a quote that someone posted, “be stubborn about your goals but be flexible about your methods. To the Young Global Leaders, I don’t think that quote needs any explanation. But most importantly the one advice I always give everyone is that if you make your parents happy and have their blessings, your success will flourish beyond your imagination. After all that’s what Being Human is all about.
“If you think of those two words Being Human and recite it to yourself, you may start to reflect on all the things you do, say, hear or feel in your everyday life.”