1. Tell us about you, your experience and time in the Middle East.
We have been building our business in the middle east for the last 3 years and have loved almost every minute. The only real problem is remembering to wear sun protection and not to forget my sunglasses for my monthly visits. We have found it straightforward to establish our company, to build a customer base and we have had great fun in doing so. Hiring and growing a full time team over the last 12 months with our offices at JLT Dubai has also helped build a sustainable business. Myself, my wife Denise and our 2 boys spent all of January 2013 in Dubai. I can recommend this part of the world as great for business people with young families. Beaches, sun and outdoor fun.
2. How would you describe the culture of your business?
Friendly and affable. Building of trust, credibility and fostering relationships is critical. We have also really enjoyed the vision and strategic intent that is shown by many of the leading organisations in the middle east. There are some operation excellent and process areas that of course need enhancing and could be improved. Overall I have really enjoyed the business culture.
3. How easy is it for you to get direct access to the decision makers in your company? Companies here
We have been fortunate that our psychometric assessment and professional services organisation is a world leader. We had offices in 23 countries before commencing our full time operation in Dubai. This immediately gave us a lot of credibility with the large international organisations and we were able to gain access quite quickly. The real secret though has been to hire a mix of people from this part of the world combined with some international team members . This is combination has again shown our commitment to the region and has been recognised by our clients.
4. What are your biggest challenges in the next 5 years?
We currently have no problems in developing great services , markets and generating revenue. Our challenges are similar to most fast growing international firms. We need to keep hiring , developing, motivating and retaining great people. It is has been my colleagues who have brought us this far and we need more of same and different types to take us to a great future.
5. What are the skills and competencies that you would need to train in order to meet the regions talent requirements.
The main training we focus on is development of professional advisory skills, project management and understanding of the business and cultural factors that drive decision making.
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