The Emirates Foundation, a leading UAE philanthropic institution, launched The Challenge in Sharjah last month, and the four-week programme wrapped up last week in Abu Dhabi.
Private sector partners ALDAR and BP funded this project as part of the Tawteen Programme, founded by the Emirates Foundation to equip young Emiratis with relevant life and leadership skills.
The Challenge featured instruction by IDG using RMAS leadership principles.
The students learned self-development methods, advanced communication, and influencing and project management skills.
The Challenge question presented this year was “How do we recruit and retain more UAE Nationals into the private sector?”
The participants used the skills they learned, along with mentor guidance, to identify solutions and conduct market research with the four pillars of society: civil society, the private sector, government and academia.
The students worked in teams—three groups of men and one group of women.
Each group had a Tawteen team leader as a mentor, and mentors from BP and ALDAR were present to support the teams.
The groups presented their findings to a VIP panel on July 16 and 17 at Beach Rotana Hotel in Abu Dhabi.
The groups offered solutions such as career guidance for UAE Nationals, increased cultural awareness for employers, call centre start ups in the Northern Emirates enabling UAE Nationals to work for Dubai and Abu Dhabi employers online and remotely, a public awareness campaign focused on the benefits of private sector employment, and establishment of a retention department for ongoing career development.
Also proposed was a mentoring programme featuring accredited Emirati mentors who could mentor young UAE Nationals to discover what drives them in their careers above and beyond the financial rewards.
The VIP panel consisted of Khuloud Al Nuwais, Projects Director, Emirates Foundation; Rasha Al Jaberi, Talent and Emiratisation Manager, ALDAR; Jay Pearson, General Manager and Chief Representative, BP; Peter Kelly, Senior Vice President Human Capital Strategy, ADCB; and Razan Al Mubarak, Managing Director, Emirates Wildlife Society.
Another panel including representatives from ALDAR, BP, Tawteen, IDG, and Al Shaheen selected the 24 participants in The Challenge based on applications from the group of 318 students who completed the Tawteen Leadership Academy Camp training between December 2007 and April 2008.
Al Shaheen had acted as trainers for the leadership camps.
Ahmed Ali Al Sayegh, Managing Director of the Emirates Foundation, commented:
“The Foundation believes it is invaluable for the students to build upon the skills they learned in the leadership camps by further developing communication, leadership and influencing skills. These groups of future leaders explored a valid question faced by the private sector in the UAE, and over a four-week period they discovered creative, viable solutions.”
Jay Pearson, GM & Chief Representative, for Abu Dhabi BP, said: “BP is proud to support the Tawteen Leadership Academy and it’s Al Tahaddi programme. It’s the first project of its kind in the UAE and we hope it will build mutual understanding between the young Emirati participants and the private sector, where we hope many of them will make their future careers. The success of Al Tahaddi owes much to the support of our partner ALDAR, the superior instruction provided by IDG and the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst and, most of all, the hard work and enthusiasm of its participants and mentors.”
Mr Abdulla Zam Zam, Chief Economic and Administration Officer, for Aldar Properties, said: “The Challenge is an exciting new way to offer leadership training and skill-building to young Emiratis interested in the private sector. ALDAR is impressed with the solutions presented to the panel by the four teams. Their ideas and enthusiasm show that this programme is accomplishing what it has set out to do—motivate and train future leaders.”
Tuesday, July 29- 2008 @ 16:06 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.