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Human Resources Conference highlights importance of HR and future challenges

United Arab Emirates: Wednesday, February 23 - 2005 @ 16:19

This topic was discussed by David Creelman, CEO at Creelman Research, Canada and former Chief of Content and Research, HR.com, in a working paper presented at the “4TH Middle East HR Conference and Exhibition” organized by the Etisalat Academy at Mina A’salam in Dubai. Creelman pointed out that human capital measures are often shown in social responsibility reports, rather than appearing in financial reports.

Speaking on the second day of the conference, Sameer Daqqaq, Vice President, Marriott International Global Sales, said “Tourism and hospitality is a multi-billion-dollar industry, and the fastest growing one in the world. According to the World Tourism Organisation, tourism is one of the top 5 export categories for more than 4 out of 5 countries worldwide. It also recognises the Middle East as one of the fastest growing areas of the world in tourism. “

He added that in the UAE, tourism represents 15% of economic activity, and hotels generate more than AED 3.1 billion annually. This figure is set to increase, particularly in Dubai, where it is estimated that the current number of 5 million tourists will double by 2009. This is not a surprise in the light of the projects and developments HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and UAE Minister of Defence is planning, such as the Palm Islands, the Dubai Waterfront, and the Dubai Business Bay. It is this type of vision that will develop Dubai into one of the most attractive tourism destinations globally.

Daqqaq added that many service industries like to use the slogan: ‘the customer is always right’. This surely sounds good to the customer, but what about the person serving the customers? Does this imply he is always wrong, or it does not really matter whether he is right or wrong? At Marriott International, we have one core belief that underpins everything else and is something our founder JW Marriott believed in, as well as goes through every facet of the company; “Take care of your associates and they will take care of your guests.” No matter how many new HR ideologies come on the market, you will never get one to beat that simple fact.

Highlights on the first day of the conference were the presence and participation of several HR experts, including Ricardo Semler. He is the President of Semco, a Brazilian-based company whose revenues have grown from $35 million to $160 million in the past six years despite severe economic conditions in Latin America. It’s a unique company where managers determine their salaries and staff chooses their bosses.
Ricardo Semler is the author of “The Seven-Day Weekend: Changing the Way Work Works,” a bestseller in 2004. In the book, he explains how managers can turn a seven-day working week of drudgery and pressure to an enjoyable week full of entertainment and fun.

Other participants included Abdullah Al Daboos, General Manager of Emirates Post, who will speak about revolutionizing Emirates Post through Human Competitive Advantage.

Obaid bin Mes’har, Deputy CEO, Emirates Telecommunication Corporation, and Chairman of Etisalat Academy Board of Directors said: “Like other international organizations, we believe in the importance of training and developing employee abilities. This is the main strength of the organization in achieving its goals. This annual conference is meant to share experiences for the participants to learn from in the field of Human Resources.”

Bin Mes’har added, “The 4th Middle East HR Conference and Exhibition – The Future of HR – promises to be bigger and better this year. It will steer the practices, functions and operations of organizations’ HR. It is a gateway to meet with peers in the industry and to gain expertise from an array of renowned professionals.”

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Wednesday, February 23- 2005 @ 16:19 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.

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