Book Sharing: My Vision – Challenges in the Race for Excellence

The Book named “My Vision – Challenges in Race for Excellence” by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (Vice-President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai) and was published by Motivate Publishing in 2012.  This is a book about a unique development experience that sets a creative example for the Arab world to follow.  The book was gift and given by Dubai professionals during ANQ Congress.  I would like to record down some valuable statements of the book for reference.

The book content included:
Part I: The Pulse of Development
-          Chapter One: The Lion and the Gazelle
Part II: The Elements of the Development Industry
-          Chapter Two: The Vision
-          Chapter Three: Leadership
-          Chapter Four: Management
-          Chapter Five: Decision-making and Teamwork
Part III: Development for Survival
-          Chapter Six: The Banks of the Creek
-          Chapter Seven: Minding the Minds
-          Chapter Eight: The Importance of My Horses
-          Chapter Nine: Positive and Negative Energy
Part IV: Excellence in Development
-          Chapter Ten: Excellence in Dubai’s Development Vision
-          Chapter Eleven: Made in Dubai
-          Chapter Twelve: Institutionalizing Excellence
Part V: The Road to the Future
-          Chapter Thirteen: The Race of Nations
Author wish the same good for my own people as I do for all Arabs and quoted the Prophet Mohammed (PBUH) once said “None of you will be a true believer, until he wishes for his brother whatever good he wishes for himself.”

Credibility of leadership can only be established through action and not words. 

Our mission is for Dubai to become an international, pioneering hub of excellence and creativity, and we are already striving to make it the world’s premier trade, tourism and services destination in the twenty-first century.

Part I: The Pulse of Development
-          Chapter One: The Lion and the Gazelle
With each new day in Africa, a gazelle wakes up knowing he must outrun the fastest lion or perish. At the same time, a lion stirs and stretches, knowing he must outrun the fastest gazelle or starve. It is no different for human race.  Whether you consider yourself a gazelle or a lion, you simply have to run faster than others to survive.

When you face a challenge that demands a solution or a decision, you have two choices – you can either emulate the example set by others or use your own creativity and intelligence to formulate a new idea. 

Today’s giants might not be the same tomorrow, and those that are considered small today could well become the leaders of tomorrow.

Overcoming the challenges in the race for excellence is the secret of success; failing to do so is the reason behind defeat and trailing behind other nations.  The choice is ours. 

Part II: The Elements of the Development Industry
-          Chapter Two: The Vision

Many great leader never went to school, but gained their knowledge from the ‘university of life’ and by carefully observing everything that went on around them. 

Whatever the case, vision should always incorporate one decisive element: it must allow for implementation.

The features of a true leader’s vision
1.      The vision must be excellent in form, essence and implementation.
2.      All its elements should include imagination.
3.      It must be comprehensive and far-sighted.
4.      It must be straightforward because clarity will make it easier to implement.
5.      It must be challenging to some extent, not only for the project team, but for society as a whole.
6.      Its announcement should have an impact.
7.      It should stir the resolve, creativity and initiative in people and revive their determination to complete.
8.      It should not be easy to implement and should border on the impossible without actually being so.
9.      It should not be proposed prematurely, before perfecting it and linking all its various elements together.
10.  It should benefit everybody in a comprehensive manner. The benefits should not be restricted to one or several groups of people.
11.  It must be positive in that it promotes the people’s trust in their leadership, their future and in each other.  It must also deepen the people’s trust in their country and their loyalty to it.

-          Chapter Three: Leadership

Sheikh Zayed also taught us that leadership is all about daily action and not just theory.  Leadership, as he practiced it, is a human and social concept that overtakes speculation.  It is also about determination, self-confidence, far-sightedness and good judgement.

… true excellence is when you propose an idea that may be good, but does not necessarily gain everybody’s immediate approval, and you have to overcome obstacles to implement it.

A leader may be able to foresee something no one else can.  This is one of the qualities that make true leaders. 

Anybody may provide suggestions, but the leader alone must have the final say, because he is the one who carries the responsibility.  That is why we always adopt the formula, ‘many minds, one opinion’. 

-          Chapter Four: Management

Nowadays, the “strong and trustworthy” is the employee distinguished by excellence, success, commitment, honesty and good behavior.

Time is passing, the clock is ticking, the world is racing, and no one will wait for us.

If we were gazelles and stopped running, lions would devour us; and if we were lions and stopped running, we would starve to death. 

-          Chapter Five: Decision-making and Teamwork

Making the right decision at the right moment is one of the most important factors for success. 

The higher the quality of information on which the leader bases his decision, the higher the chances are that his decision will be the right one.  Deep consideration, consultation, research and thinking are all needed in reaching the right decision.

Part III: Development for Survival
-          Chapter Six: The Banks of the Creek

Only people can make development happen.  The secret of successful development lies in reaching an ideal formula that can efficiently use the skills of people along with … (the existence resource), to put in place a uniquely successful metropolis. 

The context of this formula is the right vision and the key to its success is the leader, who combines his goals and determination to see them through to fruition, despite all obstacles. 

I believe that true social stability is closely linked to economic stability.

-          Chapter Seven: Minding the Minds

Effort, work, planning and preparation are the tools needed to realize dreams and their goals.  If dreams are the cornerstone of great ideas, creativity is their foundation.

When we allow individuals to be themselves and practice their individuality, we free their potential and motivate their creativity. 

According to the Arab philosopher, Ibn Khaldoun, “If the leader is an oppressive tyrant who uses punishment to impose himself and searches for people’s mistakes, they become afraid and humiliated, and use lies, deceit and cunning to escape his wrath.  They consequently adopt this sort of behavior, and develop corrupt insights and low morale, and they will probably abandon him when he is in dire straits and in war.”

Our minds are factories of ideas – the higher the quality of the raw material we absorb, the better the quality of the final product. (The idea factory)

A successful leader is not one who insists that his ideas are the best and the only ones that deserve to be implemented; he is one who encourages others to develop and present new ideas.

If some of our young people think this mission is impossible, I would like them to open their windows and take a look around them… then I will tell them,

-          Chapter Eight: The Importance of My Horses

“The reason I succeeded where they failed was because the consultants, experts and trainers had bogged themselves down in such minute detail, that they failed to see when a horse was only standing on three legs!”

The key to a true and effective development process is a vision that does not allow small details to cloud its basic goals. 

-          Chapter Nine: Positive and Negative Energy

You simply cannot kill the power of dreaming in young people and then ask them to be creative and to excel.  If you kill the dream, you kill hope; and if you kill hope, what kind of life will be left for people to live?  It is only normal for young people to feel pessimistic and frustrated when they become entrapped in such a situation.

And since young people who do not own anything have nothing to lose, they lose interest in everything. 

This type of change can become less difficult for employees to adopt when they find the right example in their leader.  If the leader is not enthusiastic about change, he must not expect others to be.

“Today’s economy incorporates modern and traditional trade.  Those dealing in traditional trade are finding it difficult to convert to modern methods and want to retain their old ways.  The private sector is dynamic by nature.  The new generation of businessmen understands the requirements of dealing with the modern economy and has not faced the same difficulties the old generation had to endure while adapting to it.”

Part IV: Excellence in Development
-          Chapter Ten: Excellence in Dubai’s Development Vision

One of the main goals of the Dubai e-government initiative is to redefine the concept of government and allow it to become more efficient and active through the use of the Internet. 

Since an important part of Dubai’s philosophy is ‘living the future today’, we believe that Dubai offers one of the world’s best investment opportunities.

Our marketing strategy targets four categories: visitors, residents, trade manufacturing and services, and export markets. 

-          Chapter Eleven: Made in Dubai

“The greatest risk for a man is not to take risks.”

The Dubai way (Dubai way of doing things):
l  Crystallizing the vision;
l  Setting the goals;
l  Drawing the plan;
l  Setting a reasonable time for implementation;
l  Mobilizing resources;
l  Giving the signal for implementation of the project.

Dubai way of doing things means that work is undertaken according to Dubai’s concept of excellent achievement:
l  Superiority
l  Overcoming the impossible
l  The melting pot of success
l  Civilized models of management
l  Creating circumstances for success
l  Positive attitude
l  Innovation
l  Sustainability

Innovation: The best solutions are sometimes the easiest.  Since we want to make things easier for multinationals and ourselves, and we want them to succeed as quickly as possible, we asked them for a ‘wish list’ of what they expect and we endeavor to meet those wishes and remove all obstacles, within the limits of our laws, regulations and procedures. 

Exceeding the expectations of customers is one of the most established standards of quality.  If a passenger expects to pass through the airport in one hour and finds that he has managed to finalize everything in half an hour, this is quality service.

-          Chapter Twelve: Institutionalizing Excellence

International conferences, workshops and seminars that regularly take place in Dubai allow civil servants the chance to meet experts and specialists in the fields of management, economy and technology. 

“If you think the price of training is high, consider the price of ignorance.”
Part V: The Road to the Future
-          Chapter Thirteen: The Race of Nations

Overcoming the challenges of a new century in a new millennium calls for fresh methodologies and innovative approaches.

Change also indicates a change in mindset; the ability to understand the language of the New World and convey our message, standpoint and goals, in a clear, simple and frank manner. 

Our vision is clear, our road is paved and the clock is ticking.  There is no more time for hesitation or half-baked goals or solutions.  Development is an ongoing process and the race for excellence has no finish line.
My experience in Middle East was only in “Saudi Arabia” in 2017 and passed the Dubai airport.
The 6th National Quality Conference (NQC) in Damman, Saudi Arabia - http://nqc.gov.sa/en/AboutUsPage.aspx
20171103: Apply Visa to visit Saudi Arabia for Saudi National Quality Conference - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/apply-visa-to-visit-saudi-arabia-for.html
20171127: Pre-National Quality Conference 2017 Visit in Dammam, Saudi Arabia - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/pre-national-quality-conference-2017.html
20171128: The 6th National Quality Conference 2017 in Dammam, Saudi Arabia – Workshop - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/the-6th-national-quality-conference.html
20171128: The 6th National Quality Conference 2017 in Dammam, Saudi Arabia – Opening Ceremony - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/the-6th-national-quality-conference_28.html
20171129: The 6th National Quality Conference 2017 in Dammam, Saudi Arabia – Day 1 - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/the-6th-national-quality-conference_29.html
20171130: The 6th National Quality Conference 2017 in Dammam, Saudi Arabia – Day 2 - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/the-6th-national-quality-conference_30.html
20171130: Post-National Quality Conference 2017 Dinner & Visit in Dammam, Saudi Arabia - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2017/11/post-national-quality-conference-2017.html

Book Sharing: My Vision – Challenges in the Race for Excellence - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2018/02/book-sharing-my-vision-challenges-in.html
Book Sharing: Flashes of Thought - https://qualityalchemist.blogspot.hk/2018/02/book-sharing-flashes-of-thought.html



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