I’m a firm believer in always seeing the glass as half-full rather than half-empty, for seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, and so on. When people congratulate me for taking the positive view, I say I’m not – it’s simply all a matter of perspective.
Take my country, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. One of the richest countries in the history of the world, home to the most sacred city, built with generations of hard work, today it is under tremendous pressure, and discontent is high. And yet, I can remember what it was like during the first Gulf war, when missiles were falling on my hometown. So, from that perspective, are things really so bad today?
And we also have visionary leaders in place today, people who are dedicated to making a difference and building a brighter future for Saudi Arabia. Those leaders are not just in government either – you see in businesses across the Kingdom that there are businessmen and women determined to carry Saudi Arabia into a much richer, prosperous future. My country has embarked on an amazing journey and there are millions of people like me committed to rallying behind it.
While outsiders often view Saudi Arabia as ignoring the younger generation, our leaders are well aware of the importance of youth. Recently, the government has appointed a number of people to very senior positions – including governors and deputy governors – all men in the 30s-40s age range, some of whom I went to school with. They are being entrusted with very high levels of responsibility, and they are willing to take it on because they want to play their part in helping in that journey – as do I.
For me that journey begins on a personal level: I committed to my family, my son and my wife, to do what it takes to give them a happy, comfortable and secure life. I also committed to my son to work with him to ensure that he finds his dreams and will have all the education and support he requires to fulfill those dreams. After all, my son is going to be one of those who will continue the journey.
I have also recently started a new job, taking a position with Avaya to help it develop its presence in the Kingdom and support Saudi Arabia’s development. Having worked in the technology industry for more than 15 years, I have seen this sector go through good times and bad – again, I have always found it important to keep these things in perspective.
While the past year has been very tough for the Saudi technology market, I did not hesitate to commit my future to the sector – I know that technology will have an important role to play in Saudi Arabia’s future as companies and government bodies digitally transform themselves to meet the needs of their customers and citizens.
With my team here at Avaya, I committed to them that I will learn from them, help them use their strengths to succeed, work with them to develop, and together, reach our own dreams and those of our families. I also committed to my customers and my partners: I pledged that we will work ethically, ensuring that goals on all sides are met, understanding challenges and working together to overcome them.
For those who lead with Fear, Uncertainty, and Doubt, I say, lead with trust, honesty and commitment: this is a much faster route to success and the benefits are greater to you and the ones around you.
I have made commitments to my family, my team, my customers and my partners. Together, we can play our part in taking Saudi Arabia forward into a better future – one that our children, my son and yours, will live in.
Hisham-Alsheihk is the Managing Director KSA for Avaya.