“I am no bird: and no net ensnares me: I am a free human being with an independent will” is a quote by Charlote Bronte in her novel Jane Eyre. When I first read it, I realized that I have been striving to achieve my goals and heartfelt desires my whole life. When choosing the path and direction of my future, I have often incorporated my goals and childhood dreams in my studies and my work. I have not left any gaping opportunities for anyone to compromise my will and desire to attain a fulfilled life in terms of career and studies.
I always knew since time immemorial that I wanted to work with numbers and commerce. I was an excellent student in arithmetic, languages and social studies. This was further cemented by my loving and supportive parents who always strived to provide my siblings and I with the best education that could be offered in my locality and beyond. The support and motivation that has characterized my academic life has been instrumental in focusing my ambitions coupled with child hood dreams. This informed my decision to take up a degree in Business Administration with a specialization in marketing. This degree has given me a strong foundation in communication skills, managerial skills and business decision-making abilities.
Ever since my childhood days, I have always had a niche for business entrepreneurship. I was the kid that would try to sell small merchandise to my peers at a profit-and I still do but in another dimension. When I was eight years old, I bought pens at a wholesale price using my allowances and sold them to my schoolmates at a profit. I even coaxed my parents into supporting my small venture, which they did with a tough condition that the venture should be a part-time activity. This was to deter me from being distracted from the tedious school work. Aside from these entrepreneurial experiments, as a child I learnt the art of marketing and monetary management. I would help my mother at her local kiosk, within our neighborhood, sell and stock her merchandise during my free time. My mother trusted me enough to compute her financial transactions using my little know-how on business. I managed at a tender age to source for her cheap products from different suppliers and even win her prospective customers that would tip me for a service well provided.
My shrewd business acumen throughout my puberty provided me with a platform to engage with different individuals and personalities. The interaction was insightful and beneficial to my marketing skills and clientele-psychology that I have since honed to a great extent. Without this experience and opportunities, I would probably be stuck in a wrong profession or succumbed to disillusionment and made nothing meaningful with my life. I was fortunate though for having supporting parents and friends who saw my talents and interests early enough and aided in their nurturing. Today as a graduate in Business Administration (Marketing), I still desire to apply my business skills in any given opportunity to transform my surroundings and lives of those around me. Being an ethical and yet shrewd businessman is a tough call for many professionals in the business world. I want to cultivate honesty, commitment and friendship in all my undertakings to ensure professionalism and ethics prevail.
Reflecting on choices that have Brought me fulfillment
My academic credentials bring to light my strong interest and desire to further my knowledge in the business study. After my first degree I took a Diploma in IT Offices General Organization for Technical and Vocational Training in the year 2007. This was informed by the need to familiarize myself with the world of information and technology. It was prudent for the matching of my skills with the dynamics of the globalized world that operates virtually and effectively using IT. I took classes in various computer packages such as Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, Front Page and PowerPoint) This course ran for an year and succeeded two years later in 2010 by an English Language ESL program at the University of Victoria, British Colombia. I managed to polish my linguistic skills in English as my second language through this platform. This was motivated by the fact that the English language happens to be the most commonly used official language both in the business world and globally.
The experience in Victoria, British Colombia was eye-opening and afforded me an opportunity to interact with the western culture. The shift from my local Saudi way of life to the British culture was integral to my growth as an individual and professional destined for the global market. After the short stint in Victoria British Colombia, I moved to the University of New Brunswick in Saint John. It is in this institution that I started pre-MBA program, another milestone in my career and academic credentials. This program was essential in my preparation for the real MBA program that I am still pursuing currently. The MBA program confirms my year’s long dream and desire to specialize in my business administration field. I can officially assert that if all goes well I will graduate on October 13th this year.
The educational credentials cannot for solely expound on the vast knowledge I have acquired in the business field. I have had several opportunities where my skills have been to put to use in the real working environment. After my first degree at King Abdul-Aziz University, I managed to get a job at the Arab Reach Media Services (ARM). Arab Reach Media Services or in short ARM are an advertising agency that handles and manages all the distribution, marketing, ad sales, local production and operations for several Arabic and Italian language channels. This was my first official job to carry out as a graduate and also as a professional in the field of Business Administration. I worked in Customer Service department where my main job entailed customer assistance, working with multiple nationalities and handling the customer queries via telephone. I was able to interact and handle customers of all ages and walks of life using the behavioral psychology, business know-how and marketing skills in sorting out their queries and providing clarifications where necessary. The experience at ARM was invaluable as it extended me a chance to put in practice my theoretical knowledge.
My next work experience was acquired from the prestigious Khalid Mohamed Hamdoon Est. , a construction company located in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. At Khalid Mohamed Hamdoon Est., I was responsible for the analyzing of the marketing and sales activities, coordinating events, creating business reports, media pitches and marketing materials. My business, marketing and managerial skills were put to test in this construction company as clearly exemplified by my job description. I was effective in applying essential analytical tools in the assessment of the marketing and sale-related activities at the company. I amended several policies that I felt hindered full penetration of the construction market and embracing of the different stakeholders in the construction world. During my tenure the company recorded a 7.5% rise in the revenue and over 10% reductions in operational costs.
The events coordination as part of my job faced a number of face lifts through incorporation of proper lighting, efficient sound systems, superb exterior and interior décor, and publicity management. This was the much needed spark for the company’s corporate events which in the past had lost the appeal that this construction company was known for. The business reports under my stewardship were produced regularly with enough relevant content material on the construction company and the construction industry as a whole. The media pitches were also held time to time to present the necessary information to the public domain, a task I oversaw with much zeal. The marketing materials were diversified with the incorporation of the social media in the company’s communications and product and service marketing.
Good for the World
Identifying My public purposes
The different roles and capacities in Arab Reach Media Services (ARM) and Khalid Mohamed Hamdoon Est. were all crucial to my greater perception of the practicality and the essence of the Business Administration (Marketing) course in the job market. The skills acquired institutions of higher education in this field provide the world with the necessary manpower to handle communication, business-decision making competence and marketing. My profession presents a dynamic element in the business world and organizational skills by integrating and schools of thought that have been tested and tried and passed on over the years. The modern field of business administration provides the much needed human face in the management of business structures and outfits.
We, as the business administrators, are tasked with the role of aiding of the management of businesses globally effectively. The important role of this field in al business sectors has however been hindered and suffered setbacks to the rise of unethical business administrators. The poor subscription to the business administration ethics has seen the rise of scrupulous businesses and collapse of corporations. The desire to make a quick buck through crooked ways has seen many innocent individuals in our societies suffer as a result of poor quality and unsafe products in the market.
Exploring the impact my work will have on the world
Many companies adopt deceptive marketing strategies with the desire to rake in profits rather with the concerns of the end consumer. Many companies have also compromised the integrity that is supposed to guide production and other commercial activities. The production of substandard and fake products has been on the rise. This has led to dumping in most third world countries that lack a strong trade policy framework. This vice translates to harmful effects such as health problems, financial losses and so forth for consumers in the global market.
The rise of globalization has also reared its ugly head in the business world. There has been rise many multinational corporations that have led to the collapse of local industries due to their larger than life presence in many countries. These corporations have much influence in many institutions of regulation and governance. They influence business policy frameworks that give them an unfair advantage over the young and vulnerable firms that eventually collapse or perform below par. In my opinion, this occurs due total disregard of ethics that surround the business administration world. The rogue administrators facilitate and oversee these crude tactics which are detrimental to the well-being of economies and the business world.
Identify the social and environmental issues that move you the most
I have witnessed all these vices in the few years that I have been in employment. At the Arab Reach Media Services (ARM), our competitors employed tactics such as leaking false dossiers that were meant to taint the company negatively. I am sure this was motivated by malicious business-decision capabilities of the administrators who prefer sacrificing their integrity for the sake of revenues and good market reviews. At the Khalid Mohamed Hamdoon Est. company I had first hand experience of fellow employees who wanted to dupe clients into buying defective construction materials. This was, however, thwarted by the management which eventually instituted disciplinary measures on these employees. These instances really sadden me and have seen me write protest letters to the different management and governmental departments in charge of business and commerce policy-framework. Though small, these actions leave me with satisfaction of knowing that I did the right and prudent thing in upholding the dignity of the many business administrators out there who share the same belief in business ethics.
These negative scenarios, at times, involving colleagues really troubled me. The friendship factor presents a painful dilemma-whether to expose them or turn a blind eye to their activities. My strong philosophies and subscription to the business ethics had at times led to my alienation at the place of work. I looked like a traitor and a high-handed person. The alienation, however, made me realize that indeed a man who lacks principles can easily be swayed at whim by peer pressure and other retrogressive forces. I believe that I may have changed a few in the various work interactions to leading honest and ethical working lives.
Taking my experiences and academic credentials into consideration, it would be my greatest desire to serve in aid agencies. My business and acumen can be instrumental in highlighting these institutions for their humanitarian efforts and knack for ethical organization and management. I believe I have reached a point in my career that enables me to impact on the larger globe on a humanitarian front in relation to apt business administration and management. The humanitarian agencies are and have been non-partisan when it comes to global issues such as disasters, poverty, diseases and many more. My skills can be put into use in crafting business proposals to donors, established firms and global institutions. These proposals are essential in sourcing funds and other material aid by the partners that believe in these agencies humanitarian initiatives. My marketing skills can help in propelling these agencies in the public domain through creative marketing and communication platforms such as the social media. These are just but a few ways I can use in my positive servitude to the aid agencies. My motivation here is not based on the monetary element but rather the positive impact on the humanity.
Developing strength and drive to take action in order to pursue my personal and public purpose
In my career and academic development, I fear that I will not have enough time to further my studies and relish my achievements with my family back in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. It would be my greatest desire and delight to pursue my area of expertise to a PHD level. This is due to the responsibilities that come with age such as family, employment et cetera. At the age of twenty five years, it is not a small feat to have a master’s degree. Many of my colleagues have not advanced past the first degree but have committed much of their time to employment and business ventures. I would love after graduating this year with my Master’s degree, to venture in the consultancy world and aid agencies. The consultancy factor was arrived at by my need to put my wealth of knowledge into practical use. Many businesses crave for professional advice and guidance in different organizational processes. It is only fair that I provide services to such businesses and individuals in order to help them transform for the better. As for the aid agencies, as stated earlier, my service will be the ultimate way of impacting on the humanity or world citizenry with my education.
My quest for quality education has seen me transverse far and wide and across continents. This has strained my ties with my family back in Jeddai, Saudi Arabia. I miss my childhood friends and kin who have not seen me on a regular basis for several years. I have missed out on the many milestones in my siblings’ lives and advancements in my neighborhood and home country as whole. Through consultations with my kin and close friends; I have bought the idea of halting my pursuit for a doctorate degree for a few years. This will provide me with ample time to give back to my home community in Jeddai and catch up with my kin. I also envision in a few years to come I will need settle down and establish my own family. This family institution will require a lot of my commitment and utmost priority so as to ensure it succeeds and is based on strong foundations.
Develop the boldness and the spirit of risk-taking that will launch you down your purpose paths
My fears however will not stand in my way if need arises for me to further my education. Over the years, I have learned to adapt to challenging scenarios through my work, academic and social experiences. These experiences have molded to what I have become today. If the need arises, I will formulate a learning model such as online learning to ensure that I can have the ease in multitasking between my activities and my pursuit for educational advancement. I must admit that these partially place on a precarious and vulnerable position in pursuit of my goals. It is not easy to multitask many commitments at once; a lot would be at stake. The fears though healthy might present scenarios where am torn between two or more options. One option is likely to be affected rather in adverse manner. This is due to attention deficiencies that may occur during the juggling of many roles. For example, my enrollment for a PHD will translate to my lukewarm showing in the consultancy option.
Going towards these fears with a positive mindset will help me grow as an individual. In retrospect, I must admit my fears might be emanating from the personal insecurities, societal prejudices and opinions of those that I have gotten acquainted to. The personal insecurities dwell on the uncertainties that riddle my personal perception of issues. I believe, if I overcome these insecurities such as time procrastinating and fear of not attaining my goals as expected, I can excel. The societal prejudices that have characterized my childhood are also hindrances that blur my decisions. The backlash from my strict Muslim background also acts as deterrence in the making of some decisions. The opinions of my close friends also shape my line of thought on some decisions such as career switches and development. However, as asserted earlier, I believe a positive attitude will help in my tackling of fears that may be stumbling blocks to my excellence and life fulfillment.
In ten years time, I view myself well established in the business consultancy field. I will have established a virtual office that will enable me to serve my global clientele with ease. My clientele will able to asses my latest hypothesis on the global business trends and professional advice on how to handle administration and management predicaments in their firms and corporations. I will have also authored and co-authored several business administration and management articles that will be instrumental in shaping the academic prowess of potential business administrators worldwide. The authorship will be my avenue to leave an indelible mark in my profession as a business administrator and marketer. My aid agencies input will be seen and felt as I will vigorously campaign and source for support from different quarters. This will be motivated by my desire to chip in the humanitarian efforts of these agencies.
I further envision that I will have restructured my family to accommodate all who have seen and supported me in my ascension in various capacities both career wise and academically. My family back in Jeddiah , will have moved to better apartments courtesy of my efforts. This will be coupled with the support of my siblings in their undertakings academically and professionally. In ten years I will have established my own family and settled into family life. As for my academics, I probably will have attained my PHD in any field of Business Administration that will be relevant in the global business world by then.