8 Essential Skills For Kenyan Entrepreneurs That We Can Learn From The Arab World Of Business

By Steve Biko Wafula / Published April 27, 2023 | 3:57 pm




KEY POINTS

Entrepreneurs in the Arab world must be adaptable and resilient to succeed. The region is constantly changing, and entrepreneurs must be able to pivot when necessary. One example of an entrepreneur who embodies adaptability and resilience is Omar Almajdouie. He is the founder of the Almajdouie Group, a logistics and transportation company.


Skills

KEY TAKEAWAYS


Leadership is essential for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as they must inspire and motivate their teams to achieve their goals. One example of a successful leader in the Arab world is Fadi Ghandour, the founder of Aramex, a global logistics company.


As an entrepreneur in Kenya, there are certain skills that are crucial for our success. These skills are universal and will pay off forever in any industry.

In this article, I will discuss each of the eight skills in detail and provide examples of individuals in the Arab world who have demonstrated these skills in their respective industries and why as a country, we need to look towards the Arab world to see what we can learn from there and push our country to their level of growth.

  1. Problem-Solving

Problem-solving is the ability to identify and solve problems efficiently. It’s an essential skill for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as they often face unique challenges. One example of a successful problem solver in the Arab world is Emad Sultan. Emad is the founder of Al Rawabi Dairy Company, which is the largest integrated dairy company in the UAE. He was able to identify the problem of the lack of fresh milk in the UAE and solved it by starting his dairy company.

As a country, we are faced with many issues that need to be resolved. We have become a litigation nation and this is causing so much misery and delays in doing business. We need to learn how to solve problems, without going to court and the Arab has the best example of this.

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  1. Effective Communication

Effective communication is critical for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as it enables them to connect with potential customers, partners, and investors. Rasha Khawaja is an example of an entrepreneur who excels in communication skills.

She is the founder of Toucan, a mobile app that connects users with personal shoppers. Rasha’s ability to communicate the benefits of her app to potential investors has helped her secure funding and grow her business. As a country, we have seen a lot of Kenyans complain about poor service delivery from brands like Zuku. Effective and impactful communication is something that most of our local brands need to learn from the Arab world.

  1. Adaptability and Resilience

Entrepreneurs in the Arab world must be adaptable and resilient to succeed. The region is constantly changing, and entrepreneurs must be able to pivot when necessary. One example of an entrepreneur who embodies adaptability and resilience is Omar Almajdouie. He is the founder of the Almajdouie Group, a logistics and transportation company.

When the oil industry in Saudi Arabia was hit hard by the global recession, Omar pivoted his business to focus on other industries, such as construction and mining. This is a critical lesson that we need to learn. Most businesses in Kenya are shutting down every day and yet, if they had encouragement and support, they would support.

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  1. Leadership

Leadership is essential for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as they must inspire and motivate their teams to achieve their goals. One example of a successful leader in the Arab world is Fadi Ghandour, the founder of Aramex, a global logistics company. Fadi is known for his charismatic leadership style, which has helped him build a strong and dedicated team.

Leadership is a big challenge in Kenya and it is a crucial issue. Without prudent leadership and corporate governance, many businesses have shut down like Nakumatt, Tuskys, and Uchumi, and many more close every day. As a country, looking to the Arab world is ideal because they are ideal. Seems the solutions of the West or East are not working and this means that we must have our own African and Kenyan solutions.

  1. Networking

Networking is critical for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as it enables them to connect with potential partners and customers. One example of an entrepreneur who excels in networking is Hala Fadel. She is the founder of Leap Ventures, a venture capital firm that invests in startups in the Arab world. Hala’s extensive network has helped her identify promising startups and connect them with investors. Kenyan businesses need to learn to network with an impact not just for pleasure and the Arabian world has the best example.

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  1. Critical Thinking

Critical thinking is essential for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as it enables them to evaluate opportunities and make informed decisions. One example of an entrepreneur who excels in critical thinking is Samih Toukan. He is the co-founder of Maktoob, the first Arabic email service, which was acquired by Yahoo in 2009. Samih’s ability to identify a gap in the market and build a successful company around it is a testament to his critical thinking skills. It is hard to pick out critical-thinking business leaders in Kenya. Jimna Mbaru comes close to this and most times we wish he could be given a key role in our government to help turn around the fortunes of our businesses.

  1. Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is crucial for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as it enables them to navigate complex social situations and build strong relationships with their teams and customers. One example of an entrepreneur who excels in emotional intelligence is Huda Kattan. She is the founder of Huda Beauty, a cosmetics company that has become a global sensation. Huda’s ability to connect with her customers and create products that meet their needs is a testament to her emotional intelligence. This is one critical asset that Kenyan entrepreneurs need to learn. It is completely lacking in the entrepreneurial realm in Kenya.

  1. Teamwork and Collaboration

Teamwork and collaboration are essential for entrepreneurs in the Arab world, as they often work in close-knit communities. One example of an entrepreneur who excels in teamwork and collaboration is Majed Al Suwaidi. He is the Managing Director of Dubai Studio City, a hub for the media and entertainment industry. Majed’s ability to collaborate with industry stakeholders and build a strong team has helped him establish Dubai Studio City as a leading destination for media and entertainment in the region. This is the weakest link in Kenya. We are constantly always fighting each other and blowing off each other’s candles.

Related Content: Dear Entrepreneur, Here Are 10 Important Skills You Should Learn

In conclusion, these eight skills are essential for entrepreneurs in the Arab world to succeed in any industry and are key for us in Kenya and the African Continent. They enable entrepreneurs to identify and solve problems, communicate effectively, adapt to changing circumstances, lead their teams, build networks, think critically, navigate complex social situations, and collaborate effectively with others. By cultivating these skills, entrepreneurs in the Arab world can achieve success and make a positive impact on their communities.




About Steve Biko Wafula

Steve Biko is the CEO OF Soko Directory and the founder of Hidalgo Group of Companies. Steve is currently developing his career in law, finance, entrepreneurship and digital consultancy; and has been implementing consultancy assignments for client organizations comprising of trainings besides capacity building in entrepreneurial matters.He can be reached on: +254 20 510 1124 or Email: info@sokodirectory.com

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