Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor hosted a group of MBA students from the Thunderbird School of Global Management Arizona in late February. The group got the opportunity to hear leadership advice from the Chairman. He talked about the importance of discipline and how it is linked directly to success. “Discipline is a top priority to succeed,” he said, “but other factors are important too. You need to hire the right team of people around you. Timing is crucial and a little bit of luck.”
He said the world lacks strong leaders right now. “The US used to be a reservoir of leadership, in the days of George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Ronald Regan and Jimmy Carter, but sadly that is not the case today. America needs to be strong again for the betterment of the entire world. The same is happening in the United Kingdom. It needs a strong leader, like former Prime Minister’s Sir Winston Churchill or Baroness Margaret Thatcher.”
He praised the UAE leadership, “The UAE is the safe haven of the world thanks to our visionary leaders. The government works hand in hand with the private sector. This is key to success.”
He added, “Mentorship is important. I learned a lot of what I know today from my mentors, the former leaders of the UAE. I used to go to the majlis from a very young age.” Al Habtoor said, “Leadership is something that can’t be taught. You are born with it. You just need to polish it.” Heading the student delegation was Denis Leclerc, Ph.D., Professor, Garvin Center for Culture & Languages. Dr Denis Leclerc teaches cross-cultural communication and global negotiations at Thunderbird School of Global Management as well as multiple programmes such as on-campus MBA, and Executive MBA programmes.