Maximizing Qatari Talent Executive Summary

Contact Project Director: Professor William Scott-Jackson M: +44 (0) 7785 110910 UK: 020 8720 6440 Qatar +971 4 319 9378 Head Office: 30 St Giles’, Oxford, OX1 3LE, UK Qatar Office: Emirates Towers, Level 41, Sheikh Zayed Road, Dubai

Authors: Professor William Scott-Jackson Scott Owen Debbie Whitaker Scott Druck Rida Kariem Robert Mogielnicki

1. Background
This research initiative was instigated by His Excellency Sheikh Khalifa bin Jaseem Al Thani, Chairman of Qatar Chamber in support of the Qatar 2030 Vision, launched by His Highness Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al-Thani. This prioritised Qatari employment and development to ‘maximize Qatari Talent’. Subsequently, the National Talent Strategy (2011) and the Third Qatari Human Development Report (2012) have also stressed the need to maximize Qatari talent, in particular participation in the labour force by Qatari youth, who represent about 50% of the Qatari national population, whilst representing a minority (~15%) of the total population of Qatar (including expats). As expected in support of rapid growth and economic development, Qataris currently represent less than 10% of the workforce, which, as we will see, presents particular opportunities and challenges in terms of leadership. Qatarization policies seek to reduce the Qatar’s dependency on foreign workers and allow more nationals to benefit from economic growth in the country. The government of the Qatar has set the employment and development of Qatari talent in the private sector as a top priority for the country. Qatar Chamber, as the leader of the private sector in Qatar, has a strong commitment to develop Qatari talent in Qatar-based companies. As part of this commitment, Qatar Chamber launched this research initiative, carried out by Oxford Strategic Consulting, to help maximize the development of Qatari talent, with a specific focus on the private sector. His Excellency Sheikh Khalifa bin Jaseem Al Thani, Chairman of Qatar Chamber says: ‘Qatar Chamber is keen to support the development of Qataris in support of the Qatar National Vision 2030 and we are delighted to be working with Oxford Strategic Consultants, who have a reputation for helping development of human resources across the GCC through high impact, practical recommendations based on sound research. ‘ The report and associated presentations, provide extensive data and recommendations based on one of the most complete studies of its kind. A brief summary of some of the key findings follows:

2. The Research Findings
The KEY capability for Qatar – is Leadership!
There is an opportunity and a need for up to 80% of Qataris of working age to be leaders! In most countries, around 8% of the working population have to be executive and senior leaders. For the UK, for example, with a population of ~60m, this means that about 4.8m have to be leaders. There are around 55m UK citizens and about 5m expats. So less than 10% of UK citizens have to be leaders in order to run the country. In Qatar, with a working population of around ~1.5m, about 120,000 people have to be leaders. There are only about 150,000 employable Qataris (with a large body of expatriates). So there is an opportunity for a huge proportion of Qataris (up to 80%) to become leaders and there will continue to be a need for a carefully controlled number of senior Expatriates.

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This is a unique opportunity for Qatar to take a ‘world lead in developing leaders’. Can it be done? Our research suggests it is possible to create a ‘generation of leaders’ through intense experience of leadership situations and learning, ideally from an early age. Even for working Qataris, there are many examples of ‘fast-track’ schemes around the world, including, interestingly, the way in which eminent Qatari and other GCC families prepare their children for leadership.

The report and presentation gives practical advice and recommendations on how to create ‘a generation of leaders’. In particular, it recommends the wide adoption and teaching of ‘the Qatar leadership style’ which, it finds has significant benefits for engagement and motivation o f staff.

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Private Sector Employers need to understand the aspirations and motivations of young Qataris in order to attract them.
Our research shows that Qataris are highly motivated by factors such as ‘serving the country’ and contributing to society’ but employers think they are motivated only by money and an easy life!

So employers are using totally the wrong messages to attract and recruit young Qataris! The report shows how to design and implement a campaign to attract Qataris with the right messages. Even in competition with government salaries, employers could show that the lifetime income of the private sector is normally higher, because of the possibilities for development and fast promotion, , compared to government. Employers need to work together, especially in sectors, to overcome any misperceptions by Qataris: Perceptions and aspiration – Many young people believe that private sector roles are less meaningful than government roles. They are seen as lower status, harder work and less well paid. They believe that a government desk job is the ‘best career’. There are good arguments against these beliefs, but no one is giving them different messages in ways they can relate to. Employers often believe young nationals only want money and a ’big’ job title, but making the family proud, contributing to national success and feeling important are at least as important. Incorrect perceptions on both sides are stopping employers and young nationals from engaging effectively. Collaboration – Companies tend to work in isolation to address an industry wide problem. Companies, education institutions and government are not working closely enough together, a major contributor to the above two factors. This situation can be changed, for the benefit of private sector companies, Qataris and the nation. The report and presentations again provide practical help, tools and advice.

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Private Sector Employees should use the recruitment methods that Qataris use!
Young Qataris overwhelmingly prefer personal contact as the way to find a role in life. Employers focus on online or newspaper advertising.

The report recommends two approaches to deal with this divergence. Firstly, a variation of executive search can be used to identify specific individuals and to approach them through mutual contacts. This is like extending the personal network of the company. Secondly, ‘the world is our talent’ is a method OSC uses to identify and maintain contact with ALL the possible future candidates in a sector. It would be quite possible, for example, to maintain friendly contact and details of ALL 150,000 Qataris! Then, when your vacancy occurs, you know exactly who to approach – personally.

Enthuse and retain Valuable Qatari Talent
Given the scarcity of valuable Qatari talent, then retention is a key issue and a problem for many private sector employees. Our research, globally, shows that ‘intention to quit’ is most often due to poor leadership OR the individual not being enthused or engaged in his or her work.

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Diagnosis:
The process of quitting
Personal Personality (e.g. self esteem +ve) Congruence of job with interests (-ve) Status/seniority (-ve) General satisfaction with life (+ve)

We need to identify those at ‘thoughts of quitting’ stage

PUSH
Organisational Commitment

But how do we know who they are?

Organisational Reward/recognition Quality of supervision Work and social stimulation Conditions of work and environment

Job Satisfaction
Thoughts of searching Thoughts of quitting

Active search

Intention to quit or stay Action quit or stay

External Unemployment rates Economic situation Scarcity of/demand for skills Geography Demograpics

Probability of achieving alternative/ attractive employment

PULL

Pull (e.g. Search Consultants

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It is also the case that companies should not try and retain everybody – if a low-value individuals wishes to leave then they should be helped and encouraged! Enthused and engaged individuals, according to the research, are highly affected by their leaders or their own innate levels of enthusiasm. Luckily, our research shows that it is possible to help individuals to become more enthusiastic (in the whole lives, not just work) and it is possible to improve individual leadership. The report and presentation show how!

There is a need for coordinated initiatives
The report makes several key recommendations to maximize Qatari talent, in addition to the many government-led initiatives already underway. It suggests that employers themselves can take more effective action, for example in engaging earlier with academic institutions. The report identifies various institutions and initiatives that serve as sources of talent and recommends that these sources be used to create clear career paths and a steady flow of talent into the private sector. The report also cites the major disconnects between employers and young Qataris regarding the motivations and aspirations of nationals, the best ways to attract and recruit and the work preferences of Qataris. All of these disconnects are opportunities for more effective development of Qatari talent to reduce national unemployment, increase GDP and individual incomes and ensure Qatar’s competitive position in the global economy. We propose a number of recommended actions, detailed in Section 7 of the full report. Most recommendations can be achieved by companies themselves. Only a few need government involvement. We have tried to ensure that all of the recommendations are realistic and achievable, provide good ROI, support national strategy and fit within Qatari culture and policy outlook.
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The recommendations are written to apply to any employer in the private sector. It should be noted that several employers have implemented some of these recommendations, but we found no employers that had implemented more than 50% of them. In line with the practical nature of the recommendations, we have grouped them logically into ‘business process’ areas:   Increase the Talent Pipeline – youth engagement is a major issue, we have identified ways to improve this, to increase the overall talent pool and to inspire young nationals Attract the best Qatari Talent – employers need to build the private sector employment brand and ‘sell’ the attractions of working in the private sector in order to compete with the many perceived benefits of a government job. Matching the real motivations of Qatari nationals will also work wonders (employers are often mistaken about motivations). Recruit the best Qatari Talent – using different employment channels, finding new pools of talent, and focusing on the right Qatari will create more effective and efficient recruitment methods Develop Qatari Leaders – employers, education and government need to build more leaders, to provide this key capability for Qatar’s future development. Engage and retain the best Qatari talent – the demographic structure of Qatar means that talented Qataris will be in short supply and organizations will compete for talent. Qataris, as with other talent, must be fully engaged in order to maximize retention.

 

Much more detail on each of the above is provided in Section 7. In addition, we provide some suggestions for government-only actions at the end of the section.

Last word – a personal thank you from Professor William Scott-Jackson
This report was only possible due to the vision and commitment of His Excellency Sheikh Khalifa Bin Jassim Al Thani, Chairman of Qatar Chamber. In particular, I would like to thank Remy Rowhani, Qatar Chamber’s Director General and Ahmed Adel, our main Representative for Qatar Chamber. I would also like to thank all of the contributors whose time, openness and insights gave us such rich data and case studies. Finally, I thank my team for the hard work, long nights and heavy brainpower it took to produce the report. Debbie Whitaker for her expert interviews; Rida Kariem, Rob Mogielnicki and Scott Owens for trawling reams of data and producing incredibly clear analysis; Scott Druck for distilling the main points; and the team for the excellent national newspaper articles and radio coverage. This report has been a great team effort and I sincerely hope it makes a real difference.

Professor William Scott-Jackson Oxford, April 2014

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Appendix - Summary: Student and Employer Survey Findings
                       Business and Economics was the most popular subject area for students to study, followed by IT and Engineering Employers felt Qatari Nationals were most likely to be employed in Administration, Human Resources or Finance departments They felt they were least likely to be employed in Marketing and PR or Sales Career role models for young Qataris included His Highness Sheikh Hamad, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad Al Thani and Her Highness Sheikha Moza A career in Business Management was the most popular career aspiration for students, followed by a career in Engineering or IT The Qatar Foundation was the most popular organization to work for, followed by Ministry of Interior Doha was the most popular work location despite only a minority of students already living there The majority of employers and students felt Qatari Nationals preferred a Government job working in an office Students were more likely to feel they needed develop language, communication and management skills before entering the workplace Employers were more likely to feel students needed to develop scientific, technical, team work and commercial skills before entering the workplace Almost all Qatari students had undertaken activities to enhance their work experience in the last 12 months Over half had taken part in voluntary work or part time work and a minority had attended careers events or taken part in a work placements Employers and students relied heavily on personal and professional recommendations when it came to recruiting candidates or searching for jobs Over 8 out of 10 employers also posted job adverts online, although only 4 out of 10 of students looked for job opportunities online Over half of employers felt advertising a job online was the most effective resource when trying to fill a job vacancy for a Qatari National Students were more likely to feel they were motivated by challenge, contributing to society, influence, development and helping the country Employers were more likely to feel students were motivated by money, an easy life and pride Hence the majority of employers relied on extra bonus entitlement to retain Qatari Nationals Students were more likely to select responsibility, working overseas and building relationships as things they looked forward to when entering the workplace Employers felt students were more likely to choose organizations based on salary, work/life balance, prestige and seniority of the job title Around half of employers developed Qatari Nationals through regular appraisals and personal development plans Only a minority of employers allowed Qatari Nationals to learn from more senior professionals e.g. mentor schemes, secondments or job shadowing The majority of employers felt the main reason Qatari Nationals left their organization was to seek a better salary and benefits package
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Over half of students felt it would be difficult to find a job after leaving full time education, although almost all employers felt it would be easy Students were more likely to feel that the biggest difficulties would be a lack of language skills, lack of management skills and personal commitments Employers were more likely to find difficulties in knowing where to find candidates, competition from expats and government policies Employers felt employees in their organization were most satisfied with their salary entitlement, bonus entitlement and the level of workplace stress They felt they were least satisfied with professional development opportunities, job security and work/life balance Three-quarters of employers felt employees in their organization were somewhat satisfied with their career overall Over three-quarters of employers felt Qatarization initiatives had helped Qatari Nationals access more job opportunities and enhance their work experience Although two-thirds also felt Qatarization initiatives had worsened relationships between Qataris and Expats and 6 out of 10 felt they were too expensive and the money could be better spent elsewhere Less than half agreed Qatarization initiatives had helped Qatari Nationals to learn from more senior professionals in the organization

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