Hala Kazim

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Call her a counsellor, or an artist or an author, Hala Kazim is a multi-talented personality and a successful entrepreneur. Her venture, ‘Journey Through Change’ is dedicated to guiding people to improve their lives in positive way through different activities through counselling, workshops and team building hiking trips to name a few. Hala has been recognized as ‘Best Businesswoman in the UAE’ in 2013. Through her book ‘Hala and Change’ she has been a ‘hope’ to many. She is the first Emirati and Arab to devise such a transformational program for women.

What are the aspects considered while hiring women in an organization?

If you ask me, I always look for women who are open to learning new things and who don't take things personally. I believe, we are in a business environment where we learn from each other. If I were to hire, I would look for hardworking women who are willing to suggest, explore and discover new ways of delivering their tasks. These are the women who are best described as initiators.

 

How do you deal with unwanted attention at the workplace without spoiling relationships?

We emphasize that nobody should take things personally. Whenever I conduct an interview, I always inform the candidates that we are in a workplace that respects boundaries. If I have an observation towards an employee’s task delivery then I am addressing his/her task, I am not addressing the person or anything personal towards him/her.

What is your take on the corporate culture and coping with it?

I was fortunate to start my career at Etisalat. I have learnt a lot about the corporate culture and ways of being engaged. Today, my company’s values rely on consistency, transparency and un-casual environment. We as humans tend to work harder in a friendly and encouraging environment rather than the opposite. Every Thursday, for example, we host a lunch for the staff and enjoy eating our local food. Moreover, we express our thoughts and share our philosophies in a friendly environment.

How do you deal with failures and challenges at the workplace?

We learn from our experience. We analyze situations, study it, take our lessons and move on. 

 

What’s your inspiration and who’s your mentor in life?

I am grateful to my mentor Ms. Elaine Kinney for she helped me in finding myself. After many experiences, I found that my true passion is in providing social services to members of my community. This is why we are offering ‘Coffee with Hala’ sessions that are casual and private sessions where participants can express freely without any restrictions.

Prioritize – Husband, children, work, yourself

All of us need to learn to prioritise and put ourselves before anyone else. If we do not take care of ourselves, we wouldn't be able to take care of others. I have a very realistic expectation of relationships.

Can you put some light on the philosophies of different facets of life?

I always say that life is beautiful if we understand it. Life is simple, but we tend to complicate it for some reasons. My school focuses on being real and being the true person that you are to yourself and others. Our JTC trips encourage our participants to bring out the best version of themselves to mainly serve themselves, their families and society as a whole.

In this corporate world, what helps one to grow – looks, intelligence, personality, nationality or anything else?

I will rank it this way; personality, intelligence, looks and nationality. If you have the personality then you have the ability and the openness to learn.

What made you come out of home and start working?
My passion to help. I am passionate for community services. I utilize my skills and knowledge and incorporate it in all my services. That’s why we have recently launched a new service allowing participants to have a group discussion on a specific topic using our facilities.