Al­ghanim In­dus­tries holds ne­go­ti­a­tion work­shop for high-po­ten­tial work­ing women With spon­sor­ships from Gulf Bank and KIPCO

Kuwait Times - - LOCAL -

KUWAIT: The ‘Women in the Cor­po­rate World Se­ries’, a se­ries of con­fer­ences and work­shops de­signed to of­fer women de­vel­op­men­tal op­por­tu­ni­ties that sup­port their ca­reer as­pi­ra­tions, was launched this Mon­day at the Chair­man’s Club, in KIPCO Tower. Or­ga­nized by Al­ghanim In­dus­tries, and spon­sored by Gulf Bank and Kuwait Project Com­pany (Hold­ing) - KIPCO, the event was at­tended by ex­ec­u­tives from the par­tic­i­pat­ing com­pa­nies and over 40 high-po­ten­tial work­ing women.

The day in­cluded an im­pact­ful work­shop en­ti­tled ‘Negotiating with Ex­ec­u­tive Pres­ence’ led by Har­vard Busi­ness School Pro­fes­sor Brian J Hall, who en­gaged the par­tic­i­pants in top­ics such as ef­fec­tive ne­go­ti­a­tion prac­tices and es­sen­tial skills to en­hance ex­ec­u­tive pres­ence. Pro­fes­sor Hall is Head of the Ne­go­ti­a­tion, Or­ga­ni­za­tion and Mar­kets Unit at HBS and cur­rently serves as an ad­vi­sor to Al­ghanim In­dus­tries.

Stud­ies have shown that women have ex­tremely ef­fec­tive com­mu­ni­ca­tion skills, and they tend to ex­cel at ne­go­ti­a­tion when it per­tains to their com­pany and co­work­ers. Women’s ne­go­ti­a­tion abil­i­ties, how­ever, are not nearly as ef­fec­tive when it comes to negotiating on their own be­half. In 2015, New York City-based com­pany, Levo, sur­veyed over 10,000 women on ne­go­ti­a­tion and found that “when start­ing a job at a new com­pany, 83 per­cent of women agreed that it is im­por­tant to ne­go­ti­ate their salary, but 63 per­cent felt un­com­fort­able negotiating any­thing.” This is one of the main fac­tors that leads to in­equal­ity in pay and up­ward ca­reer mo­bil­ity.

The open­ing event fea­tured speeches from in­spi­ra­tional busi­ness lead­ers such as Vice Chair­man and Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer at Global In­vest­ment House, Maha Al-Ghu­naim and Chief Hu­man Re­sources Of­fi­cer at Al­ghanim In­dus­tries, Ge­orge Lam­bros.

Com­ment­ing on the event, Ge­orge Lam­bros said, “Al­ghanim In­dus­tries is pleased to be spon­sor­ing this se­ries, and in par­tic­u­lar, we’re ex­cited about to­day’s in­au­gu­ral ne­go­ti­a­tion work­shop. Negotiating skills are crit­i­cal to suc­cess in so many facets of the cor­po­rate world, and it’s won­der­ful to have Pro­fes­sor Hall here to­day to con­duct this work­shop for these very tal­ented ca­reer-minded women. Al­ghanim In­dus­tries is com­mit­ted to sup­port­ing ini­tia­tives that help work­ing women suc­ceed in the cor­po­rate world, and we look for­ward to or­ga­niz­ing fu­ture events in the se­ries.”

Gen­eral Man­ager for Hu­man Re­sources at Gulf Bank, Salma AlHa­j­jaj said, “Em­pow­er­ing women and achiev­ing gen­der par­ity re­quire in­ten­tional and de­lib­er­ate poli­cies. At Gulf Bank, we are com­mit­ted to these strate­gic goals and are fo­cused on nur­tur­ing our next gen­er­a­tion of lead­ers. Over the last sev­eral years, we have been in­vest­ing in in­creas­ing the num­ber of women we have in mid­dle and up­per man­age­ment. As a re­sult, we have seen a def­i­nite in­crease in the num­ber of fe­male em­ploy­ees tak­ing on lead­er­ship po­si­tions in the Bank. Fol­low­ing on the suc­cess­ful joint con­fer­ence last May, this Women in the Cor­po­rate World Se­ries pro­vides an op­por­tu­nity to help women build skills nec­es­sary for their ca­reers.”

Group Com­mu­ni­ca­tions Di­rec­tor at KIPCO, Eman Al-Awadhi said, “We are de­lighted to con­tinue to work along­side Al­ghanim In­dus­tries and Gulf Bank to help women in the cor­po­rate world suc­cess­fully reach lead­er­ship po­si­tions. The rip­ple ef­fect of men­tor­ship in­cludes tak­ing on more re­spon­si­bil­i­ties at work, mak­ing new con­tacts that can gen­er­ate new busi­ness, and in­creas­ing self-con­fi­dence. We hope that the ‘Women in the Cor­po­rate World Se­ries’ will serve to sup­port as­pir­ing women as they climb the lad­der.”

Ghu­naim also re­flected on this ef­fort, adding that “I ap­pre­ci­ate the ini­tia­tive by Al­ghanim In­dus­tries and the team’s ef­forts to ed­u­cate, em­power and mo­ti­vate women and the pos­i­tive ef­fects this ini­tia­tive will have on the cor­po­rate world. The sub­ject of em­pow­er­ing women is very close to my heart and is a ma­jor ti­tle in our so­cial re­spon­si­bil­ity strat­egy.”

Women from over ten com­pa­nies in­clud­ing Price­wa­ter­house­C­oop­ers (PwC), Oore­doo Kuwait and Ernst & Young came to­gether for this con­struc­tive three-hour work­shop. Pro­fes­sor Hall kept par­tic­i­pants en­gaged by mix­ing his lec­ture with in­te­grated case stud­ies and in­ter­ac­tive ne­go­ti­a­tion as­sign­ments.

The day was ex­tremely ben­e­fi­cial and cul­mi­nated with a cer­ti­fi­ca­tion cer­e­mony for par­tic­i­pants. The par­tic­i­pants left the work­shop with new ne­go­ti­a­tion tools they could put into im­me­di­ate prac­tice at their re­spec­tive work en­vi­ron­ments.

This event builds on the suc­cess­ful con­fer­ence held this past May, en­ti­tled “Women in the Cor­po­rate World: Breaking the Glass Ceil­ing”. Hosted by Al­ghanim In­dus­tries and Gulf Bank, sup­ported by KIPCO, the widely at­tended con­fer­ence fo­cused on ad­dress­ing the chal­lenges women face in the cor­po­rate work­place. These events are part of Al­ghanim In­dus­tries’ sus­tained ef­forts to high­light the sig­nif­i­cance and ben­e­fits of gen­der di­ver­sity in the cor­po­rate world, and to sup­port ca­reer-ori­ented women in or­der for them to reach their full po­ten­tial in the work­place.

Women em­pow­er­ment Pos­i­tive ef­fects

Group photo of the par­tic­i­pants.

Maha Al-Ghu­naim de­liv­ers her speech.

(From left) Brain Hall, Salma Al-Ha­j­jaj, and Ge­orge Lam­bros.

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