Khalaf Al Habtoor, Founding Chairman, Al Habtoor Group welcomed Tarek El Masry, Managing Director – Middle East, McKinsey & Company at his office in November. El Masry was accompanied by Professor Dr Nada Mourtada-Sabbah, the Secretary General of The University Leadership Consortium (ULC) and the BUNYAN Initiative for the Capacity-Building of the UAE youth. McKinsey is assisting the ULC as knowledge partner in shaping the strategy of the University Leadership Consortium of the UAE and the BUNYAN Initiative for the capacity-building of UAE youth, which brings together leading academic institutions of higher learning and prominent figures from industry. McKinsey led an in-depth study on behalf of the ULC focusing on how the public sector, private sector and academic can collaborate to support the development of a knowledge-based economy in the UAE.
El Masry and Professor Dr. Nada briefed Al Habtoor about the outcome of the study, in which Al Habtoor had been the first private sector figure to provide insight and guidance on the initiative. They discussed the role of technology and its impact on the job market. El Masry said that educators need to embrace techonological advancements and adapt accordingly to ensure that jobseekers are armed with the right skillset for the future.
It is not just about having a good education. We need to bridge the gap and ensure that the government, academia and the private sector communicate so that our youth has the best chance in life.” He reiterated his stance that not everyone can be a CEO or an engineer. “We need to train our youth for a variety of jobs from a plumber to a corporate executive,” he said. “It is important that whatever they do they have good practical skills in life to complement their academic background.”