Review and Reflection of a Seminar Essay

Total Length: 667 words ( 2 double-spaced pages)

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Leading Change" was the topic of discussion for the seminar delivered Dr. Saad Al-Barrak, the esteemed former CEO of Zain Telecom, and who currently serves as CEO of ILA Group. The university's president and the head of the MBA program introduced Al-Barrak to a barrage of applause from the fresh-faced and eager-eyed students in the audience. In fact, one of the main objectives of the seminar was to introduce the graduates to how to apply concepts like organizational change and leadership into real world scenarios. The audience was comprised of mainly university graduates, with a few faculty and staff members present as well. The seminar was held in a small auditorium, and about fifty people were in attendance. Many of us had opened our laptops so we could take notes. Focusing on the dual themes of leadership and change, the seminar remained highly relevant to the student body.

Building on examples from his tenure at Zain Telecom, Al-Barrak talked first about how he and his colleagues applied Kotter's 8-Step Model of Change to the organization. One of the most renowned organizational change models, Kotter's 8-Step model was undoubtedly familiar to most of the audience members, but instead of just reading case studies in textbooks, we now had the opportunity to listen to a real-life example of how the model is put into action in a company we are all familiar with. Al-Barrak spoke of the state of urgency that precedes change, and which is necessary to motivate the members of an organization to reconsider our processes and procedures.
The building of a coalition or team that can form strategic visions requires strong leadership skills, as we need to create a group of diverse individuals who can contribute different perspectives and points-of-view. Al-Barrak told us about the various challenges, pitfalls, and shortcomings he and his team experienced during the processes of change at Zain Telecom, and then helped his audience to apply what we had learned to envisioning change in our own organizations. Armed with his anecdotes and knowledge of the change process, I feel far more empowered to lead a group or "volunteer army" in my organization to institute meaningful change that generates real results.

Change is about seizing opportunities and driving an organization forward using its own momentum, and not allowing external forces to control how we choose to guide our own company.….....

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