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Posted 150 days ago Read More

Apple, Samsung or Huawei: Which One is More Relevant to the Golden Circle?

When Simon Sinek published his book Start with Why in 2009, he contemplated on the critical importance of having a clear answer to the question WHY and a strong commitment to defined goals, for companies and individuals who seek to achieve prosperity and success.

Sinek thoroughly analyzed and explained the value of this question, and presented his theory The Golden Circle to guarantee sustainable success and prosperity to the institutions that imply its concepts. But, there is still no research that studies and compares the integration and effect of this concept in competing companies across the globe.

During the last decade, we have witnessed pivotal changes and developments in smart communication technologies, and the emergence of giant companies like Apple, Samsung, and Huawei.

Has Apple maintained its answer to WHY?

Simon Sinek mentions Apple as one of the successful companies that had clearly understood and successfully integrated the concepts of the Golden Circle, for its founder genuinely believed in the objectives of the company.

Sinek described the company’s accomplishments explaining in detail the factors that made them possible.

Without a doubt, Apple challenged, innovated, and made a difference in the world. People trust this trademark and believe in the quality of its products, and would excitedly stand for hours in long lines to purchase one of their pricey high-end new releases.

Apple dominated the smartphone market but not for long. The company didn’t face any real competition until Samsung entered the playground and started producing rival smartphones registering growing revenues.

At times, Samsung had to face and deal with problems. But, through perseverance and excellence was able to withstand and produce devices that surpassed Apple in specifications and revenues as well.  

Anyone who is familiar with Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle will logically ask the following question: Has Apple diverted and lost vision of its WHY which inspired and transformed our technology and its applications?

We may not be able to give a definite answer to this question now, but we can observe the decline in the sales of Apple smart devices in contrast to the stable growth of Samsung customers community.

Samsung: The Flexible Titan

It is somewhat entertaining to watch the ongoing competition between Samsung and Apple which resembles the rivalry chase between Tom and Jerry.

Both companies need to keep this battle between them going so that the world continues to witness brilliant innovations in smartphones and their applications.

Samsung obliged Apple to rethink its WHY which Sinek assumed the company believed in, trusting that their consumers loved their products.

This can be a pretty reasonable interpretation.But, we also need to consider that after ten years of rapid technological evolution, and with the constant change in the needs and expectations of new generations, Apple may have to reevaluate its vision.

On the other hand, we cannot definitely claim that Samsung has applied Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle even though the company continues to increase its sales, revenues, and the number of its committed customers, transcending those of Apple.

Huawei: The Attainable Red Treasure

Probably, the founder and president of Huawei Ren Zhengfei, has read Sinek’s book “Start with Why” or at least heard of it or considered the concept of WHY when he set his company’s vision.

What if this company has a clear vision of its Golden Circle and is indeed challenging that in which Apple believes?

Huawei’s slogan“Building a fully connected, intelligent world” might reveal to us the answer Ren Zhengfei envisages for his company’s Golden Circle’s central question WHY.

Today, Huawei smartphones are possessed by millions of people, who may not share its vision, but are glad to be able to obtain high-end technology with an affordable price.

Mr. Zhengfei repeatedly proclaimed that Huawei is a competitive company with advanced technology and pioneering innovative approach.

Is the affordability of Huawei devices the only contributor to its triumph? The company, indeed, aims to make new state-of-the-art smart technology available for everyone with affordable prices.

There could be other reasons for the rise in Huawei’s shares in the stock market, in addition to the ideology of its founder who believes in everyone’s equal right to access technology.

Until Simon Sinek delivers a new study in this regard, let us meditate in a quote from his book “Start with Why” in which he states: “Knowing WHY is essential for lasting success and the ability to avoid being lumped in with others.”

Mousa Khijo

Posted 169 days ago Read More

Damsco Group’s Plans for Agricultural Development in Syria

According to collapse expert, Luke Kemp in his article published on “BBC” website civilization is defined as “a society with agriculture.”

Agriculture is one of the essential pillars of a state’s solid foundation. As the economy is the lifeline for any civilized entity on earth, and its pulse is nourished by agriculture, industry, trade and the investing of natural resources, it was crucial to focus on restoring the agriculture of a country thorn and exhausted by eight years of war and crisis.

Damsco Group led by its founder and CEO Mohannad Al Masre, established strategic restoration plans to revive the sector of agriculture in post-war Syria, by investing in the fertile Syrian land that was neglected during the bitter years of war, which affected not only the Syrian peasant and farmer, but the entire Syrian community with all its categories.

Syrian entrepreneur, Mohannad Al Masre’s plans, cover almost all industrious and service sectors in Syria, through the active involvement of Damsco Group’s different companies in the reconstruction of the country.

According to FAO reports, the Syrian agriculture sector suffered massive losses that reached 1.8 billion US dollars by 2013. By the end of 2015, the Syrian Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform estimated the total losses of the sector by 2 billion US dollars. These numbers reached 225 billion US dollars according to the Syrian Center for Policy Research (SCPR).

International reports of UN agencies show that 9.8 million people in Syria face food insecurity, and as many as 6.8 million live in extreme adversity, which negatively impacts the agricultural projects and the grocery trade market to a threatening extent.

On the other hand, according to the reports of the Syrian Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform, 7000 pine trees were planted in the country in 2017, and more than 3000 fruitful trees were planted in 2016.

Through its enterprises in the sectors of agriculture and the trade of main foodstuffs such as sugar, flour, olive and vegetable oils, Damsco Group upheld its approach in supporting the Syrian farmer regardless of the location of his land on the Syrian crisis map.

The strategy of Damsco Group was to take an equal stand to all sides, supporting the Syrian community without giving heed to the dividing classifications of the crisis, and purchasing the local agricultural produce for support price.

For the future, Damsco Group is considering the prospect of supporting agricultural projects in the governorate of Idlib, through the provision of affordable fertilizers and pesticides, as well as basic and essential agricultural equipment and machinery.

The Group is also investigating the best ways to encourage the Syrian youth to repatriate and to create opportunities for those who wish to invest in the sector of agriculture.

In this context, Damsco Group works on revitalizing the trade of Pistachio in the country, considering that growing this crop is widespread in Syria, which came in the fourth place in its production in the world after Iran, Turkey and USA (before 2011).

As growing “Aleppo pistachios” is centered in Aleppo, Hama and Idlib, Damsco Group provides safe land transportation services between the Syrian governorates and appropriates local trading markets for the crops in the Middle East.

Figure (1):

Figure (2):

Led by its chairman Mr. Mohannad Al Masre, Damsco Group also intends to support agricultural research for growing and cultivating Pistachio and help its production regions in Aleppo, Idlib and Hama to recover from the destruction and damage caused by the war.

In conclusion, as agriculture is the source of livelihood for humankind and civilizations, it is crucial that Syrians contribute to its development for the sustainable restoration of their country.

All the reports, numbers and tables in this article have been taken from the Syrian Ministry of Agriculture and Agrarian Reform (GFAR) and FAO. 

Mousa Khijo

Posted 185 days ago Read More

Aspects of the Reconstruction of Syria and the Return of the “People of the Camps”

“When you return to your home, think about others *** Do not forget the people in the camps.”

Mahmoud Darwish (Palestinian poet)

These words by the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish are the perfect prologue to our discourse about the Syrian refugees, and their return to the homeland.

A homeland that is like a sorrowful mother trying to regather her dispersed children, and heal her wounds that bleed painful memories. The Syrians need to forget the “The People of the Camps”, scattered like wounds all over the world, and afflicting the Syrians in all aspects of life.

We must not allow building a “Wall” that separates a household and puts a distinction between those who were forced by the war to seek refuge and suffer in foreign lands, and those who tasted the bitterness of its affliction in their homes.

Life requires a strong will to survive. We need to incorporate the energy of the Syrian youth everywhere to build the future of the country, diminishing discrimination and overcoming religious, sectarian, political or partisan divisions, and avoiding to classify people into “With” and “Against”.

Almost all Syrian entrepreneurs and businessmen stress the importance of this concept, as the best way to restore the years that were consumed by the destructive war, and reconcile all sides at the round table of the economy.

Syrian entrepreneur and chairman of Damsco Group in Dubai, Mohannad Fayez Al Masre, emphasized the importance of gathering all parties around a common point to reconstruct Syria, and support the return of the refugees so that they play their part in the renaissance of the country.

Yes, the economy comes first. You can’t start a project, or achieve advancement, without having the right economic base, to pave the way for a comprehensive renaissance project.

During his meeting with the “Qasioun Eagles”, the national team of Syria, on the occasion of the honoring ceremony of the team for participating in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, which took place in the Embassy of the Syrian Arab Republic in Dubai, Mr.  Mohannad Al Masre, pointed out the importance of gathering all Syrians and overcoming all divisions, to imply all efforts in the service of greater good and the success of future projects.

Many may question the feasibility of the calls made by international and humanitarian organizations regarding the future of the refugees, and their safe return to their country, and providing favorable conditions for them to contribute to its economic development.

However, these calls gained positive feedbacks echoed from some Syrian entrepreneurs, like Mr. Mohannad Al Masre, who visited the refugee camps in Hatay, Southern Turkey, in an initiative to provide essential aids to thousands of refugees, including food, clothing and heating appliances desperately needed in Turkey’s climate. This was achieved in cooperation with the Turkish Government and the Turkish Red Crescent Society.

At the same time, the Chairman of Damsco Group played an influential role in the Center of the Martyrs’ Sons in Syria in cooperation with the Department of Martyrs’ Affairs in Damascus, believing that it is impossible to find a conciliatory language between the Syrians without serious and sincere intentions.

To sum up, the Syrians must create an atmosphere of reconciliation and harmony, and realize that the revival of their country will not be possible if they neglect the “People of the Camps”.

Mousa Khijo

Posted 185 days ago Read More

How Can Emigrant Syrian Capitals Contribute to the Reconstruction?

The topic of reconstruction in Syria already transcended the premise of the political desire of supporters and benefactors, and the discussions have moved on to the field of economics and investments, to implement a comprehensive study and constitute right foundations for execution.

The question today is, what is the role of Syrian expatriate entrepreneurs in these discussions? And how the concerned governments plan to attract their investments and recruit the strong and valuable relationships they have in their countries of immigration? Hence, positively support and encourage the return of the refugees to Syria, who are a vital human force in the dynamics of the Syrian economy.

On the other hand, what is the sentiment and attitude of these Syrian entrepreneurs towards the reconstruction case and the issue of the return of the refugees?

Damsco trade group which is headquartered in Dubai, perceived that circumstances became favorable to execute development projects in most Syrian regions and contribute to the return of the refugees to their country.

Mohannad Fayez Al Masre, Founder & Chairman of Damsco Group, who visited Syrian refugee camps in Hatay, southern Turkey, collaborated with the Turkish Red Crescent and observed the condition of the refugees and provided aides of food, clothes and heating appliances to thousands. He also expressed optimism after perceiving their craving desire to return to their country.

Mr. Mohannad Al Masre collaborated with the Martyr’s Affairs Office in Damascus and significantly contributed to the Martyrs’ Sons Center. He stated that “Syria is on the threshold of a historical turn and a new phase, different from the last eight years of war. This requires from all Syrians, especially business entrepreneurs, to get involved and start reconstructing their country.”

He pointed that their group, in particular, will be a pioneer in executing many significant plans and projects in the country, which will create thousands of new job opportunities, encouraging Syrians to return, and limit dependence on external aids.

He also stressed that “It is essential to have sustainable safety and stability in Syria to start the projects” for which all sides stand liable.

Mohannad Al Masre called his fellow compatriots to be prepared to return to Syria and reconstruct the country, stressing that “Fellow entrepreneurs should be in the forefront of the delegation when sustainable stability is achieved in Syria.”

In his response to the inquiry about projects that Damsco Group plans to carry out in Syria, he emphasized the importance of “Centering these projects around the Syrian individual and developing human resources, thus, prepare more youth to enter the labor market.”

He also added: “Practically we started supporting rehabilitation and training centers in refugee camps in regions neighboring Syria, which are meant to expand to all Syrian regions in the upcoming stages.”

He stated that “There are professional rehabilitation centers affiliated to the Group inside and outside Syria, which aim to train Syrian individuals and integrate them to the labor market, taking a huge burden off their shoulders.”

There is also the problem of “Lack of professional labor, and to solve this problem, we created an internet platform to apply for free professional training courses.”

Mohannad Al Masre focused on “the importance of supporting agricultural projects, considering the fertility of Syrian lands, and the urge to abolish the need for external food aids.”

**Supporting Small Projects**

“As a Syrian entrepreneur, I see that small projects and domestic workshops have been a part of the Syrian culture for decades, and we should preserve and empower this culture, ensuring that it remains rooted in the Syrian mindset.”

He continues “We know that there is great need to develop the real estate sector in Syria, but we shouldn’t focus all efforts to support this sector only, as this will cause an imbalance, which will negatively affect the attainment of sustainable peace.”

He also indicated that “Obtaining the financial capital for reconstruction is insufficient without having the needed professional skills, and the war left a huge gap in human resources.”

The Syrian entrepreneur Mohannad Al Masre concluded saying: “I perceived a strong desire to return in Syrian expatriates”, and he considers this desire to be “Positive energy and motivation” for him as an entrepreneur, to initiate the beginning of a new phase in the country.

Let us remember that, Damsco Group was established in Damascus in 2004, and moved to UAE in 2011, and became one of the Syrian companies that actively contribute to the reconstruction of Syria, implementing the energy of the Syrian youth with its diverse spectrum.

Mousa Khijo

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Posted 75 days ago Read More

Joint Collaboration Agreement Between the UNHCR and Damsco Company

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) signed a joint collaboration agreement with Damsco to support the UNHCR efforts for the rehabilitation of educational buildings damaged by the war in Syria.

The agreement, which includes the commitment of Damsco company to provide financial support to the rehabilitation of a school in Rif Dimashq governorate, was signed in Damsco’s headquarter in Dubai in the presence of UNHCR’s Regional Private Sector Partnerships Manager for MENA region Mr. Husam Shaheen, and the CEO of Damsco Group Mr. Mohannad Al Masre.

In the context of the event, Mr. Husam Shaheen indicated that the UNHCR hopes this first collaboration with Damsco will be a strategic one and will aid the IDPs and the refugees, especially the Syrians, mentioning that the UNHCR seeks to engage more individuals and partners from the private sector who are capable of helping to cover the growing needs around the globe, especially in the Arab region. He stated that engaging private sector partners, especially individuals and companies, is a strategic necessity for providing humanitarian aides to the IDPs and the refugees.

On his side, Mr. Mohannad Al Masre expressed joy for his company’s partaking in the reconstruction of Syria after the war, saying: “I would like to express my delight for collaborating with the United Nations in projects that support and assist the efforts of the Syrian Government for the rehabilitation of damaged educational buildings. I emphasize that contributing to the reconstruction of Syria is everyone’s responsibility without exception. Therefore, we will rehabilitate a school in Rif Dimashq governorate in collaboration with the UNHCR who is cooperating with the Syrian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates. We chose to rehabilitate a school as the first step in this collaboration, because, the school is the primary institution where a person is established and the new generation is shaped. Thus, this will be the first step in the recovery process, and with God’s permission it will not be the last.”

Mr. Al Masre continued: “We will walk with single-minded determination implementing all effort to ensure restoring our homeland to an even better state than it was before the war, as we believe in the value of collaborative efforts for the rehabilitation of the country, which depends on the rehabilitation of the human individual.” And regarding the condition of the children in Syria Mr. Al Masre added: “Unfortunately, a large number of children in Syria are growing unschooled for reasons related to the war making them vulnerable to social hazards. Thus, our choice of this project that aims to rehabilitate the educational sector will guarantee the protection of the children from social hazards in secure schools that also help to increase the level of their self-awareness.”

During the signing ceremony, Mr. Al Masre explained that his last visit to the refugees’ camps was motivated by his deep concern and sincere care for his fellow Syrian nationals everywhere, determined by his resolution and belief in that the strength of Syria is in the unity of its land and its people. He added: “Our work in Damsco is based on a humanitarian vision that serves all the Syrians and gives top priority to the welfare of the country, and the humanitarian development projects that the company plans to undertake are not restricted to a region. The visits aimed to reveal the causes that prevent the return of the Syrian refugees to their homeland, and discover how the company can encourage and help them to return to their homes, through the execution of innovative development projects that create job opportunities and improve their living conditions.”

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Posted 115 days ago Read More

Lena Chamamyan: “In Damsco you genuinely feel that you are a Syrian”

Interview by Journalist Mousa Khijo – Damsco Media

The art never stands passive on the side block indifferent to the changes that affect the community, and touch the circumstances and the quality of life of the human individual.

Lena Chamamyan is an artist who is aware of her responsibility in bringing to light the critical issues and causes of her country.

In her new song “Yakhi Ana Souriyeh” Chamamyan demonstrated the trouble that some people go through in international airports just because they are nationals of certain countries, influenced by unfair prejudice and political conflict.

This is not the first song in which Chamamyan highlights humanitarian issues, but it is the first time her team decides to produce a video clip of the song, the scenes of which were shooted in four different cities: Damascus, Beirut, Istanbul, and Paris. This initiative also gathered the artist Lena Chamamyan with Damsco Events in a first collaborative project between them sponsored by Damsco. In the context of this collaboration, Damasco Media conducted a delightful interview with Lena Chamamyan.

There have been extensive talks about the theme of the song, but will Lena Chamamyan continue embracing such issues in her songs or this is going to remain a single initiative born as a result of your airport encounter?

“YakhiAna Souriyeh” is not the first song in which I convey an issue of this kind, I have two albums “Ghazl El Banat” and “Lawnan” in which I sang about the suffering of the refugees and the oppressed, compelled to entrust their trembling lives to the roaring sea to escape affliction and war. We see new issues such as this emerging in the world every day.

How did the audience react with this song? Initially, the first performance of the song was during the Tunisian summer concerts, and the reaction of the audience and the Tunisian media was awesome. Then came the tours in Europe and Canada with a wonderful reaction too. I realize that many people are touched by the song, because, it represents their situation as Palestinians, Iraqis, Libyans, Tunisians, and other Middle Eastern nationals.

This song is a bit different from your previous ones. Tell us about the technical challenges that an artist faces when adopting a new singing style.

Often, the crowds would like to trap the artist in a certain genre mould, and as soon as you try to escape this type, a heap of reactions onsets. Generally, I am not afraid of change; I even embrace it. “Yakhi Ana Souriyeh” is the first song in which I come this close to the folk genre, but, the musical style of my last two albums was much different from that of the previous ones: “Hal AsmarEllon” and “Shamat”. I will always try to rebel against myself and break the stereotypes imposed upon me either by myself or by others, at the same time, faithfully maintaining my standards in the music and the lyrics. 

Do you entertain the idea of writing and composing again?

Sure, as long as I am inspired. I also like working with other writers and composers as long as their words and music are after my own heart.

What can you tell us about your first video clip experience? How will you describe it?

Different, beautiful, and exhausting. I am a stage person, and I love the stage extravagantly. I also studied acting during my opera studies, so, I did not feel a stranger in front of the camera. Probably, the working team also helped me feel comfortable. I like it when the video clip adds to the taste of the song. I also adore stories; that is why I decided to record a video clip that adds an element to the song performance.

How would you evaluate your collaboration with Damsco Events especially that it is the first one you undertake together? The most beautiful thing in working with Damsco is the warmth and friendliness they embrace you with which makes you feel at home. This feeling of passion and warmth is absent in the western world. In Damsco you genuinely feel that you are a Syrian. I also sensed gentle compassion and noble thought much different from what is common in production companies today. It is delightful to meet people who give heed to the quality, and are not only interested in the profit. I wish they will continue to develop and flourish venturing out to try new things that are authentic and different.

Do you have plans for other collaborative projects with Damsco Events in the near future?

I would much like that. Many projects resemble me and Damsco, representing depth, authenticity, distinction, and innovation, as well as attaining an intimate relationship with the audience and winning the heart of the masses.

What do you think about the role of the Syrian entrepreneurs in supporting the Syrian refugees? Is it possible for large investment companies to have an influential role in humanitarian issues?

We appreciate anyone who can help afflicted humanity and rescue the oppressed. Those of us who are more fortunate, need to help bring some justice to our cause, for which the public opinion remains ignorant. As artists and entrepreneurs, we need to raise public awareness and introduce to the world who we are, what we went through, what we have lost, and what we can give. Arts may convey this to the world, while, entrepreneurs may support such arts. Of course, they can also help Syrians by creating decent job opportunities, for most Syrians are looking for more than mere financial aid, they are looking for opportunities to thrive, create, and achieve.   

Will the crowd of your GCC fans, specifically in the United Arab Emirates have an opportunity to attend your concert there in the near future?

I sincerely wish that. I am longing to meet them, and hope that a new collaboration with Damsco Events will regather me with the beloved in the Gulf and UAE.

Photography by Mahmoud Abu Ghalwa

Posted 136 days ago Read More

“Yakhi Ana Souriyeh” The Story of a Passport that brought together Mohannad Al Masre and Lena Chamamyan

The talented singer Lena Chamamyan went through exceptional procedures during a business trip from Paris to Tunisia just for being a national of Syria and carrying a Syrian passport. The same issue will be relevant when you replace the name of the country with Egypt, Iraq, Lebanon, Tunisia, etc.

This encounter inspired Chamamyan to write and compose her new song “Yakhi Ana Souriyeh”. She released a video clip of the song that was the idea of Chamamyan’s producer and manager Maher Sabra, directed by SaadKadiri and sponsored by Damsco Events, one of Damsco Group’s companies founded and directed by Syrian entrepreneur Mohannad Al Masre.    

With her beautiful angelic voice that reflects both purity and power, Lena Chamamyan’s songs submerge the human soul in an overwhelming aura of romance and serenity. For this, she is acclaimed and adored by myriads of enthralled hearts around the world.

Chamamyan did not record video clips before to maintain her artistic independence and freedom to choose until she was provoked by that encounter which gave birth to “Yakhi Ana Souriyeh”.

This is the first time Chamamyan releases a video clip and her first collaboration with Damsco Events.

Damsco’s sponsorship to this song aligns with its commitment to shed light upon the suffering of the Syrian people, using all possible means to expose and remind the general public of this issue.

The company sees that Lena Chamamyan’s song communicates not only the adversity of the Syrian nationals, but exceeds that to disclose the suffering of all nations and people afflicted by war, political conflicts, and crisis.

During a phone call with Damsco, Dr. Maher Sabra, the manager of the artist Lena Chamamyan, expressed his delight with this pioneering collaboration between Chamamyan and Damsco Events, hoping to undertake such projects again in the future, especially that both parties share a common standpoint from the humanitarian issues and the suffering in the Arab world.

Let us mention that the scenes in “Yakhi Ana Souriyeh” were shot in 4 different cities: Damascus, Beirut, Istanbul, and Paris, and its lyrics are written in Syrian and Tunisian dialects.

Mousa Khijo

Posted 147 days ago Read More

Journalist ZainaYazigi Praises Damsco Group’s Media Enterprise

On Wednesday, the “Arab Media Forum 2019” kicked off in Dubai World Trade Center in the city of Dubai under the theme “Arab Media: From Now to the Future.” The forum extends until 28/3/2019.

Syrian journalist ZainaYazigi conducted the opening session of the forum. During the session she hosted Fabrice Fries Chief Executive of Agence France-Presse (AFP) who spoke about the future of the News Agencies.

Damsco Group attended the forum’s opening session and had a delightful interview with the Syrian journalist ZainaYazigi, who talked about the future of journalism and the challenges that journalists and media professionals face in an era in which everyone has become – as Zaina puts it – a journalist.

Yazigi demonstrated some of the challenges they face as journalists saying: “Today, in this forum, we raised a challenging question that confronts journalists and media professionals. The question is: Do we still have a job? Is our work still relevant today when every individual is a kind of journalist? Everyone has access to the needed resources and technology and even high-quality photography devices, which makes this possible.”

On the other hand, Yazigi said: “Despite this fact, I believe that no party can eliminate the role of the other, but each one uses different tools and platforms. Can professional journalists adapt and enhance their coverage pace? Can they use their tools while maintaining the basic rules of good journalism? This is a serious issue, because, the media has a key role in the development of societies and humanity, introducing positive values, reproaching the guilty, and correcting the path. You can afford to dispense with appliances like the television, but, not with the journalist.”

When Damsco asked ZainaYazigi to evaluate the contribution of entrepreneurs investing in sectors far-off the media, she said: “Without a doubt, most large organizations have a financial problem. Some corporations establish media sites far less expensive than TV stations or media organizations. However, they need to have a clear vision and take heed not to turn into a short-lived fad or an advertisement billboard. They need to hire experts and adhere to the professional guidelines.”

In regards to the importance of caring for Syrian children and youth in refugee camps, and granting them the opportunity to convey their positive energy in a creative media environment, ZainaYazigi indicated: “For me, this is a central concern and a basic issue of utmost importance. At some point, I did not accept or believe in social media. However, with the emergence of the refugees’ issue, I realized the significant role that the social media played in connecting the refugees in the camps with each other, with the aid centers, and with the media, or just as an outlet for stress relief. They are even a great platform to channel the voice of their cry through Facebook, Twitter or Instagram forcing the ignorant media to pay attention and cover their stories. The issue of the refugees is a critical topic, especially that they master the use of the social media and know how to benefit from it. Nevertheless, they certainly need professional training and discovering those who are talented among them. A hindering problem that the refugee encounters today is the need to obtain the right to act freely in a certain environment, in addition to rehabilitation, until – hopefully – we find a solution to the issue of the refugees.”

As for the responsibility of Syrian financial capitals in supporting Syrian talents blooming in the camps, Yazigi advocates: “It can be a social investment too, not just a financial one.”

She highly esteemed the value of the media success of Damsco Gala organized by Damsco Events, one of the companies of Damsco Group founded and directed by the Syrian entrepreneur Mohannad Al Masre, and added: “I am always delighted to see an adequate Syrian capital. We have been accustomed to the coward capitals who invest in certain sectors avoiding projects that carry responsibility, confrontation or debut. I am glad to see a Syrian entrepreneur who is investing in this sector, for the Syrian capital, employs Syrian cadres. Thus, it highlights the Syrian issue, which in turn attracts the Syrian artist and the Syrian audience, especially in the absence of a powerful Syrian media capable of entering a real competition. Therefore, this venture has the potential to become a model in the Arab world.”

The Arab Media Forum gathered over 75 speakers and 200 media figures, scholars and politicians from across the Arab region and the world to discuss a wide range of topics including the relationship between the media and politics.

Mousa Khijo

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Posted 162 days ago Read More

Simon Sinek’s Most Important Question: Why?

Mohannad Al Masre – Chairman of Damsco Group
The most important and vital question in the progress of natural, human and social sciences is: “Why?” It is the key to all inventions, discoveries, and developments achieved by the human mind throughout history.

Simon Sinek conveys the importance of this golden question genuinely in his book “Start With Why” where he explains its importance for the prosperity of the professional journey of institutions and individuals, and “teaches the leaders and the institutions how to inspire others.”

In his famous book, he also touches the critical topic of the relationship between employees and their companies based on his brilliant theory “The Golden Circle.”

About this Golden Circle Sinek says: “The Golden Circle finds order and predictability in human behavior. Put simply, it helps us understand why we do what we do. The Golden Circle provides compelling evidence of how much more we can achieve if we remind ourselves to start everything we do by first asking why.”

I was particularly interested in Simon Sinek’s interpretation of the factors that connect the employees of a company with its leaders, and the non-chaotic organizational structure of the relationship between them, for he declares: “What all great leaders have in common is the ability to find good fits to join their organizations—those who believe what they believe.”

In another paragraph, he speaks about the influence and important responsibility of a company’s leader; I quote: “If the leader of the organization can’t clearly articulate WHY the organization exists in terms beyond its products or services, then how does he expect the employees to know WHY to come to work?”

I would like to conclude my presentation of this practical and entertaining book with a quote from its preface by Sinek: “This is a book for those who want to inspire others and for those who want to find someone to inspire them.”

The mentioned quotes are taken from the e-book “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill, Capstone; 1 edition (August 30, 2010).

Posted 162 days ago Read More

The Legendary Book of Napoleon Hill

Mohannad Al Masre – Chairman of Damsco Group
I advise the enthusiastic and ambitious youth entrepreneurs to read the book “Think and Grow Rich” by the American author Napoleon Hill.

The book offers more than a way of getting rich or increasing one’s wealth. Napoleon Hill gives valuable tips and pieces of advice for those who pursue prosperity and success, presenting real-life stories of people who fulfilled their call and achieved their goals, sometimes, after patiently enduring a lengthy struggle.

Without expressing further opinions about this wonderful book, I quote the following passages from the book for the readers to meditate on:

“He had nothing to start with, except the capacity to know what he wanted, and the determination to stand by that desire until he realized it.”
●“One of the most common causes of failure is the habit of quitting when one is overtaken by temporary defeat. Every person is guilty of this mistake at one time or another.”
●“Before success comes in any man’s life, he is sure to meet with much temporary defeat, and, perhaps, some failure.”
●“More than five hundred of the most successful men this country has ever known, told the author their greatest success came just one step beyond the point at which defeat had overtaken them.”
●“Knowledge will not attract money, unless it is organized, and intelligently directed, through practical plans of action, to the definite end of accumulation of money.”

The mentioned quotes are taken from the e-book “Think and Grow Rich” by Napoleon Hill, Capstone; 1 edition (August 30, 2010).

Posted 185 days ago Read More

“The Art of War”; The Warfare of a Successful Businessman

Mohannad Fayez Al Masre – Chairman of Damsco Group

“The Art of War” is not merely a book to display on your library shelf or decorate one’s desk… In addition to being an interesting source for politicians and military leaders, it can be an excellent reference for investors and entrepreneurs as well.

According to the preface of the Arabic publication of the book, some of the largest global companies rely on it as a reference, for the wise reflections and pieces of advice given by “Sun Tzu” more than two thousand years ago, which are still taught and effective in all areas of life (social, economic, political, commercial, sports, etc.). Despite being centuries old Chinese scroll, “The Art of War” continues to be translated and published in different languages throughout the world.

This book contains many “Golden Keys”, which guarantee success and prosperity to those who apply them in their institutions and relationships. My best advice to young entrepreneurs who seek to be eminent in their field are based on quotes from this book:

  • Do not reuse a previous tactic that brought you victory, create a new one or alter it unexpectedly.
  • Understand your work: Diligently seek to learn about events and news related to your work, speak to those who have attended conferences, or those who acquire experience and knowledge you lack. Do not look back.
  • Whatever applies to war, applies to daily life as well.
  • Take clear and right decisions: When you realize that your decision was wrong, dare to change it soon, before it is too late.
  • Be an example to others: Your subordinates consider your conduct a pattern to follow. Your acts and moral ethics have greater effect than instructions and orders you give.
  • When you are desperate, you must fight.

Sun Tzu – Art of War, Dar AlkitabAlarabe Publishing – Damascus 2010

Posted 196 days ago Read More

My Journey with Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum in “My Story: 50 Memories from 50 Years of Service”

Mohannad Al Masre – Founder & Chairman of Damsco Group

My experience with the book “My Story” is a pleasant one, with its narration of human relations, life, power, and the critical keys to the development of the state and its economy.

Rich in history, the book records the transformation of an ‘empty desert Emirate’ into one of the ‘smartest capitals’ in the world. It was an exciting journey of reading filled with the depth of institutional vision, the burden and responsibilities of a statesman; a man of excellence and a seasoned politician with great economic intellect, who focused on work, planning and innovation, the main pillars of any successful project. This is one of the most inspirational books I have read so far.

The book is an inspiring oasis for generations to come, giving them hope and encouragement to be brave and make bold decisions in all walks of life; “Paving the way to knowledge and life through experience, lifelong learning, insight and reflection.”

I eagerly read the pages of this book, learning about the important historical facts about Dubai, its development, the establishment of the Union, and the pivotal turns in its history of becoming the brilliant global economic power it is today.

The city never ceases to amaze me, the only scientific explanation for the ‘Dubai phenomenon’ is the eloquent mind that built this futuristic city. As a Dubai-based entrepreneur,I am fascinated by the ‘economic intellect’ and insight of the rulers of Dubai, discovering alternative economic resources for the wealthy emirate other than oil.

Regarding the economic challenges that Dubai faced in the early 20th century, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid says in Chapter 8 “185 Years of Searching for Dubai”: “That crisis cut off the lifeblood of the economy, bur Dubai never stopped looking to its future and diversifying its trade. Our economic crisis deepened with World War II, but so did our determination to find alternative sources of trade and revenue.”

A passage caught my attention in which Sheikh Mohammed spoke about the importance of trade for developing Dubai’s economic cycle, stating: “We continued to invest for the future and to focus on what we have always done best: trade in general, and servicing re-export markets in particular.”

Many thinks that the free market system is a recent one adopted during the last few decades in Dubai. However, Sheikh Mohammed indicates: “In 1902, after the Iranian administration in Bandar Lengeh raised taxes for merchants on that side of the Gulf, Sheikh Maktoum abolished all customs duties on imports, opened up Dubai’s port and welcomed all traders. As a result of adopting this free trade policy, goods flowed into and out of the city’s port and in a short period Dubai became the Gulf’s re-export hub. A significant number of major merchants trading in the Gulf area soon moved to Dubai and made it their regional headquarters.”

Sheikh Mohammed also sheds light on the legacy of economic intellect among the old sheikhs who ruled Dubai. In the same chapter, he writes: “My grandfather’s legacy was to ensure economic diversification so that Dubai would never again rely on just one source of income. That principle was something my father, Sheikh Rashid, adopted through the construction of ports, the expansion of Dubai Creek, the development of free zones and the airport, as well as driving the launch of new economic opportunities, such as aluminium smelting.”

“It is a legacy passed down through my family. It is the guarantee that the lessons of our arduous journey over the past 185 years haven’t been taken for granted.” This is one of the most valuable tips for entrepreneurs in this book, to help them develop and expand their investments and deliver successful projects.

Despite focusing on the political aspect and the reinsertion of the government, Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid indicates: “No one is born perfect; we all need the mind and souls of others to complete our own. Everyone must continue learning no matter how much he or she achieves. A leader needs the counsel of others to learn more, and to win their support for new plans and projects. Only an ignorant person turns a blind eye to advice.” This quote is taken from the twelfth chapter “Three Lessons from the Dawn of Rashid’s Rule” and it perfectly applies to the world of economics and business. Executives and heads of companies should follow this enlightened thought in management and relationships.

“The creation of leaders is the main enabler of development and further progress.” This is one of many robust insightful quotes about developing human resources and engaging them in serving the nation.

Focusing on competent human resources, especially young ones, and engaging them in both private and government sectors is essential for the development process.As Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid says in his book: “took great care to invest in the ambitious young people who surrounded me throughout the various stages of my career.”

Most entrepreneurs are preoccupied with the idea of appointing the right cadres in the right positions. But executives and department heads are also concerned for creating dedicated teams loyal to the vision of the institute. I quote from the same chapter: “The leader we create are the eyes through which we see, the hands with which we build and the creative energy we add to our own to realise our vision.”

In chapter 36 “Collaboration” Sheikh Mohammed expressed his belief in the importance of investing in the youth and its energy, narrating an interesting story that occurred during a GCC meeting in early 1980s: “I was sad, because, we didn’t handle our wealth effectively, we didn’t trust the ideas of our youth, and didn’t dare to try innovative approaches.” (page 207)

Far from the world of digits and finance, I was captivated by the thinking of Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid in Chapter 49: “I do not rely on personal efforts in humanitarian work, but rather on institutional efforts, for they are sustainable and have more powerful and enduring impact.”

I was impressed by the fact that the Sheikh focused on the human character; “When asked why I launched Arab Hope Makers, I said we are searching for the human in every one of us.”
Finally, I advise everyone, regardless of specialty, work or interests to read the book “My Story: 50 Stories in 50 Years” by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, as it is a book of great wisdom and invaluable insight.