Doha, QATAR – Qatar Airways Chief Executive Officer Akbar Al Baker has praised the State of Qatar’s leadership in helping shape today’s youth to become leaders of tomorrow through strong education and building strong values.
Addressing graduates of the Qatar Leadership Academy (QLA), Al Baker said education was by far the single biggest asset in developing and guiding today’s youth.
“Leadership involves being disciplined, being focused and having drive and determination to succeed,” he said, reinforcing the guiding principles and vision of His Highness, The Emir, His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani.
“Teaching others of your experience helps build leaders of tomorrow. Passing on what you have learnt is by far the biggest personal honour of mine,” he added, speaking of his experiences of his education years.
“I adopted these philosophies well through my education years – many of which I spent away from home. Like you all, I have learnt the hard way in a college environment away from family and friends. But this taught me to be a tougher and stronger individual, standing head and shoulders above my peers and giving me the strength to be the person I am today.”
Delivering the keynote speech at the annual graduation ceremony of 12 cadets of the Qatar Leadership Academy, Al Baker said the graduates had demonstrated hard work, determination and dedication to your studies.
“That hard work over the years has paid off. You have all learned through rough and tough, through ups and downs…but these are all qualities today’s leaders need to survive in today’s challenging environment,” he said.
“Leadership means taking charge and being responsible for the people you lead; taking ownership and influencing others to understand you and your thoughts; and taking control and being in the driving seat.
“Leadership also means learning to be at the centre of attention – in good and bad times; representing the establishment on the national, regional and global stage; and having targets and vision.”
Added Al Baker: “And, most of all, striving to be the best to scale the heights to international success and being looked upon by your peers and to be able to strike long-lasting partnerships.
“Those of you graduating are entering a new path in life. By competing with oneself, you aim to be the best and strive to be better than what you were.
“By competing with others in your class, you set yourselves clear benchmarks to be ahead of the rest.”
Al Baker commended the work of Her Highness Sheikha Mozah bint Nasser Al Misnad in setting up the Academy under the auspices of the Qatar Foundation.
“Her Highness’ vision has been clear. To set up an Academy that excels in all it does to shape the leaders of tomorrow. There is no Academy of its sort anywhere in the region,” he said.
“The vision and foresight has been the guiding principles of the work and function of this wonderful establishment. And I have to commend the Qatar Leadership Academy for taking giant steps in help bringing out the best disciples we have today.”
Al Baker spoke of his leadership skills helping create a national airline with the strong vision and backing of The Emir, His Highness Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani.
“Qatar Airways has achieved the best of the best on the global stage and yet strives to win even more accolades. Our decision to continue growth stem from a strong management team dedicated to building the airline.”
Qatar Leadership Academy was founded in 2005, based on the vision of Her Highness Sheikha Mozah Bint Nasser Al Misnad.
With a strong team of international staff, the Academy is a member of the Qatar Foundation and aims to promote personal growth in young men by engaging them in an environment that promotes excellence in academics, leadership and sport.
The Academy’s principle foundations are to shape tomorrow’s generation today based on the ideals of honesty, integrity, ambition, excellence, courage, loyalty, determination, respect, cooperation and teamwork.
Qatar Airways’ Economy Class has been voted Best in the World in the annual Skytrax passenger survey, in which more than 16 million travellers were polled. Ranked Five Star for service and excellence by Skytrax, the independent aviation industry monitoring agency also voted Qatar Airways’ cabin crew Best in the Middle East for the seventh year running in 2009 and Best Airline in the Middle East for the fourth consecutive year. For more information, log onto www.qatarairways.com
Qatar Airways will operate a fleet of 110 aircraft by 2013 – almost double the existing size. Qatar Airways has ordered 80 Airbus A350s, 60 Boeing 787s and 32 Boeing 777s, with deliveries of the latter having started in November 2007. The airline is one of the customers of the twin-deck Airbus A380 ‘super jumbos’ with five on order and scheduled for delivery from 2012, by which time the New Doha International Airport would have opened. For more information, visit www.ndiaproject.com
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