Life gets better after 50 and mentoring is part of this happiness

Interesting article from The Guardian.

Jonathan Rauch, author of The Happiness Curve, was relieved to find an explanation for his gloom – academics say adulthood happiness is U-shaped. Please see full article here.

Life gets better after 50: why age tends to work in favour of happiness.

Iran – The deal what comes next?

I had the opportunity to visit Tehran with Ali Borhani in February 2015 prior to the agreement to lift the sanctions on Iran. We now have the prospect of Iran becoming “open for business”. What is clear is that when the markets open, market entry will be extremely difficult unless you have the guidance and advise of a well qualified trusted advisor. I have attached a really well documented and readable article. I hope you enjoy it.

The Deal and What Comes Next Esquire October Issue 2015

How to Forge a Mentoring Relationship

How to Forge a Mentoring Relationship.

–by Patrick Cook-Deegan, syndicated from Greater Good,

Intergenerational mentoring carries many benefits, but it’s becoming more and more rare. Here are some tips for renewing an age-old practice.

When I was in high school, I had a lot of big questions.

I wanted to know if it was possible to devote your life to your work without compromising your integrity. I wanted to know how to be a powerful man without being a jerk. And I could not understand why so many adults seemed to be okay with the systematic injustices that plagued my hometown.

I read dozens of biographies as a teenager, in search of some answers. But for many years, I did not feel safe talking to an adult about any of this, for fear of being told I was crazy. I craved a deep connection with someone from an older generation who would hear my questions, sympathize with my confusion, and perhaps even set me on a path toward some satisfying answers.

Fortunately, the father of one my best friends took an interest in me. He was a quirky guy: He had messy gray hair, always smiled, and lived in a funky house in the woods. He was curious and caring toward me without ever being overbearing or judgmental. He seemed different from the other adults. He seemed at peace with himself, his family, his work, and the world. As a young person I understood that he had something that I wanted: a sense of belonging, of being at home in the world. My relationship with my friend’s dad opened up a whole new world for me outside the confines of traditional suburban Maryland.

Read full article here.

Family Businesses Need Entrepreneurs For Long-Run Success

Family Businesses need to create second/third generation entrepreneurs. Can Founders becoming great mentors?

Tony Bury

Family Businesses Need Entrepreneurs For Long-Run Success

In the world of family business, the entrepreneurs we celebrate are usually founders of companies. These clever, hardworking individuals identify a good business opportunity, scrape together some money and loyal employees, and start a company that takes off. The heirs of the founder and later generations of the family are supposed to take care of and grow the founder’s creation; they are not expected to be entrepreneurs themselves. Even attempting to reinvent the family company can be seen as disloyal by the family.

This constraint often kills the family business.

We think it is time to reassess the importance of entrepreneurs for not only the continuation of the family company, but for the continued success of the family itself.

Managers inside your core business who think like entrepreneurs (we call them intrapreneurs) can identify opportunities that move your family company into new lines of business, rejuvenate the founder’s legacy, and put the enterprise on a new growth path. Entrepreneurs (typically family members) working outside the business but with family financial support can keep talented kin inside a broader “family enterprise,” diversify business activities, and build assets.

Families that want to stay in business for another generation don’t have a choice except to encourage entrepreneurship in and out of their company. There are business reasons and family reasons why we think this is true.

The Business Reasons

In today’s competitive environment of rapid technological change and quickly evolving industries, it doesn’t pay to become too attached to current lines of business or methods for serving customer needs. You need to regularly change what you make and sell, and probably how you make and sell it. You must be nimble and, as certain lines of business wane, be able to identify growth opportunities in and out of the core industry and pursue them in experimental, cost-effective ways. For that, you need the risk-taking, resourceful attitude of an entrepreneur.

Read full article here

Source: Forbes

A Conversation with The Honorable David Miliband

David Milliband has always impressed me greatly. His transition into the world of NGO’s speaks volumes for his humanity. But listening to the conversation he had with the World Affairs Council confirms to me that we need him back in politics. What a huge mistake the labour party made?

A Conversation with The Honorable David Miliband
by World Affairs Council

Source: World Affairs Council

John Oneil’s “Future of Learning”

John Oneil has always been a visionary. Here he shares his vision of the “future of learning”.

Founders, fathers and daughters

Having the great pleasure of working with my daughter “Kat” made me greatly appreciate this article!

Founders, fathers and daughters
By Chris Tighe

Conversation flows effortlessly between John Elliott and Pamela Petty, as they talk in the boardroom at Ebac, a family-run manufacturer in north east England. They pick up each other’s points and explore tangential thoughts in easy exchange.

It is like listening to a family chat. And in a sense it is, because Mr Elliott and Ms Petty are father and daughter, as well as leading a team that aims to treble Ebac’s £20m an­nual turnover by reviving UK production of chest freezers and washing machines.

“Your strengths are more of an engineering background, mine are more business [and] numbers,” says Ms Petty, 46-year-old managing director and financial director, to Mr Elliott, 70-year-old chairman and founder. Product development is where Mr Elliott’s strengths lie, she says. “We think the best ideas come from dad.”

Mr Elliott, whose technical expertise made Ebac an early entrant into the dehumidifier and water cooler sectors in the 1970s, looks pensive: “I recognise I’m not a very good manager. I don’t finish things off.”

Ms Petty says: “I’ve never worried about whether somebody thinks I’m better than him or he is better than me. We’re different.” The age gap means he will always be more experienced but, she says, “there are probably some things I understand better”. She pauses, then says: “I can’t think of them.” But her father knows her strengths: “Your performance, your delivery,” he chips in.

Mr Elliott’s other daughter, Amanda Hird, arrives. As operations director she too spent years working her way up to senior roles at Ebac. “There are people who think you’re there because of who you are, [so] you have to build respect,” she says.

“Father & Son”, a familiar combination all over the world, has existed for centuries. “Father & Daughter” is rare. Yet, in recent years, fathers and daughters working together, sometimes with daughter eventually succeeding father, has become more common. This, says Denise Kenyon-Rouv­inez, a professor and co-director of IMD business school’s family business centre, is the case around the world.

Read full article here

Source: Financial Times, 01 July 2014

The Brain Regain by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

An interesting article written by HH Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Dubai.

It is insightful as it clearly sets out the strategy for the UAE and in so doing so highlights the difference with many other countries in the MENA region.

Enjoy reading…

The Brain Regain
by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum

DUBAI – In 1968, while studying at the Mons Officer Cadet School in the United Kingdom, I needed to visit a hospital. There I met a doctor who, to my surprise, spoke fluent Arabic. I learned that he was new to the UK, so I asked if he intended to stay long or return home. He replied with an Arabic saying that translates as: “My home is where I can eat.”

That doctor’s words stayed with me for many years, because they underscored the contradiction between our idealized view of “home” and the harsh realities of life that push talented people to leave their homes.

The doctor was a classic case of the “brain drain” phenomenon that has afflicted developing countries for decades. These countries spend scarce resources educating doctors, engineers, and scientists, in the hope that they will become engines of prosperity. Then we watch with dismay as they migrate to the West, taking with them the promise of their talent.

Click here to read the full article…

Source: Project Syndicate

Lessons learned in his first 80 years by Byron Wien of Blackstone

Thoroughly enjoyed reflecting upon how true so many of these insights are.
Great reading for all young and old people !

Enjoy reading…

Blackstone’s Byron Wien Discusses Lessons Learned in His First 80 Years

Iran: The largest and most enigmatic ‘Last Frontier Market’

By Ali Borhani
March 28, 2014

Global markets are on another roller-coaster ride, amid a new wave of overpriced technology valuations.

At the same time the Chinese will be building nuclear power plants for United Kingdom. Their National Development and Reform Commission is already preparing guides for Chinese investors with country specific tips on how to invest in the UK.

Private Equity firms are outpacing one another and running to open shops in Myanmar, companies are now talking about the investment opportunities in Ethiopia and the growing middle class in Addis Ababa, and even Cuba is beginning to approve foreign direct investment.

Five years ago many of these developments would have sounded far-fetched. But as we all know, the passage of time often brings new perspectives to international and economic relations.

Take Iran, for instance, for so long a pariah in the international and diplomatic community. Only 18 months ago many multinationals did not even dare to bring up the name of Iran, even using terms such as ‘TOMC’ in internal memorandums: The Other Middle Eastern Country.

For this country, the tide is now turning very quickly indeed, and instead of problems, governments, entrepreneurs, traders, marketers and their brands see a wealth of opportunities in this huge and untapped frontier market.

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