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Leadership As It Should Be!


Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed was born on November 14, 1982. He is the second eldest son of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai. He began his schooling in Dubai at the Rashid School for Boys and then continued his studies in the United Kingdom. There, he graduated from Sandhurst and later attended the London School of Economics. Sheikh Hamdan, also known as “Fazza”, loves poetry. “Fazza” represents the poetic identity and personality of Sheikh Hamdan. The word “Fazza” in the Emirati dialect means a person who hurries to assist others and stands by them. His poetry is intended to fill people’s hearts with happiness and help alleviate their sufferings by expressing their expectations, hopes and revealing the values and deep-rooted principles of the UAE people. Sheikh Hamdan has been greatly impressed by his father’s passion for poetry. Sheikh Hamdan has always been present at his father’s Majlis which is attended by poets from the UAE and other countries. This has given Sheikh Hamdan the chance to be exposed to several experiences shared by these poets, which proved to be of great help in identifying his own style. His early poetic experiences were encouraged by his father who used to listen to his poems and guide him accordingly, the same way it was for several other poets. His poems are mainly romantic, patriotic and about his family. He publishes his poems under the name “Fazza”. Sheikh Hamdan also has a passion for camels, cars, and skydiving. Horse riding is another passion for the young leader. “I am from a family that adores horses. Therefore, there is a strong spiritual connection between me and equestrianism which is a part of my everyday life. I ride horses whenever an opportunity presents itself because it gives me the sense of absolute freedom. I also love to dive in the Gulf; particularly, in the Emirate of Al Fujairah and the Sultanate of Oman. I regularly swim and walk at any time of the day. I also used to play soccer sometimes. However, my busy life has turned me from being an enthusiastic player into a mere fan”


Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum has learned the love of UAE and Dubai from his father, grandfather, and the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nehayan. He is a young leader deeply rooted in the culture of UAE while portraying the right image of modern leadership. A graduate of Dubai Rashed School for boys, Dubai School of Government, Sandhurst, and London School of Economics, Sheikh Hamdan has all the attributes for becoming future leader: Sheikh Hamdan was appointed as the chairman of the Dubai executive council in September 2006. On February 1, 2008, he was named as the hereditary prince of Dubai. He is also the head of the Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Establishment for Young Business Leaders, and the president of the Dubai Sports Council and the Dubai Autism Centre. Few of his achievements include introducing the unified Government, introducing performance management system to all employees in different institutions and departments of the Dubai Government, in all categories and positions, and broadening of the reach of the award categories of the fourth edition of the Dubai Award for Sustainable Transport (DAST) to cover all the UAE, following three editions restricted to Dubai. The DAST currently comprises five key categories including Special Needs Transport category, Mobility Management, Conserving the Environment, Transport Safety and School Transport. He instructed all local government entities to begin implementation of the new system of bonuses and increments to develop a modern work environment that stresses on merit and qualification. In 2007, he issued decree no. 38 establishing the Dubai Schools Inspection Bureau within the Knowledge and Human Development Authority in Dubai (KHDA). As a leader himself, he launched of ‘Al Fursan’, a one year • leadership programme for a select group of judges and department heads of Dubai Courts.


When HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum launched “Smart Government” programme, it was the culmination of vision and forward thinking of UAE leadership. Smart Government, which is to take UAE egovernment a step higher, shows just how advanced and sharp UAE business vision is. And to have Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Al Maktoum launch this initiative says a lot about the next generation of UAE Leaders.

A man of many talents and interests (poet, horse rider, diver, sky diver etc) he has a keen eye for business development. One of the areas that needed focus was Islamic banking and finance, a main element of the finance and business sectors in the Gulf and UAE. In January 2013, HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice-president, prime minister and Ruler of Dubai, issued a decree giving Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, the responsibility to oversee the development of the Islamic economy sector in the emirate, with the aim at making Dubai capital of Islamic economy. Islamic economy has a vast array of spectrums under it. From Shariah-compliant financial services and products that cater to demands of millions of customers (almost 25 % of share of the banking market in the six countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council, according to an estimate by Ernst & Young) to Halal products and services (market estimated to grow to almost $ 8 billion by 2020), this is a new world for business. 

Such is the vision behind the success of Dubai: innovation. The development of Islamic economy sector in Dubai is a brilliant idea of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai. Sheikh Hamdan acknowledges such a huge task and stresses on the innovation behind the idea: “The innovative vision of Sheikh Mohammed compels us to think in different and innovative ways so as to achieve the goals put forward by Sheikh Mohammed. They oblige all institutions and departments operating in Dubai to work as a team.” If Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid thinks Dubai should become the capital of Islamic economy, then we must think deeply at such a decision: when we have young leaders such as Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed, who firmly believes in innovation and that nothing is impossible, when we have vast business exposure and experience, modern infra-structure, and being the center of regional and world trade, when we have wisdom and determination, then, the impossible becomes possible.


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