Ali Aboutaha was born in Lebanon, grew up and studied in Germany, and moved to Dubai 11 years ago. He is currently running his own business in Dubai and is representing a couple of European companies in the GCC area. Mostly in electronic and Robotic fields.
We did a quick interview with Ali Aboutaha about his business experience in Dubai.
In the past year, what is the greatest business achievement you have achieved?
Ali Aboutaha: I achieved one of my biggest youth’s dreams to open a Lebanese restaurant located in Dubai and I have put all my ideas into how should a highly managed restaurant be in order to satisfy customers.
What advice do you wish you had received when you started your business journey and what do you intend on improving next year in 2024?
Ali Aboutaha: I wish someone told me not to believe everything that you hear.
Business is all about overcoming obstacles and creating opportunities for growth. What do you see as THE real challenge right now?
Ali Aboutaha: The big obstacle that I see as a challenge at times is the greed of people, they can’t have enough and are willing to go over dead bodies to have profit.
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Ali Aboutaha: Success had a couple of meanings for me, to reach my dreams of my youth, and to be free in order to move and do what I want whenever I want.
In your experience, what tends to be the most underestimated part of running a company? Can you share an example?
Ali Aboutaha: To control the small things, for example, one employee wrote a wrong phone number, he made a mistake by only one number, a big deal could be lost through this mistake and all other departments didn’t recognize this mistake, and the deal was dead, till I took control and searched very carefully throughout the phone numbers to fix that mistake. We saved the deal at the last minute.
Can you share a time when your business faced a significant challenge? How did you navigate through it?
Ali Aboutaha: You have to have always a view of the wide sights, look and try to see it from above, then you see clearly and you can manage to avoid problems.
How has a failure or apparent failure set you up for later success?
Ali Aboutaha: I learn from it, and I always keep in mind that it may happen a second time.
How do you build a resilient team? What qualities do you look for in your team members?
Ali Aboutaha: Character and royalty.
How do you maintain your personal resilience during tough times?
Ali Aboutaha: Playing chess and sudoku.
What strategies do you use to manage stress and maintain focus during a crisis?
Ali Aboutaha: Sorry to say that, but I eat all the time when I am under stress.
How do you communicate with your team during a crisis?
Ali Aboutaha: Face to face as they must see your eyes to understand what you mean.
What’s the most important lesson you’ve learned about leadership in times of crisis?
Ali Aboutaha: Patients, you have to be patient, never lose hope and direction.