Skills Required to be a Successful Enterprises
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Below are some traits that most successful entrepreneurs have (some may seem incidental but they are key and few people are good at all these things):
- Must be pretty good with money. Budgets. Forecasting, etc.
- Must be a good public speaker.
- Must be willing to travel extensively.
- Must be unusually healthy - if you take more than 3 days off per year due to illness (cold, flu, whatever) forget it.
- Must master the art of delayed gratification - be willing to work for a long period of time with no reward.
- Must be unusually good at whatever the particular field you want to focus on for your business.
- Must be able to do #6 above and be able to effectively communicate that expertise to lay people in a friendly, helpful way.
- Must be good at interacting with other people. i.e. you must be a "people person".
- Must be willing to take bold choices that often have negative short-term consequences. I.e. most entrepreneurs I've met have a reckless streak in them that is absolutely essential.
- Must be aggressive and assertive but able to control those impulses when necessary.
- Must have significant self-confidence which often would be described as arrogance.
- Must be able to control ego enough to complete objectives
Labels: Economy and Business
posted @ 5:36 PM, ,
What is clear, from the results of the 2008 Islamic Finance news Poll, is that the more focused and specialized Islamic financial institutions are favored to those of the larger global historically conventional institutions with Islamic operations. With 2,491 votes cast, this is the industry’s most comprehensive and definitive survey.
In the Best Overall Islamic Bank category Kuwait Finance House again ran out easy favorites for the second year running. Malaysia’s CIMB Islamic Bank climbed one place to second this year with Saudi Arabia’s Al Rajhi Banking & Investment Corporation taking third spot. One notable absentee from this category is the two times winner and runner up in 2007, Dubai Islamic Bank.
As more of the world’s financial centers announce their interest in attracting Islamic finance to their shores one would assume the Best Central Bank in Promoting Islamic Finance category would be more competitive. Not so. For the fourth straight year Bank Negara Malaysia was voted number one with more than double the votes of their nearest rival, the State Bank of Pakistan, which itself leapfrogged the Central Bank of Bahrain into second place this year.
In new categories for the 2008 Poll, BMB Islamic won Best Islamic Shariah Advisory Firm and KFH Research was voted Best Islamic Research Firm. In a year when a number of banks collapsed or merged, the Islamic finance industry witnessed a number of new arrivals ensuring a hotly contested Best New Islamic Bank category, with the UK’s Gatehouse Bank scraping victory over Maybank Islamic in a close second.
In other categories, Norton Rose climbed from second in 2007 to first in the Best Law Firm in Islamic Finance, Moody’s Investors Service was voted Best Islamic Rating Agency, Path Solutions won Best Islamic Technology Provider, Oasis Asset Management is named Best Islamic Fund Manager and Takaful Ikhlas the Best Takaful / reTakaful Provider for 2008.
In the Best Islamic Banks by Country category there were notable wins for MCCA (Australia), Faisal Islamic Bank (Egypt), Bank of London and The Middle East (UK), and Bank Muamalat Indonesia.
To all the winners I offer my sincerest congratulations.
posted @ 11:37 AM, ,
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Labels: Monetary Policy
posted @ 7:25 PM, ,
Some banks are unsure of what to do or how to do it. Some are taking a wait-and-see approach or are overwhelmed and don't see a way out. Realistically, there are only a few options if the bank's problems are highly concentrated in any industry or geography. Capital infusions, reducing troubled assets or shrinking the bank are all difficult in today's environment, but not impossible.
Banks in trouble have a challenge to balance the requirements of extra regulatory oversight and reporting while continuing to serve their solid customers. All banks must have a strong strategic and operating plan and troubled banks are no different. Priority must drive resource allocation. Key elements that cannot be overlooked are:
- In-depth knowledge of customers - know their problems.
- Ensure strong policies and procedures.
- Evaluate staff and technical capabilities and expertise to handle additional requirements that come with additional regulatory burdens.
- Evaluate and strengthen communications.
posted @ 1:57 PM, ,
39th National Day of Oman - Economic Review
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I am pleased to express my congratulations and faclilitations to Oman and its citizens on the occasion of 39th National Day. Have a look at the economic conditions of Oman here mentioned below.
Oman is a middle-income economy that is heavily dependent on dwindling oil resources, but sustained high oil prices in recent years have helped build Oman's budget and trade surpluses and foreign reserves. As a result of its dwindling oil resources, Oman is actively pursuing a development plan that focuses on diversification, industrialization, and privatization, with the objective of reducing the oil sector's contribution to GDP to 9% by 2020. Some of these projects may be in jeopardy, however, because Muscat overestimated its ability to produce or secure the natural gas needed to power them.
Oman actively seeks private foreign investors, especially in the industrial, information technology, tourism, and higher education fields. Industrial development plans focus on gas resources, metal manufacturing, petrochemicals, and international transshipment ports. The drop in oil prices and the global financial crisis in 2008 will affect Oman's fiscal position and it may post a deficit in 2009 if oil prices stay low. In addition, the global credit crisis is slowing the pace of investment and development projects - a trend that probably will continue into 2009.
- Investment (gross fixed): 27.2% of GDP (2008 est.)
- Budget: revenues: $18.13 billion, expenditures: $15.95 billion (2008 est.)
- Public debt: 2.8% of GDP (2008 est.)
- Inflation rate (consumer prices):12.5% (2008 est.)
- Central bank discount rate: 0.91% (31 December 2008)
- Commercial bank prime lending rate: 7.1% (31 December 2008)
- Stock of money: $5.25 billion (31 December 2008)
- Oil - production:761,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
- Oil - consumption:81,000 bbl/day (2008 est.)
- Oil - exports:593,700 bbl/day (2008 est.)
- Oil - imports:17,290 bbl/day (2007 est.)
- Oil - proved reserves:5.5 billion bbl (1 January 2009 est.)
Labels: Economic Overview
posted @ 2:47 PM, ,
Mergers and Acquisitions of Commercial Banks
Monday, November 16, 2009
One fine morning when our Governor SBP woke up from his sleep, he stated that the banks operating in Pakistan were too much and weak and therefore the Malaysian model needed to be followed where there were less but strong banks.
Consequently he came up with the idea to squeeze the banking strucutre by raising the minimum capital requirements which was later on pursued by his predecessors but later reversed and modified to make it work.As a result of this measure alone, the banking sector in Pakistan saw mergers and acquisitions. Today the banking system of Pakistan has become rock solid and undefeatable by any standards and does not carry any chance of failure due to systemic or any other risk.
With the mergers and acquisitions the quality of service, products and assets quality improved greatly, thanks to this measure. It has also added to the deepening of the capital and financial markets as in the case of Malaysia. As a result of this measure, the banking sector became so strong that it became a danger tro the economy. Consequently certain weak Islamic banks had to be introduced to balance the equation.
As a result of this measure, the banking services which previously were available to less than 18% of the people suddenly became available to all and sundry as in the case of the Malaysian model and today nobody can say that people do not have access to the banking services. As a result of reduction of number of banks, the number of banking staff stood considerably reduced adding to the profitability of the banking sector and the deterioration in the assets quality was made up from this source .
The emerging victorous Presidents of the newly merged entity, preferred not to continue with the exisiting employees and decided to hire the old team from his previous bank. As a result the employees of the newly merged bank who were told that their services would no longer be required as also employees of the bank who expected that they would be hired by the newly merged entity, stopped working and started to look for new opening and business came to a standstill.
Later the surrendered team alongwith the defeated President were declared redundant and were sent home where they are now serving abroad in various insitituions and contributing to their respective economies.
posted @ 12:23 PM, ,
How to Save Money While Shopping?
Friday, November 13, 2009
Have you already squeezed every last penny out of your budget? Maybe not. Thanks to free market capitalism, we can choose from a wide variety of products at a wide variety of prices pretty much any time we want to buy something. Unlike investing, saving money on purchases doesn't require any specialized training and is an easy way for anyone to stretch their budget a little farther.
No matter what your income level, you can give yourself more breathing room by becoming a savvy shopper. Here are five tips to help you get started.
Tip 1: Make the Store Your Last Choice
Most people's default response is to go to a store anytime they need something, but that's not the only way to obtain a needed item. Ask yourself these questions:
- Can I get it for free?
- Can I borrow it?
Tip 2: Negotiate When Possible
Some prices are set in stone, and it's a waste of time trying to negotiate with someone who won't budge. However, when you think there's some wiggle room, consider these strategies:
- Can I negotiate a lower price?
- Can I barter?
Tip 3: Time Your Purchase
If you wait to purchase something until you really need it, you're likely to pay the sticker price, but with a little advanced planning, you can save big bucks.
- Will this item go on sale?
- Might there be a coupon for this item somewhere?
- Can I get a better price somewhere else?
Tip 4: Substitute
If the item you want to buy doesn't quite fit into your budget, think about similar but less expensive alternatives.
- Is there something that doesn't cost as much, but does the job I need it to?
- Do I really want this?
Tip 5: Expand Your Shopping Universe
If you normally head straight to your favorite website, specialty store, or the mall when you need to buy something, consider these other shopping options that can save you a great deal of money:
- Is someone personally selling what I need?
- Does it make sense to buy this item in bulk?
posted @ 2:41 PM, ,
Companies Profits (Workers' Participation) Act, 1968
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
- the number of workers employed at any time during a year is 50, or more or
- the paid up capital as on the last day of the accounting year is Rs. 2 million or more or
- the value of fixed assets as on the last day of the accounting year is Rs. 4 million or more,
Company is required to pay @ 5% of its profits every year. The workers' share in the fund depends on the category of his average monthly salary, subject to a maximum of Rs. 5,000.
posted @ 5:33 PM, ,
Sunday, November 8, 2009
posted @ 2:44 PM, ,
Jobs in State Bank of Pakistan
Thursday, November 5, 2009
As a part of ongoing organizational development/ change management program and to strengthen its human resource base, SBP-BSC invites applications from talented Pakistani/ AJK nationals to join it as Officer Grade-2 under ‘Young Professionals Induction Program’ (YPIP-1st Batch). The job provides excellent career and developmental opportunities for the right candidates.
If you have the required qualification, zeal and enthusiasm to work for the national premier institution and fulfill the following eligibility criteria, you are strongly encouraged to apply here.
posted @ 1:32 PM, ,
A proviso has been inserted in Clause (a)of sub section 2 of section 20 whereby any bonus paid or payable to corporate employees receiving salary income of Rs.One million or more (exculding bonus) shall be chargeable to tax at the rate of 30%. This is a one time levy and payable for the tax year 2010 only, so as to support the Internally Displaced People (IDP)for their rehabilitation.
Example # 1
Salary Income other than bonus = 1,000,000
Bonus amount = 300,000
Tax @ 9% at salary other than bonus = 90,000 (A)
Tax @ 30% at bonus = 90,000 (B)
Total Tax = 180,000 (A)+ (B)
Example # 2
Salary Income other than bonus = 900,000
Bonus amount = 100,000
Total Salary = 1,000,000
Tax @ 9% at salary other than bonus = 90,000 (A)
No Tax @30% at bonus as salary excluding bonus is less than one million (B)
Total Tax = 90,000 (A)+ (B)
posted @ 1:32 PM, ,
ICAP Reviewing Syllabus
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) is reviewing the syllabus in line with international education standards of the IFAC. This was stated by President of the ICAP, Abdul Rahim Suriya, says a statement issued here on Saturday. It said that he was speaking on the occasion of the 48th Annual General Meeting of the ICAP held at Islamabad .
The ICAP statement further pointed out that Suriya in his opening remarks informed the members regarding Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the Institute with the Federal Board of Revenue for tax audit. He said that tax audit will provide opportunity to audit professionals as well as it is a challenge for the profession. Suriya remarked that 'we have good examples of success stories of tax audit in India and Turkey '.
He informed the members that the Council is reviewing the whole education system. ICAP president said that the priorities are to review the syllabus in line with International Education Standards of IFAC, developing study packs for the students and introduction of permanent credit system which is expected to be applicable for examination after December 2009.
He further added that for the continuing professional development of members, the Institute is considering to introduce most modern techniques such as video conferencing, online in collaboration with the virtual universities. He said that for the professional accountants in business, a "CFO Forum" is being planned.
Regarding the amendments in Chartered Accountants Ordinance 1961, Suriya informed that the proposed Amendment Bill is with Cabinet Committee and 'we are hopeful that it will get through soon'. He stressed that the Institute will continue close liaison with SECP, SBP and FBR as well as maintaining close contacts with IFAC and other International bodies to maintain high professional standards.
Suriya said that 'we aim to achieve shortly 100 percent IFRS compliance status'. He said that because of high education standards and quality training our CAs are in demand all over the world and are treated at par with qualified accountants of developed countries. ICAP president stated that about 1,200 Chartered Accountants are working in Middle East, Europe and USA .
posted @ 1:31 PM, ,
There isn't a magic formula for good management, of course, but if you're a manager, perhaps these tips will help you be more effective:
1 Choose a field thoughtfully.
Make it one you enjoy. It's hard to be productive without enthusiasm. This is true whether you're a manager or employee;
2 Hire carefully and be willing to fire.
You need a strong team, because a mediocre team gives mediocre results, no matter how well managed it is. One mistake is holding on to somebody who doesn't measure up. It's easy to keep this person on the job because he's not terrible at what he does. But a good manager will replace him or move him to where he can succeed unambiguously;
3 Create a productive environment.
This is a particular challenge because it requires different approaches depending on the context. Sometimes you maximise productivity by giving everybody his or her own office. Sometimes you achieve it by moving everybody into open space. Sometimes you use financial incentives to stimulate productivity. A combination of approaches is usually required. One element that almost always increases productivity is providing an information system that empowers employees.
When I was building Microsoft, I set out to create an environment where software developers could thrive. I wanted a company where engineers liked to work. I wanted to create a culture that encouraged them to work together, share ideas and remain motivated. If I hadn't been a software engineer myself, there's no way I could have achieved my goal;
4 Define success.
Make it clear to your employees what constitutes success and how they should measure their achievements. Goals must be realistic. Project schedules, for example, must be set by the people who do the work. People will accept a "bottoms-up" deadline they helped set, but they'll be cynical about a schedule imposed from the top that doesn't map to reality. Unachievable goals undermine an organisation. At my company, in addition to regular team meetings and one-on-one sessions between managers and employees, we use mass gatherings periodically and E-mail routinely to communicate what we expect from employees. If a reviewer or customer chooses another company's product , we analyse the situation. We say to our people, "The next time around we've got to win. What's needed?" The answers to these questions help us define success;
5 To be a good manager, you have to like people and be good at communicating.
This is hard to fake. If you don't enjoy interacting with people, it'll be hard to manage them well. You must have a wide range of personal contacts within your organisation. You need relationships - not necessarily personal friendships - with a fair number of people, including your own employees. You must encourage these people to tell you what's going on and give you feedback about what people are thinking about the company and your role in it;
6 Develop your people to do their jobs better than you can.
Transfer your skills to them. This is an exciting goal, but it can be threatening to a manager who worries that he's training his replacement. If you're concerned, ask your boss: "If I develop somebody who can do my job super well, does the company have some other challenge for me or not?" Many smart managers like to see their employees increase their responsibilities because it frees the managers to tackle new or undone tasks. There's no shortage of jobs for good managers. The world has an infinite amount of work to be done;
7 Build morale.
Make it clear there's plenty of goodwill to go around and that it's not just you or some hotshot manager who's going to look good if things go well. Give people a sense of the importance of what they're working on - its importance to the company, its importance to customers;
8 Take on projects yourself.
You need to do more than communicate. The last thing people want is a boss who just doles out stuff. From time to time, prove you can be hands-on by taking on one of the less attractive tasks and using it as an example of how your employees should meet challenges;
9 Don't make the same decision twice.
Spend the time and thought to make a solid decision the first time so that you don't revisit the issue unnecessarily. If you're too willing to reopen issues, it interferes not only with your execution but also with your motivation to make a decision in the first place. People hate indecisive leadership; However, that doesn't mean you have to decide everything the moment it comes to your attention. Nor that you can't ever reconsider a decision.
10 Let people know whom to please.
Maybe it's you, maybe it's your boss, and maybe it's somebody who works for you. You're in trouble and risking paralysis in your organisation when employees start saying to themselves: "Am I supposed to be making this person happy or this other person happy? They seem to have different priorities."
I don't pretend that these are the only 10 approaches a manager should keep in mind. There are lots of others. Just a month ago I encouraged leaders to demand bad news before good news from their employees. But these 10 ideas may help you manage well, and I hope they do.
posted @ 12:00 PM, ,
Top Ten Scariest Scam
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
When it comes to scams, advance-fee fraud is probably the oldest and most well-established confidence trick.
It's also one of the simplest: the conman asks you for money upfront and promises to hand you a much larger sum. One of the most common examples is the 'Nigerian 419' scam.
This involves an email - allegedly from a corrupt official or banker - offering you a share of a huge windfall in return for your help in smuggling these millions out of Nigeria or another country. After handing over various handling fees, bribes and customs duties, you sit back and await your £5 million.
Of course, this reward never arrives, leaving you hugely out of pocket.
2. Bogus lotteries
This variation on advance-fee fraud starts with you receiving an email, fax or call informing you that you've won a major prize in a foreign lottery. In order to bag your treasure, you need to hand over fees to cover assorted administration and customs charges, insurance and taxes.
Of course, this is pure fantasy, as you don't win a lottery without first buying a ticket.
Also, genuine lotteries don't ask for any money upfront other than the ticket price. Unfortunately, lottery crooks usually target older people: four in five victims of this fraud are over 65. Thus, if granny mentions that she's won a major lottery prize, make sure that it's coming from Camelot and not a fake lottery.
3. Boiler rooms
Getting involved with a 'boiler room' share scam can lose you your life savings.
As with most scams, the boiler-room swindle is quite simple: scammers call or email investors to promote 'hot stocks' which they claim will prove to be the deal of a lifetime.
These must-have shares turn out to be worthless pieces of paper, offering ownership of imaginary, worthless or loss-making firms. Instead of earning bumper returns, boiler-room victims often lose every penny. Surprisingly, many of those duped by boiler rooms are experienced investors, often with 20+ years of share-dealing behind them.
4. Cashback fraud
This swindle (known as criminal cashback) works because cheques take longer to clear than electronic bank transfers. It usually starts when you advertise something for sale, such as a car. A buyer agrees to pay your asking price, but sends you a cheque or banker's draft for a larger sum.
He then asks you to bank his cheque and send him a money transfer for the difference.
Sure enough, his cheque bounces a few days after your instantaneous money transfer has left your account. You're now out of pocket, often to the tune of £1,000 or more, and looking for a bogus buyer who's scarpered.
5. Gambling syndicates
If you want to get taken for a ride, then pay to join a gambling syndicate which offers tips to help you beat the bookies.
Forking out for daily or weekly predictions for horse-racing or football results, or buying betting software, is simply throwing your money away. One classic example of this mug's game was the KF Concept, operated by former cabbie Kevin Foster. Around 8,500 'investors' lost their cash when KFC was closed down by the Financial Services Authority (FSA). In 2005, Mr Foster was bankrupted with debts of £36 million and he was later charged with theft.
Needless to say, there is no sure-fire way of beating the bookies, although feel free to buy shares in Ladbrokes or William Hill if you want to benefit from betting...
6. Land banking
This simple swindle involves selling small plots of land to property-obsessed Brits. Land-banking firms claim that the value of this land will rocket when it is sold to developers after planning permission is obtained.
Sounds feasible, right? Sadly, investors soon find that all their £5,000+ has bought is a patch of a field in the middle of nowhere. Often, their square of grass is in a green-belt area and has zero chance of being built on or developed. One notorious land-banker, United Kingdom Land Investments, was closed down by the FSA in June 2008, with 4,500 buyers nursing losses approaching £69 million.
7. 'Make a Million' seminars
There are more 'get rich quick' schemes being advertised in the UK than you can shake a stick at. Typically, these seminars promise massive returns thanks to a fool-proof (but secret) way to buy shares or property.
These 'become a millionaire' schemes can indeed make you seriously rich, but only if you are selling them. One infamous example is Inside Track, which dangled the dream of massive wealth to be made from buy-to-let investing. Inside Track's initial presentations were free, but its inner secrets were available only by paying £2,495 for a follow-up workshop.
As the property market started to tank in the summer 2007, Inside Track duly followed suit, going into administration in April 2008.
Crooks send billions of spam emails with the intention of phishing: stealing your online banking details. Often, these unwanted messages pose as official messages from your bank or another financial organisation.
If you are conned into handing over your banking details and passwords, then spammers will use this information to hack into your online accounts and steal every penny.
So, don't open bogus emails and never click on their links. Instead, keep an eye on your Internet security.
In December 2008, Bernard Madoff made headlines all over the world when it was revealed that his apparently successful hedge fund was, in fact, a Ponzi scheme. Since the mid-Nineties, Madoff had been collecting money from new investors and using this money to pay bogus returns to his existing investors.
Pyramid schemes of this kind are often known as Ponzi schemes, after an American swindler named Charles Ponzi who claimed to use postal coupons in order to turn $100 into $150 within 45 days. When his scheme was exposed as a con trick in 1920, Ponzi's victims lost millions of dollars and he went to jail.
10. Timeshare scams
The timeshare market - buying holiday weeks in overseas properties - enjoys a reputation for sharp practices and hard selling. This isn't helped by the huge number of frauds involving timeshares, often singling out British victims and carried out in Mediterranean countries, especially Spain.
In most cases, these timeshare tricks are just advance-fee fraud: conning people out of upfront fees in return for phony promises to find a buyer for timeshares. Naturally, once you've handed over your finder's fee, broker and buyer vanish and you've thrown good money after bad. Learn more about timeshare scams.
If these scams haven't raised the hairs on the back of your neck, then you're clearly a smart cookie, so well done!
posted @ 2:53 PM, ,