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June 2018

August 2018

Speeches & Testimonials
  • A few words on my last days of a life changing experience
    29 January 2018

    Dear All,

    As some of you may already know, these will be my last few days at the Institut. As such, on my last days of a life changing experience, I would like to take the time to share with you a few stories about some of my experiences with the colleagues that I worked most closely with.


    Story #1 – The Leader



    After a few months of working at the Institut, Lamia entrusted me with the ECOFIN portfolio, and accordingly, a partnership between the IOF andBdLwas established in order to enhance economic and financial capabilities of Lebanese citizens.


    Needless to say, there were some hardships along the way due to various reasons, but not once has Lamia given up or capitulated to the external pressure. She kept pushing me to try to find ways to succeed and overcome the obstacles that we were facing; and encouraged me to work even harder and persevere when others do not.


    Do what others won’t, to achieve what others can’t.This quote exemplifies what Lamia believes in, and has been the foundation of the Institut’s success throughout the years.Lamia, I cannot thank you enough for the invaluable lessons. You’ve enriched my career considerably and taught me much more than I ever imagined.



    Story #2 – The Hard worker



    This occurrence happened a few days ago. Ghassan called me out on a mistake I made – in which I had not followed up with my direct superior to keep him updated on recent developments in a project. He stressed on the importance of keeping records, emphasized on the importance of hard work, and advised me to send an email to my superior detailing the specific proceedings, that way everything is well documented and no one can point their fingers at me or blame me.


    If you work hard enough, you can change things.” Ghassan truly embodies that. I think it is safe to say that I have never met, nor will I ever meet anyone with such work ethics. He’s extremely organized, and is a perfectionist when it comes to work. I can say with absolute honesty that I learned a lot of the workplace etiquette from him; the importance of respecting others, respecting time and processes, documenting everything; particularly the importance of following up, debriefing and keeping records.Ghassan, thank you for always calling me out on my mistakes, teaching me right from wrong, and helping me improve.



    Story #3 – The Mentor


    When I first joined IOF, I was assigned to the Publications team with Amal. Due to her meticulous nature, she expected nothing short of excellence from her team, and immediately started assigning me tasks, because she believed that experiential learning is the best way to learn, trusting that I will deliver quality work, and knowing full well that I can rely on her and the team should I require assistance.


    Learn how to say no.But what Amal truly believed in and conveyed is that we should always stand up for what is right, for what we believe in, no matter what the cost. It’s often difficult to say no, and more often than not it might get you in trouble, but it is more than worth it. Thank you Amal for this life changing lesson. I know I will never have a better mentor than you.




    Story #4 – The Facilitator


    While collaboration and cooperation between the staff is the norm and occurs almost every day, a specific story comes to mind more than others. Knowing that I had previous experience in Communication and my interest in that domain, Jide chose to involve me in some communication matters, such as the IOF’s new website, the new logo, the banner, and other things.


    Determined people working together can do anything.Jide valued my input and opinions, and believed that people’s previous experiences should be put to good use. Moreover, she understood that by involving others, exchanging ideas, and sharing experiences; others will feel a sense of belonging and that they are contributing factors to the Institut's success, which would benefit everyone. Thank you Jide for involving me, I really learned a lot!



    Story #5 – The Supporter(s)



    a)I remember very well when I was asked to attend the public speaking training. For me, public speaking is one of my biggest weaknesses, and it’s the thing that scares me the most and raises my anxiety level to such extent that I am unable to stand up, let alone give the required speech.


    Days before the training began, I started panicking, and I told Iskandar how I just couldn’t go through with it and how it’s weighing down on me. He then opened up to me, and told me how when he first began working here, he too struggled with public speaking, but with time and the supportive nature of the IOF staff, little by little it will become easier; he also offered to help me practice my speech.


    Be courageous enough to get out of your comfort zone.”This is something I have seen in my more than 2 years with the Institut. Thank you Iskandar for pushing me out of my comfort zone, and believing I can do it, and for the support over the years. I certainly wouldn’t have been able to do it without you.



    b)Throughout my short but eventful years at IOF, I’ve been lucky to find support whenever needed, be it on professional and/or personal levels.


    A single act of kindness goes a long way.Iskandar, Carl and Sami have always been there for me, and assisted whenever possible. You three in particular exemplified that to me. It is a trait that I have seen in all of my colleagues within the Institut too, who were always supportive and helpful.

    I remember Carl once telling me “for you my friend, anything”, and that was echoed by Sami too; which made me think that this is the culture that we have at IOF, it’s a culture that defines us, a culture that should stay. Thank you Iskandar,Carl and Sami for everything!



    These were but a few stories from an extraordinary experience that I had, one that I will cherish for the rest of my life.

    For those that I did not have the pleasure of working with, I wish I did; I am sure I would have enjoyed it, and learned a lot from you as well.


    The Institut is only as good as its people, and you people, each and every one of you, make all the difference. I wish you nothing but success, and I am proud to call this Institut home and call you family.


    I will miss you all, thank you for everything!

    You can always reach me at:

    Email: ichafic@gmail.com

    Phone: +961 3 537 057



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