Dave Ulrich’s ‘HR Transformation’ A Hit At Oman HR Conference

Human resources guru Dave Ulrich was a hit in Oman.

The Oman Observer covered Ulrich’s presentation on ‘HR Transformation: HR From the Outside’ at a one-day workshop 24 September 2012 at Shangri-La’s Barr Al Jissah Resort and Spa in Muscat, Oman.

The celebrated Professor is regarded as the foremost HR and management coach — ranked number one management educator by Business Week and as one of the top 5 business coaches in the world by Forbes,” according to the Oman Observer.

“Through his engagingly effective, friendly style, he put the entire audience in a relaxed and participatory mood,” The Observer enthused.

Ulrich’s presentation was part of the larger 2nd Human Resources Development Expo and Conference 2012 at Oman International Exhibition Centre under the direction of Sayyid Hamoud bin Faisal al Busaidy, Oman’s interior minister.

Oman HR Conference Significant

Dave Ulrich, a hit in Oman

Dave Ulrich

The Oman HR expo is significant because it is the largest human resources conference in the Sultanate. More than 25 government bodies and more than 50 exhibitors from local and international markets participates in the event.

Ulrich’s presence at the event is significant because it shows that Oman is interested in adopting international business practices. Many Arab states are concerned about educating and employing their citizens and their governments are interested in skills training and development.

Ulrich, a University of Michigan professor, is the equivalent of an international rock star in the human resources and business-coaching world.

Oman’s Minister of Civil Service Shaikh Khalid bin Omar al Marhoon said that his agency will make the exhibition and conference an annual event. He would like to expand the conference to cover human resources-related topics.

Some of the event’s sponsors included Takatuf and Oman Telecommunications Company; Oman Arab Bank, Saslo Legal Training Centre, Inma Technologies LLC, Al Alawi Training Centre, Almanarah Alemeya Training Service LLC and Education Experts.

Other sponsors included the British Council, AMIDEAST, AON Hewitt, ESI International, ICMA, Integrated Management Training and Consultancy, Mercer Consulting Middle East Ltd, Morison Muscat Corporate Services, Talent Institute, MEIRC SA, Exceed and IT and Training.

Several regional human resources academic and professional association also contributed to the event.

These sponsors included the National Center for Faculty and leadership Development (NCFLD) — Egypt, Society for Human Resource Management and Institute of HRD — India, SMR Gulf WLL — Bahrain, AIESEC, International Quality Solutions, Investors in People and Grofin Oman.

In comments given to the Oman Observer, Professor Ulrich responded to his being given the top rankings by noting, he is honored and humbled, adding that he does not think of himself as a great coach, but rather as a professor and a consultant who tries to learn and loves to learn about HR and organisational issues.

“My identity,” he continued, “is shaped as a teacher who learns with the people I learn with.”

Regarding his very engaging style of presentation, he said,

“When I was teaching at university (he lectured at the University of Michigan’s Business School) I took notes on the best teachers. I would then ask if I could visit their classes — in finance, in strategy — not to learn their content, but their teaching styles. And so I really try to engage people in the learning process; it’s a commitment that I’ve made to myself.”

“Good teaching,” he added, “is engagement and process, it’s also content as well as delivery and I hope I can do that well.”

He said he had learnt from his father the lesson that there is an ethos, or value, in service, which requires that ‘you give back to the world’. And, in this sense, he said he does this through his work.

Commenting on his current seven-leg journey that prior to Oman took him to Singapore, Shang-Hai — China, Bahrain and Kuwait and where his next stop will be Melbourne — Australia.

He said, he has been coming to the Middle East over the past 15-years and tries to be sensitive to Arab traditions.

“If we can join together as brothers with these common beliefs, I think the world would be a better place. I wish there was a way we could do that and come together because we share many values.”

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