After hours: Luai Bahder

Arabian Computer News delves below the corporate strategy to understand what really makes the region’s IT leaders tick.

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After hours: Luai Bahder
By Staff Writer Published  April 16, 2013

Arabian Computer News delves below the corporate strategy to understand what really makes the region’s IT leaders tick.

Luai Bahder, technical director, Smartworld

Getting personal

Nationality: Jordanian
Number of years in the industry: 16 professional years in Dubai
Favourite food: Grilled fish
Holiday destination: Irbid
Music: Arabic Oud
Dream car: Mercedes-Benz-Ener-G-Force
Gadget: iPhone
Movie/book: Die Hard series
Piece of advice: He who works smarter, achieves faster

How did you end up where you are now?

Earlier on, when I was starting to map out my career, I created a vision and set of objectives for me to follow. I accompanied this with a strategy and plan that I followed through hard work and perseverance. These are the factors that have helped placing me into where I am right now in my career.

What is your management philosophy?

My management philosophy is very simple yet I have found to be highly effective. My philosophy has always been to put strong focus and attention to both leadership and friendship. Also, it pays to be tough and strict during crunch-time situations.

What was your first computer and when did you first use it?

The first computer that I ever owned was an IBM 286, which was back then groundbreaking because of its introduction of a 6MHz Intel 80286 processor. It was faster than the ATs of that time due to its zero wait state RAM, which could move data more quickly. I used that computer for DOS and BASIC programming back in 1986.

What is your greatest achievement?

I am lucky to have earned key experiences and achievements in the ICT industry over the last fifteen years. I am fortunate and privileged to have been part of teams across implementations and initiatives in a range of areas such as security, data centres, services and infrastructure, and in sectors including aviation, smart cities, telecommunications and enterprise. One of my commitments and vision is to play a major role in the development of Dubai’s ICT segment. To date, I have been a part of some of the emirate’s top IT projects, which includes Dubai Internet City, Dubai e-Government, Dubai Municipality, Emirates Group, Dubai Airports, Dubai World Central (DWC), Al Maktoum International Airport , Dubai TV, Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company (du), Dubai Holding and Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC).

What is your biggest mistake?

I believe that its better to refer to these instances as lessons learned and not call them mistakes. Working in a segment that is both founded on technology and innovation, it is highly recommendable that we aim to learn and relish every experience.

What is your fondest memory of working in the Middle East IT industry?

Working on Al Maktoum International Airport, Jebel Ali Project, which involved transferring our service provider experience onto a larger enterprise complex project, while also building virtualized IT infrastructure for the airport systems. During the completion of the project, we could not help but feel proud of the work we had done to bring the latest technologies and ushered Dubai into the forefront of IT.

What technology do you think will have the biggest impact on the market in 2013?

I think that IT infrastructure automation has reached full maturity and today’s markets have demonstrated a key need for it.

What is the best way to deal with stress?

Stress always comes in as soon as work becomes too complicated. The best way to ward this off is to start things simple and easy — categorise, classify and set your priorities before entering or making major decisions.

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