Workshop on "Navigating for Success" organized by IBA Alumni Canada Chapter (IACC)


By Anwar Ahmed, President IACC and Alumnus 1986


Toronto, April 29, 2016: The IBA Alumni Canada Chapter ("IACC") recently organized a workshop on "Navigating for Success" at the Rogers Campus in downtown Toronto.

The objective of this workshop was to provide guidance to new and existing IBA Alumni members in Canada/North America, eager to first find a place for themselves in the Canadian/North American job market, and then navigating successfully on their way up the corporate ladder, while retaining work-life balance. Through this workshop, IACC presented some success stories of IBA Alumni and non-Alumni members, who have gone through various challenges themselves in successfully building their respective careers. The speakers shared their Canadian career journeys, and what factors they believe have contributed to their success. They also highlighted any differences between working in Canada and other places where they have worked before.

The speaker panel was composed of the following:


Joseph R. D. Cruz, Professor Emeritus Strategic Management University of Toronto
Humayun Jafrani, Partner, Banking and Capital Markets Ernst & Young
Niloufer Afzal, Senior Brand Manager The J.M. Smucker Company
Paul Flexman, Professional Coach Flex Consulting
Pervez Nooruddin, Project Manager Project Times

The speakers shared their ideas and experiences on various topics including Canadian corporate culture, barriers to entry for new immigrants and how to overcome them, social and cultural difference in the business world, leadership in the workplace, networking to enhance career prospects, navigating strategies for career enhancement during different generations and profiles and the role of mentorship in career guidance. In addition, the speakers also emphasized the importance of continued education and skills development to cater to a unique marketplace.

The moderator, Aaizah Syed, conducted her duties admirably and appeared very well prepared.

The event started with screening of the IBA promotional video which included interviews from current students and some prominent professors including the outgoing Director IBA, Dr. Ishrat Husain. The video was followed by a welcome speech by President IACC, Anwar Ahmed, in which he not only welcomed the speakers and attendees, but also thanked the past leaders and board members of IACC. He highlighted the history of the IBA Alumni Canada Chapter which started in an informal way in 1998 and then got registered in 2012 and onward. He also emphasized the support provided by IACC to various charitable organizations such as Toronto Citizens Foundation (TCF) and Family Education Service Foundation (FESF).

The networking sessions that occurred before and after the workshop provided the attendees an excellent opportunity to share ideas and mingle among senior industry professionals. It was also advantageous for new-comers, who obtained important leads into the job market, and developed valuable contacts. During the networking sessions, the attendees also enjoyed a wide menu of snacks, desserts and refreshments. The guests also enjoyed tea which was sponsored by Tapal.

Towards the end, Vice President & Treasurer IACC, Mohammad Ali Dairywala, thanked the panelists and the moderator. Zahid Junejo, Director IACC handed out gifts to the guest speakers and the moderator on behalf of IACC as a gesture of appreciation.

The evening ended with screening of a promotional video for Family Education Service Foundation (FESF), a charitable organization focused on educating and training deaf people in Pakistan.

Overall, the event portrayed a very professional and positive image of IACC and its members, with attendees benefiting immensely from the workshop. IACC also achieved its objectives of obtaining and sharing knowledge, building up a network, and promoting IACC in a positive manner.