Time flies

Has it been a week already? I am sure Riyadh has a time warp of some sort, after all, it has everything else!
My meetings went very well, clients were extremely appreciative of the effort I have made to come and visit them. I am genuinely interested in building solid partnerships and this has been gratefully accepted. When I work with organisations that truly value our support, input and advice, it makes the job easier and also gives added motivation to assist. Here I am treated as a partner and an equal and it is truly refreshing.

I still find it amazing that UK recruitment companies who want to work overseas but cannot be bothered to make the business trips required in order to cement relationships. This is why we are building an excellent reputation and you are not. Long may your laziness be our catalyst for growth.

As usual my trips are always laced with a modicum of hilarity, generally attributed to me leaving my brain back in the hotel room. This time was no exception. I think trying to open a wall thinking it was a door probably ranks as number one, but for those who understand the culture here, plonking myself down slap bang in the middle of the family section at the Ritz Carlton whilst waiting for my dinner companions ranks very close indeed. I think my utter naivety was the saving grace here.

If you are going to mistakenly sit in the family section, there are worse places than this..

If you are going to mistakenly sit in the family section, there are worse places than this..

Ritz Carlton, Riyadh. The most amazingly opulent hotel I have seen.

Riyadh is certainly a haven for shopping and opulence on a grand scale. I have never seen so many Versace shops in one city before, not to mention Leboutin, Louis Vuitton, Bugatti, Chanel and Debenhams. The past week has been an eye opener for me too. Having only worked in the Eastern Province before, I have never seen women’s only floors in malls with security guards making sure that it is a bone fide woman wishing to enter. Shops only open to families, men and women’s queues at fast food outlets and separate offices for sexes too. But, at no point have I felt any concern or have had any issues, totally the opposite. Everyone I have met has been friendly, helpful (apart from the taxi driver who dropped me at the wrong place and then admitted he could not read and had very bad eyesight) and gave me no cause to worry at all.

I have been treated to amazing dinners in unbelievable settings, received extremely humbling gifts and experienced hospitality that in the UK, companies would not even dream of doing. Nothing has been too much.

Trips to the British Embassy, major universities and colleges were extremely interesting and I leave with a knowledge bank that will now help to develop our strategy for 2014 and beyond. Companies need our help and we are best placed to serve. I plan to come back back in February for an education conference, I am sure this will come round in a blink of an eye.

The Kingdom Tower, Riyadh. An amazing building.

The Kingdom Tower, Riyadh. An amazing building.

Next stop Eastern Province – I wonder what the next week (aka 5 minutes) will bring.

Advertisements

Tags: , ,

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: