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Hussein M. Dajani


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We Facebook, Tweet and write blogs, which keep us in constant connection, but what we do with these connections is what makes the difference. Through my work experience in the MENA region for the past 10+ years, i got the opportunity to work on global, regional, and local markets and get a deep understanding on consumer and culture insights. In a world that has been cut up and defined by its differences, separated by its religions and traditions, which values money and technology at an unprecedented level, where incentives are highly self-centered, humans’ acknowledgement of interdependence seems to be largely missing. Yes, we Facebook, Tweet, and write blogs, which keep us in constant connection, but what we do with these connections is what makes the difference. I am a “connector,” as Malcolm Gladwell defines in The Tipping Point. Coming from a family of many siblings, I am used to several personalities surrounding me at all times, dealing with them, and compromising. In the same way, I treat the people who I meet as an extension of my family. It is only natural for me. Thus, the connections I make regularly benefit me personally and in business, often simultaneously. I am never satisfied with easy answers, with simple explanations: there always has to be something else, something more interesting and complex beneath the surface of things. This is perhaps a defense mechanism: growing up in a country like Lebanon, in a city like Beirut, where the sectarian civil war colored so much of my childhood and taught me early on that much of the circumstances of life are beyond one’s control, and that loyalties are both multi-layered and multi-faceted, I also learned that knowledge is power. Exercising one’s mind allows one to travel beyond the personal limitations of borders, of place, of culture, of circumstance. And perhaps this gives a measure of feeling some control over a world that is so uncontrollable. This curiosity then informs my entire life philosophy. An old friend once wrote down a phrase and asked me to meditate on it: “Maturity is the ability to manage uncertainty.” I find myself coming back to those words of wisdom again and again, and using them as a rudder to navigate this latter part of my life, which I hope can be characterized by this complex definition of maturity.

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