Author: Aditya Rawat
Once said by Mahatma Gandhi – ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’. The first thought which comes to my mind whenever I think of this quote is of Mr. Fadi Nwilati – CEO of Kaizen Asset Management Services. Fadi truly exemplifies the Japanese term – ‘KAIZEN’ which means “continuous improvement.” His approach to continuously improving things has encouraged him to come up with the idea of laying the foundation of Kaizen Asset Management Services in the year 2006 to overcome the pressing challenges faced by the real estate sector in managing their properties at minimal cost by leveraging innovative technologies to maintain utmost residents’ delight. It is a matter of pride for me to say that Fadi’s brainchild – Kaizen AMS, is among the top 5 property management firms in Dubai today.
Fadi Nwilati has been instrumental in driving a vast list of transformational changes not only within Kaizen AMS but across the industry. This is one of the several reasons he has been recognized as one of the “Most Trusted Real Estate Professionals of Dubai” by Property Times. Fadi’s unparalleled leadership followed by the utmost dedication of ‘Kaizeners’ has earned Kaizen AMS almost every prestigious industry award.
This exhaustive list includes –
- the most recent – ‘Most Customer-Centric Company of the Year’ at the International Real Estate Community Management Summit (IRECMS) Awards 2021
- ‘Customer Happiness Award’ ‘and Partnership Award – Proptech’ at ‘Smart Built Environment Awards – 2021
- Gulf Real Estate Awards for ‘Best Employer in Real Estate’ and ‘Best Consultancy in Real Estate’ –2018,
- ‘Best OAM Initiative’ & ‘Best Media and Communications’ -2019, and
- Kaizen AMS being featured on the ‘Influential Companies of 2020 list’ by CM Today
Let’s find out the 7Ps of Fadi’s leadership which makes him a truly world-class leader and a well-known figure in the Dubai Property Management industry today –
People who know Fadi will agree with me that the statement he emphasizes the most is ‘Hiring passionate people and growing them’. It is just not a statement but his core ideology. Fadi always strives to drive performance by empowering employees and acting as a mentor. I firmly believe that no monetary incentive can be a substitute for passion. It only comes from within and the people around you. ‘People with great passion can make the impossible happen’. He encourages everyone to put their heart into their job role and give the best effort to drive results. In my opinion, the biggest secret behind the triumph of Kaizen AMS as the most successful property management firm today is Fadi’s approach to encouraging employees to be passionate and nurturing a culture of strategic thinking, innovation, and creativity.
In this context – I remember a quote by famous American author, Business Coach, and CEO of Snuggwugg – Lisa Cash Hanson: “Leadership is the ability to guide others without force into a direction or decision that leaves them feeling empowered and accomplished.”
As rightly said by Vince Lombardi, ‘Success demands singleness of purpose’. One of the many reasons behind the ascendancy of Fadi is he does everything with a purpose attached to it. His core purpose is to serve, develop, and inspire people and perform his responsibilities to the best of his ability every day.
Fadi always strives to consistently achieve greater results, to be able to stand strong for those who need him, to inspire young adults that they can achieve what they want by continuously advancing themselves and improving, all the while without forgetting to have fun, disconnect, and enjoy life. By continuously improving his life and the life of everyone who surrounds him, Fadi collectively elevates everyone to greater levels. His mission is to make the property management industry enjoyable and contribute to human sustainability. By fulfilling his purpose of life every day, Fadi takes Kaizen one step closer to its mission ‘To Create Memorable Experiences and Communities’.
We live in a world where the corporate head honchos expect faster results under rigid timelines which requires working under immense pressure. However, in this journey, corporate bosses forget that working under pressure not only limits the creativity of the employees but also puts their physical & mental health in jeopardy. I have been a part of a similar work environment which had always limited my creativity. Fortunately, that’s not the case with Kaizen AMS.
‘Good things come to those who wait’. I can say this with utmost confidence that I am a very big admirer of Fadi Nwilati’s patience. He truly understands ‘Rome can’t be built in a day and gives sufficient time to every initiative to reap the results. Employees working with Kaizen AMS for a long say, Fadi has not always been like that. After receiving continuous feedback from the team members, he learned to grow and accept the virtue of performance. I feel the Greek Poet Solon has rightly said – ‘He who has learned how to obey will know how to command’. Fadi obeyed the feedback of his fellow Kaizeners which has made him more patient than he was before. His patience has led to several projects which started at a slow pace initially, gained significant momentum in a few months, and became a major success for the company in the later stages. The lesson I learned from Fadi is patience is indeed a cornerstone for being a successful entrepreneur.
The first step to success is prioritising the priorities of your stakeholders. I feel this is one of the many qualities of Fadi that he always ensure he lives up to the expectations of Kaizen’s stakeholders in terms of both quality and the timeline. He always continues to improve his efficiency and encourages Kaizeners to dedicate more time to understanding and analyzing the expectations of the stakeholders to stay one step ahead in the competition. Fadi leverages his decades of experience working on unconventional technologies and his passion for innovation to meet the dynamic expectations of the clients. His approach of leveraging the technology to make the company’s operations swift has empowered Kaizen in becoming ‘Your Technology-Enabled Property Management Company’.
Fadi’s persona is highly driven by the great value system he inherits. He encourages everyone to maintain strict compliance with the rules & regulations not only within Kaizen AMS premises and the communities we manage but in personal life as well. Fadi’s high ethics, treating every person with the utmost respect, and the attitude of keeping the promises and living up to the expectation of Kaizen AMS’ stakeholders and earning the trust vote of most notable real-estate clients in the UAE such as – Emirates REIT, Dubai South, Meydan, Meraas, Select Group, and Al Futtaim, to name a few. Once said by Raymond Thomas Dalio – “You don’t achieve happiness by getting rid of your problems – you achieve it by learning from them.”
6. Personal Touch
One of the biggest hindrances to the success of any organization is when its leader fails to establish personal touch with his employees and customers. This discourages several employees from sharing any incredible ideas they have or speaking out their minds for the betterment of the organization. According to an article by Harvard Business Review titled – ‘Can Your Employees Really Speak Freely?’ several employees fear conveying their distinctive ideas to the management because they fear the consequences of speaking their minds. Such a type of culture not only makes the employee feel demotivated but also results in the organization missing out on unique business opportunities.
Like every great leader, Fadi understands it. Thus, he has fostered a culture of open-door policy by maintaining a close relationship with every employee which makes them comfortable to communicate any ideas or concerns they have in mind with him. Mr. Fadi Nwilati organizes brainstorming sessions on a bi-weekly basis to listen to the ideas of team members as well as his expert opinion on how to go about it. This makes employees feel more inclusive and privileged that their opinion really matters and also establishes the personal touch which makes it easier for them to convey any distinctive idea they have in mind which could impact Kaizen AMS’ customers & employees.
Fadi’s philosophy of building personal touch not only with employees but with everyone he meets has encouraged him and Kaizen AMS to come up with the most innovative communication tool – the Whatsapp Chat platform to provide a personal touch to the residents of our managed communities by bringing personalization to our conversation instead of apps. Kaizen AMS’ WhatsApp platform provides 24×7 personalized support to over 30,000 residents in our 100+ managed communities. Once said by Elizabeth Mccormick – “take the time for the personal touch else how will you stand out from the crowd”. Fadi understands the meaning of this quote and truly exemplifies it.
Persistence is the seventh ‘P’ of Fadi’s incredible leadership. His ‘Never Give Up’ attitude and making efforts to thrive under critical situations is what make him a true leader in my eyes. Something I have learned in my professional career spanning over 13+ years is the quality that distinguishes great leaders is that ‘FAIL’ is not a word in their dictionary but it is an abbreviation which stands for ‘First Attempt in Learning’. Great leaders possess dogged perseverance, even in the face of overwhelming odds. Fadi is among those leaders. His persistence always motivates me and every Kaizener to strive until they achieve the best results in their job roles. Fadi never loses the sense of purpose or direction and creates a reliable compass setting for those around him. His personality sets strong examples for the employees to do something different from the previous day and drives them ‘To Create Memorable Experiences and Communities’ (a vision statement of Kaizen AMS).
Fadi’s persistence and continuous support drove me to come up with a list of unconventional initiatives which had a significant positive impact on the company’s stakeholders, business, and its most valuable asset – employees. And the ‘Employee Talks’ initiative (this blog is part of) is one of them.