Individual Relational Meeting
For my fifth meeting I met with Zahid al Anazi who is the General Secretary (GS) of Arab Student Association at The Catholic University of America. He is currently doing his business administration studies at the university. I tried to dig in to his interests, relational networks and leadership capacities as much as I could. The following is a detailed report on my meeting with Zahid.
Zahid’s parents are from Lebanon. They came to USA in the late 1980’s and since then they have their own a business dealing in Arabian Artifacts. I asked him about his interest and who they affect his life in respect to him being the GS of the Arab Student Association and in general. He replied that the pool of one’s interests shape your life in a great manner. He was born in the USA and has always been keen to know more about his Arabian roots and culture. He said that he is really interested in reading books. Especially he is inspired by the readings of Khalil Jibran who was a Lebanese writer. Zahid said that Khalil Jibran’s readings are very humanistic in nature and its cry for human dignity and rights attracts him. He said that he, therefor, tries his best to guide people to the best of his abilities to find good in their lives. He seemed really interested in helping others as he said that the main reason he is involved with the Arab Student Association is that he thinks that the people who come to USA from Arabian countries need help in getting accustomed to ways of USA. They feel frustrated when they arrive at USA and hence Zahid feels that he has a duty to help them by organizing different events in which they can meet students from other countries and also can discuss their cultural adjustment and studies issues with the organizers including him.
Zahid is also interested in studying about current political situation in the world including the Arab Peninsula. He is deeply concerned about the current situation in the Arab world and believes that not one country but the whole world need to provide their input to stabilize the situation.
I talked to Zahid about his different relational networks. Zahid seems to enjoy establishing new relations as he said that he usually takes interests in discussing new ideas with different people. He said that he has a close relation with his parents whom he talks to on phone twice a week. His own younger brother is also studying in the same university as Zahid. He keeps himself involved with his brother to help him in his studies. He also arranges study circles for Arab students. In these educational events, he establishes new relations with new people. He said that he has a good relationship with his teachers and helps the university staff in organizing events whenever he can. I would personally say that he would make a good friend and especially he would be a good person to be in a professional relation with as he seems to be a responsible person. From what I observed after going back to the meeting notes, he is a person who is good in making relations but the nature of his relations is of formal nature. So if he is a part of an organization, he would be more interested in building friendships that are of professional nature and note being informally close to others. We can see this in his present activities as well as he is offering professional help related to social adjustment and education to the people he is in relation at present.
If I had to establish an opinion about Zahid’s leadership capacity I would be a bit skeptical about it. I believe that he is not a person who focuses on specific tasks and interests. Though he is a responsible person but he seems to take responsibilities for almost everything that comes in his way. He needs to focus on specific things and establish a future goal for what he wants to actually do. I did ask him about what would he want to lead in the future but he did not provide me with a clear answer. In fact he said that he has not yet decided what he wants to do in the future. I believe that he should have a clear idea of what he wants to be within a few years. I believe that if he is serving in a leadership capacity, he would try over emphasize his influence and try to control everything to do them perfectly. As a leader, you need to let go of things sometimes and trust others in their duties. He is a person who has a perspective of his own and he would not be interested in building team capacity by looking at the individual strengths and weaknesses of others. He is a person with bureaucratic leadership style. He seems to enjoy to control others and is suggestive of tasks than of making consensus.