Sunday, August 6, 2017

Restaurant Success by the Numbers- by Roger Fields, CPA- review of the first few chapters


My plan is to post on this blog regularly, iA.

I was recently approached to invest in a restaurant at a local mall. I bought Roger Fields' Restaurant Success by the Numbers book on setting up restaurant as a reference tool to orient me to this industry.

I read the first five chapters and glanced through the remaining 10 chapters. I will share some of Fields' thoughts below:

Fields provide a decent framework based on his experiences and other case studies. I found the case studies most useful and made the material more engaging. His methodical discussion on developing the restuarant concept. identifying the target market, securing the appropriate location and making pro-forma statement based on reasonable assumptions was useful and pertinent to gain an insider's prepspecitve of launching a restaurant.

Fields splits the book into three sections:

  • Dreaming for success (Chapters: The rules of the game, The restaurant concept, Your target market, Location, location, location, Dollars and sense) 
  • Developing The Details (Chapters: Constructing the menu, Fashioning designs & ambiance, Setting the table, Raising the bar, Designing the kitchen, Staffing) 
  • Getting Down to Business (Chapters: Getting the Money to Make it a Reality, Setting up Your business, Taking it to the street, Opening Day and beyond) 

Fields begins the book with the assertion that it is a myth that 90% restaurants fail by the first year; his assertion is that 26% fail in the first year ans that 59% fail within three years. Fields asserts the following reasons on why independent restaurants fail:

  • unrealistically high rent and occupancy costs 
  • undercapitalization and lack of working capital 
  • lack of attention to details in managing financial resources 
  • poor operational management 
  • excessive investment in construction, equipment, renovation, and acquisition costs 
  • poor choice of location 
  • poor choice of concept 
  • poor or inconsistent food and service 

Fields lists a few basic rules to consider for an aspiring restuarant owner/investor:

  • Keep your foot firmly planted in realities of business and the other in your passion for your restaurant
  • Consider starting small event you've had previous experience as a chef or a manager 
  • Set initial realistic goals and objectives 
  • Recognize from the get-go that the amount of financial resource you have access to will limit the type and size of restaurant you can realistically open 
  • Make a commitment to find and surround your self with the right people to help you get the job done

In regards to my thoughts on making the investment into a restaurant, I offer the following recommendations to the operator that reached out to me:
  • Consider finding a co-founder who is familiar with local laws and jurisdiction
  • Since, the restaurant concept is Mediterranean and target market is individuals who seek out halal meat options, consider approaching existing halal meat stores and figure out if there is opportunity to collaborate in their existing location
  • Draft a well-thought out forecast and projections

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Review for Jeffrey Gitomer's The Little Red Book of Selling: 12.5 Principles of Sales Greatness


I recently listened to Jeffrey Gitomer's The Little Red Book of Selling: 12.5 Principles of Sales Greatness and wanted to share some high level notes.

Good ideas/perspectives are most useful when we act upon them.  So, how do you act upon these ideas? I suggest you focus on a couple of principles a week and try implementing a new strategy or action from these principles in a routine basis. Internalizing concepts/ideas occurs with focus and persistence.

Much thanks to Mr. Gotimer for sharing his experiences/perspective in a user-friendly manner.

I listed Mr. Gitomer's 12. 5 principles for sales greatness below:

  1. Kick your own ass
  2. Prepare to win, or lose to someone who is
  3. Personal branding is Sales: It's not who you know, its who knows you
  4. Its all about value, its all about relationship, its not all about price
  5. It's not work, its NETwork.
  6. If you can't get in front of the real decision maker, you suck.
  7. Engage me and you can make me convince myself.
  8. If you can make them laugh, you can make them buy!
  9. Use CREATIVITY to differentiate and dominate.
  10. Reduce their risk and you' convert selling to buying.
  11. When you say it about yourself its' bragging. When someone else says it about you its proof.
  12. Antennas up
  13. Resign your position as general manager of the universe. 

I wish you fulfilling success.

Why customers buy (per The Little Red Book of Selling)

  1. I like my sales rep
  2. I understand what I am buying
  3. I perceive a difference in the person and the company that I am buying from
  4. I perceive a value in the product that I am purchasing
  5. I believe my sales rep
  6. I have confidence in my sales rep
  7. I trust my sales rep
  8. I am comfortable with my sales rep
  9. I feel that there is a fit of my needs and his/her product or service
  10. The price seems fair, but its not necessarily the lowest
  11. I perceive that this product or services will increase my productivity
  12. I perceive that this product or services will increase my profit
  13. I perceive that my salesperson is trying to help me build my business in order to earn his. My salesperson is a valuable resource to me. 

18.5 secrets of success (per The Little Red Book of Selling)

  1. believe you can
  2. create the environment
  3. have the right associations
  4. expose yourself to what's new
  5. plan for the day
  6. become valuable
  7. have the answers your prospects and customers need
  8. recognize opportunity
  9. take advantage of opportunity
  10. take responsibility
  11. take action
  12. make mistakes
  13. willing to risk
  14. keep your eyes on the prize
  15. balance yourself
  16. invest, don't spend
  17. stick at it until you win
  18. develop and maintain a positive attitude
  19. ignore idiots and zealots

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Strong Believer is better; Be Determined, Make Dua, and Work Hard


I listened to Shaykh Yasir Qadih's khutbah on the following hadith:
Abu Hurayah reported that the Prophet (S) said, "A strong believer is better and more beloved to Allah than the weak believer, and there is good in both. Be eager to obtain that which benefits you, ask Allah's help, and don't be lazy. And if something happens to you (result was different that your plan/expected), then don't say, "If only I have done this, then such-and-such would have happened, but rather, say, Whatever Allah has willed has occurred, and whaterer He wants to He will do."

This hadith has many benefits and I will summarize Shaykh Yasir's points below.

Some commentary from the khutbah:

Strong believer (one who has stronger iman) is better than a weak believer (weaker believer). How do you know if you have strong iman? Look at your commitments to the deen, how often do you pray, how often do you stay away from evil.

People' faith differs, based on their inner and outward deeds. Allah loves the stronger believer. How does one know if ones' iman is strong? All you need to look at inner/outer deeds. Look at your commitment to islam and you will know how strong your iman is? How often do you pray? How often do you think about Allah?

Allah's loves also differs, based on our commitments. if you want Allah loves you, have strong iman.
How do you know if Allah loves us? In the Quran, Allah says he  loves those who have taqwah, ones who have patience. Allah doesn't love who are extravagant, oppressors
How do you become  a better mumim? Look at Allah what loves and follow them ,and avoid actions that Allah doesn't love.

Going to the next phrase in the hadith, "and in both is good." Both categories of believers have good in them. This illustrates the mercy of the prophet (S), that even when he is contrast two groups of believers, he points out a positive so that weak believer don't feel negative emotions. Prophet (S) gives us a methodology, that even in criticism, one should highlight the positive.

The next part of the hadith, "Be eager that which benefits you,"  serves as the basis of our actions. You need to have a resolve, determination, drive. Prophet (S) wants us to aim high for all matters of benefit, both in deen and in the dunya.  It could be a successful business, medical school, or other aspirations. Wise person/true believer is always aiming for the best, wants that which is good.

Once you have made up your mind on your goal, "And Seek Allah's help,"

Before undertaking anything, make dua, asking for Allah swt's guidance.  We need the realization that we need Allah's help for everything. We need to have the right frame of mind. Attitude of the believer is that you need Allah's help/decree And, then the hadith says, "don't be lazy", there is no substitute for hard work.

So, three necessary conditions for success
1. Right intention
2. Dua
3. Right action

 And if something happens to you (result was different that your plan/expected), then don't say, "If only I have done this, then such-and-such would have happened, but rather, say, "Whatever Allah has willed has occurred, and whatever He wants to He will do."

Ultimate success is not necessarily guarenteed. You can do everything right, but it might not be decreed. Don't blame yourself, don't be depressed. This hadith contains profound Islamic psychological advise.  Belief in Qadr fundamental part of faith. Accept Allah's decree and trust it.  A believer is always optimistic. True believer can never be depressed over results as long as the three conditions for success are being followed.

Don't dwell on the past. This hadith teaches us to have a positive attitude, rely on Allah, and to be happy with the result.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Review of Marketing Myopia (by Theodore Levitt)--> Leveraging these lessons in a job interview


I just read a classic HBR article, Marketing Myopia, written by the Theodore Levitt (HBS professor). Professor Levitt discusses the importance of defining industries broadly and focusing on customers' needs and desires (i.e. defining railroad industry as transportation oriented instead of railroad oriented).

Professor Levitt encourages a focused approach on customer satisfaction and urges businesses to work backwards in terms of developing a product.  The following excerpt from his paper illustrates his point:

"The view that an industry is a customer-satisfying process, not a goods-producing process is vital for all businessmen to understand. An industry begin with the customer and his needs, not with a patent, a raw material, or a selling skill. Given the customer's needs, the industry develops backwards, first concerning itself with the physical delivery of customer satisfactions. Then moves back further to creating the things by which these satisfactions are in part achieved. How these material are created is a matter of indifference to the customer, hence the particular form of manufacturing, processing, or ... cannot be considered as a vital aspect of the industry. Finally, the industry moves back still further to finding the raw materials necessary for making its products."

This mind-set can be applied to other parts of business/professional life. For instance, if you are applying for a job, consider your potential employer as your customer, and try to determine his/his needs and think through how to present your skills to meet the employer's needs. Emphasize how your past skills are translatable and applicable to current job's needs. And, finally, if you need to gain more skills/learn code/go to school, then develop yourself with the appropriate training and then present your product (i.e. yourself) to your potential employer.

You can find the full article via the following link or buy it from HBR:

Monday, July 15, 2013

Can Electronic Medical Record Systems Transform Health Care? Potential Health Benefits, Savings, And Costs? Health Affairs Article

I recently read through a study performed by RAND researchers that examined the benefit/cost analysis of EMR adoption/interoperability, "Can Electronic Medical Record Systems Transform Health Care? Potential Health Benefits, Savings, and Costs?"

The study predicts efficiency and safety savings of $142-371 billion dollars (didn't see a time frame) with the adoption of interoperable EMR systems.

The study speaks to efficiency savings, safety and health benefits. I listed some high level detail below. For more details to the headers below and study design, feel free to review the full article:
1.      Efficiency savings in outpatient setting included eliminating transcription and chart pull services, easier access to lab/radiology tests, better decision support for drug prescription, etc.

2.      Efficiency savings in the inpatient setting included decreased nursing times/length-of stay, simpler access to medical records, easier access to lab/radiology tests, etc.

3.      Safety benefits from HIT including reducing adverse drug events in inpatient and ambulatory settings

4.      Using HIT for short-term term preventive care

5.      Using HIT for near-term chronic disease management

6.      Using HIT for long-term chronic disease prevention and management

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Reviewing Islamic Finance


I recently enrolled in Ethica's Certified Islamic Finance Executive course ( and am learning about basic Islamic Finance principles and products.

For instance, Islamic Finance is built on 4 principles:

  1. interest free
  2. risk sharing, asset and service backing
  3. contractual certainty
  4. ethical

I will share some of the notes from the class through upcoming blogs, iA.

Be safe and I hope you are taking advantage of these blessed days of Ramadan.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Giving positvity presentation to a youth group


I spoke to a group of youth ~ 20 boys and girls (8-16 years old) about positivity and how it relates to the deen.
For anyone who is interested in giving a talk to group of youth on importance of positivity in our deen, feel free to use the agenda below, PowerPoint presentation (click link) and listen to the lectures listed on reference page of ppt.  (Many thanks to wife, Tasnim Ahmed for making the presentation) 

1.     Establish Ground Rules (e.g. raising hand meant everyone should be quiet)
2.     Ask everyone to itroduce themselves (say your name and say anything positive)
3.     Review Positivity PowerPoint presentation and asked for participation after each slide
4.     Begin Group Activity (split into groups of 2-3 and chose one hadith or Quranic ayat from the presentation to discuss and come up with a life scenario where that the Quranic ayat/hadith could be applied (kept the summary page up on the  projector during session as a reference))
5.     Present findings (each group presents their story/scenario to the larger group)
6.     Recap lessons learned 

Lessons learned about content:
1.     Reminders on maintaining a positive outlook on life is beneficial and is part of the Islamic tradition.
2.     Focusing on other's positive traits helps individuals and communities grow
3.     In terms of criticism, focus on ones' own shortcomings, rather than pointing out other's faults

Lessons learned from presentation delivery
1.     Planning agenda is key to keeping event on target in terms of time/message
2.     Thanking all the kids and community members who attended the event is important (I forgot to do this). The kids could have been  somewhere else, but came and spend their Fridays nights in a community setting
3.     Establishing ground rules in the beginning of the event helped maintain order (i.e. raising hand meant everyone should be quiet)
4.     Setting up competitions/prize for case study analysis helped focus the attendees (competition/prize should have been announced in the beg of the event)
5.     Presenter should be prepared to be interrupted and be patient (teenagers and young kids are rowdy)

Monday, May 27, 2013

Interested in taking the PMP exam?


I recently studied for and passed the Project Management Professional (PMP) exam, alhamdullilah. If you are interested in learning about leading project management practices, working towards the PMP certification maybe for you. 

In my opinion, the PMP gives two main benefits, it gives you an opportunity to review and learn about concepts within project management that you might not have formally encountered through your work experiences and it serves as a signal to employers who are looking for candidates with an understanding of project management methodology. Even if you are an entrepreneur and/or are not working in the project or portfolio management space, studying for the PMP will give you a useful perspective on various issues that should be considered when working in a team or project with varying customers/stakeholders. 

In regards to study tips, I suggest you read through the office PMBOK Guide and work through all the practice problems listed in Rita's guide on the pmp (2) listed below. Working through practice problems will be very important to cement the knowledge and will prepare you for the exam. Please read the benefits of practice problems/tests via the following NY times article:

I used two main books as a reference for the exam:

1. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide)-Fifth Edition

4/11/13 update
Although I used 7th edition when I took the exam, it probably makes most sense to use the 8th Edition in preparing for your exam (8th edition is based on PMBOK 5th edition, which is currently the frame of reference for the PMP exam)

PMP Exam Prep, Eighth Edition: Rita's Course in a Book for Passing the PMP Exam

PMP Exam Prep, Seventh Edition: Rita's Course in a Book for Passing the PMP Exam

In addition, I also did practice problems/exams from

Reach out if I can help-

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Review of What the Most Successful People Do on the Weekend


I recently listened to a quick talk on making better use of weekends, What the Most Successful People Do on the Weekend: A Short Guide to Making the Most of Your Days Off (by Laura Vanderkam)

Mrs. Vanderkam central thesis is to strategically plan weekends for two main reasons: anticipating enjoyable events adds value to overall happiness derived from an activity + there are too many hours in a weekend not to plan, however lightly.

I listed some notes  from the Mrs. Vanderkam's guide. Feel free to check it out.
  1. Make a weekend plan. Weekends is all about things you want to do. You need to hit Mondays refreshed and rejuvenated.
  2. Don't wait till Sat to plan the weekend. Plan 3-5 anchor events (3 hours each). Increase the joy of an activity by planning,optimize your bliss. 
  3. Ask yourself what will you really enjoy doing, and make a plan, and stay committed to it. 
  4. Most of us think of weekends as Sat and Sun. Friday 6pm to Monday morning,  60 hour blocks: 24 hours sleep, there are 36 hours left. Would you take a job,  without knowing what you will do?
  5. Loafing time needs to be consciously chosen.
  6. Choosing labors.of different sorts,  yes, your weekend needs to be different thank work week
  7. Make a List of 100 dreams- anything you want to do. Weekends are precious, they ought be cultivated. .
  8. Simply knowing that you will leave the house will give you more order in your life.
  9. Exercising,  spiritual,  and socializing. Choose from one event from each category will make an optimal portfolio. 

Specific action items for weekends
  • Use your mornings
  • Create traditions : Fulfilling habits lead to happiness
  • Schedule downtime
  • Make time to explore
  • Plan sometime fun on Sunday night

If you want to read it for yourself, check it out on Amazon:

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Review of The 4-hour Work Week (by Timothy Ferriss)


I listened to The 4-Hour Workweek by Timothy Ferris and believe that is filled with useful and practical advice on how to be more fulfilled and active in your life. The book is the author's plight of making better use of time and looking at net salary from two dimensions: money + free time.

I believe that central thesis is develop a razor-sharp focus on your goals/objectives and to challenge yourself to question and achieve your aspirations. Mr. Ferris leverages lessons learned from his life's accomplishments to help others realize their dreams and aspirations. He gives tangible action-items through out the book (e.g.  to become an expert in a topic, read three books on the topic, and summarize them in one page, contact schools/local business and start speaking on the topic)

I listened to most of book on the Long Island Railroad and at times took notes on the phone. I will paste some of the notes/lessons learned in a google document for more insight/further reference.

I find that writing out the table of contents helps me  recollect and act upon lessons learned from a books.

Table of Contents

D is for Definition
  1. Cautious and comparisons: how to burn 1000000 a night
  2. Rules that change the rules: everything popular is wrong
  3. Dodging bullets: fear-setting and escaping paralysis
  4. System reset: being unreasonable and unambiguous

E is for Elimination
  1. The end of time management L illusions and Italians
  2. The Low-Information Diet: Cultivating selective ignorance
  3. Interrupting interruption and the Art of Refusal

A is for Automation
  1. Outsourcing life: Off-loading the Rest and a taste of geo-arbitrage
  2. Income Autopilot  1: Finding the Muse
  3. Income Autopilot 2: Testing the Muse
  4. Income Autopilot 3: MBA--> Management by Absence

L is for Liberation
  1. Disappearing Act: How to Escape the Office
  2. Beyond Repair: Killing your job
  3. Mini-Retirements: Embracing the Mobile Lifestyle
  4. Filling the Void: Adding Life After Subtracting Work
  5. The Top 13 New Rich Mistakes

Last but not the Least
  1. The Art of Letting Bad things happen
  2. Things I've loved and learned in 2008
  3. How to travel the world in 10 pounds or Less
  4. The Choice-Minimal Lifestyle: 6 formulas for More Output and Less Overwhelm
  5. The Not-to-do List: 9 Habits to stop now
  6. The Margin Manifesto: 11 Tenets of reaching (or doubting) profitability in 3 months
  7. The Holy Grail: How to Outsource the Inbox and Never check email again
  8. Tim Ferris Processing Rules

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Review of Strategic Project Portfolio Management (written by Simon Moore)


I recently read Strategic Project Portfolio Management (PPM)- Enabling a productive organization (written by Simon Moore). The book had a excellent review of the application of PPM theory in the workplace. The book is filled with case studies and provides a easy-to-read background on the intersection of PPM and technology.

For those new to PPM theory, Microsoft defines PPM as the following: "Project Portfolio Management (PPM) is the continuous process of  identifying, selecting and managing a portfolio of projects in alignment with key performance metrics and strategic business objectives."

I listed notes that summarize key lessons from the concluding chapter on leading PPM practices:

  1. Set bold goals for the business and therefor the portfolio, and share these goals repeatedly and broadly.
  2. Collect far more project ideas than you can execute on from as broad and diverse group as possible
  3. Manage your portfolio as a whole against your strategic goals for the business.
  4. Estimate key project parameters early and improve on those estimates over time.
  5. Share portfolio information broadly with as many employees as possible
  6. Monitor and report on the portfolio with a view to faster and more effective decision making.
  7. Track everything that is consuming resources go beyond formal projects to anything that is a meaningful piece of work or use of resources.
  8. Drive communication across everyone involved in the portfolio.
  9. Support extensive planning before-hand and postmortem processes afterward.
  10. Recognize the portfolio management skills that your organization already has.
  11. Keep everything as simple as it can be.

How is the book organized?

  • Chapter 1, 2: Focuses primarily on creation of business goals and strategic alignment of projects to them
  • Chapters 3,4: Emphasizes benefits from disciplined planning and cost focus
  • Chapters 5,6,7: Serves as a guide to best practice implementation
  • Chapters 8,9, 10:  Expands on the prior chapter to explore the need for effective communications structures, people-centric processes, together with appropriate use of workflow, and process overall
  • Chapter 11: Takes a more theoretical look at project management, surveying the key perspectives
  • Chapter 12: Looks at future trends across project and portfolio management, combining a business and technology perspective

If you are interested in reading more notes from, feel free to click on the link below:

If you would like to read a white paper by Microsoft on PPM, click below:

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Interested in business school PhD programs?


Interested in business school PhD programs? I sat with a leading business school prof and asked him for his thoughts (listed some notes from the conversation below).

For some context, this professor finished his PhD about 5 years ago, and is about 3-4 years from reaching tenure in an institution that is research-focused.

Ultimately, he recommends the PhD route if you like long hours of analyzing data, re-writing papers, research, and occasional teaching.

For most professions, staying in industry is probably more lucrative. In terms of specific Business PhD programs, the demand characteristics of accounting PhDs in the job market alone requires exploring the program.

Phd offers a choice to make a difference (e.g. there are opportunities such as starting a business program overseas).
Teaching is mostly good.

You need to think about the PhD in terms of a 15 year investment, 6 years getting a PhD, 9 years getting tenure.

Professor is working 6 days a week.  Lifestyle is tough, you are spending a majority of the time performing analysis, rewriting papers. Typically, business school professors don't have to worry about raising money/funding.

A professor's life is a bit entrepreneurial, you have a lot of independence, and you are responsible for your success. Top 5 business prof salary is about 160k, accounting is about 200k. In academics,  you are making 60% of what you will make in industry, these industries (business, computer science, medicine) income is mark to market.

If you don't have accounting or finance work experience, think about starting some research or accounting work. As an alternative to business PhD programs, consider data science jobs at LinkedIn, Facebook, Google.

One cautionary thought:
What will be the state of business school in 20 years? What will happen to mid-tier universities with the advent of virtual academic institutions such as Khan Academy or Coursea?

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Questions to ask when drafting a project (using Mircrosoft Project as your project management tool)


Are you thinking about planning a project using Microsoft Project? I listed some notes on what information to gather in preparation to developing your Project Plan.

Determine your final deliverable and/or list of deliverables
. The gathering requirements phase will be very important to planning and ultimately executing your project/goal.

  1. What are your project’s work breakdown structures (i.e. tasks/work that need to be completed)?
  2. Have you determined summary headers (group headers of logically related tasks (WBS))
  3. What are the milestones (key events of a project such as a beginning or completion of a deliverable)
  4. Who or what will be working or are needed to complete the project (Resources)?
  5. What is our project’s availability (Calendars for the project/resource or task; need to know when the tasks, resources, projects are available)
  6. Are there any deadlines?
  7. How much time will each task take?
  8. How are tasks dependent on each other (finish to start, start to start, start to finish); Per UMT workbook, generally, all tasks and milestones must have at least one predecessor and one successor
  9. What are the fixed and variable costs of your resources? What is your project's budget?
  10. How will you categorize your task types (fixed duration, fixed units, fixed work)?
  11. Should you add contingency tasks to the plan?

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Notes from Barron's 1/28

Bismillah. I listed some notes from Barron's articles;

Head Wind into Tail Wind, by Alan Abelson
-  equities extended longest winning streak since 2004, S&P is up above 1500
-  new claims for unemployment insurance dropped to 330,000 this week
-  per Floyd Norris, inventories of unsold houses are lowest in decades, and it is now providing a stimulus to the economy
-  Abelson doesn't believe there is any real credibility to a possible war between China and Japan

That Uneasy Feeling, by Kopin Tan
-  9 out of 10 stocks are above their 50-day averages, "a sign the market is becoming overbought in the short-term"
- S&P is trading 14 X projected profits
- stocks make up 35% of assets of US pension funds (long term average ¬44%)--> so there room for further equity buying
- Michael Hartnett, BofA Merrill Lynch chief investment strategist, "Central-bank liquidity has been by far and away the most important driver of asset prices since the great financial crisis."

Friday, January 25, 2013

Notes from listening to personal mba

Bismillah. I have been listening to The Personal MBA: Master the Art of Business, Josh Kaufman. I listed some notes below.

Viewing your mind as a muscle.
Invest in yourself
How to work effectively with others?
Relationships are based on power, influence vs compulsion
Influence is more effective, people naturally desist being forced
Do things that increase you reputation and skills
Comparative Advantage (CA), Ricardo calculated that specialization is better than making everything yourself
Focus on what you are best at
CA explains why diverse teams are stronger.
Communication overhead:
Everyone had a fundamental need to feel important
Being present and focused
What got you here will not get you there. Putting down people leads to ineffective conversation
Share facts, tell your story, ask for other's story.
Treat people with appreciation, courtesy, respect,
When you assign a task, tell the why as well. Give the intent behind your plan. This allows people to act to changes.
Take responsibility and assign specific responsibility

Monday, January 7, 2013

Macro economic outlook for 2013

I was reading through some global outlook reports and wanted to share some of the reports. Here is a brief summary.

The United States government’s gridlock in the legislative houses, fears of dipping back into a recession and forecasts of 2% GDP growth lends itself to a cautiously positive economic 2013 outlook. Even with modest US GDP growth in 2012, the consistency of 34 months of job creation and stronger investor confidence led to strong 2012 stock market performance (e.g. S&P 500 gained 13.4%, Nasdaq Composite Index gained nearly 16%). In a global sense, contraction of many Eurozone member economies and less than 1% mean GDP growth for Eurozone demonstrate that developed economies are not growing strongly. Emerging countries such as Turkey are showing stronger economic growth (4%) and thus potentially are more attractive to investors. 

Global grind: The world economy’s woes are far from over, forecasts Robin Bew:

Jan Hatzius on 2013- projects later half of 2013 to have greater growth:

Russell Investments 2013 Global market outlook:|18567|economic%20outlook%202013||S|p|19218821602&gclid=CPGVrfyQz7QCFUbf4AodohUAQQ

UPSIDE AND DOWNSIDE: An Excellent Overview Of The US Economy In 2013

Read more:

Doing one thing at a time


Interesting read about the importance of focus on projects/day to activities. Tony Schwartz advises his readers to avoid multi-tasking and to give one's undivided attention when working on a project/task. In addition, Tony believes that it is important to complete most important tasks in the morning, take breaks during the day and to plan meaningful/complete vacations from work. 

To read more, click on the link below to read full post.

It is interested that in the tradition of the Prophet (peace be upon him), he would turn his face and body to someone when he spoke to him. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

Returning to the blog world, iA

Assalamu Alaikom (peace be upon you):

The plan is to return from the blog haitus.

Muhammad Alshareef's What can you do in 10 min?" khutbah is filled many beneficial tips and reminders on beneficial practices that we can implement in less than 10 min.

Much love and peace

Monday, October 25, 2010

Take benefit of five before five

The Prophet (pbuh) said: “Take benefit of five before five:your youth before your old age,your health before your sickness,your wealth before your poverty,your free-time before your preoccupation,and your life before your death.”(Hakim)

This hadith reminds us to make proactive use of my talents, gifts, and resources. Nothing in this is life is permanent and it is important to utilize our strengths/skills NOW, rather, than later, iA. Each gift mentioned in this hadith is important: our youth, health, wealth, free-time, and life. I hope we have the ability to take full advantage of these gifts to empower ourselves and our communities. has a great khutbah on this topic

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Visit the sick

During Fajr prayer, the imam reminded us about the importance of visiting the sick. I believe he was referring to the following hadith.

The Prophet (S) said: "When a man goes to visit his sick Muslim brother, he walks along a path of Paradise until he sits, and when he sits he is cloaked in mercy. If he comes in the morning, seventy thousand angels pray for him until evening, and if he comes in the evening, seventy thousand angels pray for him until morning." At-TirmidSubhanAllah.. Who wouldn't angels praying for him/her? This hadith is a great reminder on the importance of visiting the sick. I definitely need to this more often. Hopefully, I will be make it a point to visit someone sick within a week, iA.