HEC Paris, organised an online webinar session for the staff of Qatar Foundation (QF). The session, supported by QF Learning & Development to promote employee learning, was led by Dr Serge Besanger, professor of strategy and economics at HEC Paris and consulting expert at the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Dr Pablo Martin de Holan, dean of HEC Paris in Qatar, was present. Commenting on the partnership between HEC Paris and QF he said: “We have completed 10 years of our partnership with Qatar Foundation and we are very honoured to deliver this online webinar for its staff. This programme reflects Qatar Foundation’s mission and that HEC Paris’ share its objective with its commitment to the development of a knowledge-based economy in Qatar.”

“Over the last decade, we have set the benchmark for executive education in Qatar by demonstrating impact and excellence which also signals our plan for the future. For us, excellence means world-class programmes, and impact means sustaining and increasing our contributions to Qatar and its institutions, guided by the Qatar National Vision 2030," he added.

The webinar session provided an overview to the coronavirus pandemic and its aftermath - ‘Covid-19: where do we stand?’ and comprised three sessions, each of which included a Q&A round.

In the first session ‘Building better resilience during and after a crisis’, Dr Besanger offered valuable recommendations on how to make company’s relationships more robust and identify those relationships that needed strengthening; as well as how to build organisational and financial resilience.

In the second session ‘Promoting agility and innovation during times of crisis’, Dr Besanger addressed the topic of organisational agility and how this may represent, to some firms, a paradigm change in their way of conducting business. He thereby stressed the importance of leaving one’s comfort zone and espousing a culture where error is seen as a positive.

In the concluding session ‘Creating an innovative customer focus’, he talked about a number of ideas ranging from encouraging the frontline teams to resolving customer issues, and improving customer experiences to adopting Big Data in a stakeholder-friendly manner.

HEC Paris successfully completed 10 years of its Qatar chapter in 2020. It joined QF in June 2010 and was its first European partner university.

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