Date: October 11, 2023
The Bahrain Center for Strategic, International, and Energy Studies (Derasat) organized a seminar titled ‘The Role of Strategic Planning in Institutional Work’, under its ‘Think Talks’ lecture series, on Wednesday 11 October 2023 in its headquarters in Al-Awali. Participants included representatives of various organizations in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
The seminar featured four topics: the historical development of strategic thinking; the importance of strategic thinking in implementing institutional plans, as envisioned by the Bahraini Society for Strategic Planning; the role of strategic planning in addressing challenges, as experienced by the Bahrain Airport Company; and strategic planning’s contributions to achieving organizational goals, as implemented by the Labour Fund (Tamkeen).
Dr. Hamad Ebrahim Al-Abdulla, Executive Director of Derasat Center, explained the historical development of strategic thinking; exploring the concept’s development and its significance in ancient conflicts; and emphasizing its connection to military organization and planning. He also shed light on the early writings related to strategic planning in ancient China and Athens, tracing its evolution from the Middle Ages to present day. Strategic planning has gained prominence as an essential component of politics, economics, and institutional management, serving as a vital tool for both individual and institutional success.
Mrs. Samaa Yousef Al-Raees, President of the Bahraini Society for Strategic Planning, presented the importance of strategic planning in implementing institutional plans. She stressed the instrument’s significance in achieving organizational goals, fostering competitiveness, and successfully navigating complex work environments. The presentation covered effective formulation of strategies, aligning organizational goals with strategic initiatives, and the exchange of ideas and scientific methods applicable to strategic planning across diverse organizational settings. Mrs. Al-Raees also highlighted the BSSP’s pivotal role in promoting strategic management, providing support to local organizations and individuals, and facilitating the development of management and strategic planning skills.
The third topic in the seminar discussed the role of strategic planning in addressing challenges through the experience of the Bahrain Airport Company, presented by Mrs. Leena Ahmed Faraj, Vice President of Strategic Implementation and Business Development at the Bahrain Airport Company. She showcased the plans implemented and steps taken by the company to ensure business continuity for logistical services and air freight during the COVID-19 pandemic; all while relying on competent national resources. Her presentation included model BAC crisis management initiatives, through critical responsiveness measures imposed by pandemic circumstances on the aviation and air freight sectors; two of the most vital sectors during the pandemic. Mrs. Faraj addressed the steps of identifying objectives and program and procedure assessment by utilizing the roles and capacities of several proficient departments within the company’s structure.
Mrs. Alya Ali Al-Aali, Chief Strategy and Data Analytics Officer at the Labour Fund (Tamkeen), delivered the fourth topic on the role of strategic planning in attaining organizational goals. She emphasized the pivotal role of strategic planning in establishing a clear path for the organization to achieve its strategic objectives, with a particular focus on supporting local entrepreneurship. Furthermore, she highlighted the importance of aligning organizational plans and policies with Bahrain’s Vision 2030 and sustainable development goals. Mrs. Al-Aali stressed the significance of strategic planning as an ongoing and continuous process within all institutions, adhering to the highest international standards and best practices. This approach aims to enhance national capabilities and cultivate a culture of strategic thinking and planning.
The seminar was moderated by Dr. Ashraf Mohammed Keshk, Director of the Strategic and International Studies Program in Derasat’s Studies and Research Directorate. Notably, this seminar is part of Derasat’s ongoing initiatives to facilitate dialog and the exchange of opinions on vital issues and topics that benefit various national sectors.