OAB Launches Women Mentoring programme to tap into female talent

Muscat, 20, Oct 2019:  On the eve of Omani Women’s Day, Oman Arab Bank (OAB), has launched a mentoring programme, specifically geared towards women. The launch took place as part of its Women’s Day celebration at the Fraser Suites in Muscat. The event was attended by the Guest of Honour, Ms. Randa Sadik, a Member of the Board of OAB and the Deputy CEO of Arab Bank, as well as over 200 female members of staff and senior management of the Bank. There was also a section dedicated to SMEs established by women at the event, in order to help them promote their business.

The internal women mentoring program is designed to help participants tap into latent or undiscovered talents, and hopes to overcome personal roadblocks to success. Over the course of six months, 26 mentees will be split amongst ten mentors, after being subjected to an initial training course on the ins and outs of mentoring. Mentoring relies on mutual respect and willingness to listen and learn from both mentor and mentee. Rather than a traditional teacher-student dynamic, the relationship built allows an unfettered exchange of experiences and information.

Commenting on OAB’s initiative, Asma Al Zadjali, Head of the Banking Operations Group, stated, “Trust is a very important element in anyone’s success: we need to trust our own talent and ability, and also trust the people around us to help us in achieving our goals. Mentoring builds on this trust relationship. It allows us to share the relevant development areas without the fear of being judged. This helps mentees gain confidence in their abilities and strengthen communication, which in turn leads to further career development.”

OAB has always shown strong support to talent, be it male or female and has a key objective to identify talent early and reward excellence. At the Bank women are on the board, take some of the most strategic roles in senior management and are rapidly making their way up through the ranks to take more and more senior roles. The support of talent is reflective of its own ambition as an employer to support the development of the Omani workforce.

Rashad Al Musafir, CEO of the Bank, commented on OAB’s commitment to talent, stating, “Diversity in the workplace makes good business sense. At OAB, our talent development initiatives are aimed at improving the overall output of our employees, but are also structured in a way that recognises and uplifts all talent to contribute to the overall success of the bank. Our training initiatives, including mentoring, are an extension of our strategy to support our colleagues throughout their journey at OAB.”

To evidence this even further, for its Women’s Day celebrations OAB joined forces with the Sidab Women, which is supervised by the Ministry and Social Development. The organisation seeks to empower Omani women, by establishing projects that benefit their participants. Their current project aims to reduce waste by creating bags using recycled materials.

Randa Sadik, delivered a speech on the occasion in which she said, “I’m very pleased and honoured to be here today celebrating the many achievements and successes of the Omani women and acknowledging their pivotal role and valuable contributions across the different sectors in the Sultanate.” She added, “At home and in the work place, Omani women continue to set a great example for reliability, hard work, professionalism and ambition, working side by side with men in tackling challenges and leveraging opportunities towards building the future.”

OAB, and by extension its Human Resource Division (HRD), has always placed great importance on the empowerment of women, consistently encouraging them to take on positions of greater responsibility within the Bank. They provide them with every tool and opportunity possible to do so, with this mentoring programme as only the very latest in a long line of programmes developed and organised by the Bank. Each of these training programmes have been specifically designed to augment staff skills and competencies; providing them with the tools required to grow professionally.

Furthermore, the HRD has already taken into account training for staff at all levels, right from entry level internship and orientation programmes, all the way to senior level leadership and management programmes. On a broader scale, such a wide range of training programmes also help towards enabling knowledge sharing within the financial sector of the country as a whole.

In addition to these training programmes, the HRD also readily offers its support for both external and internal programmes that celebrate and support women’s empowerment, such as this women’s day celebration.

Oman Arab Bank has a rich and proud history as one of the first financial institutions to be established in the Sultanate. Today, the bank operates a nationwide network of 65 branches and representative offices with 152 ATMs spread across Oman. OAB provides a complete range of financial products and services for personal banking, corporate banking and investment clients.