Shamim Yusuf is the General Manager of Al Nahda Center, a one-stop destination for all government services in Dubai. He is a leader who has a customer-centric mindset and business approach.
Al Nahda Center is one of Dubai’s largest government service provider, as Shamim says.
Shamim Yusuf is a Malaysian Passport holder residing in UAE and helping Al Nahda Center achieve its goals to provide ease and convenience to the customers in terms of government services. Al Nahda Center is also present on Instagram, TikTok, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter & LinkedIn.
Let’s learn more about Al Nahda Center and Shamim Yusuf through the interview conducted below.
Explain the background of you and the company in detail.
I am a proud citizen of India and have been in Dubai for more than 20 years. It is one of the most beautiful cities to live in and grow in. This city is home to the largest malls, highest towers, excellent infrastructure, and moreover the most potent business hub.
I come from a background in Hospitality and Facilities Management; My past professional engagement has sharpened my skills in leadership, team-building, strategic planning, performance management, and budgeting. I am currently the General Manager of Al Nahda Center, located in Al Qusais 1, Dubai.
Al Nahda Center is the largest government service provider in Dubai. We have almost all the government services and departments located within, like Amer, immigration, Dubai Health Authority, Federal Authority of Identity and Citizenship, Dubai Courts, 24-hour Drive Through PCR, Dubai Economy, Taw-Jeeh, Tas-Heel, and more.
What are your goals?
My topmost goal is to attract all residents and tourists to visit Al Nahda Center for all their government services, business services, and documentation services, followed by improving company standards, increasing customer satisfaction, conducting frequent periodical meetings with all the head of departments to establish positive long-term business plans and to state mission-driven core values.
What do you feel is the biggest strength of yourself/company right now?
Our biggest strength is being the only center in Dubai where all government services are provided under one roof and the advantages of the location we are established in, which makes us the prime center for the customers who live on the Northern side of Dubai and Sharjah.
Our company partners are also actively involved in decision-making and team building, which significantly supports us as a company. We at Al Nahda Center work together as a family, and our top priority is customer satisfaction. We provide services like a free shuttle bus, 24 hours open chat box system, free parking space for 500 cars, 24 hours PCR drive-through, and much more.
What was the path you/your company took to get to where you are today?
In 2016, we started an AMER center located in Muhaisnah, which was regulated under the GDRFA. We dealt with visa-related services and typing. Soon we realized how difficult it was for a person to get all their visa-related procedures done. A person who needed to renew their visa had to travel from place to place, from typing to visa medical until the visa stamping.
After a precise market analysis, we decided to open Al Nahda Center in 2019, where all services were provided so customers could do their procedures without any hassle. We had to work hard to get approval from the Government of Dubai for our various services present today.
Why did you start (or want to be the head of) this company?
Due to my previous experience in hospitality and facilities management, I found it quite interesting to put my skills into the governmental service industry. My professional experiences have brought me here today, and I would like to keep growing along with this company. I see the potential for us to become the most successful and expand internationally with the same business module.
What have been the biggest challenges you’ve had to overcome?
The biggest challenge I had to overcome was establishing a social media marketing team. I found it quite challenging initially to identify our target demographic and coordinate among the various departments to have the same marketing goals. Thankfully now we are actively participating across all social media platforms, with almost 10k followers on Instagram and 30k followers on TikTok. We are currently running our 3rd-year anniversary campaigns.
Give us one word that describes you the best.
I guess I can say ‘Leader’ since I have been working as the team lead for the past few years in Al Nahda Center. As the general manager, I have managed all departments and solved all issues without hesitation. I learned how to balance personal and professional relations, and I believe in leading a team, not ruling them.
What makes you excited about Mondays?
Mondays are very exciting as I get time over the weekend to sit and plan strategic techniques to discuss for the coming week. I return back to work with a very positive attitude which influences my team to work harder because on Mondays, it is highly crowded with customers, and we expect the highest footfalls when the week starts.
What do you value most about your culture and vision?
Our vision as a company is to provide services to strive to succeed at clients’ expectations constantly. Unmatched service is our forte, and an efficient team is our backbone. As you can see in our logo, we have used green and golden colors. The green stands for growth, and the golden stands for success, just like our mindsets.
Tell us about a project that forced you to be innovative and creative.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, our company realized that there is a high demand for an RT PCR facility, In our location there are many schools and residential communities. The management and I introduced a drive-through PCR facility open for 12 hours, and then the need for travel PCR, and many educational institutes occasionally needed PCR reports. We decided to make our drive-through facility 24 hours open, and we had to use innovative techniques to attract more customers and offer to cater to every sector. Many schools, offices, and hotels needed PCR camps to be set in their area for group PCR testing, so we also introduced Home Care.
What are your company’s strategies, and how do they stand unique from your competitors?
As I have mentioned before, there is no other company in Dubai that provides numerous government services under one single roof. We have all the services under one umbrella, whether a client wants to renew his VISA, open a business or make their Ejari or tenancy contract. We are unique!
What are the key values which helped you to overcome the roadblocks/challenges in your career? Tell us something about your memorable incident in your leadership.
The fundamental values that helped me overcome challenges were adaptability, fast learning, planning and pivoting, and viewing a challenge as an opportunity.
One of my memorable incidents was the previously mentioned PCR facility initiative. Getting approval was a very studious task, our team had to submit business plans to the Dubai Health Authority, and we had crucial meetings with the Director General of DHA. It required a lot of leadership skills and teamwork to convince them to give us the permit.
How do you see the company changing in two years, and how do you see yourself creating that change?
We will be extending our branch to Muhaisnah. We will be having a center for all visa medical services regulated by the Dubai Health Authority. Due to our past work relations and increase in customer satisfaction, we got approval for such an exceptional chance to grow as a company.
We are expecting to improve ourselves further and expand more locally and internationally in the future. Our ultimate goal is to become the largest government service provider in the UAE.
Where is your leadership going? What benefits do your clients get from your company in this competitive world?
I can say that starting with a company of just 50 employees and today having a headcount of over 180 employees shows how far my team and I have come.
During the past 2 years, we have expanded our departments and added more services like Taw-Jeeh and Tas-Heel, which caters to labors and blue-collar workers. Al Nahda Center has positive brand equity in the market due to my leadership skills, teamwork, and coordination.
The benefits my clients are getting are the various promotional offers and discounts we provide on our services, like a Student discount for PCR, a discount on typing services for corporate companies, exclusive businessmen services, etc.
What are your company’s services/solutions or products on par with the current industry standards? Tell us something about your upcoming products or services.
We offer the best services in Dubai, our customer satisfaction rate is impressive, and we plan to add more services. Most celebrities have gotten their Golden Visa from us, like the famous TikToker Jumana Khan and Indian hero Sonu Sood.
We are partnering with a Chinese company called the Wheel Of Fate to help provide exclusive government documentation services for the Chinese community in Dubai. We are looking to diversify more into various communities and hope to hold good business relationships with more companies in Dubai.
Connect with Shamim Yusuf on LinkedIn.