Trust technology and youth to ensure sustainability in organizations: Aamir Khan 

Islamabad, October 31, 2022 (PPI-OT):”Technology is a key enabler to accelerate transformation of businesses for sustainable growth”, said Chairman Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan Aamir Khan, in his address to ICAP’s All Pakistan Chartered Accountant’s Conference 2022. He pointed out that there are three integral challenges to sustainable growth of corporates, which also become cause for lack of transformation of companies into enterprises suited to transforming needs of the market and consumers.

He noted these challenges to be avoidance of risk, emphasis on experience instead of nourishing newer approach from youth, and reluctance to adapt to changing needs of the market and consumers. He said that the social and cultural factors of our country teach risk avoidance and doses the masses with the accompanying uncertainty.

“To me, a risk-taking culture encouraged by organizational support, lies at the heart of progress. During the past few decades, legacy leaders in many industries that failed to embrace risk and innovation have faded away, rather unceremoniously”. The solution then becomes embedding and inculcating a risk-taking attitude with a careful calculation of the potential outcomes and putting “what-if” strategies in place, he said.

Aamir Khan also accentuated on the nurturing youth to become power houses of innovation and providing them leadership opportunities. He said that the youth group (aged below 30 years) has an outlook and aspirations that differs significantly compared to their seniors.

And stronghold of officials over 50 years of age, at times, organizations and their leadership to struggle with the pace of expected change and renders them slow to evolve and transform for future.

“New opportunities and risks around ESG, climate change and gender mainstreaming resonate more strongly with the younger population,” he said adding that their exclusion also leads organizations to fall short of making business plans that ensure sustainable and transformative future for the businesses.

Elaborating the need for openness to adaptability, Khan said that with the advent of Artificial Intelligence, the ability to accumulate, share and analyse data for decision-making is critical for any futuristic and sustainable program.

“Equally important is the continuously educate and retrain the entire workforce consistently an emerging and new technology use cases,” he noted. Aamir Khan also shared instances where SECP has put all these solutions into practice within its ranks and has encouraged those under its regulatory ambit to apply the same. In 2019, approximately 28 percent of SECP officers were under the age of 35, while within 3 years, by 2022, this percentage has increased to 35 percent.

“Furthermore, especially constituted teams, comprising of officers below age 35, are routinely tasked to work on practical problems and give presentations and recommendations to the Commission”, he informed. He mentioned SECP’s flagship transformation program LEAP, as a product of a team with an average age well under 40. He concluded his remarks by highlighting new models of business and viewing operative and delivery models through the lens of users as a significant aspect for sustainability.

“It is indeed the right time that we build businesses that last, rather than to build for profit. It is imperative that we all work together by stepping in to the shoes of end users to determine their needs and consider the impact of our actions on the society”, he said.

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