It was that day in March 2015 when I was attending SQU career fair representing Radisson Blu Hotel, Muscat when a representative from National Training Institute (NTI) approached me telling me to nominate candidates from our hotel to attend the Biz Pro competition. I was sitting the next morning at my office, writing down all the names of employees who are qualified to enter the competition and I send it to NTI and the representative told me, “What about you, I think you are very much qualifying to enter the contest.” I honestly forget about myself at that stage, but it took me seconds to think and say I will participate. After that, I discussed with my manager who happens to be the General Manager of the hotel and told him about all the employees whom I nominated.
Few days after I sent the nominations, I got an email stating that I was invited for the first round of the assessment. On the day of the assessment, I entered the room where I saw many candidates and was like “will I make it to the final?!”. We were supposed to start at around 9:00 am, however; due to road traffic many of the participants couldn’t arrive on time so the organizer NTI asked us if it was ok to start at 9.30 am. Everyone in the room agreed and at back of my head, I had the thought that I called for a meeting back in the hotel which involved the general manager and all the department heads that was supposed to start at 10.30 am. Nevertheless, I also agreed and committed to finishing the exam within 45 minutes instead of the given hour so I can rush and make it for the meeting. At around 10.15 am I submitted my paper and left the exam room, and I was the first one to leave keeping behind me a room full of contestants. While driving to the hotel, I had thoughts in my head that I will never make it to the second stage of the assessment.
A week later, I received an email from NTI inviting me to the next level, and I was happy and thrilled that I was able to pass the first stage. I attended the assessment, and it was shortlisted to 10 participants and from those only six will make it to the final stage. The candidates were strong and I truly learned a lot from them and their discussions. A week later, I received an email saying that I was shortlisted as a finalist and invited to the last stage of the assessment which was to give a presentation to the entire judging panel consisting of ten talking about my success story. At that moment, I felt excited yet worried, but I said I could do it. I went for the presentation and a few days later, I received an email inviting us for the ceremony whereby, the three winners will be announced. NTI also told us that we could invite our family and friends.
On the day of the ceremony, I had mixed feeling of happiness that I made it to the semi-final stage and worried if I will be the selected Business Professional of 2015. The event started, and the MC introduced the guests, and it was time to announce the three finalists who are the winners, the MC started calling the winners. It was that moment when I felt my eyes are full of happiness tears hearing my name being called and the entire guests around applause and smiling with pleasure. Before heading to the stage, I couldn’t hold myself but to run to a table where my mom was sitting and hugged with tears. At the same time, I thanked my husband, brother, my boss and my team members for all the support. Then I went to the stage to receive my gift which was a trophy stating my name and the word Business Professional of Year 2015 along with a scholarship opportunity.
This indeed was one of the proud moment of my life which taught me “Never to Give Up” and also to take opportunities around us. Few days after this achievement, I saw my name in the newspaper as one of the candidates who has been awarded His Majesty’s Scholarship to pursue my master’s degree in Brand Management.
– To be continued –
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