SASREF collaborates with Aon to create leadership development programme to nurture Saudi talent

Initiative underlines commitment of SASREF and Aon to support the goal of the kingdom’s Vision 2030 to hone the skills of Saudi talent

SASREF is the joint venture of Saudi Aramco and Shell International.
SASREF is the joint venture of Saudi Aramco and Shell International.

SASREF (Saudi Aramco Shell Refinery Company) has completed a comprehensive leadership development programme (QAED) that aims to nurture the skills and competencies of its senior professionals with the support of Aon, a leading global professional services firm providing a broad range of risk, retirement and health solutions.

QAED is a specialized leadership development programme to develop skills of SASREF professionals to support the strategic business growth goals.

Executed over a period of four months, the leadership development programme covered more than 90 SASREF staff in managerial positions. Aon leveraged a suite of scientific assessment tools to determine the current leadership capabilities of the group and helped develop their leadership skills further to support the growth of the organisation for the long term. Aon also provided executive coaching for senior leaders, to strengthen their long-term impact on the business.

Mohammad A Jurais, talent development manager, SASREF, said: “As an employer of choice, we invest significantly in people development. Our employees are our primary assets and by developing their skills, we are further contributing to a key goal of the kingdom’s Vision 2030 to nurture professional Saudi talent.

“We identified the need for a modern and scientific leadership development programme that will equip our leaders with the required level of competency to support the strategic growth of our organisation. QAED was clearly aligned with our objectives and we look forward to a highly rewarding and interactive programme that will boost the competencies of our team,” added Jurais.

Robin Ullrich, QAED lead, SASREF, said: “Leaders who participated in QAED evaluation are now much more well-positioned to embark upon a structured developmental pathway through professional training and educational programmes, where they are in a position to develop a broad and deep understanding of issues affecting their organisations to achieve excellence.”

Following the review of the leadership abilities, Aon delivered a bespoke training programme suited to individual needs and aspirations. A team of executive coaches supported the training activities, and the outcomes of the sessions were provided as a comprehensive organisational report to the executive management and the leadership development committee of SASREF, highlighting the strengths, opportunities and moving-forward plan.

The leadership development programme meets the needs of SASREF to develop a strong pool of leaders who can undertake complex operations for the company. The development sessions further strengthen the confidence of leaders at SASREF, assuring them a long-term future in leadership roles.

Mina Morris, associate partner, Aon Middle East and Africa, said: “The opportunity to support SASREF with a truly comprehensive leadership development programme underlines our strength in talent assessment and development solutions.”

With the focus of Saudi Arabia, under its Vision 2030 to invest and develop future leaders, our holistic approach to leadership development served as an ideal fit to the needs of SASREF and the kingdom. With our deep leadership consulting expertise, we ensured that SASREF’s leadership pipeline fully supports their business strategy and provides them with a competitive advantage in the market.”

“The programme brought several advantages to SASREF staff, as it increased self-awareness and underscored their stronger career prospects. It will lead to a cascade effect in leadership where better leaders will be instrumental in creating more effective future leaders within the organisation,” Morris added.

The proprietary tools used by Aon utilised technology and simulated a day in the life of a business leader, with different challenges for the mangers to solve. The programme focused on the competencies which bring about future success at SASREF, including change leadership, collaboration, communication, creativity and innovation, decision making, empowering others, results focus, risk assessment, safe work practices, and visioning and strategic thinking. 

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