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All these are based on my personal experience and I write it down so that others won’t make the same mistakes I’ve made or mistakes I’ve observed others did. I think these mistakes would be most relevant to student leaders especially Majlis Perwakilan Pelajar.

1. Don’t demand respect from your peers, it will never come. Respect is a given, it comes from the heart. It comes naturally for those unique qualities you possess and utilize (skills, etc)

2. Don’t encourage nor be in love with your organization members. It will lead to your downfall through bad mouths spoken by your members. Professional conduct is a must.

3. A leader without a vision is similar to a newborn baby appointed as the President of a Nation / Country. Without any vision you can’t achieve anything significant.

4. For long term results and praises, go for intangible results. For short term results and praises, go for tangible results.

5. An organization that does not create tangible results would lead to further demotivation with a ‘given time’.

6. Allowing a member in the organization to slack off (lazy, ponteng) is the start of the organization’s downfall. This particular member must be dealt with. If slacking off is still apparent, forced resignation is applicable.

7. It’s better to safeguard the interests of the people who contribute to the organization and are loyal to the organization than protecting those people sucking-up to you in its entirety.

8. Trust, dedication and loyalty between “leaders-members” is the foundation of growth.

9. Recruit the cream of the crop (trustworthy, willingness, IQ & EQ intelligence) as your team members and not who talk-a-lot but does nothing.

10. First impression is a false assumption, constant impression is a near-accurate assumption.

11. Do not reveal secrets to those who are not trustworthy.

12. Do not take subordinates of your superiors as your protectors and listener unless they have proved their trustworthiness as those who are close to you could be your next betrayers and slanderers.

13. Never trade your religion / faith / principle with unlawful acts (example: accepting bribes, prosecuting when you know it is wrong)

14. Always assess and evaluate potential threats and opportunities on your environment to increase your “grip” with your current strength and cover your weaknesses.

15. Never trust fully the person with the running mouth (gossip, create stories, sucking-up to you, bodek), they may be entertaining but they will be the first to betray you in any case.

16. Keep and gather allies, be it friend, enemy or rivals for he who commands the battlefield wins half the fight.

17. Never let the ball off your feet and slack off for one second.

18. Always be truthful in your cause and not deviate. Anger is the cause of destruction to self and organization. Being proud is the source of failing to keep rule #14 in check.

19. An act of kindness and responsibility for governance and leadership is solely for Allah s.w.t., unjust doing leads to self-corruption.

20. Titles and decorations are purely responsibility given by Allah, as leaders we are stewards and shall discharge our duties for the benefit of all, not betray the oath we have promised.

21.Always  be humble, everyone including you do not favour those who are proud of themselves. Humbleness + intelligence is the essence of loyalty and respect.

22. A leader who slack-off will destroy his / her organization in a “time” period.

23. A person who becomes a leader solely to pursue his personal intentions will be stewards who those not understand his people and subordinates.

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Students Political Fight.

Yin and Yang.

That’s about it.

For ye to understand.

Action speaks louder than words.

Sometimes knowledge makes one see the light when all is dark.

Never let the ball of your feet, they tell you when u play soccer.

I tell you, he who conquers the field wins half the fight.

For every wind is not the same wind.

Idiots see every wind as the same wind.

Simply idiots are those deceived.

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Realities of Life

dead_sea_sunsetThey say you become wise as you become a man.

They say the young is full of energy because they never know the barriers in front of them.

They say brain beats brawns.

They say the strong oppress the weak.

They say you have to be in the ‘family’ to be powerful.

They say with power you command the world.

They say with faith you command your inner self.

They say things and being naive, you believe.

They say things and being mature, you caught them.

For they ask why have they been deceived and bullied.

For the weak are those that do not seek knowledge till the end.

For the weak are those that ask why but do not find the reason.

For the weak choose to assume upon hearing but not understand.

Whatever path it may lead to, only two things matter.

Change is a reality only with intelligence and time.

Success is always a matter of perseverance.

Impunity exist only for those without knowledge and those who does not use it.

For “The Most Gracious, Most Merciful Allah s.w.t.” has already determined our course.

For my life experience sends me shivers and myths of rainbow.

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The annual pilihanraya kampus has returned. Most IPTAs in Lembah Klang would battle it off for the seats in the council for the PRK 2009. Nonetheless, such elections aint for those with ill-willed, happy go lucky and for-fun-let’s-get-elected. Our student elections have been passed down from generation to generation with this element I call it: reflective democracy. Translate that into plain english; mixing up and assuming student politics are on equal ground with national politics.

In reality, majority of the students do not care at all or even understand the reason they should vote for their representatives. Why? You may say simply say because MPP do not perform their duties until students do not see the need for an MPP at all. My answer: MPP has been given the provisions under the law to execute their duties but to carry out these duties, a whole hearted, dedicated team would need to be in place. Should these seats be filled with people who do not understand why they are there at the first place or even champions a group agenda without understanding what the students really need, you can nod your head and agree that students won’t care about MPP.

A mistake not to be made is this:  “another 3 months to election day, let’s be more active and campaign more (make more noise and get attention), and when we (win or lose), keep quiet until the next 3 months before election.”

Winning just don’t work that way. Just like; getting friends take time, creating trust takes honesty (time) and respect needs credibility building (more time and proving your worth). So if you are starting to campaign now and think the students would care, I wish you good luck, try next year aite? Whatever it is, those who aspire to win the elections should have campaigned ALL the TIME. Not when the campaign is near. That’s why people won’t trust or care about what you campaign for them, they don’t know you and it’s very unlikely they would like you.

Whateva it shall be, my principles have always been for students to act intellectually. Intellectual in my terms are as follows:

  • Using 3 main aspects to project it: reading books/journals/literary , applying what you learn in real life and learning from your mistakes and lastly gaining experience and teaching others your skills.
  • Do not Assume. Never assume. Always put down the facts right before taking action.
  • Do not define. Explain. Some people tend to use complicated jargons to make them look smart, for example: saying “cyclical unemployment” towards a crowd of non-economic knowledge. By doing that you are just learning to use a term. You should explain the term and apply it. The key here is applying it not showing off your vocabulary knowledge.
  • Be a strategist. Lose the battle not the war. To win the war use all the tools you have. In layman terms, use all avenues you fool. Dosen’t mean a brick wall is there you have to pecahkan. Climb and get over it.
  • Go the extra mile and learn the art and tactics of politics. Politicians will teach you tricks but that’s about it. See the world. Read political figure biographies! From the Audacity of Hope (Obama), Muqaddimah (Ibnu Khaldun), My Life (Bill Clinton), The Malay Dilemma (Tun Mahathir), The Chinese Dilemma (Yi Le Sheng), The Just Prince (Sulwan Al-Muta), READ IT! It will teach you all you need to know in the world to succeed in politics. For they have walked the path as you had and some things might just be applicable. But the best book I’ve read from all of em is “Power Plays”. This political book rocks! From the way Tony Blair paved victory for the Labour Party to Junichiro Kuizomi won the Diet, it states everything a “mahasiswa” should know.

Well, I wish good luck to everyone for this year’s Pilihanraya Kampus. I’ve discharged my duties to the best of my abilities during my days in my MPP Seat and hopefully all would not go in vain. I know it would not, as long as students strive  and work to acquire knowledge than anyone they deem as superior to gain the advantage. God willing, with time and effort, the intellectual tradition which I see is starting to bear fruit, when flourished, would return the glory of students as one of the respected entity by the community/masyarakat, not just students who dont know and cepat melenting. I pray the day would come when our working adults, graduated working people, PhD or any other people who have better qualification than students, would look up highly at our student leaders with respect, admiration with effection, just like how we are in awe with students who are in Harvard or Cambridge.

For I know the day would come when you choose to change and make excellence your tradition.

All the best. Signing off from duty as your official president in hours to come.

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It’s almost the 12th day of the Gaza offensive by Israel and it’s absolutely disheartening to see the Muslim world powerless politically, economically and almost in every sense to stop Israel from beating the hell out of Palestinians in Gaza. Gone are the days when at least a Muslim country could be considered a significant and strong state to alter the political landscape. I see demonstrations in the streets as plainly emotions at heart in which we could only contribute emotional support which is very much intangible.

But we forget. Forget the Muslims world did. We still hold significant economic power.

Tun Mahathir has called the boycott of jewish products, followed by the Malaysian Muslim Consumer Association today which would boycott Coca Cola as a start followed by other products which are deemed as “possess jewish interests”.

It’s time for Malaysian Student Leaders to take action and follow suit on an economic boycott. This will give us a double edge benefit: helping our Malaysian industry & creating a consumer-centered business model. How?

Well you see, I do hope the next MPP SeMalaysia or MPPK members would coordinate a “systematic boycott”. With IPTA students numbering more than 500k at aggregate, it’s a force to be reckoned with intelligent mobilization. The concept is mainly;

  • Work with Consumer & Industry Associations, NGO : Student Associations should approach all the crowd pullers for a start and ensure the association pledge for boycott of “selected” products. This would create media coverage and probable chain effect.
  • Provide Substitute Products : A triggered idea. Should product X (Coca Cola) be taken out from the market and we promote a substitute, product Y (Malaysian Beverage brand) would receive free promotional effect. Should work only if the substitute product share almost the same characteristics. Good business opportunity for our industry. Imagine many other products. Good time to promote Barangan Buatan Malaysia.
  • Segment labeling : With the help of associations, let’s get the merchants in the association to label these products as “our systematic boycott” or in any colour in their stores. Can you imagine majority wouldn’t buy it because others would be looking at you buying something with support a war cause? Ah the mircale of psychology.
  • Use Social Networking : I see many Gaza causes springing up in facebook and friendster, what better way to coordinate systematic boycott through these communication channels and recommending substitute products.
  • Carefully select products to boycott : We wouldn’t want our industry to be in trouble don’t we? Let’s examine which products would be wise to boycott at a start and which we can live without. Then we work to boycott others from there.

Mind you, I have jewish friends and I am totally against suicide bombing and I am not anti-semitic but i am against the Israeli politicians who possess so much self interest and influenced by their ‘oligarchs’ and think tanks. Look what will happen to the children who survived in Gaza after this war. They would be traumatized and would sow hatred in their hearts. It creates more and more problem. We Muslims should learn from what I read in the Roman Abromovich biography, the author states that jews possess “ceiling effect” which made them resilient. Perhaps Muslims should learn from our jewish friends.

Anyway, since I am no more the student leader, I do hope our student leaders would do this in the future. Let’s act smart. Let’s imitate political tactics employed by Ghandi. Let’s use intelligence.

For all this are not driven because of hatred, but it’s the only tangible aid we can offer to comfort the tears of the Muslims in Gaza.

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I’ve received calls from papers asking on my comments on AUKU. I told them it was positive. It was what we asked for during our meeting with Dato’ Seri Najib in MPPK. Nonetheless certain journalists told me to not be afraid of my comments because I was a YDP and I have to be on my principles. Again, provoked by journalists. Curse you. That is my principles weak minded fool. I have always believed that students need to learn about politics and know everything from national to international issues but trained in an intellectual manner. Intellectual here I derive as the ability to think and strategize accordingly and to utilize in-depth research academic knowledge to debate and hence achieve the desired political objective.

resist-2

I do not condemn aggressive political plays such as demonstration or public display as that is the spirit of democracy but I tend to attend to the need of the masses. Ask anyone from 20k students in UPM about AUKU and how it restricts their life and I am sure most would say they dont even know what it is and they don’t feel anything effecting them. The masses need different things in uni hence the law of demand and supply kicks in. (Not a scientific statistical proof, just my value judgement but I suggest someone research on this but please be fair not bias in getting the results)

Nonetheless, the newly admended AUKU did left it’s mark. Some would say, this is our work while another group will say, no that is our work and you have done nothing. Let’s get something very clear here. Was AUKU successfully amended last year or previous years when the YDP MPP of IPTAs made their stand that AUKU is there to stay while another group be it GMMA or Pro Mahasiswa fought for abolishment or amendment? No.

And yet it was amended this year when YDP MPP IPTA made their stand to the government on the sections to be amended and the other Pro Mahasiswa group shared the same vision. What happened? We have amendment, that’s right.

Truly student leaders need to be analytical in their approach, to segregate levels of uncertainties and approach with strategies in a likewise manner. When will we understand that we will always have opposition and the government to debate and then agree on issues? When will we student leaders understand that we are not decision-makers as the government is the one not us. When will we realise we are the so called “pressure group” to make things happen? When will we realise that we need the support of each other’s voice to make things happen, just like what happened to AUKU? We can’t do it alone in making the government change things, we need each other.

Some people would say, we do not want to have any groups in uni. Just individuals fighting for students welfare. I wish you good luck on the name of democracy. We are humans, we will always have groups and from groups we will share ideologies hence create organizations. I put my bets on this, just look and observe, we will always have groups in uni even though you want it differently.

Whatever it is, AUKU has been amended and we’ll see how far it goes in 2-3 years. For my friends which do not have a clue on AUKU, welcome to the IPTA political world.

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soft-skill_7881

It’s been three weeks since I just started my practical training at Horwath Malaysia. I must say that I just adopted a principle dearly important to me as long as I am in the corporate sector: “increase your right hand skills, your business/industry knowledge and your left hand skills, anaytical skills”. Those were the words from James Chan, one of the Partners in Horwath KL. It’s great to have seniors which are willing to teach me all the skills and the knowledge needed to interpret the industry, many thanks to Kiam Soon and Ai Ling. Looking forward for our final audit together this January.

After being so active in UPM for the past three and a half years, having meeting hours per day more than going to lectures everyday, I must say all those skills I’ve learnt in UPM, they call it SOFTSKILLs, I can conclude this:

You need it but do burn your softskills certs (symbolic).

And why do I say that?

You will agree with me by saying yeap, we need softskills to be marketable and get ourselves employed. That’s ONLY A PART of the IMPORTANCE of softskills. Maybe let me put it at 10% of the overall importance. Or maybe let me put it at that’s a 1/10 of the REASON why we should acquire softskills.

Why? Why? What’s my point?

Get this concept right: Softskills are skills which potray your personality, EQ and attitude.

In translation terms, it stick inside you and determines how you do things and project yourself.

In career terms, it’s simply skills which you need to progress in your career.

I still don’t get your point. Then read on.

Let’s examine two scenarios below;

Scenario 1 :

Student A hears that softskills are important for him/her to secure a job, so him/her join 8 clubs and societies. 1 active society and another 7 are dormant societies. The objective was to make him/her CV look great to the employer. So he/her secured Presidency in 2 clubs. He/her looked active on papers with certs but actually there were no activities or once in a blue moon activities organized which are on a small scale, just like during school times. What did he/she learn from all that? Minimum to nothing.

Scenario 2 :

Student B hears that softskills are important for him/her to secure a job, so he/her searched for clubs and societies which would aid him in his career. For example he/she wants to be a banker, so he/she joined the Enterpreneur Club or the Finance Club. He joined other clubs which would enhance his/her management and leadership skills through large seminars and etc. (example AIESEC). Then him/her organized activities which are on a large scale and grows his networking of friends, peers and professionals in uni, outside and industry. What did he/she learn from all that? Skills which would stick inside him/her. Minimum to maximum.

Ok fine. So what, do I really need to learn all this crap? Read on.

Firstly, put yourself in your employer’s shoes. Say you are a CEO of a company and you wanna employ fresh grads. As a company you want profit hence you want employees that can contribute to that and same goes to organizations, they want performance and results hence they want employees that can contribute to that.

So you interview a freshie and you employ him/her. Why? Good academic results and damn active, 10 societies, president that and this, fuyoo!! Hebat siot!

Then suddenly when this freshie gets to work; all sorts of problems arises, can’t communicate with collegues, can’t interact with clients, have a don’t care attitude, can’t even organize teams well.

Next what happens? The boss shows you the door with your latest paycheck

Can You See Now?

The reason softskills are important is because you use during your working life. Those skills are needed by both organizations and industry. And you must provide that. Provide the SKILLS NOT CERTS!

You show so many certs, fine. But it’s how you utilize the skills that will ensure your career and how you climb up the ladder.

And for burning the certs earlier, don’t do it, I’m just saying that certs are for presentation purposes but what how you use your skills that would ensure your future.

So, YES, we need softskills but definitely not gathering CERTS.

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