Ian Faulkner: Driving Success With People-First Approach

Ian Faulkner: Driving Success With People-First Approach

Ian Faulkner, COO

Ian Faulkner


As the business world becomes increasingly complex and competitive, the role of the Chief Operating Officer (COO) has never been more important. A modern-day COO not only oversees the day-to-day operations of an organization but also plays a pivotal role in shaping its long-term strategic direction. This requires a combination of exceptional and empathetic leadership skills, deep industry expertise, and an unwavering commitment to achieving organizational goals.

Meet such an inspiring COO, Ian Faulkner of Al Rawabit International. With over 20 years of experience in recruitment and HR, Faulkner is a seasoned professional who has made significant contributions to both local and global organizations. His passion for connecting people with meaningful employment opportunities is what drives him, and he has witnessed first-hand the transformative impact of talent acquisition on his client's success.

Founding Al Rawabit International over a decade ago, Ian Faulkner was motivated by the prospect of not only securing employment for individuals but also supporting businesses in their growth trajectory. He is a firm believer in a people-first approach and has built his organization's success on trust, relationships, and reputation. Helping people find a job is a serious responsibility, ultimately at Al Rawabit, we are helping people feed and educate their families. It is difficult as we can’t help everyone, but we try to be as supportive as possible. It's no surprise that he is regarded as one of the industry's most respected leaders, and CEO Insights Asia is thrilled to feature him in this issue.

What is the motivation that fuels your daily routines? What is your success mantra?

What fuels my daily routine is a dual purpose. Firstly I am deeply driven to help businesses unlock their fullest potential by identifying and securing top-tier talent. The satisfaction that comes with enabling organizations to thrive is immeasurable. Secondly, establishing and nurturing a company culture where employees can evolve and blossom is incredibly fulfilling. Witnessing the personal and professional growth of those around me, and supporting them in their journeys, is my ultimate success mantra. It's not about my achievements alone, but rather the accomplishments of those in my team. I take great pleasure in identifying the factors that propel individuals to succeed and guiding them toward their goals.

Invest in building strong relationships & trust with people, & success will follow

How would you define Al Rawabit International as an organization and its current position in the market?

Al Rawabit International is a people-first company. We prioritize supporting individuals in their career journey, not merely placing them in roles that match their CVs. Instead, we take the time to gain a deep understanding of their aspirations and passions, aligning their talents with roles that fulfill them on a deeper level. This approach goes beyond short-term fixes and allows for long-term career success.

Our unique proposition lies in our emphasis on identifying not only the right academic qualifications but also cultural fit to ensure a strong future for both our clients and candidates. We believe that it's essential to match individuals' personal qualities with the company culture to create a cohesive, productive environment.

At Al Rawabit International, our value additions are unparalleled. We offer customized solutions to meet our client's unique needs, providing a wide range of services from talent acquisition to HR consulting. Our dedicated team ensures that clients receive personalized attention throughout the entire recruitment process, offering ongoing support and guidance. Ultimately, we are committed to building long-lasting relationships with our clients and candidates alike, facilitating a mutually beneficial partnership.

Tell us about your leadership approach. What are the guidelines or methodologies you follow to lead your team?

As a leader, I firmly believe in a collaborative approach that values mutual expertise. Rather than viewing individuals as being above or below me, I prioritize open communication and listening to others' insights. This is reflected in my adherence to the principle of using two ears and one mouth in the right ratio - listening more than talking.

While I am always excited to explore innovative ideas, I recognize the importance of empowering my team members and giving them the freedom to flourish. I believe in providing a supportive environment that fosters growth and development, and I strive to promote autonomy and responsibility among team members. Ultimately, I aim to lead by example, setting the tone for a positive, productive workplace culture that values collaboration and mutual respect.

Tell me about the major milestones or major challenges you have experienced in your journey so far. What is the future destination you are heading towards?

Reflecting on our journey over the past 10 years, I am proud to say that we have just celebrated our most successful year yet. Having hired over 6000 people and contracted even more, we have firmly established ourselves as a leader in the industry. Our success can be attributed to our unwavering commitment to supporting people in their career journeys.

While the past couple of years has presented significant challenges, particularly with the onset of COVID-19, we have persevered by staying true to our principles and continuing to put people first. Despite the difficult circumstances, we prioritized the needs of our clients and employees, ensuring that everyone felt supported and valued.

Looking ahead, our goal is to continue building on our reputation and relationships. We aim to maintain our trajectory of growth and success, fuelled by a deep commitment to trust, collaboration, and mutual respect. Our focus will remain on supporting people in their career journeys, empowering them to achieve their full potential, and contributing to their own personal success.

Ian Faulkner, COO, Al Rawabit International

Ian excels at building strong relationships with individuals and corporations alike and has a proven track record of delivering outstanding results. Ian's exceptional interpersonal skills have been honed through successful large-scale turn-key recruitment projects in education, transport, medical, oil, and gas in both government and private entities across the region.

Ian possesses an impressive array of abilities across multiple areas, including Sales, Finance, Administration, Business Management, and Customer Service. His outstanding capabilities in diverse countries and settings enable him to perform at an exceptionally high level, ensuring that he consistently exceeds expectations.

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