Entrepreneurship For Better Egypt : Ziad Aly at TEDxTanta

Uploaded by TEDxTalks on 02.09.2012

My name Is Ziad Aly
the story of this bag (for fun only)
It's a very nice story
It was over 1 year & half ago
Before the revolution
In Jordan, I was In a very Important conference
Called Arab Tech
King Abdullah attended also with his ministers
You know, the ministers sit down in the first raw When someone important attends
Actually I sat down in the second raw Like this person right there
My bag was in my hand & I felt that it was a safe place
Due to the presence of the king & his ministers
Then I put my bag between 2 chairs As your place now sir
I was in a foreign country
So my passport, credit card and 3-4 phones were Inside this bag
I went to the stage to present my presentation as I do now
I went back to search for my bag, unfortunately I didn't find it!
I had to be In Egypt the next day
Because it was a short trip Like this from Cairo to Tanta
I don't want to mention my struggle in that time
From moving between embassy and banks
And my attempt to disable my credit card
But the problem was, how can I pay for the hotel?
But praise be to God
I used to put another credit card in my pocket
Since that time I used to take my bag with me In every place
I don't mean something sir
(audience laughter)
Let's talk seriously now
It's pleasure for me to be hare In Tanta With you
I'm not like shafeek
Nor Amr Mousa
I used to go around all the cities In Egypt
I was the General Manager of Vodafone
I started with them as sales director
I had to build distribution network for Vodafone
So I went around every place In Egypt
Then I made a project with post office to start Etisalat Company
I also went around every post office to organize Places for different branches of Etisalat
It's pleasure for me to visit these different places
I know every Inch of Egypt
But I really don't intend to run for election
If you think its preface for that
Actually I started my talk that I worked as a general Manager for Vodafone
And a chairman for post office company
Now I'm a boss for my company
I'll talk today about 2 things
And its relationship with current time
It's difficult word to understand
But we will say it's just like starting your own company And business
As we just said: we should start at somewhere
I will talk also about Egypt position nowadays
I ignored talking about this because
I'm convinced that Entrepreneurship, which I started
Is a liberty
Which means: to do whatever you want, whenever you want As you want
But most people usually
Say that's not a good Idea
But this is just the beginning of The real entrepreneur
Who has his own vision & imagination and insist to do it Even If anyone prevent him
If we take a look at the Egyptian revolution
I really appreciate that many people now in somewhere
Can't stand to hear about the revolution again
But I'm not talking about it right now to make evaluation If it's good or bad
Of course the revolution made great things, unlike many people Who don't think so?
What I want to talk about is the advantages That we earned from it
We didn't notice what really happened
We just mock the current debates and the new people Who appear?
Who just imagined In this room that one day we will have 13 presidential candidates
Or maybe 6 whom we have to select one of them next Wednesday
Dr. Abu El Fotoh, or any other candidate
Sorry for saying this but I talk a lot about this topic
And we will go to Alexandria to hold a conference for Dr. Abu El fotoh So, excuse me
Who really imagined that this day will come?
I will be 50 years old In sep. So I think that average age in this room is 25 years
Please raise your hand if you believe that this day will come
I can see now 3-4 hands only
I think this number is much more
Many people in this room imagined and dream of this day
Just like my best friend and my brother Khaled Mansour said
They have a vision, through it they believe That Egypt will be better
And they said: tomorrow Egypt will change
Then they change it virtually
This indicates that we have open minded people with Great ideas more than we think
We have people who dream, think and achieve their goals More than I thought
All the people in my same age thought that This story has ended
This is the spirit of entrepreneur
The spirit to start your own business
To say that you have an idea, and to believe that this idea Will be turning point to change something
(Da'a Gdeda) Is more than gorgeous name
Let's applaud them for such a beautiful work
I will end my talk with Da'a Gdeda later
I will tell you what I'm trying to do Perhaps anyone can help me
Let me tell you in brief the feature of the entrepreneur
And how much we have of this characteristic
In the past, they said that Egypt has weak entrepreneurship
Jordan is smaller in size than Egypt About 1/10
Or maybe less. However, It has huge Movement In Entrepreneurship
Especially In the field of the Internet & mobiles
Because Jordanians or Palestinians have Commercial tendency
How many people here heard about any member of their families?
who wanted to start their own project ?
Ha? How many?
If no one raise his hand I won't believe
because every person In Egypt wants to establish his own business
from person wants to own a taxi , another wants to open clothes shop
other one intend to open Cafeteria with Hookah
Everyone wants to establish his own business
so I think that Egyptians have strong desire
Oh right,someone can also own a microbus
my point of view Is that all Egyptians have strong will to achieve what they want
but we should start
the most Important feature In the entrepreneur Is that
He Is always curious and want to explore
There is a famous riddle In English
That is hard to find an answer for it
If you know the answer, just tell me
It's: Why did the chicken cross the road?
Does anyone know the answer?
To get to the other side, yes
People say "In order to get to the other side"
This is curiosity
But I have another Interpretation
It's that the chicken saw the other side brighter
Life is brighter on the other side
It's just like get cross the other side of the sea Even If It's dangerous
It's another side of courage
Exploration is required for any entrepreneur
But courage is also essential
Entrepreneur has enough courage to continue Even If anyone frustrates him
I can see here some people whom I met In 25th Jan In Mustafa Mahmoud square
And other whom I met in tahrir square at night
Of course all of them have mighty courage
Regardless of their dreams to change Egypt
And their belief of these dreams
In addition to their ability to come down to streets
But certainly they had unusual courage
To face the central security
Either In Mustafa Mahmoud square, Gala'a bridge, or Qasr El Nile Bridge
This unusual courage is required for any Entrepreneur
Because you will find all the time people who frustrate you By saying: Oh, It's not very important to succeed
The pleasant thing in entrepreneur also Is his passion
His passion within his words or talking About his project
Actually I deal a lot with young Entrepreneurs
Like: Flat six laps, Developers and many other companies
Which sponsor and funded the small companies?
The spark into the entrepreneur eyes will Encourage you to support him
Once he talks about his own project you feel his Passion and enthusiasm
I really think that this passion exists In Egyptian Youth
And In every Inch in Egypt
Unlike other people have imagined this
He feels that he has a dream
And creative Idea that can be applied In the real life
And you just feel his passion & enthusiasm That convinces you
Another feature that we all failed to deal with it, especially After revolution
Despite Its importance
There are many communities managed to do It
It Is Flexibility
Entrepreneur should be flexible
That means: nothing can stop him
Just like water
Some people called him changeable
I have my own goal My own project
Powerful Egypt
If we need to establish a strong & successful company
Nothing will prevent or stop us
I have enough flexibility to cross any obstacle
Or any road block
Either jumping on it,
Or throw anything on it
Or turning from the other side to avoid it
Whatever method, I should have flexibility
Different companies now call It pivoting
For instance, a project that apply sharing photos online
After while they will stop that project claiming that
There are many sites doing that actually like Facebook & Flicker
So my project won't have successful marketing
But the flexible person will figure out that there Are many ways to process these photos
To come up with Instagram
And discover that I have much to do with this technology To improve It
By only turning my Idea
So as not to reach an impasse
Flexibility Is very important when we think about Our future
Mr.Khaled had talked about how we gathered
But I also add that we should have flexibility
Because If I talk to you without flexibility
And without comprehension to the other speaker
We won't gain anything
Because of the absence of flexibility
We won't get along with each other
So I think it's a very important trait
If anyone here heard about me before
I had a psychological problem when I was a child
They always told me to think outside the box
How many one heard about this statement before?
Seriously, I can't do It
I have to confess
That when they told me to think outside the box
This Is my box..
And they told me to think outside It
so, until now I didn't find the mechanism to think there
It's very hard. Can anyone do It?
Seriously! How can I think outside my box?
What? To change the box?
Maybe, but It's difficult too
Actually I came up with another Idiom
It's "Expand the box"
It's easier
Its like "put our heads together"
It means that I can think with another person
As Mr.Khaled had talked about (Masrena)
And we were together In Tahrir Square for a long time
With Mr. Wael Khaleel (revolutionary socialist) and Wael Ghonem
The latter Is my friend since I was working for Google
he let In everything(Liberal ,Masonic ,Muslim brotherhood)
He's changeable
Mr.Khaled Mansour(Salafi)
Many different people & communities
We worked hard together
So this diversity has many advantages
As we can look to issues from another perspective
For example I want to open a new company for distribution Around Egypt
I must have people from Tanta
If there is another vision
If there is another marketing & perspective
Resort to a friend
That's what "Expand the box" means
But the most important trait that Egyptian Entrepreneur Should have
Is Building the tribe
Just like Facebook & Twitter nowadays
And how much you can combine audience Possess the same interests
Even If they were in different places of The world
When I was In Road show after revolution
To talk about the small Egyptian companies,
and young egyptian entrepreneurs
we talked to Silken Vale to catch Investors In order to come to Egypt
when I was In New York,Los Angeles or San Francisco Anywhere
I was writing a status or tweet telling them that I am In that place
Or telling them my place to meet anyone there
In a tweet from my account
It was a surprise for me after I wrote that, about 7-10 Egyptian people Followers on Twitter
Came to hold that meeting and it was amazing
So, you can build the tribe even If you don't know them personally
But I think you should know them
This is the way we gather
After we determine our vision and goal
We should be gathered
There is another important thing its: Paranoia
Do you know its meaning?
It's when you look around you afraid of something
Do you remember earlier when you just speak then you heard Your sound echo
Then you were looking around afraid of that voice
That's what Paranoia mean
If you are an entrepreneur, be sure that failure is Part of your life
How many people here did everything correctly?
Like our dear candidates whom my friend talked about
Ha? How many?
Like who said I do everything correctly
I really didn't meet anyone before who do everything Correctly
Except those who appear on air claiming that
Paranoia is to expect failure
To plan that I will fail along the way
But I will have enough flexibility to move on
To move on is an important step
As we yelling "revolution till victory, revolution in every place in Egypt"
This was reflecting our passion to prevail & continue our Revolution
It's better to complete our revolution in everywhere
In our work, that is needed nowadays
With my friends & our community
It's needed also to go around villages & suburbs To communicate with people there
And to explain why do we do so
Because people don't understand our purpose of doing that
It's very important to think about widespread business that Could reach villages
It's very important also to know that
Through integration and building the tribe we will prevail
We will be able to build powerful Egypt
New Egypt
As we want it to be
Powerful Egypt that combine all different communities
We won't talk to everyone with his own method only
And that is required, It's not forbidden, It's not also some sort Of change
But our powerful Egypt has something more important than Denomination
Something superior than being supporter for Al Ahly or Al Zamalek
Something superior than being liberal, revolutionary socialist, capitalist Or communist
Our goal Is to build the powerful Egypt as we want It to be
If we do that, we will enjoy what we are doing
We will cancel the useless argument at coffees
And the silly talking
It's not our business
As long as the other person say correct ideas, I will support him
No matter what his past was That's out of my interest
No matter what his color Is It's not my business also
At the end I want to say that this always begin with mere dream
With great effort
And accepting each other
If we just think about the most important thing that we need
While building our new Egypt
We need to dream
Make an effort
And finally deal well with each other
Thank you
But I want to tell you my next project & dream
After the presidential election If Allah wishes
I always dream to stop working
In the age of 50
Currently, I can't stop working
Due to the different issues in our society that need to be addressed
We have to work harder
And we need to build together our country Regardless of our denomination
so I decided In next September
-If Allah wishes-
That I will ride my own motorcycle, I rarely drive cars Except In traveling
I will go on by motorcycle for 100 days
I will visit 100 villages
And donate for every village 100 thousand L.E
In the form of a labor-intensive project
To create new employment opportunities
I am really admired of Da'a Gdeda
Because we might restore our heritage Make different handicrafts
Or come up with many Ideas
That will be from 21/9 to 30/12/2012
This project will be turned into 100 days Foundation
Our goal In this foundation
Is that: If anyone of you wants to join us
He will promise to grant 100 days of his life
For the sake of Allah, and to serve the nation
That means to do voluntary work for 100 days of his life
If I were busy someday, I will pay for that day From my income
Other days, I will make an effort
For some days I will work on that with my friends
At the end we will build our powerful Egypt
And all of us must participate In this renaissance
So that I came up with that Idea
To show that everyone can leave his other works for 100 days
I expect that all of you will participate in this