Building a training culture one course at a time.
Through his unique training programs and entrepreneurial spirit, Abdullah Al Zamil, partner in the Gulf Business Network Training Centre (GBNTC), is helping shift and shape the direction of development and change within Saudi Arabia.
2010: A Beginning of a Journey
After earning a bachelor’s degree in finance from Los Angeles, California, Al Zamil came back to Khobar and attended a business simulation game. “I saw four years’ worth of finance in three days,” said Al Zamil. An idea of implementing this business idea in Saudi was forming in the back of his head.
Al Zamil approached big companies in the area with the idea, but they weren’t interested. Then he had an opportunity to take a similar simulation program in Kenya about Train the Trainer, for those who were starting out their careers in the training field. The course gave him the ability to attract interested companies through presenting his simulation in a more appealing way.
The Next Big Step
Al Zamil formed a team of three to take things forward and they eventually got their first contract ever with the Saudi Electricity Company. They performed a trial simulation for 20 employees and it went so well that they ended up expanding it to 2,400 employees.
With that success in hand, they performed the same service for the National Water Company and several governmental entities. “I was really excited to get a phone call from Dubai for a training program,” said Al Zamil. “The Entrepreneurship Challenge” was meant for families who wanted to expand on their ideas to start a business.
The Glass is Half Full
Unfortunately, companies started cutting down their budgets for training as the economy struggled in 2016. Undeterred, Al Zamil thought: why not implement workshops for the public? He posted a social media ad for a trial simulation program, Finance for Non-Finance: Learn Finance in Three Days.
“I realized the power of social media on that day,” said Al Zamil, as many people attended the course. Better yet, companies wanted to partner up and start implementing these new training programs. Thus, he partnered up with GBNTC.
He began offering courses throughout the country, and even expanded his roster of courses to include a barista workshop, jewelry design, styling, cake decoration, pottery making, photography and art and crafts.
“We want to be a unique training center that provides training programs that do not exist here,” said Al Zamil.