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Rafiuddin Shikoh On Consumers To Contributors & Islamic Economy

Episode 24

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Hosted by
Maruf Yusupov

I help people discover their purpose in life and follow their passion to live in prosperity.

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Rafi is one of the thought leaders when it comes to Islamic Economy. Here is why I say this.

He is the managing director of Dinar Standard and Rafi and his team has been publishing “Islamic Economy Reports” in partnership with Thomson Reuters for the global Muslim market. 

He is one of the very few people I know who are smart and humble. This is why he is not only a good friend but first and foremost one of my mentors and advisors. 

In this episode, we discussed how we can as a Muslim ummah transform from consumers to contributors to serve God by serving humanity. 

Show Notes

Dinar Standard

Interview transcript

Maruf: Hey, Assalamu alaikum. This is Maruf. Welcome to the Muslims On Fire. Today, I have a very special guest, a friend and mentor, advisor brother Rafi. Assalamu alaikum, Rafi. Welcome to the show. 

Rafi: Walaikumassalam! Oh, nice to hear from you and it’s a pleasure to be here.

Maruf: It’s a pleasure to get you on the show even after some period you know, what? Why don’t we start? Why don’t you tell us briefly what you’re doing these days. Then we dive into the longer story. But we stay with us. Go ahead, please.

Rafi: First and foremost, I’m a proud father of three wonderful kids, ranging from high school 6 years old, have a wonderful partner, life partner, an artist and the lower to that first and foremost, I’m blessed to have my parents with us, then providing a blast their blessing to us all the time.

And I wider dipping and family as well, and in terms of the work nowadays, I’m reading for now launched a firm in 2014 our standard but as a consulting firm in 2008 and 113, our standard is now a recognized research and advisory firm, growth strategy research and advisory firm with the anchor focus or the most prominent focus and known for working the Islamic economy paste and of you very well know. But also now doing government Innovation work at a global level as well as social impact investment. So that’s in a nutshell. 

Maruf: Thank you very much. Well, okay, so the Dinner Standard some of you may not know the name, but I’m sure you have come along with at least one of their charges so reports. So, they’ve been publishing this report Global state of Islam economy. 

Anything you have seen about an economy and its growth. It’s most probably come from the Dinner Standard in their team. But before that we want to today, I want to talk to Rafi about his story, you know it life story. So we come to be so why don’t we start with that directly with them to tell us? 

You know sometimes when we look back we can connect past looking backwards right now when you look back at your childhood memories, how do you see them? Like, do you remember any of those memories that could have contributed to who you are today in some specific way and I would like to know that then let’s stop there and we’re gonna take it from there and move on, you know. Go ahead.

Rafi: Absolutely, there was a strong link. And in fact, I leverage it very much in a motivation to do what I’m doing now in our standard. But before I talk about the childhood part, Maruf, I think it probably relevant to share with you the motivation to start doing our standards as well. Because then that will link well to the childhood part. 

So it’s September 11, 2001. I was in Boston during strategy consulting work as you know, the terrorist attack in New York City. I was, a two years, into my career. Sorry not two, actually two years in Boston by that time and 

about eight years in my professional career.

You know that affected a lot of Muslim professionals around the world, especially America. I was certainly one of them and in pursuing the professional work that we’re doing and this question of what is the role of the Muslims in the world, especially, you know in that time period there is this huge negative impact on the role of Muslims in the world that was happening. 

So knowing our very proud history as innovators terms of everything from astronomy to medicine to even bureaucracy, you know, this was something that really affected me. I also had always had a fire in my belly to do something on my own or build something myself. 

So I was evaluating about that time or what would it be and this really had an effect on it? And one thing I observed around that point in this evaluation was on this assessment of what should I be pursuing is I know been around the most because in Boston, I was working with the strategy consulting firm having worked with period Fortune 500 firms or companies and how they build dentures and brands from zero to Global no matter of you know a few years.

So, it’s a known science and art but observed at that time that within the Muslim majority countries is not been one top 100 Global brand and the looked into it further in backing this past century, we never had one at a top 100 level.

And so that to me was a shocker and I wanted to explore that from as a professional and potentially pursue that as the media proposition or B2B magazine like a business week or an economist type of things over I’ve designed a ranking to what do we have? 

So I drafted a top 100 ranking of brands or businesses in the Muslim-majority countries, and because my background was primarily business I needed, you know a friend introduced me to another friend who became a co-founder with me on this journey and who had also background comic scientist. 

And so, you know, I should be here within because the two big questions to address within our plan was number one, why don’t we have Global brands from the Muslim world where most of the communities around the world and number two, what is the role of Islam or Islamic thinking in the modern business sense? 

And because I was not academic, you know, we wanted to pursue it more in a very practical private sector way that we decided to launch it as a business magazine like an online business magazine and that’s what we did. In fact, we registered the project or business in New Jersey in December 2004 and we launched it as their online platform. 

So, I can tell more about our journey as to drive. So basically about two thousand four to eight we pursuit is doing a lot of original research work. But as a business model, it wasn’t working. The job had to pursue another opportunity as a result.

And I was continuing on taking some malted investment from the beginning one of the proposed mentors for me was brother Almar Rahman who many of you know, and you would you certainly do as well and I took on a couple other clothes mentor speak with incomplete money and Switch to night and into a Consulting model and that’s where I start getting some traction. 

So talk more about the business coming back to your original question about childhood memory, right? I grew up in Oman, but I’m originally from Pakistan. So 1984 and I’ve sent okay. I’m going to date myself with that purple fine. I was fascinated by epic degree team. This was the time when Pakistan had acquired playing Dorothy had and I really respect that. I just wanted to build plane like that. And so I actually joined the Pakistan Air Force. 

This is straight out of 10th grade. They cool it up that level and I was quite young. They’ll expect young but that would pose a passion about the saying that I thought I’d get an opportunity to do that. And I and it was a great and a couple of years into the training program. 

I realized I didn’t necessarily want to be a soldier. I wanted to build, then also, I had gotten an opportunity where I had an opportunity to leave or exit in the way and an honorable exit, which I hope and I came to the US. 

Maruf: One question is here. So, when you start your studies your standard engine as Engineer or as a pilot?

Rafi: Engineer. I joined. I will recruit it to be an aeronautical engineer. That’s what I want to do. But what happened is, you know, obviously they did you roll. So it’s just the difference would be if I joined a Manufacturing Company versus the Air Force where you know, the role is different choice, you know, I mean not to say.

And I’m very grateful to that experience. It’s incredibly professional and impressive organization now actually building plane. 

But at that time I didn’t see that path clearly and I had the opportunity to exit, so I did and I came to the US and you know all people but God has his own plans for all of us then.

And certainly blessed that the paths able to take don’t like that forward in The USA. I started doing more. I took marketing I couldn’t get in, I couldn’t afford to be honest getting into an aeronautical Engineer program in the US. So I pursued marketing and computer science as a minor.

And during that time, I really got fascinated by two brands in the US others as well, but in particular 90 and Dell and I saw I was super fashion by how brand Nike as a brand was being billed, you know was not about selling shoes. It was about some spirit of competition and I was amazed how that type of a proposition creates so much business value to it to a firm, to a company.

And make them be power houses that they are in today’s analogy would be Apple and Google and so forth. So I was fastened by both tell and Nike and realized my love for building planes was about building something amazing and that’s now links back to that board my about ten years or so professional experience in the US working for a boutique. I started working for a small media consultancy out of the Charlotte North Carolina as a head of marketing.

And I learned a lot about Sports Marketing there as well as senior corporate communication work and moved to Boston with a strategy consulting firm soil. So head of and then to post 9/11 with this major top 100 to 500 or 100 Global firm in New York. 

So I had the good platform of working in a professional environment before I started in our standard which I think is important Clues and if that guy That point I guess edifice now linked to the story of September 11 with my childhood passion and the passion to build something, you know 9/11 happened. 

And I was looking to adapt states of ten years into my professional careers start something on my own build something on my own and this question of, okay. What are we doing in the Muslim world when it comes to building things and discussion of world. There aren’t any Global brand. Why is that a quarter of the world’s population? They have all type of talent and landed money. 

And so, you know, I really that kind of linked to having our standard start is that love which I still carry with me and our passion remains which is how do you create Global brands from this part of the world but also lower banks for anyone or any relations that have could impact social impact and are responsible venture in to kind of close that this part of your question. 

We learned you know and others will join this journey thinking. Our Center has also evolved now wanting to make the arc standard a global top, Global consultancy and interviews with our values and to bring good to the world, as a consulting firm and also as a consulting firm enabling others in our community to become Global signatories. 

Maruf: You know what I noticed is that firstly I was talking to another brother from 

otherwise, you know them, is that Zakat Foundation of America brother Halil. How do you figure so he was telling me I was asking the same question. 

He was telling me how he started his charity actually, started a couple of weeks. I think if I remember correctly after 9/11, and now you’re telling me how 9/11 affected you and you started this. I also remember from my own experience. I didn’t start a company, but for me, it was crucial because I came to Denmark 1999. 

It’s 2003 two years after that and was all those crazy things going on TV. I was beginning to question who am I and all those things. I mean what I’m saying is that I can see a pattern and many people like especially Muslims. 

This horrible incident could have affected us in a way instead of just killing done with it and you want you know, we want to do something about another thing that this kind of pattern. I’m just trying to do this and I think at the end of the day you said what happens but I don’t really I think what it really means to us and what we do about it, right, isn’t it correct method? 

Here’s a question for you. You said when you are looking at this top hundred you can see any reason brand and it kind of was kind of chakra for you. But actually if I may comment you’re right. I mean, I think it’s not only a hundred I would say our kind of innovation could have stopped 15, 16th century as a Muslim civilization. Wouldn’t you agree with that? 

Rafi: I mean, you know, there’s so many reasons as we started in our standardized. Like I said end of 2004. So I’ve been immersed in answering this question for you know, and there are many yes, absolutely. But you know people say, oh it’s because of this, because of that whatever we’re smart enough to solve it. 

Maruf: Absolutely.

Rafi: Also holding ourselves to that big thinking and you know, we actually have done a proper study on this very question. Why not now and and the reason to what happened and why the demise happen, you know, there’s so many social political aspects to it from the demise of the Ottoman Empire too many other reasons, right?

Even theological religious thinking people say had really stopped evolving. And so I mean, I’m not You know, I have a business background. So that wasn’t my expertise. My thought was, this is where we are now. Yeah, and it doesn’t make sense and how can we solve for it as a particle. 

Maruf: That’s good. So well Journey like 10 15 years now. So what are the things I think is a very beautiful job like explaining how it all started and where you are, today. You said you grew up in Oman, right, but you probably won’t like so would you like to tell a little bit light on that? So how come you were born in Pakistan and your parents motoman or you are studying what happened there? 

Rafi: Sure my parents moved when I was two years old. My father was in banking and we were in Oman and I pretty much grew up but it was still in a little bit of a bubble as you know, many foreign communities or just ask for communities like live in their own country. 

So did we but yet I grew up in Oman, went a very sheltered, you know Oman is a very peaceful country, strong Nostalgia having grown up there very strong appreciation of the people of Oman. I don’t know if you may know recently the Sultana form on passed away and amazingly gracious man.

And we grew up seeing his openness and graciousness as people and generally the people and it’s a you know, you don’t hear about Oman right bordered with Saudi Arabia and Yemen. And you just don’t hear about it. 

In context of the geopolitical strike ability, it’s a very peaceful country and the country people are very peaceful. So we were living in a country I grew up in an environment with very sheltered from the outside. 

So yeah, you know, my father worked for a bank or BCCI coming to the point about the subsidiary of BCCI, which is one of the I would say it was in its time, which is no more, many of you may not know but this was one of the largest banks across the Emerging Markets toward world and was starting to expand into the US and Europe as well. 

When it was shut down for some Corrupt Practices so forth, but the way that bank was built it was the only bank that reached its level of success. It was started by from the UAE and it became a global in the National Bank run by many Pakistani bankers and probably in that time the leading brand from the Muslim World.

 There was no internet culture down.So the story of BCCI’s rise is equally important to and had a little bit of an influence because it was quite a success story of that time.

Maruf: So, let me tell you that your school years in Oman then. We will mend and right you are studying school in Oman. Is this correct?

Rafi: Yeah, in 10th Grade.

Maruf: So, whether any subjects particular your favorites or you enjoy the school at all? Because I remember they do some guests say particularly like the subjects I’m saying all subjects because the whole purpose of the story is to kind of try to understand where we stick cause people are different, right? 

Some people just only like some subjects some like to all and we’re trying to find a path know someone might find it beneficial some point find it in their similar situation. That’s why any subject that could have jumped at you and you really liked and the rest you ¾don’t like much or how was your school years? 

Rafi: Sure. Let me say about those subject I didn’t like and I was really bad at, I barely pass in chemistry. And in terms of I was good, okay and math and other science I think was probably my favorite. I was good at drawing. So I really liked biology I could draw, we had to draw in our Journal. 

So this is you know, I think that my failed effort at drawing my love for it probably had something to do with my wife being an artist living that you know that type of my wishes to her work as well a bit and then and you know, I think I may even some of our create, you know, if you’ve seen a lot of hurting on sanders work, even though it may be all boring business data.

But I really like to tell a good strong creative story. And so you’ll see a lot of our work as you know, we try our best to have it visually nicely presented. So there is a potentially to that but other than that, yeah, and I was okay. That wasn’t a student. That was okay. I’ve always wanted to do extracurricular stuff. I was like, I was always doing a lot of things. 

Maruf: Here’s a question like, you know, one of the things I have other things I noticed is that I know I mean you were born in a Muslim family. I understand that but today cut off most of the work you do is as you said is very inclined and you also mentioned that it came to like 911’s effect on it, but I want to ask you like at some point in our life. If that even you born as a Muslim, you have to kind of take a conscious decision, you know, there’s something I want to focus on, you know, did it happen all set 911 or it happened just before that.

Rafi: Yeah, absolutely. So we were blessed to have you know, we have a very, my childhood, my home, my parents very much practicing look then you had a very good. I mean we were not very very religious. But you know, my dad, my mom read the Quran. 

We go to friday prayers, but not like super religious relatively I suppose but I had a very good basic grounding and I think as we the term Taqua or having a God in your heart or Allah in your heart think we had that we certainly had that and that definitely is critical. 

I believe, you know, in terms of as you grow up and then 9/11 did have a significant impact to because why even during school we Classes Sonic studies and all of that the reality is as you know, my roof and probably your other interviews and observation, you know growing up in a Muslim country in a Muslim family. It becomes more of a cultural habitual things. 

You’re not really thinking about it. You’re not really going with you don’t yeah, you don’t have the conviction and the belief of you know, if someone came into the face right thinking about it and really deciding on it. So that was the same case for it. I mean it was more cultural, you know, you have to believe but it wasn’t really something that we would have had that kind of conviction post 9/11 yet. 

It was probably even though I’d read the Quran which is our to the source to all the belief system and our beloved Prophets life, but I never had studied it the way I think it needed to be studied of, you know, just really knowing what God is saying to this book. I did that for the first time after 9/11 and really 

 transformative for me.

Maruf: Like, you know what people like when they mention about your families. So far, I have not met a person who said our family was to religious, you always say our family was not religious. We did our Salat. We remember our Mosque. 

There’s always, how to put it this way. I even met a person say our first question is I guess what does religious mean anyway? How would it be if your family is too religious? 

I’m just asking you a question not only from you but I just want to understand what would mean like there’s always something that’s not enough, right? Like what we’re doing with seems there’s not enough but what do you think we should do? All right?

Rafi: Right. I mean, I think I mean from he pressed a relative to how our lives are today in short it is at a different level practice and Convention conviction. Then before still a big difference is we were doing prayers. We were having our Eve, we were doing Ramadan. We were really but we weren’t really talking about it. 

I wasn’t really thinking about why we’re doing it and having the true conviction of and really, you know, when you pray you’re actually asking God for help. We weren’t really praying that way right or we’re just seeing them. 

You mean you were you know, it was more ritual right and now it’s very much, you know spiritual, thinking driven yet and it’s very spiritual epic Permian and maybe because of the age stage we are but I think even in our kids, I believe it’s at a different level than what we had. 

Maruf: I see, that’s very beautiful put. So it grew awareness, consciousness, right, doing exciting news and all but action, but also intension and thinking behind it. It’s very beautiful and kind of thing, exactly. Okay sounds good. So I was wondering, you know, when I interview, I was asking the community. Do you’ve any questions for photography and uh, you know, he is twisting and recently I was talking to this friend, Juma. Do you know her? 

Rafi: Yeah, I think so.

Maruf: Okay, she’s a graphic artist. She was talking about her art. It’s coming up soon at this days the episode. It was very helpful episode and her journey about Hajj and how she started drawing. 

Rafi: Oh, yes. Oh absolutely have met her briefly in Dubai, I believe.

Maruf: So, we’re discussing the role of art and especially in Islam note artists like in a very specific way. It’s not like Business, it’s not like telling you what to do. Right. It’s like inspires you. Yeah, it comes from the heartless changes you in a way and one of the things he was suggesting is that actually only discussing me specifically about you. 

But we’re discussing where things are and she said, you know, we really need to like pay attention to Art and Design, right? And I was just thinking wow, that’s interesting. Actually. I’m talking to her fee, which is the day, you know the other guys who does this Islamic record any of these categories? It’s just yeah, but they miss their Art and Design and said you were pointing to do have.

I know they have modest fashion and they have Pharmaceuticals, they have media etc. But she was saying we need to Art and Design section because like even she’s a point, right? 

If you look at the global world, like going economy days are designed as a places, what do you think? I didn’t design it is all that in Islamic economy. I mean if you are even thinking me, you know, like moving forward. What’s your thought and I do think we need a special category in that. What do you think?

Rafi: We have done some work on it. It’s not part of our Islamic economy a new report. But we do there is a couple of pieces of work that have been done to first of all, you know, because when you look at the business and economic side, you have to look at what industry does it map to right? So it’s not an industry by self and what is that industry? 

So, okay, in art you could say it’s the artist, you know that produce the art of the distribution platforms allow Galleries and online and ect or you could say there’s other aspects of you know sound music would qualify theater media. 

And so I think a big part so you have to look at what we mean by Art and I think in terms of an economic sector, what we’re talking about the report part of work and so in that the big segment of quote-unquote art and culture if we can call it, you know because you have Galleries and so you have to look at the full portfolio sub-segment of what falls under our culture.

And the media is a big part of it. So which we cover, right? It’s the production of Dramas and cereals and content for kids and so forth. So, one is from a purely business point of view. What sector are we talking about? And so that report because we’re only we’re not able to cover every sector we pick the top ones that have an economic impact and within the realm of art, you know media comes up as the size of the economy.

At the same time, like I said, you know, I’m a believer of art, of course, is Islamic Art has a very rich history. In fact, my wife’s been doing some unique work in that realm and many and across the world. We have very rich Heritage. 

So I think the theme of the role of art or Islamic Art in Islamic economy would be inspiring the creative aspect across the sectors. So, how does it relate to fashion, how does it relate to Cosmetics or even presentation and how we see and live our food lifestyle so for. 

So, I think it’s something that more functionally cuts across and I’m just you know, thinking out loud with you but as a business segments, you know, how big is the market market so forth, it just for that reports. Perfect. It didn’t but I will say we have done separate to work and others have also done on the Islamic Art and culture as it economic theme analysis. 

Maruf; So yeah, I see your point. So yeah, I think in her case, she means like the drawings that you know her Waterworld. So I think what she’s trying to do is guess she recently launched Islamicart.com, so which is like a portal to unite other Islamic artists where they can bring your drawings. 

So the public muslim-majority, you know communities you can go and you know, see what’s available if you want to can purches it. 

I mean the reason I mention is that if your wife actually draws Islamic Arts it might be a good reason to check it out as well.

Rafi: Definitely and so I can picture amazing work. 

Maruf: That’s awesome. So yeah, I mean one of the things you mentioned is go back to one of the questions you mentioned you said when you were doing this this thing like you didn’t see top 100 brands, any Muslim Brands and you would you know, that was kind of a shocker. Or what I don’t understand is why did it matter to you that you’re not as a Muslim, any Muslim Brad’s were like top hundred like what does what does it really mean to you at that time?

Rafi: You put your finger on the thing that you know, I had that defines different people. This is the one that defines me a lot and it means a lot now, I think it’s from the, you know the motivation from the building from the beginning of wanting to build things and you know, if I fascinated by an F-16 or so forth knowing that we cannot build it is just I just can’t accept that. 

You know, and the reality today is you know, if any country there are I think some limited work but you know can be build an Airbus A380 or an F-16. And at this point we can maybe even make the schools of it. So, you know, it’s absolutely natural than I think it should matter to all of us, you know, would be my view. 

Like why are we only consumers we love to consume and buy these things, right? We love our iPhones or our Mercedes has not buying power, you know, whatever but we don’t talk enough for care enough about we should be making them. Why can’t we be making them? Why can’t our kit be fired by I want to make things, not I want to just consume things and I think this is poison important from a creativity. You know what let’s link it back to artist. 

An artist creates something new like that people no one has ever seen. So what is innovation but a commercially viable something new that serves a need for people. And so I think that to me absolutely matters a lot and especially because you know, we haven’t consent and it also matters because when you in the grand scheme of the role of most of them in a global society, a global Brotherhood with all community what is a contribution.

So if we’re not contributing creating and Building Things, I think the world can benefit from what we can build and contribute because of her unique perspectives. You know today we talk about how Islamic Finance could really be a good Finance, financing platform for the world. Let’s talk.

Yeah, we talked about food. Well, Halal is not just about how an animal is slaughtered. It’s about how its treated, how it should be, how its consumed. It should be healthy because Halal that which is pure and powerful, you know, so there is a lot we can build and bring to the world. I think the world deserves our contribution and you know in the 13th century of a golden time, you said we were contributing. 

We were leading the centers of learning, was you know about it or you know, where’s the harvard’s and the point I would say why it matters because today the world is also questioning. What are you guys doing? So what is your role in this world? Okay. I mean maybe you know if it’s not destructive and if but it can be very constructive. 

And I think today the Islamic economy is I think for good it’s showing to the world and in our work now, which is a very sophisticated level now know where we’re working at a top-tier Consulting level on different aspects working with Sovereign wealth funds, investment firms government agencies, private sector, even multilateral and ngos. 

And you know, we I can very strongly and clearly be That we have a lot to offer to the world. 

Maduf: Absolutely and I think if we were coming back to Brands and Brands, I think. 

A brand is a story, isn’t it? When you are talking about the brand you’re telling a story about who you are and you are keeping up there with a story with your promise and everything certain of the day. I mean, this is the way I believe at least you can erase the very like, fundamental question. 

Why are we not doing this and that and I think because I’ve been doing this the sorry about this if I’m going to read about this because I’m creating this short course for Muslims and I think this actually goes ahead on actually the dressing is question. Why are we not agree? I think one of the things I’ve kind of discovered the pattern along the way maybe you can give you a comment on that is that. 

It’s about the stories we tell to ourselves. So today is a Muslims what story I would challenge ourselves. Are we telling the story? Hey we come from this great nation the Golden Age of Islam doing Innovative things or we are telling a story though we are victim of the sand that the things are so bad. The particular it is or complaining about ourselves. 

And I think I can bet on you that most of us just think in the ladder way because we are thinking of being victims and we are complaining in a completing mode not like a creative boat this makes sense. Do you agree with me? Or maybe I am? 

Rafi: Absolutely. Either you can just complain and sit and be taken over and create a vacuum where others can any further.

Have you 10 and it is what we are, you know for us as a firm and for me as a person it’s about two things when I zero in on the very specific point of innovating products and services. It’s very specific. We’re not trying to solve almost all the things that we need to solve for as a society and community.

And we’ve talked about it and focused on the business side of things. Like how can we contribute to the world in this context? And from that point of view is two things, one is the best innovator, you know, learn from the best, you know, when even the Golden Age, we took a lot from the Greeks . 

So you learned what you have to learn from the best and part of the learning of the best from the best is the notion of really serving needs, you know, the quarter innovation and innovative solutions is serving big needs.

And you know, so, as entrepreneurs or as innovators we have to really learn on that and linked to that is marketing as well. I’m going to need Peter Drucker, management Guru is someone I’ve really admired and learn from a lot and he says there are two things as a business person. 

Then you should focus on Innovation and marketing that’s it. And so Innovation that you know, you actually have a book on how do you find sources of innovation and that’s also very influential book.

For me in addition to another one called built to last from since calling it one soccer book. But coming to the two things this is one and then the second one very important to our identity is what is it that we bring uniquely to the world in solving those needs. 

I think it just a mix. It’s just these two things that in fact, are the recipe for Global successes and you know, I give the example when you think of German brands or German and when I use the word brand, I’m not talking about, you know branding as a marketing thing or I’m talking about the whole proposition, the value proposition. 

So when you look at your advantage so much about who German people are, you know when you think of Germany, the branch from Germany, BMW and others are all the Precision Engineering is so much of who they are as people and an American Brian Branch similarly Japanese Branch similarly. 

And so you know, brand is infused with our unique identities, is so much that Islamic values contribute to that unique proposition and think these two things is, you know, practically what I personally believe in with Ds. This is how we’re building value for our clients. 

Maruf: Absolutely. I mean, yeah, you mentioned that two great books. What about Innovation, built the last. I read them. I really enjoyed them and recently, I read two more books. I think it could be beneficial for all of us. One of them was, it’s called Start With Why. I’m sure you have heard from Simon Sinek and he talks about this purpose, why? How the companies like apple, they start with why, not with what not will help?

Why, you know, why do we exist? And the next book I saw with from him. He was very interesting was that it’s called Infinite Game. So he says how the company should play infinite game, not just to find a game that winning and losing is it much more that I think we can all learn like try to understand what the infinite game is, not like the short-term to long-term if he understand and try to play with it and I think that’s gonna be changed the way that the way see the moving forward. 

Okay, so we’ve been talking for a while I mean what  would you like to it what kind of question I should have asked maybe I haven’t and you would like to mention maybe for example the worst is that where is this Dinner Standard right now, when would you see moving forward or any other question you would like to you know answer on your own that would be really good. 

Rafi: Sure, so on Dinner Standard which is see the what very much focused on and then it links perhaps the continuation to the last thing we were talking about is what is uniquely that we bring to the world, aspect and you know, our while we are our vision is to become a top tier Global consulting firm keeping with the question of why don’t we are Global brand. 

So even in the Consulting space when you look at it the top consulting firms in the world has never been and to date even the top consulting firms in the Muslim majority. Major economies of the world Indonesia is how the etcetera are all you know, not from this part of the world. 

So the mackenzies or due to the weight of the world and so our vision is Insh’allah that in our standard becomes reaches and and offers not just at that level but stands out with this unique personality that are unique way of doing work how we do work, not just with just supporting part of what is unique that we bring to the world, you know, and we take a lot of learning from a beloved Prophet. 

He was a businessman. He one of the things he brought to the business will time and inspired many of us who has the integrity and the beauty, you know, there’s as you know, there’s a lot of reference to the state, the rule, the level of respect that a business personal Trader would have who does Justin and fear business and you know, his wife was a businesswoman. 

So there’s a lot of great learning. So for example for us and buildings in our sanity top consulting firm. Now we have top clients we’re so small but very proud of the global level work and high impact work. We’ve been doing spanning Tunisia, Malaysia, Saudi, UAE, Bahrain, Turkey, the US. 

So is that we’re bringing the ethos of how to also do our work with good values and respect and this is something when we see our clients are seeing and you know, we’re building strong relationships. 

And so these are some unique things that we bring in addition to how you solve for a client’s needs again giving our works, example being conscious of the social impact. We don’t take clients that have a very clear negative impact on the environment or wider social consideration. 

So, you know, this is important and we’re just started the journey and greatful for the team that I have, the mentors and the board members. And so this is a vision that we have and I think I would implore all of us who are connected or inspired by our value system and want to do something to think big and not just up to serve, you know that they are communities but look to serve the world. 

The world is going through many diet challenges from climate change to help too. Job jobs that will not exist with their government Innovation work. We have very detailed analysis on how net-net Tegan and next 30 years or so the number of jobs available with be less leaving with the switch to new types of jobs and all the wild population will continue to grow because people will be living longer. So I mean, this is the level we have to think at and not just okay, you know, what is Halal or not? It’s important, of course, but to be contributing to the world. 

We have to think at that level and you know, as God has instructed to us we’ve been sent. The Prophets (S) was sent us a messenger for Alamine all of mankind. 

Maruf: It’s very beautiful that way so we’re not thinking all about ourselves. But also the whole mankind how we can create a better solution, right? So, would you like to mention where listeners can find your projects or website or social media handles, you are more than welcome to do. So, we also of course mentioned on the show notes as well. 

Rafi: Sure. It’s DinarStandard.com. Okay forward Twitter handle DinarStandard Facebook, LinkedIn, I think Instagram as well, but most importantly need all your Duas and look to reach out to me for anything or any of our teammates. And thank you, Maruf, for your work. I know, we’ve known each other for a while with my so you are equally more passionate on the various areas. You’re working on specially with Alihuda.I wish you and the team the best as well. 

Maruf: Thank you very much and thank you for being here. Having said that Assalamu alaikum.

Rafi: Walaikumassalm.

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Episode 24