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7 MORE Questions on Leadership with Khalid Alhashish

Name: Khalid Alhashish

Title: CFO

Organisation: Intimaa Real Estate Services Co. (A SEDCO Holding Subsidiary)

Khalid Alhashish is an accomplished finance executive with over 20 years of industry-leading experience in the Middle East. He has a proven track record of delivering impactful financial and investment strategies, driving business growth, and optimizing financial outcomes across diverse sectors. Khalid is skilled in implementing cost-saving measures and has consistently achieved positive financial results by strategically managing resources. With expertise in financial planning, internal control, and organizational restructuring, he has established robust budgeting and financial reporting tools. Khalid has a strong reputation for effectively managing mega projects and assignments, delivering outstanding results while aligning with stakeholders' goals. Recognized for his innovative financial management solutions, Khalid has consistently driven profitability and fostered long-term success. He brings a wealth of expertise and a focus on maximizing financial performance to any organization.

Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!

We’ve gone through the interviews and asked the best of the best to come back and answer 7 MORE Questions on Leadership.

I hope Khalid's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!


Jonno White

1. As a leader, how do you build trust with employees, customers and other stakeholders?

Building trust with employees, customers, and other stakeholders is essential for effective leadership. Here are key strategies I employ to build trust:

Open and honest communication.

Setting a positive example for others.

Actively listening to others.

Following through on commitments.

Recognizing and appreciating others' efforts.

Learning from mistakes.

Treating everyone fairly and consistently.

Building trust takes time and effort. It requires open communication, leading by example, listening attentively, honoring commitments, showing appreciation, embracing learning opportunities, and treating everyone with fairness and consistency.

2. What do 'VISION' and 'MISSION' mean to you? And what does it actually look like to use them in real-world business?

For me, 'VISION' and 'MISSION' are important concepts that shape the direction and purpose of a business. Here's what they mean and how they are used in the real world:

VISION: it is like a big goal for the future of the business. It describes what the leader wants the company to become. A vision statement inspires and guides employees, helps make decisions, and attracts people who share the same goals.

In real-world business, a leader uses the vision to:

Gets everyone excited and working together towards a common goal.

Helps leaders and employees know what direction to take and what actions to prioritize.

Attracts investors, customers, and partners who believe in the same goals.

MISSION: It explains why the business exists and what it aims to do. It includes the company's values and goals. The mission statement guides daily activities and helps create a unique identity for the business.

In real-world business, a leader uses the mission to:

Helps employees know what they should focus on and what's most important for the business.

Sets the tone for how employees should behave and what values they should uphold.

Helps the business differentiate itself from others by showing what makes it special.

To use vision and mission effectively in real-world business, leaders need to integrate them into the company's culture, align them with the company's plans, and regularly communicate and reinforce them to everyone involved. This way, leaders can inspire their teams, create a sense of purpose, and move the business toward its desired future.

3. How can a leader empower the people they're leading?

As a leader, my approach to empowering the people I lead is based on several key principles:

Open, honest, and transparent communication helps establish a strong foundation of trust.

I believe in granting my team members the freedom to make decisions and take ownership of their work.

While providing clear guidelines and expectations, I also have confidence in their judgment and expertise.

Supporting the growth and development of my team is a commitment I hold. This involves creating opportunities for learning, providing constructive feedback, and encouraging them to embrace new challenges.

To foster a collaborative environment, I value and respect everyone's ideas and contributions. Open dialogue, active listening, and constructive discussions are encouraged to tap into the collective intelligence of the team.

By acknowledging their hard work and success, I aim to boost their confidence and motivation.

I see myself as a mentor and coach to my team members.

I provide guidance, support, and encouragement to help them overcome obstacles and reach their full potential.

By following these principles, I strive to create an environment where my team members feel empowered, motivated, and valued. I believe that by empowering individuals, we can unlock their full potential and drive collective success.

4. Who are some of the coaches or mentors in your life who have had a positive influence on your leadership? Can you please tell a meaningful story about one of them?

One of the managers who had a significant impact on my approach to leading a team and my role as a financial leader was a group CFO who possessed highly negative qualities such as narcissism, dictator-decision-making, lack of transparency, ineffective communication, and a lack of support for team development. I observed the detrimental psychological effects these behaviors had on the team members and their performance.

This experience compelled me to distance myself from any behaviors resembling those negative traits. I witnessed the negative consequences of such actions and made a conscious effort to act completely oppositely. Transparency, effective communication, supporting team development, and actively listening to team members became my top priorities. My leadership style revolves around a people-centric approach, placing individuals at the core of our work, caring about their well-being, and nurturing their growth and skills.

I am committed to creating a work environment that encourages transparency, collaboration, and open participation. I strive to provide opportunities for growth and continuous training for the team, valuing their opinions and suggestions as genuine assets. I firmly believe that a strong team relies on the cooperation, respect, and encouragement of all its members to achieve our shared goals.

In summary, the negative experience with that group CFO compelled me to adopt an approach that focuses on people and their development through transparency, effective communication, support for team growth, and actively listening to their ideas and contributions.

5. Leadership is often more about what you DON'T do. How do you maintain focus in your role?

Maintaining focus in a leadership role requires mindfulness of what not to do. Here are some strategies that I used :

Establish clear priorities and goals for me and my team.

Identify the most important tasks and projects that align with objectives.

Having a clear direction enables one to stay focused on what truly matters.

Acknowledge that I can't handle everything on my own.

Delegate tasks and responsibilities to capable team members, freeing up time to concentrate on high-priority activities that demand attention.

Effective delegation ensures that tasks are assigned to those best suited for them and helps distribute the workload.

Practice discipline in avoiding distractions that can divert focus. This involves minimizing interruptions during dedicated work time, effectively managing emails and notifications, and setting boundaries to safeguard concentration.

Utilize time management techniques such as prioritization, scheduling, and setting deadlines.

Break down larger tasks into smaller, manageable steps, and allocate specific time blocks for different activities. This structured approach helps minimize the likelihood of getting sidetracked and allows one to stay on track.

By implementing these strategies, leaders can maintain focus in their roles by consciously choosing what not to do. This enables them to channel their energy and efforts toward the most important tasks and responsibilities.

6. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Everyone plans differently. How do you plan for the week, month and years ahead in your role?

Here are examples of my work plan as a CFO for the week, month, and upcoming years, including some key practical examples of what I do:


Analyze the previous week's financial performance.

Meet with department heads for project updates and budget status.

Collaborate with the finance team for cash flow forecast. Assess financial metrics for attention areas.

Prepare reports for executive meetings.

Engage with auditors or advisors for financial matters.


Review monthly financial statements.

Analyze revenue trends and profitability.

Coordinate with the budgeting team for the financial forecast.

Evaluate financial controls and risk management.

Align financial plans with business strategies.

Optimize working capital.

Conduct financial reviews with department heads.


Review Yearly financial statements.

Participate in strategic planning.

Assess capital structure and funding needs.

Develop multi-year financial projections.

Review investment portfolio.

Engage in mergers and acquisitions.

Collaborate on cost-saving initiatives.

Stay updated on regulations and trends.

Provide financial leadership and guidance.

Remember that planning is an iterative process. Continuously review, evaluate, and refine plans based on feedback, new information, and evolving business needs. Flexibility and agility are essential in adapting to dynamic market conditions and driving financial success as a CFO.

7. What advice would you give to a young leader who is struggling to delegate effectively?

If you're a young leader struggling to delegate effectively, here are some pieces of advice to help you improve:

Understand that effective delegation is crucial for the productivity, growth, and development of your team members. It allows you to focus on higher-level tasks and empowers others to contribute their skills and expertise.

Start by identifying tasks that can be successfully delegated. Focus on tasks that don't necessarily require your unique expertise or decision-making authority. Look for opportunities to delegate routine or administrative tasks, allowing you to prioritize strategic and value-added responsibilities.

Empower your team members with the resources, tools, and information they need to complete the delegated tasks successfully. Offer guidance, clarification, and feedback throughout the process to ensure their understanding and progress.

Trust your team members' abilities and judgment. Avoid micromanaging or constantly checking on their progress. Allow them to take ownership of the tasks and demonstrate their capabilities. Be available for guidance and support when needed, but allow them space to work independently.

Regularly evaluate the outcomes of delegated tasks. Assess both the results achieved and the development of your team members. Reflect on the effectiveness of your delegation process and make adjustments as needed to refine your approach over time.

Remember, effective delegation is a skill that takes time to develop. By gradually delegating tasks, building trust, and providing support, you can empower your team members and cultivate a culture of collaboration and growth.

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