Name: Khurrum Rehman
Title: Commercial Head
I have over 15 years of experience in the retail industry, specializing in vendor management and business development for online commerce and fashion. As the Head of Commercial at Leyjao.pk, Pakistan's fastest-growing e-commerce platform, I manage a portfolio of hundreds of brands and suppliers across multiple categories, ensuring the best assortment, quality, and value for our customers.
My core competencies include identifying and securing strategic partnerships, negotiating margins and contracts, managing inventory and pricing, analyzing sales trends and performance, and developing and executing marketing and merchandising campaigns. I have successfully launched and scaled several fashion subcategories, such as men's and women's clothing, footwear, and accessories, and increased the user retention and conversion rates by 25% and 15%, respectively. I am driven by the mission of transforming the online retail landscape in Pakistan and empowering local entrepreneurs and consumers with the best products and services.
Thank you to the 2,000 leaders who’ve generously done the 7 Questions on Leadership!
I hope Khurrum's answers will encourage you in your leadership journey. Enjoy!
1. What have you found most challenging as a leader?
Well leader have different challenges, but the two things which I have found really challenging are adoptability and Risk Management.
2. How did you become a leader? Can you please briefly tell the story?
My career journey showcases a rapid progression and early leadership recognition. Here's a brief overview of my career trajectory:
Financial Analyst Role (2006): My career began in 2006 with a financial institution, where I have started as a Financial Analyst. Within eight months, of time my exceptional performance led to a promotion to the position of Assistant Manager.
Assistant Manager Position (Within 8 Months): As an Assistant Manager, I assumed a leadership role and managed a team of approximately 12 people. This early promotion reflects my strong analytical skills and leadership potential.
Operations Manager Role (Within 2 Years): Within two years of my career, I have achieved another significant promotion, this time to the position of Operations Manager. In this role, I took on the responsibility of managing approximately 50 people across three different departments. Managing such a large team early in my career indicates not only my leadership potential but also my ability to handle challenges and responsibilities effectively.
3. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?
Well, for leaders it is important to have the work-life Balance. I have started my day with the same phenomena and making sure that my work should not impact my family.
Maintaining a work-life balance is indeed crucial for leaders and professionals alike but here are the few things I do regularly.
- Physical Activity: Engaging in regular physical activity is known to have numerous health benefits, both physical and mental, so I normally start my day with Exercise.
- Spiritual Practices: Participating in spiritual practices, such as offering Salah, can provide me a sense of peace and mindfulness.
Time Management: Effectively managing my time is really essential for achieving a work-life balance, that's what I follow regularly
Family Time: Spending quality time with family is a key component of a balanced life and also key to success.
Self-Care: In addition to physical activity, consider other self-care practices that resonate me such as reading books, playing cricket, watching movies and having along drive.
4. What's a recent leadership lesson you've learned for the first time or been reminded of?
One important leadership lesson for managers is the significance of effective communication. Clear and transparent communication is crucial in building trust, fostering collaboration, and ensuring that everyone in the team is aligned with organizational goals
5. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?
Well, as per experience one book that has had a profound impact on leadership thinking is "Leaders Eat Last" by Simon Sinek. In this book, Sinek explores the concept of leadership and how great leaders create environments where people feel inspired, valued, and motivated to give their best. The title "Leaders Eat Last" is symbolic, emphasizing the idea that true leaders prioritize the well-being of their teams before their own.
6. If you could only give one piece of advice to a young leader, what would you say to them?
If I could offer one piece of advice to a young leader, it would be to prioritize continuous learning and personal development. The landscape of leadership is dynamic and ever-evolving, and those who commit to ongoing learning are better equipped to navigate change, make informed decisions, and inspire others.
7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader, so far?
Title: "From Analyst to Operations Maestro: A Leader's Journey"
In 2003, I embarked on my professional journey as a Financial Analyst in a prominent financial institution. In a mere eight months, my dedication and analytical prowess were recognized, propelling me to the role of Assistant Manager. This early promotion signaled the beginning of a leadership trajectory that would define my career.
As an Assistant Manager, I took charge of a team of 12 individuals, delving into leadership responsibilities with enthusiasm. The challenges were embraced, and through effective communication and focused coordination, we surpassed departmental goals. This experience laid the foundation for my approach to leadership — one that values collaboration and teamwork.
Within the next two years, the organization bestowed upon me the role of Operations Manager. This pivotal position tasked me with overseeing a multifaceted team spanning three departments and comprising 50 individuals. Navigating the complexities of operations management demanded strategic thinking, and I rose to the occasion with a keen eye for efficiency.
My leadership style is characterized by a commitment to open communication, fostering a culture of collaboration, and a relentless pursuit of operational excellence. As a leader, I find inspiration in facing challenges head-on, transforming them into opportunities for growth. My journey from a Financial Analyst to Operations Manager exemplifies not just career progression but a dedication to leadership that embraces challenges, values teamwork, and strives for continuous improvement.
The chapters of my leadership story continue to unfold, each one marked by a commitment to excellence, an embrace of challenges, and a vision for fostering a collaborative and thriving work environment.