[Challenge:Future] Directionist

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  • DirectionistsTeam Name : Anjakan ParadigmaTeam Leader: Syakir Hashim Team members : Aslam Shah : Ibnu AbbasCountry: Singapore

  • It is the year 2022. A beautiful morning, I awoke from a rather refreshing sleep upon completion of another assignment the night before. With regained and sharpened senses, still lying comfortably on my bed I pushed my pillow away and made swiping mition of my hand across the screen of my television. The television, too at the cue of its master, came to life. BBC News channel was on the screen. The ever bubbly newscasters of the morning programme was reporting a rather surprising news:

    the North Korean government has been taken over by the North Korean Democratic Party, and that there is a call by its new leader for assitance in the planning for its economy.

  • I was startled by the sudden loud beeps on my phone which was placed on my study desk just beside my bed. I rolled towards the direction of my phone and picked it up. It was my boss. ''Good morning, hotshot...'' he cheerfully greeted me, ''I hope you are ready for another major assignment.''I listened carefully. By pure coincidence and yet as if our fates were interwined, the task I was assigned with was...to be the advisor for the North Korean government. My heart was beating wildly for excitement. This was no mere task, but deep down I know that as a Directionist, there is no room for failure, what's with the many possibilities for solutions that simultaneously ran through my mind. My job requires my expertise to advise in the implemetation of a set of policies that corporations and governments need to suit to the needs of society, as well as their own.

    I quickly forced my mind to snap back to reality.. My boss, now with a rather demanding tone, instructed, ''You will meet my secretary, Ms Lane, at Changi Airport Terminal One(Singapore). Call her up. She has your air tickets. Be there at the airport by 12p.m. Your flight's at 3p.m. Just so you know, the media will be around there to hear what us Directionists have in mind. At the moment, just try your best to keep a low profile. If need be just remember, be truthful, and never ever over-promise.'

  • It is 10a.m in Pyeongyang, two days after I received the call. I am sitting in a rather spacious and cold meeting room at North Korea's parliament house. Top goverment officials surrounded me. A sense of inimadition fills the room, of which I quickly sidetracked negative thoughts, and regained my composure. 'Do not worry, they are now being open-minded', I constantly, and calmly, told myself. 'I am a Directionist after all, and will have to act my part.It is 10a.m in Pyeongyang, two days after I received the call. I am sitting in a rather spacious and cold meeting room at North Korea's parliament house. Top goverment officials surrounded me.

  • As the dsicussions start, clarifcations and suggestions came streaming in rather fast and furiously.

    From what I came to know about, and upon analyzing sublimally in my mind, the current situation is that North Korea yearns to make their economy more tranpsarent, and to link up with the global community immediately, but are unsure of the right process. Thus, they require the assistance of a trusted expert that bears no prejudice or ill-intentions, and yet are amongst the most knowledgable and wise in the ways of policies. In short, they need the advice of a Directionist.

    The second I heard the name of the aforementioned model, a million thoughts struck my mind. However, being polite, I carried on listening intently. At this point of time, I could see that the board members of the meeting were curious, and enlightened. I thought to myself perhaps they too sincerely believe that it is the best solution to their current plight. Upon coming to his turn to offer suggestions and solutions to the situation, the Finance Minster suggested, with a hint of assertiveness in his tone, that he believes that the Rostow's Model of Development is perhaps the best solution.

  • In pale contrast, I disagree with the model. I waited patiently for my turn to speak. Upon completion of the Finance Minister's enthusiastic explanation, I could sense a sudden uplift of mood evoked within the confinements of the cold, packed meeting room.

    The President, with a slight nod of his head and seemingly controlled smile, turned to me and asked, 'So what do you think, Mr Directionist?'.I immediately stood up, and prepared to offer my frank opinion. 'To achieve great success, I believe we should adapt a model beyond the norm', I nonchalantly answered.

    A couple of puzzled heads turned to me. 'Rostow's Model of Development' is a good model. In North Korea's context, it might most likely work. However, I have a model in mind that may actually acclerate the country's economic growth faster and with more success within a much shorter timeframe.

  • I now held the attention of everyone in the boardroom. I continued my explanation,' we should speed up the pace of economic development by getting the Primary Stage and High-end Secondary stage of economic development to happen simultaneously.

    The REMs are pivotal to their individual goals. I understand that North Korea has a lack of educated workforce. In the short-run, we should ease the immigration laws and invite as many foreign specialists and talents to work in such high-end secondary industries. However, we should focus on delivering quality education to the youths and children of North Korea. My suggestion is to reduce conspicuous spending and reduce military expenditure. Also, I suggest we sell nuclear energy that North Korea have in abundance to the world to generate some income to fund the national budget in the initial years as we await the inflow of Foreign Investments.'The Directionists' Suggestions

  • The whole room was silent,the image above reflects the looks on the faces of the North Korean leaders at the meeting. A sense of heightened curiosity fills the atmosphere.

    C'mon North Korea has bountiful of Rare Earth Materials(REM) which the international technological corporations needs badly to feed their production lines. If we are going to sell it to them at the raw state of the REMs, how much can we earn? I suggest we get the MNCs to build factories here in Pyoingyang and get them to commit to sustainable and green production practices. Don't be afraid of them not coming to North Korea because they need us more than we need them.

  • The North Korean officials brought me to a presidential suite in a top hotel in Pyongyang. I put my things down and started to reflect on today's work before I update the Directionist HQ on my meeting...I recalled a moment in the meeting earlier when the finance minister stood up to condemn my suggestions. My reply, was just a smile. I have been in such situations countless times while studying in Cambridge University.

    I studied in the prestigious Direction & Future degree programme. The only degree programme that qualifies one to be a qualified directionist. During my time reading that degree, we were free to do whichever research we want. When we go for tutorials, everyone were good listeners. Everyone was keen to listen to other people's ideas. The undergraduate directionists were always picking on each others' minds

  • I loved my time learning. And so did my peers. Learning to become a directionist was not all textbooks and readings and notes.

    It was learning to become a visionary and a good leader. One who listens to the people around them, reflects on the past and has a clear vision of the future that the whole world wants.

    There were no arguments in lectures and tutorials when I read Direction & Future in Cambridge.

    Instead we listened more than we spoke. We were not eager to answer but we were eager to listen to the brilliant ideas that surrounds us. That made the directionists unique. A special breed of leaders. With foresight, a good grasp of history and the excellence in being a listening leader.

    Never have I regretted being amongst the league of Directionists in this world.