Millennials' thoughts on CEOx1Day

We’re delighted at the feedback that we’ve received from our participating students in our CEOx1Day programme this year so far.

For our flagship year of running CEOx1Day in the Middle East, we are thrilled that the students were able to receive such an eye opening opportunity from many prestigious companies in the region. Each student has had the experience of shadowing a influential leader, from well-known global companies in the Middle East, and their thoughts on the project are exactly what we wanted to hear.

Their opinions on the CEOx1Day programme can be found here:


Sanjana from University of Wollongong Dubai shadowed Guido Ferralasco, MD at Ferrero

"I learnt a lot about Mr Guido, MD of Ferrero Gulf and how he worked hard to earn such a remarkable and responsible position, which can be seen by the way he manages his daily tasks. I was also able to meet the various Ferrero department heads and see how they make decisions and function as a team. I not only received eye-opening insights into the company, but also received a clearer understanding of my personal strengths, and what areas I must work upon to be able to achieve a similar position. It was a highly enlightening experience to gain a practical view into various career opportunities, all in just 2 days. I strongly recommend this to anyone who’s in the process of making a career decision, as such decision-making processes, require not only research about the educational aspects, but also a practical glimpse into what each job field requires you to do."


Shaima, from Zayed University shadowed Dr. Amina Al Rustamani, CEO of TECOM Group 

"Meeting a successful Emirati woman, who is an inspiration to many people, both men and women, made me eager to work even harder, follow my dreams, and most importantly, think of ideas in an unconventional manner. The biggest challenge facing my generation is the absence of work-based learning. Another challenge, is finding the right opportunity, which will not only allow us to learn, but will also challenge our conventional ideas and encourage growth in an ever-evolving world. However, I believe that companies such as Odgers Berndtson are continuously seeking to match organizations with young minds who are eager to learn, be challenged, and exert their efforts."


Rohan from American University of Sharjah shadowed Dietmar Siersdorfer, CEO for Siemens Middle East & Siemens LLC UAE 

"I took part in the programme primarily to step out of my comfort zone. Moreover, as a student, I have always been intrigued about how Multinational Corporations operate. By being a part of this initiative, which was organised by Odgers Berndtson, I was not only able to develop my networking skills, but it also helped me broaden my network, by providing me with the exposure to engage with professionals in various fields of study. Overall, it was a positive experience, right from the first stage of the application, to the very end of being a finalist and being granted the opportunity of shadowing an esteemed CEO. The overall experience with Mr. Dietmar Siersdorfer, was simply amazing. Seeing how passionately and enthusiastically Mr. Siersdorfer was towards working for the best interests of Siemens, showed me the level of focus and desire I need to achieve, if I ever want to picture myself as a leader in a company such as Siemens."


Maitha from from Zayed University shadowed Issam AbdulRahim Kazim, CEO from Dubai Tourism


"The programme seemed unusual to me at first, as it examines the potential of leadership in the younger generation, giving them the opportunity to experience and access the world of a CEO for one day. As an individual, I enjoy challenging and teaching myself, so when I read about the CEOx1Day programme, I thought that it will be a great experience and a journey of challenges. The day itself exceeded my expectations in many ways. Initially I thought I would be with the CEO for the whole day, but I was given the opportunity of checking up on a project and attending a meeting in the CEOs place and asked to report back to him by the end of the day. It was evident to me how management and prioritizing played a huge role not only for the CEO but for everyone working in Dubai Tourism. In addition to this I learnt how looking to the future, planning for it and working on those plans today, will bring a difference to tomorrow."


Ahmad from the American University of Sharjah shadowed Martin Stewart, CEO for OSN

"I honestly wanted to try something “life changing” and really try to step into the shoes of a CEO for a day. First of all, I shadowed Mr Martin for three days, which was something I wasn’t expecting for him to agree upon. I was extremely amazed by the  level of personal bonding and interaction that I had with people from OSN. The best part of the 3 days was that, OSN always kept me occupied. When Mr Martin travelled to India for a meeting, I spent the entire day with different executives getting to know their own roles and responsibilities within the company. I didn't think that I would interested in such a different work area from my first field of interest, but I going to apply for OSN’s 3 month internship once I graduate. I can’t honestly express enough gratitude towards the CEOx1Day planner. It was beyond all my expectations. I am extremely grateful for Mr Martin and Mr John for allowing me to stay at OSN for 3 days."