The 31 year old Doaa is proud to be the youngest manager in iSiS Organic, SEKEMs company for Organic food and beverages. The regional export manager started her journey with the company 11 years ago, even before she got her Bachelor degree!
“SEKEM is the best school of life one can ask for.”
“SEKEM is the best school of life one can ask for,” says Doaa. “People learn every day and are happy to help and teach other in every way.” Doaa learned about this approach of the SEKEM Initiative that wants to unfold the hidden potential of people, already at the very beginning. “We’ll teach you from scratch, were Dr. Ibrahim’s words; and so, they did. I started at the bottom of the chain,” the SEKEM employee reveals. She worked at the reception for nine months, and then became the assistant for Dr. Mamdouh Abouleish, general manager of iSiS Organic. But this wasn’t enough for the young Egyptian. She wanted to learn and grow more in the company and found a good teacher in Dr. Iman Daoud, previous export manager, who introduced her to the work and even shared the office with her. After the revolution, the position became free and she suddenly found herself performing both jobs! Still an assistant at the time, she rose up to the occasion when she was chosen to help with the export work for 2 years.
“You have now entered an important new field, I trust you to be up to the task,” said Dr. Ibrahim Abouleish.
When Dr. Ahmed Sultan became the export manager for iSiS and Atos in 2012, Doaa took her first official step in the export field. “I received a call I could not have imagined… Dr. Ibrahim Abouleish himself called me to say: You have now entered an important new field and I trust you to be up to the task. I was honored as much as shocked, that he had kept track of my progress,” she remembers. Like that, the young SEKEM employee took over the position of Export Specialist.
In less than a year to her promotion, Doaa found herself in a difficult situation where she thought resigning was her only choice. When Doaa’s mom passed away, she became responsible of her two young sisters. Doaa’s manager at the time, Dr. Ahmed Sultan then suggested that she could work in part-time. “I am very grateful to Dr. Sultan and Dr. Mamdouh Abouleish as this solution allows me to keep my position, and my future career without jeopardizing my obligations towards my family, which led me to where i am now, as a Regional Export manager,” the mother to Sila and Lojy tells.
“SEKEM gave me courage!”
The former shy Doaa did not only develop her career but also discovered her hidden talents in SEKEM. She gained for instance the courage to perform in front of an audience and sing. It was back in 2010, when she sang as a part of the SEKEM choir, that she first discovered her love for singing. Turns out, singing is not her only talent! On a fun, playful attempt she helped write lyrics for several tracks in collaboration with Andreas Kalbhenn, current iSiS export manager for Europe and a passionate singer. One of their songs “Yalla neeishha – Let’s live it” will be performed soon in the SEKEM School theatre. “I am very happy and grateful to learn something new every day, even about myself. SEKEM didn’t just offer me a career path, it changed me and my character… it gave me courage,” says Doaa Mohamed Gabal.