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Hat Trick Hirani - Shafik wins National Manager of the Year


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Hat Trick Hirani - Shafik wins National Manager of the Year

  1. 1. IG MAGAZINE > Hattrick “People often fear, not that they will fail, but that they will be successful beyond their imagination. Success is all about confronting that fear.” —Shafik Hirani— Hirani IG Mag Summer 09_v2:Layout 1 8/11/09 1:10 PM Page 22
  2. 2. IG MAGAZINE > AUGUST 2009 ometimes, a leader emerges whose charisma inspires, whose motivation leads to success, and whose style allows for his team members to fulfill each one of their goals. We can find these qualities among many Investors Group directors but one has recently stood ever so slightly taller, winning both the National T.O.P Leader award and the National Division Director of the Year award three years in a row. That person is Shafik Hirani from Calgary South. Shafik leads a mighty team, 38 Consultants strong. A member of Shafik’s large division, Consultant Alex Senkiw says that from the first moment he met his Division Director he could tell he would be different from other managers. “I have had many bosses since leaving school 10 years ago but none have had as much impact on me as he has. His work ethic and enthusiasm alone have inspired me to always put in the extra effort.” Shafik’s leadership approach is what Alex appreciates the most. “He has an open door policy and is always willing to spend time showing people how to fish but he will never actually give you the fish. This is definitely one of the main reasons for my success in my first year,” says the Pillar Award winner. In 2008, Shafik’s division was number one in Canada with $82 million in New Business Credits (NBC). In fact, his team has been number one in Canada since 2005 – no small feat. Under Shafik’s leadership, Consultants in his division have won 10 Pillar Awards and he has promoted one Division Director from his division this year. This overwhelming success has led to countless client referrals and many awards for him and Consultants in the division. “Our success comes from a combination of factors,” he says. “Like a good golf swing, your stance is one aspect, your grip is another, your back swing and follow-through are important, as well as your positioning and eye contact… but when you put them all together, you have a perfect shot. It’s all about the combination of factors we get from our team.” In spite of his division’s great success, Shafik insists that he tries not to focus too much on results, just hard work. “People often fear, not that they will fail, but that they will be successful beyond their imagination. Success is all about confronting that fear,” explains Shafik. A caring mentor, he always asks his team what differences exist between their current situation and their ideal future. “If there are big differences, then we identify the gap and look at why the gap exists. Then we must find the discipline to improve.” It is this kind of mentorship that has made Shafik’s team overwhelmingly responsive to his leadership. “Shafik has managed to create a culture in our division where we are able to rely on one another for ideas, motivation and assistance,” says Daniel Wan, Consultant from Calgary South. “We learn and adapt faster through the empathy that Shafik has taught us.” Consultant Tom Gilman agrees. “Shafik is very perceptive about the emotional state of clients and his staff. He interprets them well and goes beyond the scope of a manager to ensure the overall happiness of those who surround him.” These skills are reflected in the success he’s enjoyed in his personal practice. Shafik’s personal practice was second in Canada in 2008, bringing in almost $27 million in NBC. He has also been the top director in personal production for the past seven years and the only director ever to make President’s Elite and T.O.P., which he has done three times. Consultant Steven Bello believes that Shafik’s intelligence and passion are the hallmarks of his success. “These qualities become sophisticated tools of leadership when they are appropriately applied to the management of a team,” he explains. “Shafik’s qualities serve as an unquenchable source of inspiration and strength to many in an industry full of challenges.” How do you continue to charge ahead when you’re already at the top? Shafik continues to persist and shows no signs of slowing down. “The Japanese have a term called kaizen. It basically means continuous improvements,” he says. “There are a lot of areas in our practice and systems that need development. Now, it’s time to sit back, reflect upon these things, and make plans for the future.” For the third year in a row, Calgary South Division Director Shafik Hirani accepts both the National Division Director of the Year and National T.O.P. Leader awards. IG Mag Summer 09_v2:Layout 1 8/11/09 1:10 PM Page 23