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Zafer Achi

Zafer Achi

Dubai, UAE & Europe

Zafer is a leadership coach and a designer and facilitator of leadership development interventions. He works to increase the mental complexity necessary for addressing the complexity of the challenges leaders face by using developmental rather than tactical approaches. Using conversation as a platform, Zafer seeks to challenge and unfreeze limiting beliefs to help leaders embrace more expansive and more fluid mindsets. As an outcome of his coaching engagements leaders can see, in every situation, more choices for action and more opportunity for creative win-win moves thus helping them better deliver on their performance.

Zafer has spent 34 years as a top tier management consultant – including 27 years as a Partner- with McKinsey & Company. At McKinsey, Zafer led the development of the Firm’s senior partners learning curriculum, and personally designed and delivered as lead faculty several of the Firm’s most iconic leadership development programs. He has spent the last 15 years being at the cutting edge of management thinking and intervention design. He specializes in the areas of culture, leadership, talent, and change management. Zafer is exceptionally adept at bridging across cultures. He has spent extensive professional time serving clients across the globe. Born in Damascus and raised in Lebanon, Zafer has studied, worked, and lived in another eight countries. He is fluent in Arabic, French and English and can also converse in Spanish, Japanese and Bahasa.

Zafer is a graduate of HEC (Paris) and MIT’s Sloan School of Management. He is a certified Leadership Circle coach, and a certified Growth Edge coach. Zafer is also a graduate of the prestigious Director Education Program of the Canadian Institute of Corporate Directors (ICD). He has co-founded the Montreal Chapter of the ICD, and has served on the national board of the ICD for 3 years. Zafer also sat on the Board of Governors of the Board Director Institute (BDI), a GCC-based institution that promotes better governance through Director training.

Zafer is married and has six children; he is based in Dubai and works across the globe.

The insights I gained from working with Zafer were quite profound. My time with him allowed me to gain a valuable perspective on my behaviors from the standpoint of others. But more importantly, it allowed me to probe, understand and at times question the beliefs and motivations behind these behaviors. This ultimately allowed me more control over them. Throughout this whole process, what struck me was Zafer's keen ability to create an environment and a dialogue that promotes reflection, self-exploration and personal growth, without at any time appearing directive or prescriptive. That is truly a remarkable skill.

CEO, Derayah