NORMAN — Creating sustainable companies is a goal of entreprenuer and business executive A.K.M. Zabed from Dhaka, Bangladesh. And who better to demonstrate a model for longevity than a Norman firm that has been succeeding in the same community for three decades?
Richard McKinney Jr. believes community involvement is key to long-term business success. That’s why when offered the opportunity to participate in a Professional Exchange Program through the University of Oklahoma and the U.S. Department of State, McKinney said “yes.”
“We’re invested in our community,” McKinney said. “This is our home. This program was a big opportunity.”
McKinney is president of the McKinney Partnership Architects, a Norman firm that hosted one of 11 participants in the cultural exchange. The program included participants from Bangladesh and Nepal. McKinney Partnerships hosted Zabed.
Zabed has a Master of Business Administration from the University of Dhaka. He is managing director of Sthapottik and focuses on branding, sales, supply chain management, finance and human resource development. His company also does consulting work for GMG Airlines, the Molla Group, the Pride Group and Newbarry Foods.
“I wanted to have exposure of the world’s leading architects,” Zabed said. “What processes do they use?”
Zabed said Bangladesh, as an emerging nation, is bursting with new businesses.
“We see a lot of companies, but they don’t last long,” Zabed said.
He wants to learn how to build sustainable companies, and his experience with McKinney Architects has clued him in on some important components to long-term business viability.
Zabed said he learned about efficient processes that would allow a company to make money while still servicing the community and society. He also was exposed to technology at McKinney that will help business thrive.
His experience with the McKinney Partnership has opened his eyes to the value of deeper community involvement, he said.