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Gateway Testimonial – Mahaveer Ramdharry

Title: Senior Administrator – Client Services: Private Wealth Services
Where did Gateway take you?

From Mauritius to Dubai * ( see footnote for a tremendous turn in the tale!)

“Coming home and carrying on with my work, I feel I approach it with a fresher pair of eyes, and much more practical and international”

What was your Gateway opportunity?

My secondment to the JTC Dubai office took me by pleasant surprise! I was still digesting the JTC acquires Minerva Group acquisition news when I was told my proposed Gateway placement to Dubai was about to become an actuality and in the end I spent six months with the team out there.

How did JTC support you in all of this?

Naturally, the senior management back in Mauritius were actively involved in assisting me through all the administrative and legal formalities prior to the move. And upon arrival, there was very much a real, warm family welcome awaiting me. My Dubai colleagues went above and beyond in taking the initiative to introduce me to local customs and their way of life both in and out of the office, so the overall adaption phase was really very smooth. Dubai felt like home away from home pretty quickly!

How did your family and friends feel about your move?

In one word – Happy! As soon as I told them I was moving within JTC, everyone was quick in telling me this opportunity was one not to be missed. From the start of the process, the whole team were so supportive about the Gateway placement, which filled my friends and family with confidence.

What were your lessons learnt along the way?

Moving to Dubai, I learnt so much by the way of local knowledge and experience, whilst naturally becoming an advocate for my own Mauritius.
I enjoyed sharing the detail with my new colleagues as to the why and how we do particular things in our part of the world whilst also taking on board their own particular ways of working. I also learnt so much by the way of presentation skills and my spoken English greatly improved – both in terms of expressing myself in professional, technical knowledge as well as the informal, usual day to day ‘this is life’ topics by conversing with people I wouldn’t usually speak with. Additionally, I was managing a totally different client portfolio which frequently took me out of my comfort zone and pushed me to learn.

What was the big highlight?

I really felt my personality had the opportunity to come into its own. Finally I was able to put faces to the names, particularly established business heads as well as clients and bankers I’d usually only dealt with via email or telephone. I also got the opportunity to utilise my French language skills.

Any downside?

Nothing comes to mind. Aside from the great office environment which I’ve already highlighted, the weather, accommodation etc was all to the mark. What I could say is I missed the Mauritian public holidays (there are 15 of them in total!) which I only got to enjoy by way of the various ‘out of office’ messages received from my Mauritian colleagues! Of course all good things must come to an end and as I started missing family and friends, it was already time to hop on the plane for home.

Why do you think the international experience that Gateway offers is important?

I feel it prompts you to really know your home jurisdiction through and through. I was frequently asked questions from a variety of colleagues and clients about both Mauritius as a jurisdiction as well as our service capabilities and offering from a JTC perspective. What’s more, I really believe in the importance of understanding how another working culture works, especially within the same organisation. This is particularly vital when servicing entities managed by overseas colleagues. Coming home and carrying on with my work, I feel I approach it with a fresher pair of eyes, and much more practical and international mind-set. Thanks to my Dubai experience, I am much more acquainted with the laws of Dubai, how the jurisdiction operates and the opportunities there are in the market. All things you really have to be there to learn.

PS / And we’re delighted to say that Mahaveer’s Gateway secondment was so successful on both sides that, after his return to Mauritius, he was offered a permanent transfer to the Dubai office and is already settling back in very well!

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