23-year-old Dyar Al-Ashtari is the CEO of a digital firm, Pivot Flow LLC. A startup that he launched at the age of 17, with his partner. The digital firm specializes in content creation, search engine optimization, and website development. Today, Pivot Flow LLC is worth almost 25 million US dollars and Al-Ashtari himself is worth 3 million US dollars.
Dyar Al-Ashtari achieving such career highlights at the young age of 23 is no small feat. That is why we caught up with him to share some inspiration and advice to young upcoming CEOs. These are his 5 best tips on being a young CEO.
Dyar Al-Ashtari believes that the most important tip on being a successful CEO, especially a young one, is to understand that success in your workspace is not the goal; the goal is success in life. Real success is not limited to financial success but also entails succeeding at having a wholesome life. Every other aspect of your life has to be on par with the kind of business success you want to achieve as a CEO. And the only way to achieve this is to integrate work ethic into your life.
It is not enough to demonstrate a strong work ethic at the office and within work forums only. Replicate that high level of organization, consistency, determination, productivity, and cooperation in all other aspects of your life. Al-Ashtari made his strong work ethic part of his lifestyle since the inception of his first business at 13 years old. Today, he attributes the success he has achieved as a young CEO to this decision.
The biggest challenge that young entrepreneurs face today when coming up is being coined “too ambitious”. There are only a few people who will believe in their vision and even fewer people willing to support them. Dyar Al-Ashtari and his partner faced the same challenge when getting their startup off the ground but they did not give up. To the young entrepreneurs, he says “aim for the stars, you might just reach them.” Nobody believed Al-Ashtari would generate his first million dollar profit at the age of 18, but he believed it and he did it.
In his journey as a young CEO, one of the skills that have ensured Al-Ashtari’s consistent progress as an entrepreneur is the ability to set realistic deadlines. As a leader, you have to be aware of your capabilities and those of your employees both at a comfortable pace and under healthy pressure. This should dictate how you schedule tasks and set deadlines. Otherwise, you and your workforce will be under too much pressure, fatigued and suffer from burnouts leading to decreased productivity. And as the CEO, learn to listen to your mind and body, when you need a break take one, recharge and come back at a hundred percent.
Mistakes and setbacks are inevitable on any entrepreneurial journey. Dyar Al-Ashtari affirms that as a young CEO you will make numerous mistakes, some easily overlooked, some costly. And as the leader, you will be tasked with the responsibility of moving the business forward after such challenges. This will only be possible if you change your perspective. View your mistakes as less of failures and more of lessons. Take a step back, do your assessment, understand the lesson, refine your process and get back to your journey.
As the CEO you should always be at the forefront of learning. In today’s technological era, change is rampant and being caught unawares is not an option. So, in the struggle to remain relevant, you must actively and constantly learn, change and adapt. You have to know how to use the new tools from today to your advantage and your company’s. Your company’s survival and relevance will be dependent on the ability to provide solutions to today’s problems.
Dyar Al-Ashtari has proven that being a successful young CEO and a successful entrepreneur is possible. He maintains that the journey, while well worth it, is not for the lighthearted. There will be challenges, but these 5 tips should set the foundation for you to overcome them. Al-Ashtari hopes that he inspires the next young CEOs by sharing his journey. It is your time to get out there and be great.