A Day in the Life of a CEO: Jahid Fazal-Karim of Jetcraft

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Kicking off a new series on CEO Today Magazine, we ask the world’s CEOs what their typical day looks like, from what they eat for breakfast to the last thing they do before catching some sleep. As our first Q&A we speak to Jahid Fazal-Karim of Jetcraft.

What time do you wake up in the morning?

I try to get 6-8 hours of sleep a night, but depending on where I am in the world physically and what time zone my internal clock is on, my wake-up times can vary.

What is the first thing you do in the morning? 

I enjoy a good espresso in the mornings to wake myself up while checking my emails. And, I always try to make time for a workout, whether it’s a run on the beach in North Carolina, a bike ride in Tuscany or Barry’s Bootcamp in NYC.

As a global company, you can often be anywhere in the world. Where is your favourite place to be and why?

It’s hard to pick just one destination –the energy in a big city like Montreal, London, New York or Dubai is incomparable. Away from the urban, my favorite landscapes are in the mountains of Switzerland and the vineyards of Tuscany. I also really like the beach and places off the beaten path. My preference is to experience new places with the locals.

How do you adjust to the time difference?

I prefer to fly in the evening so I can rest on the plane and wake up refreshed. When arriving in a new time zone, I’ll do my best to keep going as long as I can, scheduling meetings as soon as I land. Then, after my professional commitments are finished, I’ll spend time catching up on sleep, fitness and personal obligations. For shorter trips, it’s not even worth it to adjust – I just keep going.

Typically, what time is your first meeting?

Jetcraft is a customer-focused business and we pride ourselves on being available to our customers any time of day or night. That being said, I prefer that any non-client meetings take place after I have those 6-8 hours of sleep I referenced in question 1!

Customer rapport is an important aspect of your business, how many customers do you tend to meet in one day?

Jetcraft now has over 20 offices globally, and 25+ dedicated sales directors and sales engineers who are all meeting with customers on a regular basis. I’m lucky to have such a strong, dedicated, multi-national team who take the best care of our clients.

I will also meet with customers regularly and while it’s tough to pinpoint an exact number per day, I will say that I try to meet every one of our clients in person.

We understand it can take months, but can you give us an insight into a typical day of a sales process?

At the risk of sounding cliché, there really is no typical day. I balance my time between phone calls, emails and in-person meetings and social outings with Jetcraft team members, industry partners and customers. Our connections are one of the many things that make working with Jetcraft so valuable, and meeting face-to-face, building relationships, will always be an extremely important part of our business. My day is also spent brainstorming with our executive team on how to creatively structure deals to best meet our clients’ needs. For example, Jetcraft has its own inventory of aircraft and the ability to take in trades. We may structure a deal to trade our client’s existing aircraft for the one he’s about to purchase allowing him to complete his objectives in one seamless transaction without carrying the weight of two aircraft at once.

What do you do to break away from your busy day?

One of my favorite things to do, when we’re all together, is to eat dinner with my family. Spending time with my family and friends is very important to me.

What keeps you motivated?

Truly my work keeps me motivated. The business aviation industry fascinates me – It flows through my blood. I wake up excited every day, especially in following the evolution and the trends going on right now such as technology and globalisation. I cannot wait to see what happens in 1, 5, 10 and 20 years and we at Jetcraft look forward to being an integral part of it.

Jetcraft is the international leader in aircraft sales, marketing and ownership strategies, managing and maintaining over 20 regional offices globally. We have a unique position between the traditional broker and OEMs. Jetcraft’s recent results are the best in the company’s 55-year history (82 transactions, 1.8billion value in 2016), due to our global presence, wide variety of new and pre-owned aircraft inventory, and ability to accept trades.

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