Bienvenue en Maroc

Rabat, 1 April ’17. #IBMCSC  #CSCMorocco10 #CitizenIBM

Landed in Casablanca after transiting through Abu Dhabi. My flight path is very interesting; we pass over Cairo; avoid Libya and travel through the entire length of Algeria before entering Morocco only to get a spectacular view of the Atlas mountains on the port side of the airplane. All my other colleagues are landing at Rabat and I am the only one to land at Casablanca.  I only recently got to know that the famed movie “Casablanca” was shot 100% on Hollywood sets. So, it is great to touch down at the real Casablanca and see it first hand albeit only from the sky. On landing, I have a car waiting for me to drive me to Rabat, an hour a quarter away. The drive from Casablanca to Rabat is real beautiful. Seeing the excellent highways and the landscape, at first I think I could have been in any European country but the palm trees and the houses remind you otherwise. About half of the journey is bang along the coast, reminding me of stretches between Chennai and Pondicherry, except that the waters here are deep blue.

Flight Path

I reach my hotel, Cantor Terminus, about half past noon and I have Malika Lakalech, our ever enthusiastic host from Pyxera Global (IBM appointed manager for our program) waiting to greet me at the lobby. The Cantor Terminus is located in the art deco district of Rabat and very close to the Moroccon parliament. Our hotel and the district have a distinct old world, colonial era charm. I have lunch with Malika savouring the excellent crepes and then head back to the hotel to greet nine more colleagues who all arrive from Paris together. We meet, greet, chill out and then head for dinner to the Table restaurant at our hotel before calling it a day.

Our first team dinner

It’s still April Fools Day but it seems more like a wise-man’s day. Not that I consider myself very wise but definitely wiser than ever before. Am exhausted but I can’t sleep without reminding myself why I am here. And I contemplate about Corporate Social Responsibility.  In our world, no man or woman lives in an island, completely self sufficient and without dependency on anyone else. As a human race we thrive because we are inter-dependent. Quite similarly businesses succeed and progress because of inter dependencies that a diverse economic ecosystem and society provide. A business enterprise requires a skilled, educated and healthy work force; society bats for stability, human progress and protection from natural calamities. A sustainable use of resources and clean air ensures a better environment and consequently better health of populations. Business and Society are really two sides of the same coin and  Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) can help create a virtuous cycle of human progress.
On that note, I sign-off with the promise to complete my reflections on CSR another day.     Bon nuit

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