From Isolation to Digitalism: A Conversation with Zohare Haider

For an organization trying to promote and market its products or image without using social media as an integral part of the marketing mix is akin to trying to empty an ocean using only a thimble… that is how indispensable a role social media plays today. Recognizing the revolutionary period we are in, organizations should mainly focus on improving digital tools, including websites, with stronger user experience, social media for product positioning, customer acquisition, retention, and service.

Mr. Zohare Haider, Regional Head of Digital at British Council, is also responsible for strategy roll-out and management of all work in South Asia. He said,

“I am an agent and ambassador of change to my organization. My aim is to achieve business excellence in terms of British Council’s digital presence. This includes making sure our brand is uniform, and teams working towards a common organizational goal.”

Sharing his views further, he also talked about how digitalism cannot be treated in isolation. A physical environment is required to have the impact of digital tools.

With the invention of the telephone, communications gaps were reduced and with our striding advent into the tech era, the pattern has continued. And with upcoming inventions in digital media, most especially our ability to engage with technology has increased. Since Pakistan is in its developing stages, technology should our first priority. Here Pakistanis need to understand that, to enable technology, infrastructure in the form of economic prosperity, telecom companies, technical skills, smart user interfaces, and content is required.

Students are the most worthwhile asset of a nation, and the British Council has worked very closely with this segment. On asking Mr. Zohare, about how students adapt to technology, he added, this generation has adapted technology with the speed of light, thus the more people have access to technology, the more mature and sophisticated it will be. He further stated that they would ‘engage to evolve,’ by engaging with one another, the environment, and technology.

In order to proceed further, students need to be more focused towards digitalism. Furthermore, providing access to teachers, students and making education available online, should also be profitable. Pakistan lacks nothing. People have the potential to exceed not only in the regional context, but be amongst the top players on a global level. And undoubtedly, we already have many examples that our locals have done some brilliant work given the right conditions and supporting environment. These include Convo, Popinjay, TinTash, Social Ants etc, which shows great dedication. If infrastructure, like reinforcing environment, government policies and financial support are given, then more students and budding entrepreneurs will focus on providing solutions rather than hurdles.

Talking about how technology has helped transform the education sector. Mr. Zohare said that organizations like PTA and USF play a major role in proliferation of digitally delivering or enabling education. He added, “We are more confident now that we are providing e-learning, remote learning and digital learning, which has increased the demand for digital academic education also. Moreover, Internationalizing Higher Education is a big part of our global agenda.”

Considering how organizations like British Council, PTA, USF, P@sha etc, are working with such enthusiastic spirit, to promote digital education, it is to be hoped that the day is not far off when education, in digital form, will be available to every student. And for those intimidated by the word, ‘digital,’ understanding technology and using it in ways best suited to your needs is sure to help!