President ICAP Message


Evolving Mental Models - Sustaining Competitive Edge

“Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.” ̶  Albert Einstein

The current digital wave shift finance through financial technology and innovative business models that can be measured akin to the 19th century’s industrial revolution. From blockchain-based-invention, the widespread adoption of mobile payments to equity crowd funding and beyond, finance function has entered a new digital age. Today, well-established organisations are riding this wave of transformation finding ways to tap the well of its seemingly infinite potential through innovative mental models.

The theme of the Conference Evolving Mental Models - Sustaining Competitive Edge is indeed a welcome and pertinent thought that needs to be embraced. Mental Model is a way of examining a problem and every model offers a different framework to solve them. Organisations are exploring different mental models, moving beyond the regular mundane practices, to gain an edge, a way to reach the top and break barriers.

In today’s environment, organisations need to develop or acquire new knowledge for sustainable competitive advantage. They need skilled professionals to spread knowledge internally while assessing and building management capabilities to nurture ongoing innovation. Also, to develop relevant mental models to determine and analyse the situation that help in decision making.

To be a leader in the midst of 21st century complexity, one has to be an effective innovator. Innovation is the most important strategy for growing towards the top line. Business model innovation is what leaders from emerging economies are using to succeed and compete with large established businesses in the west. This is a smart choice.

Today, a leader’s job begins and ends with reframing. Without continually reframing oneself and others in the ecosystem with new mental models one cannot compete successfully in the global market place. For now, only a few organisations mastered mental model innovation and are able to use it repeatedly to build success upon success.

Reframing and redefining is the new job for most leaders today. Without incorporating mental model innovation into the organisational ecosystem, change will not take place and the culture will stagnate and become non-competitive. Smart leaders focus on business model innovation, whereas wise leaders focus on mental model innovation.  

The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP) has always pursued professional recognition for its members which was the main reason behind the origin of ICAP Professional Accountants in Business (PAIB) Committee to bring the numerous professional accountants in business and industry closer, and which continues to this day. I must congratulate the hard work of the PAIB committee members in putting together the event.

Also, I would like to express my gratitude to the entire fraternity for the support in ensuring success of this activity and making it a huge success.  

Riaz A. Rehman Chadia, FCA