A string of envious achievements right from his high school-college days; amazing programs scripted for local, regional and global giants, substantial charity initiatives and handy patches scripted for free for just about anyone from anywhere…you might think we are talking about a computer box but this gentle, warm, affable man whose whizz-kid-to-top-geek growth is inspirational says he is neither a machine nor a magician.
“I’m not a computer box. I have made use of the computer box to create an impact in society…There is no magic to create success. It is all about passion and hard work. ”
Tariq Hilal Al Barwani
Almost failed in his high school but achieved distinction from one of the leading technology universities in Australia (Swinburne University of Technology) and voted among the top 5 percent of the best computing undergraduates in universities in Canada (Acadia University), Tariq is today a well-known IT expert and a keynote motivational speaker in the country who has helped transform the lives of people and organisations.
A household name in Oman, Tariq started working while completing high school as a computer programmer, earning a monthly salary of $350 but built a portfolio of over $1 million as a result of the projects he created for companies that included computer applications, TV and radio programs, training sessions and speaking engagements.
Also, he raised funds for projects and invested in various initiatives throughout a decade of challenges that were turned into fruitful opportunities in the end. “Education is your biggest tool to the future,” Tariq says.
Some of the notable initiatives by Tariq included the software developed for Omantel, known as GTO2Omantel, that has impacted 20,000 Internet subscribers; Internet marketing for automobile industries; and the IT portal which was acquired by OHI Telecom for a two-year contract.
More than 100 local and international organisations have engaged and invited Tariq to present and share knowledge gained in 25 years of experience in creating and running successful initiatives that impacted millions of people positively in various fields, including technology, community, banking, telecom, education, media & events. Among the international organisations are Microsoft, SAP, Nokia, HSBC, US Embassy, London Speaker Bureau, SUEZ international, TEDx, BETT, Dahua Technology, MakerFaire, Abu Dhabi Chamber of Commerce; and the local organisations include Bank Muscat, Sultan Qaboos University, German University of Technology, Muscat College, Higher Colleges of Technology, KhimjiRamdas, Majan College, Modern College of Business and Science, Ministry of Tourism, Oman Training Institute, Indian schools, Public Authority for Radio, Royal Oman Police, Ooredoo, Omantel, Oman Air and Al Ahlia Insurance.
Tariq’s initiatives have received 27 awards locally and internationally. “Every award is a recognition of what I have learnt in the last 25 years of my career,” he notes.
Today, Tariq serves as a member of the board of advisers of Muscat College as well as technology solutions provider Intertech LLC. Also, he is the founder and chairman of Oman’s biggest knowledge sharing platform — Knowledge Oman.
“Knowledge Oman has impacted hundreds of thousands of people with 74 initiatives in the form of projects, workshops and seminars that positively impacted students from college and universities, women, entrepreneurs and professionals from various industries,” Tariq says.
Knowledge Oman has worked with 35 partners locally and internationally attracting over 80,000 registrations and 700 volunteers and receiving four top awards.
” You should never underestimate your power. Anyone can be successful provided you choose what you want to become and work towards that very hard,” Tariq stresses.