From the Desk of the Festival Director: Arts and the Individual


From the Desk of the Festival Director: Arts and the Individual


The arts is also a crucial element of helping us get in touch with our expressive and creative sides, which is much needed for successful careers and businesses of the future.

Just as we all need to make an effort to make the workplace conducive for women — “We cannot all succeed when half of us are held back”, as aptly put by Malala Yousafzai, Nobel Peace Prize winner — we also need to make a concerted effort to tap the right-brained characteristics that include intuition, creativity and understanding our emotions.

In any nation, the most important self-renewing natural resource is its people. If the primary focus of our education and career is left-brain mastery, are we not then performing at half our potential?

In 2013, Google ran a survey of the most important qualities of the best employees and teams and concluded that the seven top characteristics of success at the tech giant are all soft skills: being a good coach; communicating and listening well; possessing insights; having empathy toward and being supportive of one’s colleagues; being a good critical thinker and problem solver; and being able to make connections across complex ideas.

These are essentially traits of emotional intelligence, which can be nurtured through participation in, and appreciation of, the performing arts.


This is an excerpt from KLIAF Festival Director Datin Sunita Rajakumar’s article in The Edge on 29 July 2018.



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