His Majesty The King granted an Audience to the 2019-2022 cohort graduating from the Royal Institute of Management yesterday.
In an informal conversation with the 746 graduates and RIM staff, His Majesty spoke about our challenges as a nation, concerns over issues we face today, and our way forward if we are to secure a bright future for Bhutan.
Before addressing these topics, His Majesty shared some advice especially for the younger graduates, who have much of their lives and careers to look forward to.
His Majesty said that to achieve all our goals and aspirations, it is of utmost importance to be consistent and persevere- with discipline, even our smallest daily efforts can add up to big results.
His Majesty pointed out that if a person works 8 hours a day for 30 years, they spend roughly 80,000 hours of their lives working. It is, therefore, important for people embarking on their careers to choose something they are passionate about, as they will be spending so much of their lives engaged in doing what they have chosen.
Finally, His Majesty advised them to choose a career that enables them to continue learning and growing- in these changing times, if we are not constantly upgrading our skills, we will invariably fall behind.
His Majesty said that Bhutan is going through a transformation because we have a window of opportunity in which to forever change the course of our future, and ensure that our children inherit a successful nation.
“There can be no greater act of compassion than to be strong, resilient and unwavering for the sake of our children’s future,” His Majesty said.
His Majesty’s foremost concerns were about the economy- individual prosperity is held back because of the size of our market and because of a lack of substantial export of goods and services.
While infrastructure and education are the foundations for building a strong future, these are our weaknesses at present, His Majesty said. There is a great deal of work to be done to improve physical infrastructure and our regulatory environment before planning a more vibrant economy.
We can no longer rely on hydropower to be our sole source of revenue, due to greater competition and uncertainty in the sector. In addition to this, the cost of delivering services in Bhutan is very high– there is a lot of inefficiency in how we manage public funds which are meant to the people.
These are challenges we need to address if we are to change the course of our future. However, His Majesty expressed confidence in the bureaucracy and government of the day to seize the opportunity and take whatever steps are needed to ensure that Bhutan is successful. His Majesty also expressed confidence in the people of Bhutan, who, above all, love our country, to make all the sacrifices necessary to take on challenges with strength and determination.
Our advantage, His Majesty said, has always been that Bhutan enjoys a degree of goodwill and interest from the rest of the world. There is a quality about Bhutan and her people which has inspired others to see us as unique and special.
This is a source for optimism, and something we must build upon. In a world where knowledge and skills are increasingly becoming cheaper and more accessible, values are still precious. In such a world, our true advantage is being dependable, reliable, and trustworthy.
This must become our anchor– something to build as our national identity as Bhutanese, His Majesty said.
The 24th Convocation ceremony of RIM was held earlier this morning with the Prime Minister as Chief Guest. This was the first convocation ceremony held by the institute since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. The graduates belong to Masters of Business Administration, Post Graduate Diploma in Financial Management, Post Graduate Diploma in Public Administration, Post Graduate Diploma in National Law, and Diploma in Financial Management. In addition, graduates from two additional courses- Graduate Diploma in Accounting and Certificate in Accounting, which targeted de-suups in collaboration with the De-Suung Skilling Project, were also part of the convocation ceremony.