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WALTER STUBER (02.02.2021)

 

A guest commentary by Khalid Nadeem Arif, founder and CEO at outsourcing4work

 

For my more than 100 employees, it does not matter whether they participate in our regular online meetings from a coworking space, home office or from the beach, or in which country they are currently located. My IT and service company works 100% remotely. Everyone is completely flexible in terms of time and location-independent, and they also use it.
Just not me. I am always at my home in Groß-Gerau, Germany, and lie in bed most of the time. I suffer from chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Most people probably cannot imagine how long a day and even longer a night can be if there is nothing you can do but lie in bed most of the time, like me. But today I am in the fortunate position of having meaningful and productive work despite these limitations. It’s been a long journey.


Success and illness

In 1969 I was born in Lahore, Pakistan. When I was fifteen I immigrated to Sweden. A year later I came to Germany. In 1993, at the age of twenty-four, I started my own company.
We got to know early the benefits, but also the risks, of remote work with international teams and we became very successful in it.
In 2007 I became ill. I felt pain all the time and I was infinitely exhausted. I have been to a large number of doctors, specialists, alternative practitioners, and hospitals. Nobody could detect a diagnosis for me. That’s why at some point it was said that I was suffering from depression. For years I received corresponding therapies and had to take antidepressants, which gave me additional pain.


Radical changes

Then one day I happened to see a documentary about Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) on TV. I thought they were telling my story! That changed my life radically. Now I finally knew what I had and, with the help of doctors and a self-help group, was able to organise my life accordingly. There is still no therapy for CFS, but I know what to look out for and can save myself from additional and unnecessary suffering.
If my health allows it, I will work sitting or lying down. I mainly take care of the strategic work in the company. I often use my cell phone to write notes or to communicate with employees. Talking uses up a lot of energy and often results in severe stomach pains. So I try to reduce it to the bare minimum. One positive aspect of my illnesses is that it has made me a specialist in remote work.


Commitment to Pakistan

One thing is clear to me: I live in the best country in the world, where all options are open to me. But there are very many people in this world who struggle every day to get enough food on their plates for their families. This is also the case in Pakistan, the country where I was born. Despite a good education, many people there have little chance to get a well-paid job.
That’s why I plan, from my bed in Germany, to develop the economically underdeveloped city in Pakistan, Rabwah, into an IT hub for remote work and to create a thousand new remote jobs there in Pakistan over the next five years – www.1000jobs4rabwah.com
I would also like to launch a non-profit foundation into which I would like to contribute a large part of my assets.


Never give up!

Despite my illness, today, by the grace of God, I live a happy and very grateful life. With my example, I would like to encourage the chronically ill and people with disabilities not to give up and support them in using the possibilities of remote work for themselves.
That’s why I decided to talk publicly about my personal story, my illness, and my future plans and produced a clip – www.youtube.com/watch?v=rZxDExiqsAc&t=2s
I hope that it encourages many people and gives an impulse for their own lives.

Boost Your City (01.12.2020)

 

The 51-year-old heads an internationally successful company with more than 100 employees.

Although he often cannot go out of his house for months and spends most of the time in bed because of his serious illness (CFS – Chronic fatigue syndrome), he runs an internationally successful company with more than 100 employees – Khalid Nadeem Arif (51 years), founder and CEO of outsourcing4work.
The impressive story of this brave man from Groß-Gerau shows how much people can achieve despite difficult circumstances. And that even what could be considered a negative stroke of fate always bring opportunities with them.


A slogan with potential: outsourcing4work – remote solutions

The development of the remote model of outsourcing4work begins long before Corona. And it is a prime example for companies that are successfully involved in the field of digital infrastructure. More than ten years ago, the Pakistani entrepreneur Khalid Nadeem Arif took the decision to focus intensively on working in the home office. The reason for this was an illness that made it impossible for him to get out of bed at times. Instead of giving up on his company, he gradually developed it into a 100% remote company.
The IT and personnel services company now employs people from all over the world with more than 100 employees from 17 countries. They all work together remotely. Guided and supported by the man who at the beginning of his career could hardly have foreseen the growth his remote model would one day reach. As a provider of Indian IT experts, the innovative infrastructure is also a central core of the business model.
Sometimes Khalid Nadeem Arif is a little surprised by his own strength: “Today I often can’t go out of the house for months and lie in bed most of the time,” says Arif [https://youtu.be/ncyN1TnoJRc]. “As soon as my health allows, I start to work until I have to recover again in a very quiet and dark room. Despite my illnesses, today, by the grace of God, I live a happy and very grateful life. I have been running my company outsourcing4work GmbH for many years, mainly from my bed”.
The friendly man from Gross-Gerau has such a positive influence that his enthusiasm and eagerness can inspire people in a similar situation. And that is exactly his goal: to motivate and empower men and women with disabilities.


Diverse future plans

With his example, Khalid Nadeem Arif does not only want to encourage ill and disabled people, he also wants to support anyone interested in discovering the possibilities of remote work for themselves. In addition, the enthusiastic man wants to continue growing internationally with his 100% remote company and to create 1,000 new jobs in Pakistan in the next five years – primarily as remote jobs, of course. “One of the positive aspects of my illnesses is that they have made me an expert in remote work,” explains Khalid Nadeem Arif with a smile and is already thinking about his next big project: from his bed in Germany, he wants to make an economically underdeveloped city in Pakistan into an IT hub for remote work.


An introduction to the company

In a company-internal memo, Arif explains to every new employee how he runs the company despite massive health restrictions, how the cooperation with employees works, and what other work opportunities exist at outsourcing4work. Khalid Nadeem Arif and his team from outsourcing4work are also informing people outside the company about the various possibilities of remote work. The company organizes a variety of events [https://www.outsourcing4work.de/events/] and on December 10th, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. a webinar entitled “Remote work – this is how people with disabilities can benefit” took place.


The life of Khalid Nadeem Arif

Past

  • Born 1969 in Lahore, Pakistan
  • Started martial arts at the age of 8 and studied it for 20 years
  • Immigrated to Sweden when he was 15.
  • Came to Germany at the age of 16 and has lived in Germany ever since. Is a grateful owner of German citizenship.
  • Became an entrepreneur at the age of 24.
  • At 38, developed CFS (chronic fatigue syndrome). Also suffers from Chronic Pain Syndrome and Severe Sleep Apnea Syndrome. Is severely disabled (GdB 80) and has a disability level 2.

Present (2020)

“Today I can often not go out of my house for months and lie in bed most of the time. As soon as my health allows it, I start to work until I have to recover again in a very quiet and dark room. As soon as my health allows it again, I’ll start working…

Despite my illnesses, today, by the grace of God, I live a happy and very grateful life. I have been running my company outsourcing4work GmbH for many years, mainly from my bed. outsourcing4work is an IT and personnel services company with more than 100 employees who live in 17 countries and work remotely.

Because I could no longer drive to the office due to the severity of my illnesses and was forced to work from home, I converted my entire company into a 100% remote company almost 10 years ago.”

Future planning

  • With my example, I would like to encourage ill and disabled people not to give up and to support them in using the possibilities of remote work for themselves.
  • I want to continue to grow internationally with my 100% remote company.
  • I want to create 1,000 new jobs in Pakistan in the next 5 years. Primarily remote jobs are to be created. One of the positive effects of my illnesses is that it has made me an expert in remote work.
  • From my bed in Germany, I plan to make an economically underdeveloped city in Pakistan into an IT hub for remote work. Detailed information on why I started the 1000Jobs4Rabwah project in Pakistan and what my plan is can be found at https://1000jobs4rabwah.com