Ranging from poor quality education to a worsening external account deficit, our challenges are gigantic and multidimensional. Therefore, as soon as the election results started pouring in, the press was swamped with policy suggestions that the upcoming government should take to pull the nation out of its miseries. But almost none endeavoured to draw the attention of the upcoming government towards what they ought not to do at least for the next two to three years. Here’s my list for Imran Khan. Don’t overthink, act! Nelson Mandela said, “Recognise that the world is hungry for action, not words. Act with courage and vision.” You should roll your sleeves not to think and re-think, but to act. You explained your vision and mission to the nation countless times. The agenda was implemented in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) to some extent. Lessons learned from KP should help you implement the necessary reforms for Tabdeeli in other parts of the country more effectively and efficiently. Don’t listen to the grey-haired development professionals. The capital is overflowing boutique of development consultancies. The so-called “think tanks” investigate education sector woes in the morning, water issues in the afternoon, and become ICT for development gurus by the evening. They are good at none. Don’t listen to them. Instead, develop smartphone apps and take measures to connect directly with those who will be affected most by your policies. Let people tell you what they need and how they believe their needs should be addressed. Don’t raise people’s expectations further. The nation has a very high level of expectations attached to your upcoming government. It’s understandable that politicians make tall claims during the election season, which is precisely what you seem to have done during your campaign, and that is okay. It’s time for you recalibrate those expectations. Take the nation through the challenges facing your reform agenda; how your government will overcome them; and what is expected of the nation in this regard. Be honest and transparent in informing people of your government’s expectations toward them because this is a two-way relationship. When you tell us that you want to improve the quality of education and health sectors, tell us how bad our tax-to-GDP ratio is and that we need to do to improve it. Khan, be honest and transparent in informing people of your government’s expectations toward them, because this is a two-way relationship Don’t underestimate the potential of this nation You told us how firmly you believe in the nation’s potential and commitment to charitable causes. It’s time for you to strengthen that muscle without casting any doubt on the abilities of this nation. You need to mobilise this tremendous potential by working tirelessly and creating opportunities. Most important of your assets in this regard will be the youth and expatriate Pakistanis. The youth is full of energy and are hungry to excel in their fields and the expats have resources and skills to contribute to the betterment of our economy. You may need to create an ecosystem where expats and young Pakistani entrepreneurs collaborate and help foster economic growth. Don’t fail the nation The sufferings of the nation can’t be summed up here, but their hope is alive. You assured us that you are aware of people’s miseries and that you will consume your energy to improve the livelihood of the most marginalised of all. Several million Pakistanis have put faith in you and your promises. They see you as a beacon of hope. They want to see an equal, corruption free, and prospering Pakistan. Don’t fail them! The writer can be reached at [email protected] Published in Daily Times, August 3rd 2018.