Friday, November 16, 2007

Keeping the future safe

I have been invited to do thousands of seminars in my career, and everytime I felt that my job as a speaker, was to set things right: whatever those things may be, whether it was attitude, perspective or belief, I am paid to deliver and ignite a change, a new found confidence, self belief and passion. And I have always felt honoured and humbled to be in this position.

For 34 years, I have looked around the world and I always felt that the world had suddenly taken a nightmare pill and was headed for disaster. What I didnt see was a movement that is slowly envelopping our planet into goodness, into all that is right and all that is worthy of life. It's a movement I had the honour of being a part of, the movement is AIESEC. The conference that I did in Belgium, the NTMS 2007 on 11th November was like one I had never done before. It was a group of "young delegates" "interns" and "alumni" of this revolutionary phenomenon AIESEC. Headed under the able guidance of Andries and Vishal, the Belgium chapter invited me to do a firewalk session to motivate and inspire their 250 participants. I dont know how much the participants learnt from my 4 hour session, but I sure learnt a lot from the three days that I spent with the AIESECKERS.

Passion: I saw passion on a level that I have never witnessed before. The entire conference was planned and executed to success by STUDENTS. The delivery was flawless. Perfection and Excellence was their trade mark in all the sessions that were conducted. Love: The delegates freely sang songs of gratitude, of appreciation, of honour for their team mates. Four days, 250 young and aggressive delegates, and not a single sour or immature moment. There was heartfelt sincerety and for the lack of a better word, love between the people.

Celebration: Every day seemed a celebration, and the occassion being LIFE. The special reason being LIFE. The achievement being LIFE. The people began and ended every session with a celebration. The energy and the spirit was unbelievable. Knowledge: The 250 young and aggressive bunch of students came seeking knowledge above and beyond their University curriculum. There were sessions on personal development and practical issues concerning careers and people management. I admired the spirit of hunger and thirst to learn and to grow.

Fun: Every day was filled with over 8 hours of knowledgable sessions and at the end of the day, there were fun filled parties. I was amazed to see an intelligent balance between serious work and even more serious fun.

Responsibility: Though the fun marked the perfect way to end a meaningful day, it was also defined by responsibility. I saw the sense of responsibility through the fatigue, responsibility despite the late nights in parties, responsibility for the early morning sessions, the perfect execution, the strong sense of purpose and direction. I have never come across a group of youngsters who displayed a greater sense of responsibility and still maintaining the innocence and mischief of their age.

Purpose: Every AIESECER that i saw was defined by a strong sense of purpose and saw themselves worthy of investing time in building their future at their own cost. This was not a free seminar and every young delegate had paid to learn and grow. I have never been more impressed.

Tolerance: 250 people from over a dozen different countries. There was a mixture of cultures, races, religions, nationalities, but what brought them all together was a sense of tolerance and warmth towards each other. AIESEC believes in NO DISCRIMINATION. They give unity a whole new meaning. They are holding the world together with their love and their spirit.

Respect: There is respect for everyone. No matter who you are, what your opinion is, what your likes or dislikes are, I saw respect. For youngsters to ACT respectful, is a prayer answered, and AIESECERS are truly an answer to every peace lovers prayer. I am so inspired that being a part of the AIESEC conference has ignited in me the belief that our world, our future is in safe hands. To have an able and stable generation, a strong willed and responsible youth is a sure shot bet to a better world.

Firewalk Video Link:


Vishal said...


Thank you so much for your energy and contribution towards our purpose,
And thank you for investing so much time in us for our growth and development.

You've inspired us beyind imagination and no words could do justice to the experience you gifted us...

Thank you for believing in us and for all the kind words of appreciation and acknowledgement!

The experience is still lingering for all of us...

Muchas gracias,
Merci Beaucoup,
Dank u,
And more..

Stephanie said...

Thank you Priya!

It was incredible to have you spend time with us during the conference. Definately an experience than we will never forget.

Thank you so much.

Evca said...

Dear Priya,

thank you for these words...It showed me how thankful and proud we should be for the experience we are living in AIESEC...We are giving our best to something we believe in...peace and fulfilment of humankind`s potential...and step by step we see it is worth it.

ex MCP of AIESEC in the Czech Republic

Leen said...


Thank you once more for these kind words. It was amazing to have you at our conference. I am sure you offered our members an experience that they will never forget, which will drive them to do unbelievable things, even when the odds are against!

Thank you for that...

Dorien said...

Dear Priya,

Your words moved me because they are a true sign that AIESEC is fulfilling its purpose and that of all its members. As an alumnus I consider my decision of being a part of AIESEC a few years ago as the best decision I ever made. It gave me the most valuable things of all: love for life, an urge to reach for something beyond myself and the belief that anything is possible.

Thank you for your presence, I really believe you took all of us to another level.
Thank you so much for adding incredible value to the organisation and the movement of making the world a better place. You are a true inspiration.

AIESECly yours,

twizeremana said...

Dear Priya,

I am out of words and i feel what i will say will not add up to what i really feel and what i want to say.

My wish and all organizers wishes in that conference were to have the most succefull, inspirational and most memorable conference.

I would like to say and testify that you contributed a lot to make that conference that way,the best way we could ever wish for and up to now me and many other members who were there still talks about the experinece and it has changed and touched many of us in our lives and the way we look at challanges and things in life.

When i was reading your comments on AIESEC, i became so proud to be part of this powerfull, amazing wonderful organization (AIESEC), something that sometimes we take it for granted. i would like to Thank you for making the best experinece for people and make the best of my first experinece as a chair a National conference in a Foreign country the best that i will ever dream of having.

I am still tempted to try it at Home hehe( Dont try it at Home-u said )

Thank you very Much
Asante Sana (Swahili)

Gaspar Ndabi
Intern in PwC in Belgium

Yavor said...


I found your blog through Andries' blog. I want to thank you for your words about the conference and our organization. I for my part was not at the conference because at the same time we had our own national conference here in Switzerland.

Still. Sometimes when I watch the news or talk to friends who are not in AIESEC I get the feeling that the things we do in our organization stay in AIESEC and nobody else really understands what we are talking about and what we are aiming for. I get the feeling that we constantly have to justify our passion, our optimism, ambition and love. We have to explain people why we want to develop ourselves and fulfil our potential. Why we care.

Thanks for proving me wrong.

(Swiss Trainers Team)

Amrita said...

You sure have had a lovely experience in Belgium!!! The way you have described them, makes me feel these are super energetic guys!!! I sure missed not coming to the AISEC conference :-(

And its great to know Vishal and his team handles the entire show!!!

Kudos to the AISEC Team!!!

jayu said...

Hey mam,

I am sure it was a great workshop.

It surely has added value to everyone who attended the conference.

I am sure there are more such AIESEC conference of which you are gonna be a part of.


Ilmi Murati said...

Thank you Priya !

Thank you so much Priya for coming at NTMS 2007 , thank you because you made me better than i was because you learned me new things about myself and about the way to reach my dreams.

Your acknowledgment in Aiesec is a really great thing and a real motivation to continue our work in that way.


Filip said...

Wow. I have been very active in AIESEC for a long time, but I always found it difficult to describe it accurately to the outside world. But you just did it, very eloquently; and it is the reason why even after being an alumnus for 7 years now, I still want to be involved in the organisation.

AIESEC is unique, and everytime I attend a conference, even for a short time, I get an incredible energy boost. And this last conference was extra special, thanks to your contribution Priya! You have inspired all the delegates and it took the conference to an unprecendented level.

Thanks once again and I hope to read more of your inspiring, thought-provoking blog posts in the future!


philippe said...

Dear Priya,

Impressive. Truly.

When you say that AIESEC is keeping the future safe, well, you are right :-).
But let me tell you, that by the words you spoke at this conference, you have kept AIESEC's future safe as well.
I have the wonderful chance to see your words in action every day in my local committee, in the eyes of the people that were listening to you that night.

That's really special, and will have its impact for many years to come, in the actions of all of us.

For this, I want to thank you.

Please keep having your impact on people around the world, there is a great need for you, there is a great need for change, and for the better.

Thanks Priya, sincerely!

AIESECly yours,

(and in my town, wonderful Aalst, we say "Merci e men bieken!" , but its not really applicable to the seriousness of my gratitude...:-) )

Lynnie said...


As OCP, I was really moved by what you wrote! It shows that AIESEC indeed has a great impact on everyone and it proves that we are still going into the right direction. And that gives me more energy and more will power to keep going.

Before I was in AIESEC, I felt so small and I never believed that one person could make a difference. AIESEC changed that... and so did your session! I really enjoyed it so much. You are such a great person and you really inspired me at NTMS 2007.

Thank you so much for everything and I really hope to see you again on one of our many many conferences!


Janaki Gopalan said...

Hi Priya,

Your blog is superb and powerful.
I benefited today just like so many.

You are amazing!