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Let the journey begin!

3 Aug

>Me and my team have yesterday officially started our term as the Member Committee of AIESEC UK. It is a feeling of great enjoyment but also a great responsibility.

In my closing speech at LDS, I mentioned that this is ‘our’ year. There have been generations of AIESECers looking after this organization before us and I am sure that there are many more generations of AIESECers to come. But in 1011, it is our time to take care of AIESEC UK. And by us I mean the whole of AIESEC UK.

The organization can consider itself very lucky to have such a great group of LCPs, VPs, managers, NSTs and team leaders at the local level in the coming year. It will be a challenging experience for all of us, but I have no doubt in our ability to lead the LCs and the whole of AIESEC UK forward.

It will be a year of Unlocking Potential; both on our personal and on the organizational level. Our team motto is See it. Believe it. Achieve it. and I cannot wait until the STEPS conference to tell you together with my team more about our vision for AIESEC UK in 1011!

There is one amazing year ahead of us, so lets get cracking with it and enjoy it before it is over!

My MCP elections closing speech

3 Aug


My closing speech from LDS 2010 in Nottingham during the election for the national president (MCP) of AIESEC UK:

I would like to share some of my inner feelings with you at the beginning. When I was sitting in your place two years ago, I would not have imagined that I would be standing here one day, running for the President of AIESEC UK. I would not have imagined I would have the courage to apply for the position one day. I would not have imagined I would be confident enough to be standing here today, giving a speech to the plenary of AIESEC UK.

But I am here today. I am here today doing things I would not have imagined possible two years ago. And this is what I like about the organization. AIESEC has really changed me as a person. There were people who introduced me to the organization, there were people who in their free time delivered sessions to me and who toughed me all the necessary skills, there were people who supported me and there were people who were making sure that this organization keeps going ahead. And I am very grateful to all those people and to AIESEC UK as such.

And therefore, after being in the organization for more than two years and after gaining so much from it, I feel obliged to be giving back to it now. To allow more young people to have the same life changing experience I have had. This is the main reason why I am here today. This is the main reason I am running for the President of AIESEC UK.

You are here today, because you want to learn something new, you want to challenge yourself, you want to develop yourself, you want to discover the world and you want to have fun along the way.

AIESEC UK is here because the world still needs us. There is still a great need out there for promoting intercultural understanding and not only for promoting it but for making it a reality as well. There are still lot of young people in the world who never had a chance to work in a foreign country and who never had the chance to experience a culture different to the one they grew up in. Our society still needs young and ambitious people who are not afraid to stand up and to make the world a better place.

This is a huge commitment for us and we must make sure that in the future we will be able to fulfil it. But it is not only the future that should be driving us. It is also our past.

There were generations of AIESECers before us who were working hard to build the organization and who devoted lot of their time to making it the successful organization it is today. I met some time ago the founder of AIESEC UK. He was already an old man with great hair in his seventies but his face and his eyes were still full of energy and passion and he was telling me about all the difficulties they had to face when they were starting up in London 55 years ago. During my internship with Ernst & Young this summer my manager was proudly telling me that he was the LCP of AIESEC Manchester while he was at university and there are hundreds and thousands more people living this country who are still AIESECers in their hearts. And therefore we must never forget how much energy they put into building this organization and we must make sure they would be feeling proud of what we are doing today.

I have already talked about the future and I have already talked about the past, so what is left?

The present. Yes there were many generations of AIESECers before us and I am sure there are many more generations of AIESECers to come after we leave the organization. But we must realize that right now, we are the generation that is in charge of AIESEC UK. This is our time and we must make the most out of it so that ten, twenty years later when we will be thinking about our time spent in AIESEC we will be able to look back and say ‘Yes, we did a good job’.

This is our time to carry forward the ideas and the values which have been shaping us for the past fifty five years.

This is our time to let other young people discover what AIESEC has to offer them and let them have the same kind of life changing experiences we are living right now.

This is our time to lead through exchange. We are the generation 2010, we are the generation which will achieve the goals we have set for the organization 5 years ago and we are the generation which will come up with a new vision and a new set of goals for the future.

This is our time to keep coming up with new ideas and initiatives which will take AIESEC UK forward.

This is our time to take care of AIESEC UK and I would like to be there next year doing the job with you.

Unlocking Potential.

28 Apr

>This post is dedicated to my MC team and to AIESEC UK.

I believe that every one of us and every organization has inside a great potential. There can be two main reasons why that potential is not realised. Firstly, we might are not be aware of potential that exists within ourselves or within organizations and therefore we are not even trying to unlock it. Secondly we are aware of the potential but we do not have sufficient resources or the right attitude to unlock it.
My team will be leading AIESEC UK in the 10/11 year and we have chosen Unlocking potential as our team motto. I will therefore describe my thoughts on the topic using this example. In general we can unlock potential in three main domains. Firstly in ourselves, secondly in others and finally in organizations.

How to unlock it?

See it.
Believe it.
Achieve it.

This is the second part of our MC mottto. Firstly we need to be aware of the potential we would like to unlock. Once we have discovered it and defined it, we need to believe that we are capable of doing so. This means to plan how are we going to acquire the right attitude and the resources needed and to get a buy-in into this plan. Finally we need to execute that plan.

Unlocking potential in youself.
I always think what is it that I would like to develop. I just got back form an AIESEC conference where my team presented our motto to the members for the first time. We run there a session on this topic and me and my team shared there what potential we would like to unlock in ourselves over the next year. As for myself, I would like to go and chair a conference abroad which is something I have not done yet.

Unlocking potential in others.
It is a big satisfaction for me if my actions contribute to development of others. This is also one of the main reasons why I applied for the MC of AIESEC UK. I like creating an environment where others can unlock their potential. We are responsible for the experiences people around us are living and we should always ask ourselves how are we facilitating those experiences so that people are getting the most out of it. My focus next year will be to unlock potential in my team members and our team focus will be to provide the members of AIESEC UK with experiences which will allow them unlock their leadership potential. This will not only equip them with skills for their future lives, but it will also drive AIESEC UK forward.

Unlocking potential in organizations.
I want to be a strategy consultant in the future so this is something I am passionate about. In addition to what I have already mentioned in the previous paragraph, management often keeps running organizations so that they do not fall apart and can sustain themselves in the near future. But because they are constantly pressing the panic button, management sometimes does not take time to look at the bigger picture and to develop a robust strategy for three or more years ahead. My objective for the coming year is to facilitate development long term business model that will allow AIESEC Local Committees at universities to be financially independent on the national headquarters.

Unlocking potential is about making things better. It is about thinking what can we do that would add the most value to ourselves, others and to the organizations we are part of. The things mentioned above are my plans for my year in the AIESEC UK office. What is the potential you are going to unlock?