Design your experience – Act now! – HeADCO 2011, AIESEC Greece

Think of Greece. Think of a country facing a crisis. Think that there seems to be no way out, as the media keep showing. Think of unemployment, hopelessness, poverty, hunger, fear.

And now: STOP! Forget all these pictures coming to your head and think of what you would like to do. No, you have not the choice to say  …but in Greece”

If you want to change a system, you have to disrupt the resources on which the system depends.

~Umair Haque

Use the one of the most powerful tools your mind offers you – The power of imagination. The resource of ideas. Ideas develop when we start to think differently and set the scene in order to make them reality.

So there, I was somewhere in the mountains, in Arachova, a place known for its nightlife and VIP gathering which seems to be fading during the last years. There was a mission at HeADCo 2011 powered by AIESEC Greece. They honored me with an invitation to do a session on Innovation for Sustainability. This time not with Acropolis view but with viewing nature. Powerful scene, as powerful as the main feeling I got from them – disappointment, fear, insecurity.

The mission: Make them prove themselves that they can prove all the negative points they mentioned wrong by their own actions.

160 young AIESECers engaged in a game during the one hour, the 60 minutes, I got. They got 30 minutes to brainstorm on an idea/ solution to a business and social problem, working in groups of 10, and present in 30 seconds. Essential part: Real problem with a solution applicable in the real world, outside the protected environment of the organization the were part of.

While walking around the working groups, some interesting discussions came up and watching them writing on the flip charts, getting them actually full, in front of them, was a nice scene. Fact is that some of them managed to “pitch” in 30 seconds and translate the negative thoughts of the beginning of the session into positive first steps.

Investing in young people is one of the important investments our society should not miss out, because it is an investment in the future.

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