Big Hope 2: Keynote by Sir Chris Stone, CEO

Monday, June 18th, I was moved. I walked into the sports hall like any other day going to listen to another keynote. Well, this was not any other keynote.

In the past we had some good speakers with good work positions and big titles. Their talks were not necessarily engaging, nor did they did interact much with the crowd; they basically preached their message and left.

On Monday, however, in came Sir Chris Stone, CEO of GEMS Cambridge Education. Not only was he the CEO but also, ascended to this position from being a high school teacher.

The reason I was so moved by the talk was not only because of what he talked about but the way he did it. He started off his talk in the center of the room, moved around the audience to engage everyone. He was funny. He used images to get his message out, took off his jacket to be a bit more informal to the young audience he was targeting and finally, he used funny videos to keep us engaged.

This parrot image is a mind trick. If you look carefully you can see that it{s actually a man with pain on him that is positioned to look like the bird.

Mr. Stone’s keynote was about inspiring hope in the youth. The last technique Mr. Stone used, which was remarkable, was that he finished off his keynote with a poem* by Jonathan Reed. The poem read all these terrible hopeless words; however, when read from the bottom up, read only inspirational and hopeful words. That is what I learned from the talk. I learned not to look at things one way. There is always another angle that we just need to find.

Below are some wise words Mr. Stone shared that I saved:

-Intelligence is knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do.

-The last to see that you’re boring is yourself (doing the same routine everyday).

By Luis Kayiteshonga

 

*Poem mentioned above by Jonathan Reed:

I am part of a lost generation.
And I refuse to believe that
I can change the world.
I realize this may be a shock, but
“Happiness comes from within”
Is a lie, and
“Money will make me happy”
So in thirty years, I will tell my children
They are not the most important thing in my life.
My employer will know that
I have my priorities straight because
Work
Is more important than
Family
I tell you this:
Once upon a time
Families stayed together
But this will not be true in my era.
This is a quick fix society
Experts tell me
Thirty years from now, I will be celebrating the tenth anniversary of my divorce.
I do not concede that
I will live in a country of my own making.
In the future,
Environmental destruction will be the norm.
No longer can it be said that
My peers and I care about this Earth.
It will be evident that
My generation is apathetic and lethargic.
It is foolish to presume that
There is hope.
And all of this will come true unless we choose reverse it.

Backwards:

There is hope.
It is foolish to presume that
My generation is apathetic and lethargic.
It will be evident that
My peers and I care about this Earth.
No longer can it be said that
Environmental destruction will be the norm.
In the future,
I will live in a country of my own making.
I do not concede that
Thirty years from now, I will be celebrating the tenth anniversary of my divorce.
Experts tell me
This is a quick fix society
But this will not be true in my era.
Families stayed together
Once upon a time
I’ll tell you this:
Family
Is more important than
Work
I have my priorities straight because
My employer will know that
They are not the most important thing in my life.
So in thirty years, I will tell my children
“Money will make me happy”
Is a lie, and
“True Happiness comes from within”
I realize this may be a shock, but
I can change the world.
And I refuse to believe that
I am part of a lost generation.

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