About nine years ago, I was invited to speak at a beautiful auditorium at the American Airlines Training Center. My topic: Multicultural Markets Impact and Approach (in the financial world). A dear friend of mine -Sam - from the African American Market in those days and I presented data, statistics and best practices for our diverse markets. I remember the feeling of being in front of other amazing colleagues all in the Learning and Development family, and full of pride yet humbled by being among that special group, I promised that I would be back in that same stage, but more knowledgeable, more experienced and better prepared to make a positive impact in other people's lives.
Many years passed and I left my former company, so I was sad thinking that I didn't go back to share with others what I've learned, what I've experienced and what I've built around Diversity and Inclusion after all those years. I learned so much about Education, Opportunity and Equality, so much about Leadership and Empowerment and I never got the chance to share it with that audience. I felt a bit disappointed and frankly, like if I lost that chance forever just because I was not an employee of that company anymore.
Last week I was invited to speak at the largest organization for Diversity and Inclusion called NALC - National Affinity Leadership Congress, now "EMERGE". And as soon as I entered the place of the Conference I realized something: I was there! At the same place where I promised I'll do what it takes to become a better professional, a better person, a better contributor to our world.
I was there! And I didn't know then that I was going to fulfill my promise in a different way after almost a decade. I was there as a free entrepreneur, as a confident speaker. I was there because I chose to be there, not because I was sent to be there. What a joy. Life is full of surprises and I am blessed to be part of that surprise box.
My message to all the dreamers and doers in the world:
What's important is the WHAT. The HOW and WHEN will come...when the time is right, when you are ready.
Remember to keep your heart and mind in the right place, doing the right things for the right reasons, and you'll always be able to fulfill your promises.
Here is a video for the people I love and respect that were there when Sam and I stood in that auditorium ... thank you for believing in me.
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