It’s been a few weeks since the One Young World Summit, so I thought I would post on my key takeaways from the experience.
- “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” – Gandhi
If we’re really going to change the world, then we need to hold ourselves personally accountable. Each of our daily choices has an impact – purchase ethical products, participate in local and national elections, eat everything on your plate, volunteer, reduce your carbon footprint, etc. Simple changes in your lifestyle can have a BIG impact.
- There’s a new way to do Business
Shareholders and consumers are concerned with more than the profit these days. They want to know that the products they support are ethically produced. Even better, they want to support corporations that add value to society. In turn, employees want to work for responsible companies where their work makes a difference. Corporate responsibility shouldn’t be a “nice to have” or an “afterthought.” It should be integrated throughout the entire business.
- The Power of Technology
The internet, social media particularly, allows us to connect with people across the globe, tap into an infinite pool of knowledge, and share our experiences. Such power can be used as a catapult for social change. When ISIS mercilessly attacked those in Paris, #PorteOuverte became the call heard around the world. And now, #JeSuisEnTerrasse tells the story of Parisians’ solidarity and redemption. Use your social media accounts to instigate societal change. Use the internet to educate yourself. “I don’t know enough about it” is not a valid excuse for inaction anymore.
- Push the Status Quo
Social change is uncomfortable. Don’t live your life on autopilot by doing what’s easy. Challenge the status quo and be an activist. If we want to close the gender gap, if we want to reverse the effects of climate change, if we want to stop the radical Islamist movement that’s claimed so many lives, then we need to act now. Stand up for what you know is right, even if it gains you a few adversaries.
Attending the summit was an incredible opportunity and I’m proud to be a One Young World Ambassador. This next year at WU, my goal is to take these 4 key learnings and use them to pay it forward in a significant and tangible way. Just in time for New Years’ resolutions!