February was actually a lot calmer than I had anticipated! An event I was supposed to speak at in Saudi Arabia was rescheduled due to some security concerns, so I suddenly had an extra weekend in Paris which I took full advantage of despite the below-average cold front that swept through the region. I spent a week and a half in Toronto working on some projects which I will be able to announce in the next few weeks.
I am delighted to announce that Jesse and I both received our official French work permits enabling us to live and work in France for the next three years. This was unbelievably fortunate timing since the Swiss permit that had enabled me to stay in Europe expired on March 12. It’s nice to know where you’re going to be for the next little while and now that I’m sure I won’t get kicked out of France, I will be participating in many more local events in the city and will be hosting some events of my own next month.
New Piece for The Next Web: The Digital Economy
As reported in last month’s update, I had a fascinating conversation with Sumitra Dutta the Director of INSEAD’s eLabs about the digital economy and it’s impact on various international markets. My lovely editor Courtney told me it was one of the most shared pieces on TNW that day! You can read it here.
I presented at TEDxESCP (one of Europe’s oldest business schools) this month. My presentation was called “Digital DNA” and I spoke about the traces of ourselves we leave behind every time we do something online and what the ramifications the these online pieces of ourselves could have on our offline selves. Digital identity is an area that I find so complex and interesting to think about that it was difficult to sum it all up in 12 minutes!
I’m not sure when the videos will be ready, but as soon as I have the link, I will post the talk. Here is some info about TEDxESCP.
Richard Ivey Webcast: Digital Media & Business
I visited my Alma Mater to speak with the first year business students in my old program about my rather unconventional career path. In the morning, I spoke to three classes of students. It was very surreal to be in the same classroom that I had sat in myself five years ago. I spoke about the importance of following your instincts even you’re doing something that your classmates aren’t. So many opportunities that I have had were disguised as seemingly random events that I chose to jump into. I have been rewarded every single time I have taken that instinctive leap in the pursuit of new experiences or knowledge.
It was an informal conversation and I was really happy when I received several emails from students letting me know that my story had inspired them to take some unconventional steps as well. In the afternoon, I gave a more structured speech about some of the necessary skills that a c-suite leader will need in this digital economy. You can see some clips of the webcast here.
Young Global Shapers
This month I was also accepted into the Young Global Shapers community at the World Economic Forum. It’s a community of young people between the ages of 20-30 who have shown great potential for leadership in their industry or sector. My first YGS event will be in March so stay tuned for the next monthly recap to see how it went. More details here.
I’ll be heading to London and Copenhagen next month for some events, but will mainly be focused on writing and project work. I’m hoping to check out some local tech events as well as host a Sandbox drink (or two) at my apartment in the next few weeks. I can’t believe spring is just around the corner!