Reconnecting with Your Mission

I attended today the Boston College International Conference on Corporate Citizenship. I loved the opening keynote this morning by Dev Patnaik which was based on his book, Wired to Care. His main premise was that companies succeed when they operate with empathy, connecting to what their customers really care about. In his words, we are most successful when we reconnect with our humanity, empathy, creativity and courage. I loved it when, in response to the familiar saying “it’s not personal, it’s just business,” Dev said, “if it’s not personal then why am I doing it?!” His whole talk was a call to action for us to operate each day out of a sense of purpose and passion.

At the end of the day, our Intel Vice President of Corporate Affairs, Shelly Esque, participated on a panel with Cisco, Microsoft and Tony Wagner of Harvard on the need to improve the quality of global education, and the role of the private sector in supporting this critical objective. Cisco, Intel and Microsoft have joined together to sponsor ground-breaking academic research on how we define and measure the skills students need today to be successful in the global economy. If we can build consensus on these issues, then we believe more countries will promote curriculum to develop these skills.

For me there was a direct link between Dev’s opening keynote and our closing session on education. Improving education is Intel’s passion and mine. I am happiest when I come to work and feel a direct link between my efforts and a global expansion of access to quality education. I want to do something everyday to enable more kids to receive a good education, to feel like they matter, to believe that they deserve access to the best technology, the best ideas, the best future. I think readers of this blog are probably tired of hearing me talk about the school where I worked in Guatemala and how much I want those kids and all kids like them to have a chance to succeed, so I’ll simply refer to you to my previous blogs for more background on my motivation. But I want to thank Dev for strengthening today my enthusiasm around my personal mission. What’s yours?

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