As part of learning by doing during my degree at Team Academy Amsterdam, we are constantly encouraged to break through our barriers and tackle our challenges head on. This year I took on a project to work in collaboration with other Team Academies around Europe and organize a conference in the chosen location being Budapest, Hungary. The aim of the conference was to allow students from all the Team Academies around the world to meet up and share their experiences and challenges, possibly forming future collaborations.
A representative from each Team Academy around Europe was chosen to be on the team organizing the conference. I represented Team Academy Amsterdam. In the beginning, I never really appreciated how much of a challenge we were going to face organizing the conference remotely from our different locations. Most of our communication was done over regular Skype meetings often being hindered by the internet connection in our various countries. My contributions to the conference included organizing keynote speaker Paul Renaud who gave a 4-hour workshop on networking, I was proud to have been able to get such a respected speaker to give a class at our conference. I was also tasked to manage some of the social media platforms and assist with promoting the event in the different Team Academies around Europe.
I additionally did a talk on the coffee industry and my personal coffee company. Speaking in front of a large audience is something many will face during their career’s especially if you want to be successful, odds are you will be doing it more often than you expect. I was at the same time nervous about the outcome of my presentation as speaking in front of a crowd of 200 plus, is not something I do on a regular basis. The talk ended up going really well, and I realized when you are so passionate about something like I am about the coffee industry there is nothing that is going to stop you from achieving your goals. I intend on doing public talks more regularly to further improve my public speaking skills as this is the best way to practically learn I believe.
The conference taught me a lot overall on a number of different levels and seeing your hours of work suddenly being put into action is something very special, especially if it turns out to be successful like in this case. I learned many valuable lessons including working with different European cultures and ensuring you are legally protected by a contract before performing the work required. As part of the Team Academy degree, traveling is something that tends to happen naturally. I really enjoyed exploring Budapest, with its diverse history and culture, but also their interesting way of conducting business which was slightly different to the Netherlands. Traveling opens your world to horizons that you could never have dreamed of and traveling to Budapest was just another moment where I strongly felt a sense freedom and tranquility.
Learn more about my coffee company Kahawa Koffie at www.kahawakoffie.com.
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