President's Note - January 2017

Tricia Leid

AFETT President 2016/2017

January certainly hit the ground running as the year began with serious issues concerning women; gender and public safety were yet again highlighted in the media. These disruptions are hardly ever planned and more common than not it forces us to reassess our previous way of thinking. A common tradition is to begin the year with a new year’s resolution, however, what has shown to be more rewarding is a personal mission statement. Have you ever asked yourself – How did I get here? Is this the job, business or life that you wanted or saw for yourself? Oddly enough having everything you dreamed of is not necessarily giving you the fulfillment you expected. Many times we go in the direction that life takes us, unconsciously following the crowd. Studies show that as humans we are more likely to be affected by people’s behaviour than we expect. This is why it is important to understand what matters most to you in life.

Challenging your thought process by asking “What did I do today that was rewarding?” will give insight as to where you should be. Rather than follow someone else’s dreams, yours can be realised. Understand that disruptions in life - both good and bad, can bring an opportunity for learning. Instead of complaining about the difficult boss or negative conversation, turn it into an opportunity to have stretch goals. Stretch goals will take us out of our comfort zone and force us to do better.

Myopic views can cause us to overlook directions that were not considered before. You can gain the same fulfillment in life by perusing it from a different angle. A good example of this is the Kodak camera and the cell phone. Some of you may remember a time before cell phones were a regular part of our daily lives and having a camera to use on occasion was normal. Had Kodak considered that their competition would have arisen from a phone, their dream of increased revenue from a totally different line of business might have been realised.

AFETT wants to continually provide you with a different or alternative perspective, to meet and engage with persons you may not normally meet in your daily operations. Our International Women’s Day registration has begun, and we are pleased to have such a well-rounded business woman as our Feature Speaker. Ms. Kristine Thompson will certainly inspire all ages and demographics. To ensure that we continue to advocate for change, our February monthly meeting will allow us to have courageous conversations about sexual harassment in the workplace, which will steer us in the direction of engaging public officials on policy change.

We are not without gratitude, and we happily celebrate wins with the WINAD coalition on the Child Marriage bill increasing the age limit to 18. AFETT articulated our stand and its importance to aligning with the UN model, which goads Trinidad and Tobago to update our ancient laws. Our January meeting, ‘Professional Networking’, kicked us into high gear and was very well received. The event stimulated conversations that were certainly engaging and led to at least two personal opportunities that will be pursued. Seize the opportunity to step out of your comfort zone as the year rolls on and pursue what is worthwhile to you. Rest assured you will not regret it.

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