Quick fixes are an addiction

We love quick fixes. Speed is the most crucial factor for winning in the new world. Fast food to 7 minute workouts to consultants pushing theories to change an organisation or a whole country in 100 days are now common. News headlines scream quick change, because any media likes eyeballs on them. In a week, we all forget. Then we need another quick fix.

It’s nothing short of planting a seed and waiting anxiously to watch the seed transforms in to a plant next day. No result. Then decides to extract the seed out and plant it somewhere else hoping the new ground would be different, would be better. There was nothing wrong with the seed. Water, sunlight and caring were missing.

So if you want to make changes in your life, family or work -quick fixes won’t work, unless you make them a habit, a daily routine.

Something Magical happened at #YouthSparkLive

Microsoft, in collaboration with Ministry of Telecom and Digital Infrastructure and Sarvodaya-Fusion organised this event #YouthSparkLive at Trace expert City on December 3rd , to inspire youth in Colombo to learn coding, get right advice on career guidance, and have tons of fun doing that. The reason for Microsoft to have this event in Colombo was because youth in colombo were excited after seeing the 5000 youth training program happening in rural Sri Lanka.

The event is simple in design: full of energy, lots of space, bean bags, music, laughter, networking, talks by IT industry leaders, one on one career counselling sessions, and finally a coding relay where teams of 3, from Universities, schools etc compete getting through code.org coding modules. The fastest to complete the given modules, win.

One of the teams was from Nisala Nenasala, Udubaddawa. This centre led by Santhusa Jayathilaka was one of the first Grass Root Partners of Sarvodaya-Fusion since 2008. I was happy to see them there, competing shoulder to shoulder with leading universities and schools in Colombo. There was so much energy in the hall, I did a facebook live session ( first in my life).

 

Something magical happened. The team from Udubaddawa won.

A team of 3 young boys from rural Kurunegala -unassuming, calm, focused, enthusiastic in their hearts, understanding internet has finally levelled the opportunity to anyone in the world, proved, surprised all ( including me) that tech education is Sri Lanka is ripe for disruption.

 

What brought me to Sarvodaya-Fusion in 2006, was my belief that basic IT education and ability to read and speak English will help any rural youth to find opportunities fitting their passion and strength.

 

We’ve been doing this for more than a decade. We saw the transformation through out, but on this day, these young men shattered doubts in anyone’s mind -they are capable of careers in IT, with proper guidance, confidence and unconditional belief in them.

Cheers to team at Microsoft, especially Janakie Karunaratne and Wellington Perera.

Too many entrepreneurship forums in Sri Lanka. Is that bad ?

Yes,

If I think I have to be in every one of them. Going to too many forums will take away actual time I can work, and also when the senses fatigue creeps in ( This happens when I am bombarded with too many ideas, too quick), what hits the eyes and ears will die right there, not bothering to enter my brain.

No,

if I want good ideas in our society to blossom, pollinate and spread.

Entrepreneurship is of no use if practice is absent. Sri Lanka has a culture of ‘OK’. Contrary to what the media is projecting, been an entrepreneur is next best thing to a ‘stable’ job. Working for a company is cheered, running a company is frowned upon. This ‘OK’ culture is killing Sri Lanka silently in every aspect. It is a high, very thick glass ceiling that must be broken. Hence forums are important. Yet, Action is better than forums, forums are better than no forums.

The need for change

We like others to change, but take very little effort to change ourselves.Why change my self? So that I can tolerate others? No. Not at all. I change because the battle is always an internal one.

The world, which is seemingly outside, is not actually outside. World is what we perceive in our minds what it is. I go down the memory lane, 10 years back, and another 10 years – the things most important to me had changed. All dependent on my experience, of what I make out of what was presented to me.

So, the change must always come from with in to make things better. We are capable of change, but we have become ‘OK’ to go with the flow.

 

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