I recently joined the movement to bring the first ever TED like experience to the University of Waterloo. Prashanth, the Chair of TEDxUW approached me on a fine Monday evening and said “Sharath, I would really like you to join us, I have a feeling that you would be an amazing fit”
Surprised by the proposal, I wasn’t so sure what action to take at that moment. I told him I would get back to him in a week; he actually gave me two weeks. I talked with a couple of my close friends and well-wishers and they all gave me the same answer: “Go for it!” It was an amazing opportunity, plus I was a getting a bit restless sitting on such an opportunity so I responded by saying “why not” on Saturday at 5.30pm. Right away, I got an email from Prashanth asking me to hop into a Skype meeting with a potential sponsor at 6pm. I got my first taste at how fast paced things at TEDxUW were.
Lately, I have been asking myself: What is the real reason that I choose to join TEDxUW? All the other reasons such as “this is an amazing opportunity” or that “I was a bit bored” were simply not true and I knew that for a fact. Luckily, I found the answer to that question when I was having a conversation with a friend online. I was explaining the idea behind TED and the reasons for bringing TEDx to uWaterloo and the answer finally hit me. I wanted to join this movement because deep within me, I strongly believed that we are living in a world full of rapid innovations, social revolutions and incredible progress. Sometimes, we just have to take a leap of faith and not worry that things are not going to work out. If we fail we just learn from our mistakes, rinse and then repeat; if we have never failed, we have never lived. As Seth Godin once said, the greatest mistake one can do is not doing anything and that is why I love to be part of TEDxUW. TEDxUW is about like-minded, extremely motivated and talented people joining together to take action – seeing what is wrong around them, saying no to archaic traditions, defying the norm and finally doing something about it. And that’s the real reason why I enjoy being part of TEDxUW.
It is a lot of work putting together TEDxUW but, I would rather not be doing anything else. I currently help manage the marketing efforts at TEDxUW. The Marketing team is in charge of managing the website, Social Media, Advertising and Public relations. I also help out with Speaker relations and volunteer recruitment. We actually launched our website just last week, Check it out http://www.tedxuw.com/ . I can’t wait to bring this event to uWaterloo. In my future blog posts, I will talk about some of the cool things that we are hoping to do at TEDxUW.
TEDxUW, November 12th, Hagey Hall, University of Waterloo.