Cyriel Kortleven is a crewmember and co-founder of new shoes today - a growing number of soulmates in business who give support to people and organisations on their road to creation, innovation and change.Cyriel shares his experience in India with YourStory in a 3 part series; Part 1:
This is my first visit to India. What a country - it's absolutely right when people say that India is a land full of contrasts. You can come across a slum next to a five star hotel. In that hotel you have to pay 600 roepies for a Kingfisher (beer) while some people outside have to work several days to earn that same amount of money. And the cities are huge, in Begium we live with ten million people in the whole country but cities like Delhi and Mumbai are a lot bigger.
I've mainly travelled in the bigger cities Delhi, Gwalior and Mumbai and it took me 4 days before I got used to the big crowd, the crazy traffic and the rhythms of the cities that never sleep. I had the opportunity to do some workshops and presentations for three business schools and was one of the speakers at the Click Asia Summit - a conference (40 participants) on digital marketing.
It was for me a great opportunity to see how the people from India would react to my interactive style of presenting on the topic creative skills and thinking outside the box. They really liked it and I'm sure that the topic will become even more important in the next years because India is booming. Again, it's a paradox. You notice that a lot of people are ready to move on and become a worldpower in the economic world (there's a lot of creativity and entrepreneurship) and at the other side, some basic needs (like electricity, water, ...) need to be provided because even in the very expensive hotels, you can have some electricity problems or the internet is suddenly gone ... But I think that's also the charming side of India. Those kind of things are still possible here and nobody complains. It's a nice moment of rest ;-)
Cyriel makes people more conscious of the opportunities in life. He is an international speaker in the domain of creativity and innovation. He gives workshops and presentations in creative skills and attitude and the breaking of fixed thinking patterns. Cyriel moves people in a literally and figurative way by means of a combination of creativity and improvisation - also brought together in the succesful dutch book 'And ... Action!' (English version is coming)
What does New Shoes Today do?
Cyriel says: It's not so easy to explain what new shoes today exactly is. Nobody knows, not even we as crew-members of new shoes today. But that we are 'present' is for sure. We are a growing number of soulmates in business who give support to people and organisations on their road to creation, innovation and change. I'll give you some facts and figures to get an image of new shoes today:
+ We are with 20 crew-members
+ Started with 10 founders, 2005, Christmas eve 0.00 o’clock
+ Backgrounds in engineering, consulting, anthropology, marketing, creativity, entrepreneuring, economics, ICT, arts
+ No office, no director, no sales-team and no employees.
+ Based in Belgium and the Netherlands
+ 37 month commitment
+ Compass on energy, faith and trust, not on administration
All of us are looking for new ways of doing business in 21st century and were not satisfied with current ways companies are organised. At this moment we are working together and in freedom and hope to bring something beautiful to the world where we support every crew-member to go for the big thing and each other dreams.
We also believe that creation, innovation and change interact constantly and cannot be separated. They emerge in every individual and organisation when not held back. As a result people find their power and soul to develop and reach enlightenment. Once the individual taps into this power within himself or herself the organisation they work in will naturally reap the benefits.
And let's give some concrete examples of what kind of activities that we do on a 'normal' day. To illustrate our impact and diversity, listed here things new shoes today brought to the world on Thursday November 20, 2008;
• 48 people received a course on personal leadership
• Newsletter ‘7 Ideas’ to 1400 subscribers
• A manager received personal coaching through a wonderwalk
• Second in a big pitch because of being too innovative
• 2 primary schools involved in ‘You count’- newspaper on sustainability
• 2 keynotes on World Creativity Forum, 1200 participants
• New vision for a Dutch province, developed in co creation
• John Cleese and Tom Kelly received the book Creativity Today
• 4 Workshops on creativity and innovation for a governmental organisation
• Playing with 3 children, giving them confidence and learning from them