Representing ICAS at One Young World

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Indy Hothi By Indy Hothi

8 January 2016

When I began the graduate programme with EY in 2011, I never envisaged that I would one day represent ICAS and EY at the second most internationally representative event after the Olympics, the One Young World (OYW) summit.

OYW is a UK-based not-for-profit organisation that gathers together young people from around the world in an annual summit event, empowering them to make lasting connections to create positive change. In November, around 1,300 young people from around the world gathered in Bangkok to hear inspiring speakers such as former UN secretarygeneral Kofi Annan, rock star and aid campaigner Sir Bob Geldof and Professor Muhammad Yunus, Nobel prizewinner and founder of Grameen Bank.

The OYW summit is not a place to just talk about challenges in society but, more importantly, to drive action and create lasting change. People talk about you all as future leaders but really you are leaders already, young leaders who have the capability to make positive change. You have to go out there and do it.

As the winner of the ICAS One Young CA competition, I was part of the delegation from Chartered Accountants Worldwide (CAW) and was joined by delegates from other leading chartered accountancy bodies including Ireland, England and Wales, South Africa and Australia & New Zealand. As well as the keynote speeches there were specialist sessions, and “Introducing Social Business” was one of those I was most looking forward to.

The session was presented by Professor Yunus – a Bangladeshi social entrepreneur, banker, economist, and pioneer of the concepts of microcredit and microfinance. He talked about how mainstream businesses haven’t really made an attempt to intrinsically embed social and community initiatives into their business models. In contrast, he remarked: “Social businesses make profit and change people’s lives for the better.” As the founder of my own social enterprise, Hothi & Othi, which supports emerging artists, I took away valuable insights on expanding my social business and useful feedback on developing its social impact model.

I’m also a Thai boxing enthusiast, so I was interested in the sports leadership session co-hosted by Li Xiaopeng, a four-time Olympic gold-winning gymnast holding 16 world titles. He summed up his experience with professional sports beautifully when he said: “With sport, good or bad, you know how to become stronger.”

Chartered Accountants Worldwide held a session on “The ethics of international business”, hosted by Ronan Dunne, CEO with Telefonica UK/O2. It was wonderful to see people from a variety of professions and industries coming together to discuss ethics. One thing in particular Dunne said summed up the session well: “People do business with brands and companies they trust, so having an ethical mindset is key to that.”

As a business adviser with EY, my work is already having an impact, and I feel I have the responsibility to lead by example, to be courageous and daring so that younger generations can be inspired to change the world.

Something that OYW co-founder David Jones said on the opening day particularly resonated with me. He said: “The OYW summit is not a place to just talk about challenges in society but, more importantly, to drive action and create lasting change. People talk about you all as future leaders but really you are leaders already, young leaders who have the capability to make positive change. You have to go out there and do it.”

As a business adviser with EY, my work is already having an impact, and I feel I have the responsibility to lead by example, to be courageous and daring so that younger generations can be inspired to change the world; whether that is through my career at EY, humanitarian projects or the social business I run.

I have made connections that have extended past this summit and could last a lifetime, and I have met many like-minded individuals. Who knows what the future will bring: one day we might end up working together to change the world, or simply remain great friends.

Either way, I am grateful for this amazing opportunity.

Topics

  • CA life
  • One Young CA

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