The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the world’s most respected institutions, heard I was in town, and invited me to speak to its members. But there was an issue: I was scheduled to fly into Sierra Leone in hours.
The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (Dutch: Koninklijke Nederlandse Akademie van Wetenschappen, abbreviated: KNAW) is an organization dedicated to the advancement of science and literature in the Netherlands. The academy is housed in the Trippenhuis in Amsterdam.
In addition to various advisory and administrative functions it operates a number of research institutes and awards many prizes, including the Lorentz Medal in theoretical physics, the Dr Hendrik Muller Prize for Behavioural and Social Science and the Heineken Prizes.
Then, they sent the media team and I recorded an interview. We discussed many things, from inventing human immortality to transforming Africa through productivity-enablers anchored on technology. Then, a member, after watching the tape invited me to an EU committee, making my yearly trip to Brussels possible.
My message today: How do you handle the opportunities before you when they come? That interview, short conversation, etc could open a great future if you manage them well.