I just had an opportunity come along that got me talking about Southeast Asia again. Several people have asked, “Why Southeast Asia?” My answer, “Why not? It is the top of the world! You have heard of Sagarmatha, right?” But, there is so much more, so I decided to take a few minutes to explain.
I have had a strong interest in Southeast Asia for many years. I am firmly convinced that these nations have more growth potential than any other region in the world. The situation there is in some ways similar to America in the mid-1800, but the pace of change is steadily increasing. So it is very possible that they will catch-up with and surpass western culture in the next 50 years. They are ahead of the West in some areas but have the potential to get ahead in all areas. Just 100 years ago, Europeans considered America backward, and now Europe is in danger of being left behind. The same can easily happen again as, this time, Asia becomes the center of the world.
With this incredible potential comes many challenges. The population density is both a great opportunity and a great difficulty. The governments for the most part want to help but do not know how. Infrastructure is badly needed. Millions are getting left in the mud in the shadow of the shiny new towers – both figuratively and literally. One of the biggest challenges is communication. Hundreds of languages and dialects hinder communication between neighbors, and even though English is being taught throughout the region, cultural background and even figures of speech are causing small and often unnoticed barriers. It is the small things that cause friction. Friction slows progress. Experts in communication can help find the small things and eliminate or at least lubricate them.
I want to help Southeast Asia grow, and I think I have a skill-set that will greatly help them in their growth. I am a communicator. I am not one of those experts that bought a college degree, although I have spent thousands of hours of research on the topic. I became an expert by actually doing communication. Now everyone talks, sure, but communication is more than that. It is the ability to understand your audience and put your message in the words and format that they will understand. Communication is two-way. Good communicators recognize that they can learn more from their audience than they could ever hope to teach. Good communicators must be humble enough to learn or they will have nothing of value to teach.
I am passionate about communicating and helping to make communication easier for others. I want to be part of something big. Southeast Asia is huge! Huge in population, area, and resources, sure, but also huge in potential and need. I have the ability and the desire to fill the need and help them achieve their full potential.