Wednesday’s Stranger – Week Two

In this new section, I am not going to talk about myself or any of my work / self-improvement / techno obsession (just a little).

 

Here is week two of “WEDNESDAY’S STRANGER”.

 

 

Every Wednesday on the iooikos blog, I will talk about a personality. Someone you might know, but most of the time no. Because I like surprises, I will try to surprise you every week and treat you with discovering a personality, a character I found interesting, that struck me during the week, the past year, someone I might know personally as well… or not !

 

So, without further ado…

 

Last December, as a member of my Engineer School Fondation, the Université de Technology de Troyes, I got invited to a visit and having diner at the prestigious Palais du Luxembourg : French gouvernment Sénat.

 

 

It is a very prestigious and important place for my birth country. I could not refuse the invitation. The idea of going there and meeting some of my former study colleagues was very motivating.

 

So I went there, we had a very beautiful tour of the building / monument, assisted at one of the daily “séance” and had champagne, in the whole tradition of Troyes, the town of the university.

 

Senator Adnot did the introduction before the tour and joined us back at the drink. He is a true politician in the classical sense : he loves to discuss and positively approach people by talking to them on various subjects.

 

He is a moderate.liberal. yes, the dot is there intentionally.

 

For a 71 year old man (at the time), he shows no signs of fatigue and is still very aware of his time. He is from agricultural background and knows what the value of work is. He also has a great culture, and loves to site quotes (even obscure ones)

 

So time for supper! We enter the reserved restaurant room, welcomed by a huge stand in portrait of Napoléon. People are being placed at the table. I am sitting next to Philippe Adnot.

 

So he turns to me as we present ourselves to the other guests at the table: “Mr Tromeur, the man from Luxembourg!”. I guess he worked on our resumes a little before… And so, we have a chat about the school, Luxembourg vs France, the future of computing.

 

 

We eat, still talking with each other, and at the end the senator Adnot stands up to make the final discourse. He basically used bits and pieces our discussions.

 

And he recalls the start of the school in the 1990s and that is where it hit me. Hard!

 

Back in 1994 (wow talking almost quarter of a century), I enrolled the UTT. The school had just started. I was goign to be part of the first promotion. I was a much different person. But still, the will to succeed in life was already on. I graduated proudly in 1997 and in December, started my first job in Luxembourg.

 

So what it hit me: the fight of Philippe Adnot to bring a different kind of school to France, to his region brought me where I am. His idea came from an article he read in 1992, mentioning ideas to bring France forward economically: education was one of the ideas. He felt this was a good thing to bring to his region.

 

Later that year, he visited a university in USA, and that is where the root concept came from: a modern school dedicated to create a generation of innovative engineers or managers.

 

A school that could influence  businesses of a region, a country and, why the hell not, the world.

 

After he finished, I thanked him personally. Not for quoting me, just for my path. I did not him, never met him before. I do not remember any mention of him at school.

 

Philippe Adnot, like many people around the world, is a mentor in disguise. Hidden, but so impactful on life and businesses. Thanks to him, and others, I have the life I have now because of my school, my studies and the keys it gave me to succeed.

 

Influencers can be anywhere on the way. Just listen, sustain curiosity and be smart to learn. It is not always easy to be mindful, but you can be thankful everyday to others.

 

Even if they are strangers. Just be mindful as well : give back as much as you can. You can influence others as well !