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7th Oct, 2011

Planning for 2012
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on October 7, 2011 10:48


I would like to start by thanking everyone that turned up to last nights Board meeting and AGM.

Events » Community projects » Community Mindmap

The energy in the room was infectious and the ideas for training, projects, events and charity involvement were flowing freely.

Following on from the success of our 'How JCI Reading Can Help You' event the input from new members was fantastic. It was great to see that we have truly shown that JCI Reading can open new doors for people and it's effects can be far more reaching than those simply in the room on the day.

For the last 2 years the main focus of JCI Reading has been on Personal Development, giving members the opportunities to increase knowledge and skills, then apply them.

In 2012 we are committing to increase this to having a larger impact on the community around us. We are looking to increase the number of both community and business projects focusing the training we provide on the specific needs of those projects to ensure they have the highest possible impact. Click on the mindmap to see just some of the areas we are discussing and let us know where you would like to help and add value.

On the official side we had 2 votes to build the foundations for next years board.

I was honoured to be supported to be the President of JCI Reading for 2012 and am excited to be working once again with Clare Franklin who has taken the role of Events Coordinator.

If you have an interest in learning or developing your skills and influencing the impact that JCI Reading will be making over the coming year there are other board positions that can be made to fit you and the commitment you are able to make. Please speak to me to discuss the options.

2012 is going to be a fantastic year, so get involved and help make a difference.


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9th Sep, 2011

Why JCI by Jerry Rubin from Pure Financial Advice Ltd
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on September 9, 2011 12:02


Profile Pics » pure.jpg"Pure Financial Advice has been a keen supporter of JCI. When a trainee financial adviser join the company we encouraged them to join JCI. By joining JCI it improved her business acumen and enhanced her business skills, making her more confident through networking with other young business professionals.

On a separate note I personally have also attended and participated in JCI seminars and found them of great value listening to the business services offered by different professions and improving my own business skills also."

Jerry Rubin from Pure Financial Advice Ltd

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4th Sep, 2011

JCI Reading Newsletter - How JCI Can Help You
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on September 4, 2011 12:43



Whether you are running a business, or are an employee working in one, JCI can and will help you

For individuals:
JCI provides development opportunities that may not be available in your current work environment. The opportunity to gain new skills, polish old ones, meet new friends (from all over the world) to take part in or even run projects that mean something to you.
Even if you are currently not working, employers are looking for proactive people, therefore showing an active interest in an organisation such as JCI will do wonders for your CV and Interview presentation.

For Businesses:
We can either give you the opportunity to present your speciality to a receptive audience of young professionals who wish to learn more about the subject
Help you to increase the skill set and engagement of your employees by getting them involved in our training and project sessions.

This introduction email barely touches the surface of how JCI can help, so please come along to our 'How JCI Can Help You' evening, kindly hosted by Shirlaws UK, to find out more.

If you have any questions about any of the events, JCI or how to recognise your opportunities then Drop me an email

I look forward to hearing from you.

Stephen Wells

JCI Reading President 2011

How JCI Reading Can Help You

Thursday 22nd September
Registration and refreshments 18:30-19:15 before presentation and networking

Presented by Active JCI Members....

Whether you are an employer or an individual JCI Can help you or your staff.

Come along to our relaxed information evening to find out how.

Drinks and refreshments served between 18:30-19:15 before active members of JCI explain how it has helped them, and what activities we are currently involved in to help the community and develop the leaders of tomorrow.

Location: Kindly Hosted by Shirlaws UK at 2nd Floor, 2-4 Kings Road, Reading RG1 3AA
Cost: This is a FREE Event
Contact: Clare Franlkin Events Co-ordinator
Book your ticket

JCI South Leadership Academy - Hosted in Reading

Friday 23rd - Sunday 25th September
Registration 18:30 Friday to 16:00 Sunday

Various Guest Presenters.

This intensive weekend residential is an ideal opportunity to challenge yourself to take action to develop your personal leadership potential in the workplace and in JCI. Come and learn the essential ingredients to becoming the leader you want to be:

  • Learn why emotional intelligence is needed in leadership
  • How to communicate as a leader and how to build support around your ideas and projects,
  • What are your strengths as a leader and how can you make the most of them
  • Learn how to build and utilise networks and resources and how they can support your development as a leader.

Location: Quality Hotel Reading (formally The Royal County Hotel), 4-8 Duke Street, Reading,RG1 4RY
Investment: Members £120 / Non Members £165 / Students £112
Contact: Soraya Bowen Events Co-ordinator
Book your ticket

7 Steps for More Effective Presentations.

Thursday 29th September
Registration 19:00 to start at 19:30

Presented by David Pinnock.

A new and exciting presentation skills training experience, for both novice and experienced presenters.

This short workshop explores seven key presentation principles and provides the opportunity to practice them in a supportive and encouraging environment.

Location: TBC
Investment: Earlybird booking £5 Members / £10 Non Members
Contact: Clare Franlkin Events Co-ordinator
Book your Earlybird ticket

Say Hello to the real you.

Thursday 13th October
Registration 19:00 to start at 19:30

Presented by Stephen Wells.
In this interactive workshop you will be introduced (possibly for the first time) to the real you. Learning about yourself and what influences the decisions you make. Building on the positives and learning to look at the old negatives in a new light.
Workshop Review from 14th July- Say Hello to the Real You

Location: TBC
Investment: Earlybird booking £5 Members / £10 Non Members
Contact: Clare Franlkin Events Co-ordinator
Book your Earlybird ticket

Debating Workshop - Stand up and Speak

Thursday 27th October.
Registration 19:00 for a 19:30 Start

Are you good at talking but can't structure your speech? Or would you just like to learn to talk in front of an audience?

Debating is a traditional JCI training to practice public speaking skills where you will learn to structure your comments, articulate and argue professionally with your team members on entertaining subjects.

Location: TBC

Investment: Earlybird booking £5 Members / £10 Non Members
Contact: Clare Franlkin Events Co-ordinator
Book your Earlybird ticket

Recent Events

Workshop Review - Saiy Hello to the Real You

JCI - UN Global Partnership Summit - Intro and Day 1

Confident Presence workshop by Solveig Malvik

"How to work a room" - Networking Training Review

JCI Scotland National Conference 2011 - Review


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27th Aug, 2011

Why JCI by Bill Montague from DMP
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on August 27, 2011 16:57


Profile Pics » BillMontague.jpg

"The old adage ‘people buy people’ remains as true today as ever, especially for business professionals. 

In a world where our personal qualities count for so much, it is a good idea to develop networking and related skills early on in our careers.  

That’s why DMP have encouraged our young lawyers to get involved with JCI and it has been a pleasure to see the benefits that JCI membership has brought them."

Bill Montague from DMP

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19th Jul, 2011

‘Say Hello to the Real You’ Workshop - Training Review
by Diane Edgington on July 19, 2011 17:07



Date: Thursday 14th July 2011

Venue:  Dexter Montague LLP Solicitors, 105 Oxford Road, Reading, RG1 7UD

Trainer: Stephen Wells - AIM to Succeed

 This highly interactive workshop was be facilitated by Stephen Wells, founder of AIM to Succeed.  Steve coaches Businesses and Individuals to help them reach their full potential by identifying previously hidden strengths and unbridled ambition.                 

In the literature for the event Steve suggested that we would be introduced (possibly for the first time) to the real you - the aim of this workshop.  This was the part that really grabbed me! 

As a group, we identified the following key objectives:

  • Who is the real me?  
  • What is it that makes me?
  • What defines me?

Learning about yourself and what influences the decisions you make.  Building on the positives and learning to look at the old negatives in a new light.  Fascinating stuff and I'm confident that all those who attended the session agree that we certainly achieved this and a whole lot more!

We all have different experiences and what they mean to each of us.  Steve opened the workshop by asking each of us to introduce ourselves to the rest of the group, by stating what it is that defines us.  Tricky!

Introductions done, we moved on to try to define 'what I am' by compiling a personal list. 

My list began...

  • I am Diane
  • I am a wife to David
  • I am a soon to be mum
  • I am a member of JCI Reading Board of Directors
  • I am an HR Business Partner etc  etc

Exploring these lists we discussed them and Steve took us deeper into how we use them to define ourselves. As I thought more about my 'what I am' list, my list began to grow at rapid speed including:

  • I am happy
  • I am loving
  • I am a foodie
  • I am motivated
  • I am not creative

 The list is endless and will have to be rewritten continuously as I reflect.

While reflecting on the lists Steve also talked about perceptions and how we can each have very different views of the same story.  Steve provides an excellent example of this theory by reading us a detailed story.  It's fascinating how we each process and filter information so differently. 

This moved onto how we all use language patterns and how we process the world around us (as it happens) :

  • Delete, distort and generalise information
  • Are influenced by values and beliefs
  • Posess internal representation
  • Intrasinctly link our state to our physiology

.....attitude, passion & self belief

Which lead us to some interesting NLP concept, including Maslow's hierarchy of needs:

  • Higher purpose / Identity
  • Values
  • Beliefs
  • Capabilities
  • Behaviors
  • Environment

In summary, Steve explained the theory that by learning about ourselves we will be able to move forward with a new insight into 'our' world and how we are really in control of it.  Setting us up perfectly to set new goals and ensure that we achieve them.

Throughout the course of the workshop, Steve guided us through:

The current you:

  • All the things that we are
  • What made us think that is us
  • What we have achieved so far
  •  The Real you:

Steve challenged us to step into ourselves with new knowledge and identify who we really are, asking us to let yourself go and dream our dream.

This was our opportunity to ensure we know why we want to be where we want to be.  Allowing us to set ourselves ambitious and honest goals knowing that we committed to achieving them.

Steve closed the workshop by asking each of us to write a postcard which we addressed to ourselves with a short note of what we had promised ourselves personally.  Steve committed to post these to each of us in 21 days time as a reminder.  What a great idea - thanks Steve! 

Personally, I thought this was an excellent workshop provided by an excellent, passionate and highly knowledgeable trainer.  I got a lot from it, it really makes you think about who you are, what you want to be, how you will get there and what you already are and that's only scratching the surface! 


Training was provided by Stephen Wells, founder of AIM to Succeed

 AIM to Succeed:

  • Ambition
  • Inspiration
  • Motivation

 Steve is also JCI Reading President 2011.

 Other workshops by AIM to Succeed include:

Leadership Workbook
Turning Obstacles into Opportunities
Setting a DREAM goal

Resource Recognition

Finally, on behalf of all those who participated, thank you sincerely Steve for a fabulous workshop, it was highly interesting, informative, provided food for thought and good fun!

Review written by Diane Edgington (JCI Reading Training Director / HR Business Partner for the EMEA region Seagate Technology)

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9th Jul, 2011

Stephen Wells - Coaching
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on July 9, 2011 11:09



Profile Pics » SteveWells_AIMLogo.jpgSince finding JCI in 2009 Steve become a changed man.

Jumping straight in and going to the 2009 World congress in Tunisia only a few months after joining he found something that had been missing, a true passion. Being around a group of people that had energy by the bucket and determination to succeed Steve revitalised that he too the spark.


With a passion for people as his focus he set up AIM to Succeed Success Coaching. Working with Businesses and Individual helping them to identify their true passion and dream goals then helping them use the resources they already have to start their journey towards them, safe in the knowledge that they can achieve them.


When he took over as JCI Reading President in Dec 2010 he finished his speech with the following statement (an adaptation of Budha's 1000's candles)


I NOW walk through life with a fire burning bright inside me,

if I drop sparks on you let them burn,

for someday you will drop sparks of your own

and light a fire in someone’s life. – Stephen Wells 2010


If you would like to meet Steve and have him help you find your true calling, then come along to JCI Reading on Thursday 14th July where his is running his Say hello to the real you workshop. This is your opportunity to find out what defines you and why you make the choices you make.

> Update July 2014
Steve is also now running a series of workshops and masterclasses which are being offered to JCI at discounted rates.
All along the theme of 'Expanding your hobby, interest or business idea' 
Where do you want to take it? 5th June 2014    
Visualising your Dream Masterclass - 17th July 2014
Price Perception - 28th August 2014
More to come.... 



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4th Jul, 2011


 JCI Reading Training Session Review

“The Speed Reading Coach” with Alex Garcez

 Date: Thursday 30th June 2011 @ 7.00pm

Venue: Positive Computing, 252-256 Kings Road, Reading, Berkshire, RG1 4HP

Events » Training courses » SpeedAlex.jpgIn the 'experience what speed reading feels like, live!' workshop Alex Garcez, the speed reading coach, opened the session delivered to JCI Reading members by measuring everyone's reading speed.  i.e. how many words can you read comfortably in 1 minute?  Most of us could read somewhere between 150-300 words.  It’s interesting to understand that we tend to read at the same speed that we talk.  Therefore, if you normally speak quickly, you probably read faster than people who speak slowly.  Interesting!     dotted line

Alex then progressed to explain what happens with our eyes while reading so that we could begin to understand the principles of speed reading.

We think at least 10 times faster than we talk, isn’t that incredible! We can use this power to learn how to read faster and remember more of what we read.  Alex explained that even though we may not have noticed previously, that we’re probably sounding the words inside our heads.  We need to learn to silence this imaginary voice! 

Alex estimates that we skip back to re-read about 30% of the time.  If we become more focused and skip back only 10% of the time, we will be speed reading without even applying any of the techniques available.

Through use of stories and by comparing the act of speed reading with playing a video game Alex explained; whenever you start a new game you fail quite quickly but if you spend a few minutes practicing, your mind speeds up and you feel comfortable again and keep improving because our brain loves speed.

Alex continued to differentiate between the left and right sides of our brain:

Left Brain:

  • Can comprehend
  • Detail orientated
  • Sequential and linear
  • Words and language
  • Time orientated
  • Past and future
  • Knows Name
  • Safe

Right Brain:

  • Can ‘get it’ (i.e. meaning)
  • ‘Big Picture’ Orientated
  • Holistic
  • Symbols and Images
  • Not time based
  • Present
  • Knows Face
  • Risk Taking

Events » Training courses » SpeedGroup.jpgTo close the session, Alex presented a short video where everyone was required to read text which flashed one word at a time on a screen at a speed of 350 words per minute.  It was interesting that we could all understand the text, even when the speed was increased dramatically to 500 words per minute and 3 words per line.   

In summary, throughout the session we covered the following key points: 

  • What your actual reading speed is
  • The tricks to learn how to speed read
  • That your brain loves speed!
  • How to do it and you will experience how it feels...
  • Slow is boring and fast is fun!!


Further information, including a tutoritial is available at:

Special Promotion:

 Alex has made a special promotion of his 4 hour training session for JCI Reading members and friends: 

 Please click the link below to view all the dates available and to book yourself onto one of 

his public courses in London, or for a minimum group of 5 people in Reading. 

To receive the special discount and pay £130.00 pp:

  • Choose a date from the list and enter the number of places they want to book
  • Please email Steve to get the promo code
  • Click “Apply Discount” and the price will be “£130.00”
  • Click “ORDER NOW”

This discount code will be valid until 31st July 2011.

Following the training, Alex would expect to see an improvement from 50% to 300%.

Finally, on behalf of all those who participated in the session, thank you Alex!

For more information Alex Garcez follow the link

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4th Jul, 2011

Alex Garcez
by Stephen Wells 2011-12 President of JCI Reading, and Founder of on July 4, 2011 13:39


Trainer Biography

Events » Training courses » SpeedAlex.jpgAlex Garcez teaches time pressured city professionals to read twice as fast.

He was a slow reader himself and after a breakthrough experience he has learned to read faster.

Alex has developed a new system that helps ambitious professionals to gain knowledge quickly and after 7 years of experience he has happy clients from Companies including JP Morgan, KPMG and IBM.

 With the Internet doubling every year, new information is becoming out of date faster than ever, whilst our ability to process information is still the same and the great majority still read like they used to as a teenager and can't read faster than they talk.

 Most people don't question their reading speed because they don't know there is a way to measure it.

 Alex delivers an intensive 4 hour speed reading training, teaching the tools and techniques to set his students up with a skill for life and he guarantees 33% improvement.

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28th Jun, 2011

JCI - UN Global Partnership Summit - Conclusion
by Faisal Mooraby on June 28, 2011 14:22


Events » un symbol sm.jpgIn Conclusion

I had mixed feelings when the summit ended. I was sad because of the wonderful experience I had at the summit has come to an "end". I was happy because this "end" is only the beginning. We talk about win-win situations and this summit was one. It was a win for JCI, a win for its partners and the UN MDG programme, and certainly a win for the individuals.

For JCI, it now has more opportunities to put in place more programmes and attract more members across the globe. It has also strengthen its bond with the partners present and certainly with the UN. 

For the partners, they have approached the right platform to make strengthen their messages and links to the world. JCI members are global active citizens who are making a difference in their businesses and local communities every time. Thus JCI is the ideal partner to mobilise young people around the world.

For the individuals, the summit has given the opportunity, and motivation, for them to become better leaders in business, in their community, and in the world. Although the focus of the summit was related to the Millennium Development Goals, the skills acquired, the links made, the opportunities which have opened, are relevant to nurture your leadership skills in various fields - from business to politics. After all, the event of such scale was organised and made successful by JCI members. It can be you who are amongst the organisers of the next world event. Imagine how much weight it will bring to your CV since all the skills you'll learn and acquire are transferable, how positively it can present your business to your partners or clients, and certainly, how important you can make yourself in your own community. The people you'll meet will not just be links to you, they'll be active contacts who will know you. 

JCI gives me opportunities at every corner to become a leader and create positive changes in my community and globally. Think what JCI can do for you!

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27th Jun, 2011

JCI - UN Global Partnership Summit - Day 4
by Faisal Mooraby on June 27, 2011 20:41


Day 4Events » un symbol.jpg

The final day started with an energising activity to uplift our spirit more. We were told to feel happy and inspired with Shakira's Waka waka (this time for Africa) being played. We even had a train march to encourage everyone to join us. 

On the day, there were three breakout sessions and each individuals could attend up to 2. The sessions were on: Sustainability, Education and Economic Empowerment, and Health and Well-being. Personally, I attended the sessions on Sustainability and Education and Economic Empowerment. The most memorable point made from these sessions were that "You don't need to engage in ground breaking initiatives, engage in small initiatives incrementally.


The first session was moderated by Vice President Katherine Cheng from the USA. She opened her session by quoting her own experience and showed how little change can make a big difference. In the past year, she convinced her company to use eco-friendly light bulbs. Since then, her initiatives reduced energy cost to her company and even saved two job heads, which is certainly a huge impact. The speakers of the panel were Jimmy Lee (Vice President of Strategy and Regional Affairs for GBCHealth), Aaron Nelson (President and CEO of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce in North Carolina, USA) and Joseph Hearn (President of Advanced Remarketing Services).

The speakers brought into their experiences and achievements and how we, from JCI, can help spread the good work in our local communities. They were clear and honest that the main purpose with business in engaging in environment sustainability is not because they care about the environment (the individuals do care however). Green initiatives for businesses mean reduced cost, good reputation and more clients in some parts of the world - thus a sound business case. Green Plus an initiative by one of the speakers, Aaron Nelson, consists of simple guidelines on how businesses can become greener. It also consists of a forum on which members can engage with other members on lessons learning. But the point is again, the changes do not have to be big but they will help businesses save money and maybe employees. Hopefully we will get hold of these presentations, which we can distribute to our local chambers of commerce or employers. Let us start with small incremental changes.

Education and Economic Empowerment

In the Education and Economic Empowerment session, we had the pleasure to hear from David Donaldson (Director of Education at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF), Erin Sawyer (Director of International Operations for Junior Achievement) and Sarah Gunther (American Jewish World Service's Associated Director of grants for Africa). What we heard was that education and economic issues do not only relate to the developing world. David Donaldson gave clear problems which a lot of communities across the United States are facing because cost cutting activities. What we heard from Erin Sawyer and Sarah Gunther, were how their organisations were helping teenagers across the globe to empower themselves - whether through teaching them business skills or through creating their own networks. It was clear to the audience that we should partner with these associations because (1) we are already doing similar work in our local communities, (2) JCI has a huge amount of volunteers which these partners can make use of, (3) it will be for our mutual benefits since more young people will be empowered and JCI members will learn new skills that they can put into practice at work or in their businesses. 

Closing of Summit

After 2 great sessions, all delegates reunited at the grand hall for the closing of the summit. The Secretary General of JCI, Mr. Edison Kodama, showed us two very emotional videos. The first was about MDG partners work in 1 day. The second was regarding the work being accomplished by different JCI Chapters around the world, with "Heal the World" as the background music. Vice President Ester ter Beek then presented the resolution to us:

As active dedicated to the advancement of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals and inspired by our shared commitment, we, the delegates of the 2011 JCI Global Partnership Summit, do hereby resolve as follows:
   * That every JCI National Organization will take action to identify a need in its country within the framework of the UN MDGs by the 2011 JCI World Congress in Brussels, Belgium
   * That every JCI National Organization shall commit to at least one project by 2011 World Congress, but may embark on additional projects as new needs are identified before 2015
   * To proceed to launch the implementation of such a project simultaneously around the world on JCI Active Citizen Day, December 11, 2011
   * To commit to report annually on the progress of the implementation of such a project at the JCI Global Partnership Summit
This resolution agreed herein shall guide the activities of JCI National Organizations until 2015.

JCI President Kentaro Harada presented his gratitude to us delegates and urged us to act upon the resolution in his farewell speech. The chair person, Toshinari Fujii from JCI Japan, also expressed his gratitude and the success of the summit before closing it.

Events » un closing ceremony.jpgClosing Ceremony at the UN HQ

After the closure of the summit, we headed to the United Nations Headquarters for the closing ceremony. Not everyone has the opportunity to have a closing ceremony at the UN but I can say without JCI I would very unlikely have had the chance. The closing ceremony was a final chance to meet more JCI members and partners before the next JCI event. As I mentioned in my previous posts, these JCI events offer more than networking. They give you the opportunity to bond with other professionals around the globe. Personally, I had the chance to talk to the permanent mission ambassador of Madagascar, H.E. Mr. Zina Andrianarivelo-Razafy, and Japan, H.E. Mr. Tsuneo Nishada, to the UN. Talking to the Secretary General of JCI, Mr. Edison Kodama, in itself is a privilege. 

As a JCI UK member, I was also very proud to see our newest member, Ms Jaruwan Bumroungruksa of JCI London, being awarded her JCI membership pin by the JCI President, Mr. Kentaro Harada. To put it in perspective, Jaruwan has been a member of JCI for only 4 weeks and she is already making a difference globally. 

The ceremony ended with all members of JCI present to sign a scroll, representing an agreement to the resolution. I was privilege to sign the scroll as an acting JCI UK President. Afterwards, there were lots of photo shoots with members and partners.

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