From Youssef to US

"Life is 99% accept the reality and 1% is creating your own reality."

I’m Youssef Kobo, a young strategic and innovation analyst, motivational speaker, social entrepreneur you name it.

I’m the son of a Moroccan father and mother. I’m Born in Mechelen and I studied and worked in Brussels. My journey has been full of life lessons. I’m happy that I became the person I always wanted to be. I have a nice job and I started my own company.

I started ASSAT: A SEAT AT THE TABLE. A seat at the table is a coaching and mentoring program for young professionals where they can meet with CEO’s, ministers and decisionmakers in Belgium.

Creating bands and opportunities for others brings me fulfillment.

How I came to that idea is because of my own experience. As a young man with a migration background we don’t really have the same opportunities as other people. You can go to the same school, do the same sport, go to the same collage or have the same degree as the average person but as a person that is coming from a minority you will never have the same opportunities. Through my journey I experienced the power of having a network and have opportunities.

I’m the type of person to use everything that I have by my side to succeed and I did.

I hustled and grinded for almost 12 years. What people underestimate is that when you want to get something you have to be where people are that can help you with it. Everywhere that I went, every network event, every job, every voluntary work I did I tried to be the best version of myself and stand out. It’s only by standing out that people notice you!

That’s also why I see my migration background more as an asset than a liability. I went to places where people wouldn’t expect me to be and that took their attention.

Important people are always interested in what you’re doing in the same place as they are. They’ll eventually come to you and that’s when you have to be prepared to show the best version of yourself.

Obstacles never stopped me for getting where I wanted to be.

When you face obstacles you have two choices, one is cry hard and stop or work twice as hard as you did. I did the second one and it helped me. Yes, in this country I may not get the same chances as someone else because of my ethnicity but let that be my foil to reach excellence and prove people wrong. I learned that the I can’t always make the right move but the most important for me is to rebound. Life is 99% accept the reality and 1% is creating your own reality. Transform your dreams in goals!

We’re living an area of globalization and polarization and a changing world. That’s part is scaring some people and some populists are using that fear to blame minorities.

Migration for me is about people that want a new life, creating new stories, growth, adventures, taking risks, and entrepreneurship. Migration and entrepreneurship are all the same.

I want to live in a world where we show solidarity, love and be understanding of each other’s challenges.