Long post ahead. Enjoy it as much as I do.
Herbalife Asia Pacific Extravaganza 2011 commenced on May 6, Friday, with Global Nutrition Transition Conference, Leadership Meeting, and World Team Training. My second Extravaganza, true. Yet, I was so amazed at the grandeur of the event that I did not use my camera at all!
Thus the number of photos from May 7 onwards. I surely did not want to miss a thing anymore.
Suzie Tan and Fadzil Muda's Team Herbalife (who decided to take the tour package they offered through Triways Travel Network, Malaysia) departed from our accommodation, The Centric Ratchada, to Extravaganza 2011 venue, Bangkok International Trade and Exhibition Center (BITEC), as early as 6:30 a.m. Thailand time. Kamal and I woke up at 4:00 a.m. as we preferred to have ample time for prayers, bath, shake breakfast, and extra shake preparation to be had during tea times and lunch. Thus the little baggage you can see Kamal pulls in the rightmost photo above. There was enough water for both of us, too.
Back to the trip to BITEC. Thanks to the weekend, the traffic was smoother than the previous weekdays, which meant we were early.
Alhamdulillah, being the early birds, the team managed to secure front seats for the general qualifiers. The leaders reminded us the advantage of being VIP qualifiers - earlier entrance time thus the ability to secure front seats for the general qualifiers, fewer people, and, proximity to the stage which means closer view of the speakers hence better photo opportunities. Another way to have good seats is by qualifying to the Top Achievers Business Team (TAB Team). President's Team Members, Chairman's Club Members, and Founder's Circle Members even had their own tables and lounges.
Nevertheless, there have always been big screens strategically located around the hall; no problem for those seated at the back, like Kamal and I first did during Herbalife University 2009, Taipei.
Being early enabled me to roam around BITEC for more photos as Kamal helped the leaders to guard the aforementioned seats for general qualifiers in the team. I also brought with me a canister of Herbalife Formula 1 Cappuccino flavour in case I found a distributor from other countries who would love to swap their respective distinctive products with me.
Such swapping is a culture during international events as there are products unique to a certain country within the Asia Pacific region. Herbalife Formula 1 Mango flavour is only available in India. Cappuccino flavour is accessible merely in Malaysia and Singapore. The Indonesians have Wild Berry flavour to swap with, while Thailand offers its special Strawberry flavour. South Korea and Taiwan are famous for Cookies n' Cream flavours. Then, there is a range of Herbalife Shake for Kids and Active Fiber Complex. Oh, a lot more!
I actually managed to swap the Cappuccino flavour with Cookies n' Cream flavour although I was mainly out there to shoot photos of people. Particularly children (because I missed Khalish). My favourite photos feature a little girl from in LA Galaxy with Herbalife logo jersey, and a little boy who was intrigued by the abundance of buttons around him. Cute!
I knew that the team was there extremely early when I got to enter the hall again to have a second portion of shake and keep another canister of Formula 1 Cappuccino flavour in my sling bag, and still had time for more photos, another swapping, and two visits to the ladies' room. I love punctuality.
I only entered the hall again when I heard the cue song, Tina Turner's 'Simply the Best'. The energy from 23,000 spirited people seeped into me, and, I must emphasise here that it is one of the reasons why I love attending such events. These souls love Herbalife as much as Kamal and I do because of the positive changes in life, thanks to Allah's will and the products. How we also long to spread the positive changes, this love to others.
Flags of 13 Asia Pacific countries and other countries from different regions waved to the music mix by the DJ and the cultural shows performed by the local dancers. We simply could not wait for the speakers to begin their sessions.
"A powerhouse of speakers with their impressive credentials came to the Extravaganza and imparted their knowledge to the audience, making each and every person in the hall proud to be a part of this company called Herbalife."
True. The main reason both Kamal and I look forward to these events. As Kamal put it, he would not hesitate to pay thousands of Ringgit Malaysia in the past to be a part of self-improvement seminars. Now, he paid less yet acquired more.
"We come here to be inspired, to be motivated, to grow."
Michael O. Johnson, Herbalife Chief Executive Officer, who also concluded his session that day with
"I am the brand!" as he and his family consume Herbalife shakes and other products daily.
"I received Herbalife as a gift; which I received without any conditions."
The new Founder's Circle Members from South Korea, Tae Ho Kim and Hyun Mo Koo, who brought the audience to tears when they shared those words, those feelings from their hearts.
Read their story here.
Read their story here.
Translation services through FM channels were available for speakers who chose to speak in their respective native languages. Our Business Coaches taught us during the previous Extravaganza to record the sessions through the English FM channel - great to listen to again and again in the car.
Therefore, it is essential that an attendee brings along with him or her a device with FM radio. Kamal and I used MP3 players. For those who forgot to bring such devices, they could get FM radios at the Merchandise Booth. I also preferred to write notes for viewing pleasure.
Came afternoon break, one would witness various ways people enjoy the shakes. Some used the shaker cup, some the shake mixer, and some have prepared the shake back at their accommodations. Like us. Because of the quick lunch, Kamal and I had plenty of time to walk around BITEC. We brought with us more canisters of Formula 1 Cappuccino Flavour, in search for Wild Berry and Cookies n' Cream. We needed more of the latter as a Mother's Day gift. My mother loves the ice-cream like sensation.
We walked as far as the other side of BITEC. The place was dedicated for Herbalife Merchandise Booth and a newly introduced Shake Bar. Sales from certain merchandises and the shakes were channeled to Herbalife Family Foundation (HFF).
The place buzzed with activities indeed. Apart from the swapping sessions, the Herbalife Merchandise Booth, and the Shake Bar, people also thronged an open massage parlour. We noted the reasonable price tags for food & beverage and services at BITEC.
All in all, we did get 1)two canisters of Formula 1 Cookies n' Cream, 2) a canister of Formula 1 Wild Berry, 3)a canister of Active Fiber Complex Apple flavour, and 4) a lot of photos.
Thanks to the highly nutritious shakes for an efficient day. Next time, Kamal and I would love to try the special shakes from the Shake Bar. We fervently hope that the concept would be continued at the next international event. More photos of the Shake Bar tomorrow.
The Shake Bar, along the HFF merchandise sales and a silent auction of premium items at the President's Team Lounge have raised USD65,000, which benefit Asia Pacific Casa Herbalife.
The shakes kept us alert for the next session as well. Leslie Stanford, Founder's Circle Member from Canada has consumed Herbalife and shared its wonders with others for 30 years. This year, she is 53 years old, but, she appeared to be younger. Ah, she was simply exuberant.
I admired her passion the most. She craved for success in life, sure, but, she wanted the success to be based on her enthusiasm. She said, "if we are in here just for the money, we are not going to last in Herbalife." I understand perfectly. Most of us at the Extravaganza were there because Herbalife has given us new bodies, new health, and new perspectives in life. We have strong 'why'.
Concluding the whole session was A Night of Recognition. What an inspiring conclusion as we beheld people from all walks of life talked about their successes, both in weight and health management and business.
Before Kamal and I stepped out of the hall, we chanced upon Kamal's friend from Malay College Kuala Kangsar, Luqmanul Hakim, and his wife, Sabrina. We love being around people like them because they are always grounded no matter how high they fly. In her hand, Sabrina is holding a story about her son, Faisal. He is diagnosed with lissencephaly or smooth brain, a rare brain formation disorder. Hakim and Sabrina really appreciate Herbalife because it provides Faisal with the best nutrition that has improved his situation tremendously.
Oh yes, Herbalife gives us a second, better life (with the will of The Almighty). Enough 'why' to keep us going in this mission for nutrition.