Tuesday, 4 August 2020

Not By Scams Earn Money Honestly

Updated: March 5, 2011 5:15 pm

We are going through a period of crisis, when our young people are only learning that those who made billions were men like Raja or Raju of Satyam or Hasan Ali or hundreds of such scamasters, who have brought black spot on India’s integrity. If we can separate the chaff from the grain in this heap of events, we need to give message to the younger people that success and money can be achieved by fair means as well. But what does it need?

                There are many books, which give easy formulae for achieving success. There are established prejudices that only good schools and good institutes produce achievers. Even craze for foreign education has begun with this assumption which is not true as many like Naryan Murthy, Indira Nooyi and thousands of others have achieved international fame and success receiving Indian education. It is also not true that a good institute is bound to produce achievers. Even IQ test is no guarantee for the brilliance of a man as Einstein had mere 150 scores whereas many other scientists had 190 and above. Malcolm Gladwell in his Story of Success brings out the scientific data to prove that success comes not necessarily from a good school or high IQ but three factors matter for success—first is IQ and vision, second is the hard work and third is opportunity. In other words, we can frame a formula: Intellect × hard work × opportunity = Success. It is not a single factor which makes for success but it is true that all the successful people had a high IQ as in case of Einstein, who had IQ of 150, which is high but not very high. It is a qualifying factor that the author picturesquely compares to six-foot-height requirement for a basketball player. Hard work is one of the most essential ingredients of success. The example of Bill Gates would suffice. He was not an MBA or degree-holder but Harvard dropout, yet he was mad for computer and his obsession led him to passionately woo computer from the early age of 15 and when he left Harvard he had been programming for eight years. When he was hardly 15 years, he discovered that University of Washington had free time on their computers from 3AM onwards. “I would leave at night …walk up to the University or take a bus. That’s why I am always so generous to the University of Washington because they let me steal so much computer time,” says Bill Gates. His mother wondered how he got up so early as he was always a late riser. But he was obsessed with computer and worked hard. Those were the days when colleges did not have computer labs and PC age dawned only in 1975. There were not many high schools students in 1960s that had the time on mainframe computer to do programming. Hard work paid as the opportunity had arrived also. The opportunity and hard work combined with basic intellect and vision paid him dividends.

                But the value of being successful and rich is that you can give to the society what you got from it. Half of his wealth is committed to philanthropy. No wonder he visits India to ask other rich people in India also to shed some wealth for philanthropy.

 By NK Singh

The author is former chairman of the Airports Authority of India

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