Friday, March 02, 2007

Winner: With a difference

My colleague had won the Photography contest conducted in our organization. When I met him in the pantry, I congratulated him and asked casually what the prize was. He told the prize and added that something better could have been given. Then I asked him (almost jokingly) what he would do with that prize. He told that he would go back to that person, whom he had taken the photo (that won him the prize) and give the gift to him (usually we, especially me, never give a gift of that kind to anybody, as it’s “me” who earned it and for that memorable moment). I was standing there (almost still) as he left to his cubicle, thinking there silently, not knowing what to think about…. Was I appreciating him? Or was I wondering at the existence of such people? Or was I jealous that I couldn’t get such an idea or occasion? I don’t know……….

Legends: when are they made???

That day, I was going through “Coffee with Economic Times (ET)” article in ET, online. It was an interview of Azim Premji (AP) & Narayan Murthy (NM) with ET. There was surprising news for me, that NM had once applied to Wipro for a job and AP had interviewed him. I told this to my colleague and he told that he knew that. He also told that, some of the Infy board members including Nandan Nilekani were ex-Wipro employees.

Now here I am not talking about the organizations or who is who. As both AP and NM put it, their organizations are not rivals; they are competitors (now I can give a pat on back, as I had the same view when discussing things with people). Today we all accept that AP & NM are successful persons, achievers and winners. I was thinking about the circumstances that made them winners.

If, NM had joined Wipro, would we have Infy today? If AP was not forced to take up the responsibility in the mid-way of his studies, would we have seen Wipro as it is today?

We (me and my colleague) continued our discussion. I told that, even if NM had joined Wipro at that time, he wouldn’t have remained there. People of his kind couldn’t be content working for somebody. But he asked me how I could say that. Time and money can change anything. When we don’t have something then only we think about it very seriously. NM was in difficult phases then when he thought of setting up of an organization himself and giving job to many, which he didn’t have. If he was given a job he would have been content satisfied. Today he might have been identified with Wipro in some senior position, that’s all.

I couldn’t help but agree with him. All that happens for the good..??? !!

Now the question that is haunting me is, is it necessary that everyone has to go through a phase of difficulty / humiliation/ identity crisis to become winners/legends?? If we don’t encounter any of these, will we not be somebody which history remembers??

If Thomas alva Edison hadn’t failed 158 times? If at all eistein was not sent out of school for not doing the problem? If an apple hadn’t fell on Newton? If Gandhi was not insulted in South Africa??

There is saying “legends are not born, but made”. When? How? What is the trigger for success path? Do all of us have such a trigger? But only few catch it or is that only few get it?
Searching for the answer………………..