Monthly Archives: April 2011

Luck – is it the only factor for success??

Luck – is it the only factor for success??

All of us have heard many successful people attributing “Luck” as an important factor in success. But more important question – “Is LUCK” the only factor in defining success.??

What is luck anyway? By definition luck is “good chance” or “fortune”. So let’s examine some of the attributes of luck. Luck is a combination of time, place and action. This is to say you have to be in the “right” place,at the “right” time doing the “right” action. So it is this combination of getting all things “Right” makes success.

Let’s take the example of InfoSys. They were in the right place at the right time doing all the right things. But aren’t there enough companies in the same field in same city exactly doing the same stuff? Why only info sys raced ahead of others?? Was it some unknown element or was it a secret ingredient “LUCK” which made all the difference.

In silicon valley we have seen so many search engines before and after google’s birth. All were in the valley,, doing exactly similar stuff, with same search engines (almost’ with all due respect to google). But where are altavista, info seek, etc…? Is it plain old luck??

In every field we keep seeing this enormous disparity of “luck” favoring extra ordinarily in favor of the successful prodigal sons. We all know Vinod Kambli and people like him who are extremely talented. But still success still eludes them. Al Gore almost won the election…….just almost.

Luck in my view is that 1% in 100% of success. But it is that make or break 1% which will make u successful or NOT. At times you feel you are so close ….almost 99% over…..yet that 1% defines whether you attain your goal or not.

So does this mean luck alone decides what is success?. Not really – let’s say Narayanamurthy was born in Somalia instead of Mysore and started a company called infosys….what would have happened? Or imagine Steve jobs born in Syria (his biological father is a Syrian –  Abdul fattah) and had created a company called apple in Syria, would have been the king of tech field? What are the odds of success. Or if Manmohan Singh’s family had continued to stay in Pakistan? Very tough set of questions.

So it has to be right place…..right time and doing the right things along with the “secret” sauce called luck will make success.

Is it by birth are you lucky? Not really… all walks of life, we know many people who have failed miserably multiple times before getting full success. It means the old saying “Fortune favors the prepared” must be right.

So you actually will not know if you are ready for luck. It’s an accidental event. There is a story about mr. KP Singh of DLF that it was an accidental event in which he met Rajiv Gandhi which inspired him to create DLF and buy lands in a village at throw away prices – the village is Gurgaon:-)

This leads to the next question how do we get lucky?

Will try to answer that in my next article.

“Ruthless Innovation”

What is “Ruthless Innovation”

Dictionary meaning of

Ruthless    : – adjective 1. without pity or mercy
Innovation  : – noun 1. something new or different introduced 2. the act of innovating; introduction of new things or methods

As we see it Ruthless innovation means “Without Pity or mercy creating something new or different”

There are many world leaders who are “Ruthless Innovators” in multiple fields. For example, Gandhi was a Ruthless Innovator. So is Steve jobs or Mark Zuckerberg in tech field. You can count Lady Gaga as yet another example of Ruthless innovator (click here to see her >>>>>>>”all meat dress” ??

Or Richard Branson who went around the world in an air balloon.

And when we look at any sport you will see legions of exemplary leaders like Mike Jordan or Sachin Tendulkar or even Tiger woods who have repeatedly displayed all the traits of Ruthless innovators.

Then how do you achieve a superior Ruthless Innovation model?

Step1 – “Accept” It starts with a clear acceptance of the need to innovate differently. Throw away your pre FaceBook or Twitter generation innovation models. Understand that your 6 year old kid can do faster, better with her little fingers on an iPad than you and your team out together. So, to innovate for that generation, you can not use models and processes of pre 2005 era. It’s over …..u need something new

Step 2 – “Globalize” you gotta build a global team. A team comprising of all same type men/ women of same religion / language is a disaster recipe for innovation. Have a diverse team with people from Uruguay, Mysore, Palo Alto and Taiwan . This kinda team has a better chance of building a cool break through product.

Step 3 – “iterate” . RiP water fall model. You can not afford to design a process which needs a document to be reviewed by 7 people and the “boss” has to approve. If you are the “boss” and wanna succeed, fire yourself out of the innovation. Allow the team to work smoothly. Iterate every few hours. Bring your prospective customers into the loop.. Did you know word press does thousands of “releases” every month??

Step 4 – “ Learn“. Make sure you and your team learn every day every hour. Fire the members who refuse to learn fast enough. Learn about the changes in market, competition, new ideas, changing customer behavior everything. Share it with everyone. Even if you are a one man army…..this applies.

Step 5 – “Execute“. Have you heard the song des’ree you gotta be tough??. Ruthless innovation is all about executing your idea In a methodical precision at high speed. Imagine a surgeon at a hospi Continue reading