For every individual, the discovery of knowledge and its transformation into wisdom depends upon the values we embrace. Whether it is science, medicine, sports, art, or technology - the names of people who imagined the impossible are etched in the pages of history. So, to become an inventor, one must possess an intense flame of passion, a burning desire to accomplish our goals. And for some, it could simply be their mantras of success.
While working hard is important, it does not suffice in today's world. What's required is to sail through the journey by adopting smart, effective, and judicious strategies.
But how do you achieve success in a world that is constantly evolving - both technologically and morally?
According to Saurabh Sharma, the working Vice President of Elsevier (Research Solutions, APAC), "If you think a little deeper, technology today is helping us organise large volumes of data into information and then interpreting that information into rich knowledge. While technology has made great progress in transforming data into information and now into knowledge, what remains outside the capability of technology is the transformation of knowledge into wisdom. In my opinion, that's where human intelligence plays an important role."
Managing a massive business operation across the Asia-Pacific countries, Mr. Saurabh Sharma says that the pathway of his professional life has been stipulated by several factors, thus contributing to his success. Mentioned below are his five mantras to his success.
1. Creativity is everything
As the country's former President & Sr. Scientist, Late Prof APJ Abdul Kalam once said, "Creativity is the key to success in the future."
According to him, creativity is fuelled by curiosity, which results in the creation of new things. These new things can further add value to society owing to the accumulation of several features within the item. For instance, Apple is an excellent example of creativity. True to their tagline, "think different", Apple was responsible for coming up with a creative solution that combined three products into one - an iPod, a phone and an internet device into one single revolutionary product called, 'iPhone'.
He believes in having the courage to follow his heart and intuition – embracing curiosity, being open to acquiring new knowledge and creativity to apply learning for better outcomes.
2. Continuous learning - the minimum requirement for success
"Learn. Unlearn. Relearn."
Learning is a quest of a lifetime. Research from Deloitte and the World Economic Forum suggests that skills that once had a half-life of 30 years now have an average life of just six years. This means that an individual will need to reskill seven times throughout an average working career.
n 2020, Saurabh identified the need to improve his knowledge on the power of data-driven decision making and underwent an executive education program on "Business analytics – Decision making using data" from the Judge Business school at Cambridge University. He also enrolled in a two-month executive program from the India School of Business, Hyderabad, on "Business communication & storytelling" in 2021.
3. Collaboration is the new competition
"Competition makes us faster; collaboration makes us better."
'If you want to walk fast, walk alone. But if you're going to walk far, walk together. Teamwork and collaboration are the keys to long term success.
According to Mr. Saurabh Sharma, the collaboration between employees and organisations is crucial for the long-standing success of both entities. The tasks become significantly more accessible and yield better results when multiple minds pursue the same goal. One of the best examples of healthy collaboration is the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). With an employee base of over 17,000, ISRO has succeeded in launching 109 spacecraft missions, 77 rocket launch missions, and 319 foreign satellites from 33 countries.
His advice – Believe in the strength of collaboration – be open to help and receive help from your colleagues and peers, exchange ideas, extend feedback, and trust me that the spirit of working together is the key to success.
4. Commitment leads to action
"You cannot conquer what you are not committed to."
The best way to understand commitment is to observe acts of kindness, duty, and compassion in our daily lives. Let's take the unwavering spirits of the country's medical fraternity during the pandemic as a perfect example. Just like us, they have a choice to stay at home and avoid hospitals. However, they have stood their ground. Quoting Jim Rohn, he says, "Discipline is the bridge between goals and accomplishment."
5. Communication - send the right message
"The art of communication is the language of leadership."
One of the most important mantrasfor achieving success in personal and professional lives is communication. It is an essential aspect for the development of coherent leadership. For instance, on the eve of the Quit India movement, Gandhi called for determined resistance towards British rule. Through his speech, Mahatma Gandhi laid the foundation of our freedom struggle. He states that he has always believed85% of one's success comes from their ability to lead, negotiate, and communicate.
A firm believer of these mantras, Mr. Sharma also states that it is critical to understand that individuals must not stop their commitment once they achieve what they want. "Instead, it is important to retain and practice these mantras even more to stand your ground." He believes that success should not change your commitment to the right cause, and finally, you should let the curiosity of a child persist in you so that you can continue to discover this beautiful world every day.