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Life Lessons From Sundar Pichai

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Sundar Pichai, the Chief Executive Officer of Google, was born and bought up in a middle class family in Madurai, Tamil Nadu. He spent most of his childhood living in a modest two bedroom apartment with his parents and grew up living a restricted life. However, he has always been extremely appreciative of his parents’ devotion and sacrifices to always provide him with the best education and support.

After completing his education from IIT Kharagpur and Stanford University, Pichai took the biggest leap of his life by joining Google in 2004. He shot to fame by becoming the youngest CEO of Google in 2015.  Today, we take a look at five pointers that can be learned from the life of Sundar Pichai.

1. Be bold enough to do something:
While he may have hailed from a middle class background, Pichai pursued bigger dreams. Till date, he encourages all entrepreneurs to follow their passion, dream big and constantly reinvent themselves. In order to reach the top of the pyramid, you have to work really hard and have to be persistent in all your approaches.

2. Take risks and be different:
Being ambitious helps in keeping your motivation levels high, but being different helps deliver out of the box solutions. Pichai led the company through one of their major changes, moving from just software related solutions to hardware and retail. Under his guidance, Google expanded in 2015 to restructure its sprawling business and created the parent company, Alphabet. Alphabet became the home for its more experimental projects such as space exploration and anti mortality.

3. Do not give up:
Failure has been conditioned to sound like a bad thing. But not for Pichai. He has always championed a positive attitude to failure. “Wear your failure as a badge of honor and start again,” is one of his famous quotes. In 2013, the company came under immense scrutiny for invading the privacy of the users. This year, the company also faced allegations of increasing gender gap and discrimination. However, Pichai persevered in trying to rectify the past mistake, create a more stable work environment and build a better future for everyone.

4. Work Smart Not Hard:
Breaking all the stereotypes, Sundar Pichai is known for keeping a work life balance and not being a workaholic. He believes in working smart to boost efficiency and productivity levels. Chrome, the now ubiquitous web browser, was initially started as an experiment by his team of 10 engineers. When Microsoft made ‘Bing’ its default browser, it was assumed that Chrome would not work out in the market. However, with a few innovative approaches, Chrome secured its position in the search market.

5. Pursue Your Passion:
Watch what Pichai has to say about following your passion in this motivational video –

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Four Books About Finance Every Young Entrepreneur Should Read

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“You’ve got to tell your money what to do or it will leave.” — Dave Ramsey

Well, we could not agree more.  Entrepreneurship is not just about having a lot of money, it is about knowing how to manage that money well.

Money management is one skill without which it is almost impossible to succeed as an entrepreneur.  This, however, is very hard to master, especially if you are a beginner. Luckily, in today’s world, there are some really good books targeted at helping beginners understand how money works.

Therefore, if you are a new entrepreneur or aspiring to be one, here is a list of finance books you should read.

 

1) MONEY Master The Game: 7 Simple Steps To Financial Freedom

“What matters is that you master money and it doesn’t master you. Then you are free to live life on your own terms.”

Tony Robbins.

Written by entrepreneur, philanthropist Tony Robbins, MONEY Master The Game: 7 Simple Steps To Financial Freedom walks you through simple steps you can take to master your money game.  This book deals with the most important topic of money management—investment.  For beginners who just started investing, the book provides a lot of information about the highs and lows of investing.

Based on one on one interviews with various financial experts, this book gives you a complete blueprint to become financially independent.  If you have just started as an entrepreneur or investor, this book is totally for you.

 

2) The Millionaire FastLane: Crack The Code To Wealth And Live Rich For A Lifetime

“Go to school, get a good job, save 10% of your paycheck, buy a used car, cancel the movie channels, quit drinking expensive Starbucks mocha lattes, save and penny pinch your life away, trust your life savings to the stock market, and one day, when you are oh, say, 65 years old, you can retire rich,”—is this how you plan to lead your life?  Well then you are definitely on the ‘slowlane.’  

The slowlane might seem to be a risk free method to get rich, but by the time you reach, there you might be in a wheelchair.

Through The Millionaire FastLane: Crack The Code To Wealth And Live Rich For A Lifetime, author M.J. DeMarco introduces you to a new way of getting rich—The Fastlane.  Using various examples, this book teaches you how you can use various market strategies to your favour, find your wealth accelerator and make millions while you are still young, so that you can enjoy it now.

 

3) The Intelligent Investor

“People who invest make money for themselves; people who speculate make money for their brokers.”

Benjamin Graham.

Written by one of the greatest investment advisors of the 20th century, Benjamin Graham, The Intelligent Investor has been inspiring investors since 1949.

This book is basically the stock market Bible and teaches you every possible thing about investment.  The author succeeded in putting the hardest concepts of investment into simple terms, making it easier for beginners to understand.

Over the years, The Intelligent Investor has been revised into various editions to incorporate today’s market scenario.  Warren Buffet himself described it as the best book about investment ever written.

Have you read this book yet?

 

4) The Money Book For The Young, Fabulous And Broke

“Build a great career for yourself rather than settling for a job that does nothing for you but pay the bills”

Suze Orman.

Written by TV star and financial expert Suze Orman, The Money Book For The Young, Fabulous And Broke is targeted at teaching millenials the basics of the financial world.  This book is a fantastic piece of work which can help the younger generation to cope with various financial problems like student loans and the job market.  Over the course of ten chapters, this book could take you from being broke to a secure financial position. If you are a millenial looking to learn some basics of Finance, then you should definitely get your hands on  The Money Book For The Young, Fabulous and Broke.

 

Books are invaluable sources of knowledge.  For every problem you face in life, there is a book out there to help you get over it.  If managing finances has been your problem, then the above list of books can help you manage them better.

Which of these books are you planning to read first? Comment below and let us know.

 

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Ratan Tata Unknown Facts

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Chairman emeritus of the Tata Group, Ratan Tata is arguably one of the most successful people of India.  During his 21 year career, he transformed Tata Group from a national brand to an international brand with his impeccable business skills.

Here is a list of some lesser known facts about the 81 year old industrialist:

1) Though he was born in an affluent household, Ratan Tata had a troubled childhood. His parents, Naval Hormusji Tata and Sooni Tata, separated when he was just 7 years old.  Post the separation, his brother and he were raised by their grandmother.

2)  Ratan Tata has a degree in architecture from Cornell University and he even pursued an advanced management program from Harvard Business School.

 

3) When Ratan Tata first started his career at Tata Steel, his job was to manage the blast furnace and shovel limestone.  It was only in 1991 he became the Chairperson.

 

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4) Ratan Tata is an avid car lover and does not refrain himself from spending on cars.  His car collection includes Maserati Quattroporte, Chrysler Sebring, Ferrari California, Mercedes Benz S-Class and Jaguar F-Type.

 

5) Not many people know Ratan Tata is a trained pilot.  He owns a pilot’s license and is often seen flying aircrafts owned by the Tata Group.  He was also the first Indian to fly the F-16 Falcon in 2007.

6) In 1999, Ratan Tata and his team went to Ford to sell their emerging car business and were humiliated by Bill Ford who said, “You do not know anything, why did you start the passenger car division at all.”  Nine years later, Ratan Tata got his sweet revenge when he took over Ford’s ace car brands, Jaguar and Land Rover, for half the price.

 

7) Ratan Tata received the third and second highest civilian awards, Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan in 2000 and 2008 respectively.  In 2009, the United Kingdom honoured him with the Honorary Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire.

8) Ratan Tata is not included in the world’s richest as he owns most of his shares through trusts and foundations.  If all those shares are accounted, his net worth would be $ 72 billion.

 

9) By his own admission, Ratan Tata came close to marriage 4 times in his life, but backed off each time either due to fear or another reason.

10) Ratan Tata donates millions to education every year.  One particular year, he donated $ 50 million to Harvard University and $25 million to Cornell University, especially for the Indian students studying at the two universities.

 

Fighting all the hurdles that came his way, today Ratan Tata is the king of the corporate world.  Thank you, Mr. Tata, for being an inspiration to an entire Nation.

 

Comment below and let us know which of these facts surprised you the most.

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5 Essential Skills Required To Be A Successful Entrepreneur

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All the high net worth individuals in the world are where they are because they developed a certain skill set, which in turn helped them to reach their goals.  Mere knowledge of your niche area won’t help you become a successful entrepreneur. While you need patience to run a business, you also need to focus on developing some critical skills which not only help you run your business but also can help you solve any problems that might arise in your entrepreneurial journey.

Here is a list of 5 skills you should start developing if you aspire to become a successful entrepreneur.

 

1) Creativity

As an entrepreneur, you will face new problems every day and for entrepreneurs, creativity isn’t just about coming up with new ideas, it is about being able to adapt to new situations quickly and finding solutions for problems as and when they arise. You will also have to constantly improve and upgrade your products and services to stay alive in the market. Therefore, creativity is the most essential skill an entrepreneur should possess.  

The brand Apple is synonymous with creativity, thanks to the genius Steve Jobs. When the iPhone initially launched, critics came up with a 100 reasons as to why it would fail and it almost did. With his creativity, Steve Jobs kept upgrading the product and today, it is the best selling smartphone in the world.  Steve Jobs’ creativity was the driving force behind Apple’s product design and marketing.

 

2) Communication

Every entrepreneur needs to be an effective communicator. It is essential for entrepreneurs to be able to communicate with employees, customers, investors, peers and mentors. One simply cannot manage a great team or  provide a great customer service if one is not an effective communicator. Irrespective of whether a person runs a startup or a Fortune 500 company, communication is the key skill that he must develop.

Billionaire entrepreneur Richard Branson who himself is a student of communication, calls it “an art”.

 

3) Salesmanship

As an entrepreneur you should be able to sell sand in the desert.

Salesmanship is one such skill without which, it is nearly impossible to succeed as an entrepreneur. The soft skill of sales goes hand- in -hand with communication and is key to run a successful business.  An entrepreneur should be able to sell the business idea to investors, their products and services to customers.

Salesmanship plays a key role in building trust between the company and the customer.

Mark Cuban, an American businessman, investor and the owner of National Basketball Association often emphasises that salesmanship is the skill that made him millions. When asked what he would do if he lost it all, he replied saying that he would pick up a sales job and was pretty sure that this could make him a multi-millionaire again.

 

4) Money Management

If you cannot manage money, you cannot manage a business. Period!

Financial management is the most important responsibility of an entrepreneur, especially in the startup stage. Knowing your cash flow can make planning and budgeting for financial needs easier. This is a key skill to develop if you are aiming to be a successful entrepreneur.

Elon Musk, the 46 year old CEO of SpaceX and Tesla often states that he does not spend his $ 20 billion fortune on lavish vacations or expensive hobbies. Instead, he invests his profits back into his business for its development.

 

5)  Ability to find and manage people

Having great people on your team will make life much easier for you. It gives you access to new strengths while building a company culture of which people would want to be a part.  Hiring the right people is key to building a successful company. Along with hiring the right people, an entrepreneur should be able to manage them efficiently. He should be able to assign the right kind of tasks to people considering their strengths and weaknesses.

The world’s richest man, Jeff Bezos follows a three question method of hiring people for his company.  

  1. Will you admire this person?
  2. Will this person raise the average level of effectiveness of the group they’re entering?
  3. Along what dimension might this person be a superstar?

Only when he is satisfied with these answers, will that person work for him.

Being an entrepreneur is a complicated task and your success as an entrepreneur is the result of the small actions taken over a period of time.

If you notice you are lacking a skill or two, focus on nurturing those skills today so you might be able to enjoy success tomorrow.

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