At our learning centre, we held a discussion on- “What is important for success- knowledge, power or wealth?”
The participants in the discussions were entrepreneurs, corporate executives, bankers and others. Different views were presented by the speakers. Some considered knowledge as most important factor. They enumerated examples of successful people who had risen from being unknown to highly rated successful individual by consistently acquiring knowledge and gainfully using it. Knowledge in such cases did not necessarily mean any university degree or such other qualification. Knowledge, here, denotes application of mind of the practical knowledge received through any medium and using the same for earning name, fame and wealth. Steve Jobs is one such example. Our own Dhirubhai Ambani is another. Even Warren Buffet’s story is no different. It is rags to riches. While academic Knowledge has also helped lots of people to become successful and famous.
The role of power in success, too, cannot be undermined. Politicians achieve power and then use the same to achieve greater power. This is how power helps them to be successful. In the present scenario, a powerful politician can introduce his/her son or daughter to become a nominated leader and in the process achieve success in politics. Many politicians, today, are following this model of leadership succession. Likewise, a powerful bureaucrat can use his power to help his friend relative to achieve success.
Wealth can buy knowledge and power. So, one may say that if you have money, you can achieve any goal by hiring people, facilities to create any large project and achieve success. But without Knowledge achieved through experience it is very difficult to see the success of a large project. Political leaders can no doubt introduce their wards in leadership succession through the power they wield, but unless they ensure that the latter gain sufficient experience, the entrant may not be successful. Knowledge acquired through experience alone will bring success to them. Here too, Knowledge gained with experience becomes important. Power alone will not work. So, the fact of the matter is that knowledge learnt through studies or gained through experience is indeed very important in any field. But, it needs to be remembered that the meaning of success has to be defined by each and every individual in his/her own terms. How should one do that? That will be a subject of another post. Thank you.
Simply said, any person must assess himself/herself on the 3 important aspects of personality: i) Acquiring knowledge ii) Developing an ability to explain what you know iii) Using your knowledge for your work and activities.
Acquiring Knowledge: One acquires knowledge with formal educations. More importantly practical knowledge is acquired once you entered your business or profession. Every day can give us some lesson provided we sit down and contemplate to review the day. So knowledge is a continuous, never ending process. Even when we have learnt something in our formal education, we may have to supplement the same with additional information during life.
Ability to transfer knowledge: Anything that we do is a collaborative effort, today. Thus, you have to communicate your ideas, your views and so on. Unless you are adept in this aspect of personality, your growth will have some kind of limitation. So ability to transfer knowledge and make others do what you want to them to do is crucial to the success of your project. If there is any deficiency in this ability to communicate, the same will show in the progress of the project.
Putting knowledge to work: One may have acquired great knowledge but unless they put it to use its value will never be discovered. So, thoughts are not enough. Thoughts must be converted in to action. It is the action which can bring about any result. The more efforts you put in, the better results are rewarded. But one should never have the expectation that all efforts will bring in results. Some time you work very hard but the result are not commensurate with the amount of efforts made. That is the way life works. No one should ever expect the poetic justice in life. It is observed that those who excel in the first aspect of personality may become philosophers and the kind. They are generally good advisors but not so good in performance. They need to develop a perspective so that they are not lost in the ocean of knowledge. Knowledge is unending, indeed. They have to limit themselves to what is needed by them.
Other people, who are quiet, apply their mind and rely more on action. They are often the risk takers. They are the mostly likely people to become business leaders. They hire people for various functions which they feel that they are not able to perform. But because of their rich and sometime checkered experience, they have a lot to talk about. But they tend to become self centered.
People who develop excellent ability to transfer knowledge become teachers, lecturers, public speakers, trainers and performers. The nucleolus of their progress always remains communication skills. The world today, is heading toward the situation where communication skills have assumed a great importance. We spend more time on conference calls, on social media, on organizing/conducting/participating in meetings and so on. The human communication skills have only brought about all the progress that we see around us. During the last century world has seen maximum material progress which has been achieved with maximum communicative collaboration.
Thanks for reading.