What is most important among knowledge, power or wealth for Success today?

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. 

Negotiation Skills

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Hi, today I will talk to you about Negotiation Skills. What is negotiation? How does it work? What is the need? I will try to answer all these and other related questions in a simple manner.
Whenever two or more parties sit together to resolve certain issues concerning them, negotiation come into play. Discussion could be about resolving some dispute, concluding a sale or even influencing some people or a group to get some ideas accepted.
Now, let’s see the possibility of success of negotiation. Success depends primarily on three aspects. These are:

  1. Issue should be negotiable. We can negotiate buying or selling a car, or a piece of land or house. But no negotiation is possible on for your example child, or for that matter any other object with which either party is emotionally attached.
  2. Second factor is the willingness of the parties to accommodate and compromise. Extremely rigid attitude cannot bring about any success is negotiation.
  3. Next, third factor for successful negotiation is that the parties must have some respect, some trust among them. This, acts like a bridge and negotiation can achieve some success. It can resolve some problems.

Having described the factors for success of negotiation, I should now talk about the basic ingredients. What are the requirements of negotiation? These are:

  1. Knowledge of human behavior. Negotiating parties need to conversant with normal human behavior. How do they react to the conflicting views?
  2. Secondly, the negotiators must prepare themselves for discussions. They must collect all the relevant information regarding the issues. Preparation is a must.
  3. Third requirement and lastly is that negotiators must understand the role of assumptions. We all harbor certain due to experience of life and society. The negotiators must reflect to clearly understand these assumptions. Undoubtedly, they play an important role during negotiation.

Then, we come to the next aspect of negotiation.
The techniques which are:
Strategy or the plan & techniques

  1. Strategy: the negotiating parties work out their strategy. It’s like an army general working out plan with his lieutenants. Each step is defined keeping in view the strategy of the opponents.
  2. Tactics: the negotiators must be adept in devising required tactics. Tactics are maneuvers, which the negotiators adopt during discussions. This is particularly important as at time the strategy may not work. Tactics require the negotiators to be adept, alert and creative in modifying the steps on the spot when needed.

Thank you.