As a translator, here are 20 things I learn from the rise and crisis of Indian IT industry.
1. Heady, cash-heavy and un-thought of success should be feared more than great failures.
2. Do/build something which you can call absolutely your own. Say – a piece of software, a book, a video, which you can say your contribution to the world while you die. This should be something which was done by you for no client, no one else but as a contribution to the world.
3. It is dangerous to be always surrounded by people who are too envious of you but not courageous enough to criticize you. Representative Institution in India : Mainstream Media who lionized many such IT companies but as soon as their fortune went downwards, the ‘wisdom’ of these media hordes returned.
4. Greatness is not a process, it is not some way of working, it is not some model or trick you have discovered – aided by time or something which is told to be so by important men and women. Greatness is a state of your consciousness.
5. There is a fundamental difference between manpower and talent. Indian IT companies have 1,00.000 + manpower. But how much is talent-power ? As in military, so in business. A talented individual is worth an Army. And an ‘army of manpower’ will disperse at the first call for real talent. Talent = A work which is sanctioned by your consciousness.
6. Business is always risky and ruthless The ruthlessness cannot be hidden forever by ESOP, green campuses, factory shaped office-objects, shiny women and other shiny accessories and effeminate men. The façade is very fragile and be always in the look-out for crevices and things under the carpet.
7. The tyranny of the underdog or slumdog. This is the worst tyranny because it does all nonsense and while asked for the incompetencies it always puts its slumdog status as an alibi.
Why did you not make any intellectual product or service like your clients ?
Poor Infrastructure, corruption, colonial hang-over, poverty.. But I hear you have $ 1 billion in the bank… You could have at least tried….
8. If something is going smooth, you are most likely in a lane that will become increasingly narrow.
9. If your idea needs support from heaven and hell and nether worlds, go for it. Do not be prisoner of any country, nationality or skin-colour. Our body is coming from an ovarian lottery on which we had no control.
10. Read history. Especially early history of any industry. You will come to know the pioneers and the risk they have taken and the tradition that flowed thereof. Then you shall understand things better – you shall not resent why some people are better in some areas. If you logically follow, you shall discover the area where you are naturally better. You need not work hard for it.
11. Businesses, especially big businesses have all the incentives to keep you away from the truth. Truth does not respect any corporation, person, government, faith, belief or assumptions. Truth is truth and one reaches truth only by dealing in it. Be curious to know what is behind all this shine and glamour.
12. Indian IT industry, in its degenerate state (which has set in for all practical purposes) can be modelled by three entities – Kaliyuga Corporation, Vulture Brothers Incorporated and Fagin Solutions. The last is your IT company which tries to maximize profit by leading clients, employees, investors and everyone away from the fact. Vulture Brothers are looking for all kind of issues and problems to feed on – media and other institutions which feed on the labour of others. Kaliyuga Corporations are the large clients which complete the triad. One needs to cultivate the art of detecting – ‘Something rotten in the streets of Denmark’
13. Those who live by the sword die by the sword. The rapid growth of IT needed massive foot soldiers and officers just like a war makes boys into men. So many boys became managers but have nothing better management skill then looking for a better ‘manager’ job or hop. These people considered the push of time as their talent-propellent, The time is working in reverse now and talent propellent is very low. Those in their 40s will have very dark days ahead. Ask yourself – are you getting what you are getting because of favourable time or really because of your talent ? The answer does not matter. What matters is honest questioning,
14. If you have not built walled gardens in a vast steppe, you have a high chance of getting lost during night and might need to take shelter in those walled gardens paying monopoly rent. Indian IT companies have not built much to be consumed in the domestic market. Now, Google and others are putting things into cloud and will push the levers of Indian business. Automation will not need so man-power. In a classic act of history, Indian IT companies will need IBM/Google to reach Indian market. Just like Indian cotton once needed Manchester to reach Indian shops till swadeshis started burning them. But this time, there is no Colonial Government to blame – it is our own folly.
15. Men and women are specialized by Nature under the superintendence of Lord to perform certain activities. Since IT industry needed manpower to sustain the growth and no actual specialization – most men are becoming effeminate and most women are becoming neurotic. You cannot be happy working against the Lord’s will.
16. There are plenty of people, posts, channels to confuse and dis-orient you. There is another class of men who are change worshippers. Change is an impersonal thing and one cannot be satisfied by worshipping change. We need something unchanging in the sea of change and that unchanging entity is the Supreme Lord. Without faith in the Lord, you will be kicked by the change worshippers and in turn they will be also kicked.
17. The eternal cycle of manifestation, growing into maturity, malfunction and un-manifestation cannot be overcome by any one. There is no point fretting over these things.
18. People who spend most of their career under a large protective umbrella like Government, Large Corporation, Easy money, good in inheritance generally get conditioned into believing that the world was created for supplying their fancies and order. They suffer from a complex where they seldom feel thankfulness or say grace. They demand more and insist on this demand, however irrational.
19. The price of liberty is eternal vigilance and also relative poverty. You cannot be an EMI-slave and demand a creative life.
20. IT industry is passing through two recessions – one permanent and this is irreversible. The second one is temporary and this one can be overcome if we do not commit the folly of not admitting the permanent one.
Courtesy : In my search for getting a historical as well as riveting perspective of Indian IT industry, my apprehensions proved to be true, Too much manpower but too little talent. In the whole steppe, I finally found a lone commentary from Mr. Alok Kumar and I acknowledge many facts which I have borrowed from him. Read his blog like I did – all posts in the form of hard reading. I recommend it highly. His blog is Future Tense.