The top 50 richest men on the earth, the billionaires feature two Indians. At the time of writing this article, the number 13 on the list is, Mukesh Ambani. His real-time net worth is $46.2B and he has inherited $90 billion worth of Reliance Industries from his late father.
The next Indian standing at number 36 is Azim Premji. He is an Indian-American who has a real-time net worth of $4.9B. Premi owns Wipro, India’s third-largest outsourcer, however, he has lived all his life in the USA. He gave up his studies at Stanford, in 1966 and started looking after the family’s cooking oil which later expanded to the tech business.
Apart from these two gentlemen, no other Indian or a single Pakistani is listed in the top billionaire list on the Forbes website.
The top 50 richest people list is full of people who are first-time millionaires, which means, they have not inherited money from their family. The top 3 on the list are Jeff Bezos, Bill Gates, and Warren Buffett and similarly, the list features many other tech giants such as Jack Ma, Elon Musk, and Mark Zuckerberg. They are all 1st generation billionaires.
What makes the above list so special? How did they get to this point of popularity and wealth? Why big and amazing ideas such as Microsoft, Apple, Facebook, or Google do not come from Asia, the subcontinent in particular?
Is it because the people here are dumb, stupid to say the least, or perhaps they do not have exposure to the amazing kinder garden education of the west that all billionaires have gone through?
One wonders why the people from the subcontinent, India and Pakistan are unable to unleash their true potential and why the region does not have prominent success stories to tell the world.
There could be many reasons, starting from the family background to the culture to the society and moving down to the education system, and then to the vicious circle of poverty that entangles one in a way, it is hard to break free.
The entrepreneurial mindset is absent from college graduates because the whole high-grade “RAT” race has disabled students to think unorthodoxly, think big, and take a risk in their professional life. Everybody wants to have a fixed income and find a job after graduation. Even when they get a job, most of them stay content with their status and salary and do not think of growth throughout their career.
Let’s take a look at this subject from a different perspective.
Toddler is told on their face “NO”, quite frequently too when they try to do something. When put to bed at night, the fear is injected from a very early stage by terrifying them with scary witches, and evil characters so they fall to sleep early. That fear begins to build its place in the subconscious mind and stays when the child grows up.
The toddler then grows into a young kid but is not allowed to experience true life on their own, to do experiments, or to chase their dreams.
The typical education system focuses on typical subjects that may not necessarily be of interest to every student. School is the time when creativity needs to be explored but unfortunately, the current education system does not have any space for creative artists or thinkers. This is exactly why Jack Ma thinks, the education system has failed and we need to change that.
I also believe, unfortunately, our learning is unintentionally ceased to a larger extent by our parents at a young age, and here is why.
Teenager is afraid of making a decision in life because, ever since they began to walk on their own, they are told: “you are lazy, you sound so stupid and you can’t and should not do this”. This extra caution sabotage the thinking process.
The strict brought up followed by the school grade race calls for unwanted taunts from the parents and family members. Gradually, it begins to hurt the creative mind from thinking on its own.
Fast forward, this “NO” installs the fear in the mind of an adult because, being stopped from chasing their dreams when they were growing up as a kid — has somehow made them believe, they are good for nothing.
It also injects a belief that they are no different from others, there’s nothing extraordinary about them so, therefore, they do not think out of the box from traditional life.
This similar pattern forces most to follow the crowd and live a sub-standard life.
The fixed mindset:
In Pakistan and India, the first choice after graduation is to search for a Government job and if that does not happen, teaching sadly takes the second option and it is only after rejection from the first two, one begins to explore private jobs.
Nowhere in this race of earning two times a decent meal, one can even think about exploring entrepreneurial options.
Who is responsible for such a mindset?
When you tie a horse with a chain to a cage, years later tying it to a chair won’t be different. It’s the chain, not the cage that stops the mind from thinking freely.
That “NO” from childhood is the cage, it stops us from taking risks, making a decision, and moving forward with life as an adult. The school does not offer non-traditional education such as entrepreneurship, freelancing, or making money online. Everyone is just another brick in the wall except a few, who break their barriers, stand up to society and break the taboos.
Such people not only become successful but also creates job opportunities for others in society.
I agree with this quote. If you want to become successful, you have to think “BIG”.
Think “BIG” or go “HOME”. Well in the subcontinent, staying home is not an option so people just follow the typical rat race and end up regretting the deathbed.
Life is too short to think small. Think big, and don’t listen to people, the naysayers, who tell you it can not be done.
Go all heart out. Do it, prove it to them, and sing the “Song of your life“.