My Dear Student Friends,
This is Dr. Ravi Saripalle, Believer and Mentor, Inspire to Innovate (i2i) Storytelling Movement. Welcome to “Letter to Student Series- Volume 1 and Issue 3”. Hope you enjoyed reading my previous letter. These letters are connecting many schools and student friends of North to South & East to West. I thank all of you for spending your valuable time reading this letter series and patiently acknowledging the same.
In the previous issue, I stressed the importance of getting inspired and finding right mentor. In that, you read about Jadav Payeng of Assam, forest man of India, how he inspired by ecological destruction and created man made forest (environmental innovation). You also read about Dashrath Manjhi of Bihar, mountain man of India, how he inspired to chip the mountain and created civil innovation. You heard about Armstrong Pame, a young and dynamic IAS officer from Manipur, how he proactively initiated Facebook campaign for fund raising and made road construction, known as "Peoples' Road", connecting Manipur to Nagaland and Assam. You also read about importance of attitude and how it elevates your altitude. I truly hope they are relevant to inspire you, again inspire you and without any deviation inspire you forever.
My Dear Friends, This week, I would like to stress upon the most important linkages between inspiration and innovation. Today, Innovation is survival. Without innovation, nobody can think of sustainable future. Worldwide, Individuals and Organizations are striving towards various innovations- Social Innovations, Political Innovations, Technological Innovations, Ecological Innovations, Legal Innovations, Economical Innovations, Marketing and Business Innovations, Educational Innovations and so on! Now question rises in your mind. What is the source of Innovation? In my view, the basic fabric of innovation sprouts from inspiration. That inspiration may arise out of positive experience or sometimes triggered from negative situations.
Fundamentally, there are three sources for Inspiration-
1.Natural Calamities or Political Movements are sources of inspiration for amazing people. Martin Luther King, Jr, a social activist, got inspired to run civil rights movement. Nelson Mandela, South Africa’s first democratically elected President, inspired to build democratic and free society where people live in harmony. One Subramanya Bharathi, One Azad, One Bhagat Singh, One Mahatma Gandhi, One Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, One Bal Gangadhar Tilak, One Veer Savarkar One Lal Bahadur and many such Ones… all inspired to bring independence.
2. Individual or Group of people experiences certain difficulty or having some need or problem. Inspiration comes from such need or problem. I read about Prem Ganapathy, founder of Dosa Plaza in Economic Times(Feb 20,2012). It is an amazing occurrence. At age of 17 years, Prem Ganapathi started his journey from low end dish washing job in small bakery shop in 1990 for survival. In 2012, Dosa Plaza became food chain with more than 43 restaurants across 11 states, 7 restaurants in 4 countries with 30 crores revenue. Thomos Edison failed 10,000 times in his quest to invent electric bulb. Edison held 1000+ patents. He found there is technical need in the society and strived towards such tech-innovations
3.The third source is most important where we generate inspiration in Individual or group. Individual is given a platform and nurtured. He/she hear stories of great achievers and failures in time context. They take inspiration by hearing and seeing but not by experiencing. Given a right mentoring, they get charged and inspired. This process helps in generating predictable inspiration and should be embodied in the education system. The system should provide such opportunities for transformation. Inspire to Innovate (i2i) Letter to student series is one such initiative. Being sincere reader, we aspire that you should become one such great thinker, creative leader and are part of Innovation Fauj.
Inspiration sprouts from Hungry or Full-Stomach, Love or Hatred, Life or Death, Construction or Destruction, Silence or Noise, Light or Dark, Speed or Slow, Natural or Unnatural, Child or Aged, Literate or Illiterate and Truth or Falsehood! If it is to make positive world, welcome it blindly.
In year 2000, I had wonderful opportunity to meet Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam at John F. Welch Technology Center, in Bangalore along with leaders of Wipro Technologies. It was memorable opportunity in my life. I had lunch and one-on-one conversation with Dr.Kalam. After hearing my questions patiently, Dr.Kalam told, “You young people should be inspired and make India inspired!” He opened his bag, pulled a book, singed on it and presented to me very affectionately. It was “Wings of Fire”, an autobiography of Missile Man of India. I always inspired by his famous quote - “Dream, dream, dream. Dreams transform into thoughts and thoughts result in action.”
It is true now. India is getting inspired. Making others inspired across the world. Satya Nadella, became CEO of one of the world’s largest tech giants-Microsoft . Sundar Pichai, seized CEO position of the most innovative company, Google. Inspiration is not limited to Technology. India continued to be inspired spiritually even in contemporary times. You could witness, the power of collective inspiration in Kumbh Melas. It is believed that it is largest religious gathering on the earth! More than 120 million (12 crore) people visited during 2013 mela (kumbhmelaallahabad.gov.in,)! Kalamandalam Hemalatha sets Guinness world record for performing longest dance marathon of 123 hours and 15 minutes! Is it humanly possible without taking inspiration from some source?
As you all know that our "Little Master" Sachin became the first player to score 100 centuries. Recently I received an interesting message from some unknown source. When Sachin made his first test debut, Sehwag was 10 yrs old, Mr Vijay was 5 yrs, Ojha was 3 yrs 71 days old, Raina was 2 yrs old, Pujara was 1 yr 9 months and Kohli was not born. Now Sachin is still playing with these star cricketers. I am quoting this in my workshops. After making my students hear these statements, I ask one simple question to them – What is Sachin playing? Many students told CRICKET and looked at me foolishly for asking such silly question! I am not annoyed. However, in one of the workshops, one boy told, Sachin is not playing CRICKET. He is playing a game called COMMITMENT. It was absolutely most intelligent and prudent response which I ever heard. Commitment comes from some source of inspiration. Unless we are inspired, there is no manifestation of the commitment.
Helen Keller, a renowned writer, was the first deaf-blind to earn a Bachelor of Arts degree. Dr.Sharadkumar Dixit, did free surgery camps for almost 30 years in India, covering more than 300,000 free surgeries (greatidols.blogspot.in, 30-Aug-15). Where such inspiration does come for these extraordinary people? It comes from one of the 3 sources which I listed earlier. Teachers may get inspiration from students and Vice-Versa. Mothers may get inspiration from children. Spirituality may inspire someone, so as Adventures may inspire others. Biographies and Experiences may inspire many so as Nature may inspire a lot. Lovely flowers, sweet birds, beautiful animals, gushing waters and so on are the sources of inspiration. Get inspired! from the past, Feel Inspired!! for today, Program Inspired!!! for tomorrow.
My Dear friends, Farrah Gray told “Build your own dreams, or someone else will hire you to build theirs”. It is absolutely true. Yes, we are in a highly competitive environment. In spite of best efforts, sometimes our dreams may not be realized. Our actions may not get recognized. Can pile of gold, crores of rupees, fleet of vehicles, networking and so on give us true happiness? No, Inspiration only can give such happiness! Napoleon Hill told “If you cannot do great things, do small things in a great way.” George Bernard Shaw told “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” Inspire my dear student friends!
My Dear Friends, Hope you enjoyed reading this letter. I appreciate your valuable time. I wish it is informative and useful. I will again see you in my next letter. Thank you for giving me this great opportunity to write to you and help me to learn, unlearn and relearn in this process.
With Best Wishes
Dr. Ravi Saripalle
About Author: Dr. Ravi Saripalle is Believer and Mentor of Inspire to Innovate (i2i) Storytelling Movement. He is also Director, Center for Innovation, GVP College of Engineering (A), Vizag, AP. As part of Inspire to Innovate (i2i) Thinking Movement, Dr.Ravi conducts Inspire to Innovate (i2i) Storytelling Workshops to inspire students and provide customized mentoring to specific inspired students. Dr. Ravi is having more than 17 years of experience in Industry, Consultancy, Training, Mentoring and Research. Prior to this current role, Dr. Ravi worked with Wipro Technologies for more than a decade. Dr Ravi can be reached at saripalle.ravi@gmail,com or http://i2itm.blogspot.in/ or facebook.com/saripalle.ravi or https://www.facebook.com/i2ithinkingmovement
Links to previous letters
1. Letter to Student Series- Volume 1 and Issue 2 (Inspire To Innovate (I2i) Storytelling Movement @ Students Of India)
2. Letter to Student Series- Volume 1 and Issue 1 (Inspire To Innovate (I2i) Stortytelling Movement @ Students Of India)
Disclaimer: The goal of this i2i letter series campaign is to inspire students through storytelling and develop innovative leaders to build strong nation. In this process, I have taken several data points from various websites, NEWS articles, books, videos etc. I sincerely thank all the editors for providing such insightful stories. To the best of my knowledge, I tried to acknowledge all the sources. I sincerely apologize for any omissions, grammatical mistakes and hurting any reader’s sentiments. I request all the readers to understand spirit behind this effort. This effort doesn’t involve any commercials. Letter series is for free distribution.