Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Generous side of Azim Permji of Wipro

Jealousy is a basic human instinct. It's not uncommon for jealousy to get stirred up by seeing roaring success in others. This is true for 90% of people of ordinary financial status. Jealousy starts rearing its head and expressing itself from early childhood when another child comes into the family. It has been seen that initially the older child shows traits of envy towards the younger, suffering from insecurity of parental love getting divided. This envy takes on another form in school and college, directing itself towards other students who are more successful. In the professional field, envy and jealousy takes on a more diplomatic form. People who are not so successful financially express their jealousy towards others who are. Their attitude towards the rich becomes extremely negative. “Rich people become richer while the poor get poorer”, “the rich make their money from the blood of the poor”, “rich people are dishonest”. These thoughts fill their minds constantly. These are popular myths, and are not necessarily close to the truth. In fact, if it was true that all rich men are dishonest, no one would have gone ahead and done business with them. To expand a business in a really big way, one needs to work with various associated companies, and thousands, and sometimes millions of customers. If one is dishonest, one would lose everyone's trust, putting abrupt brakes on the growing business. Thus, contrary to popular belief, the rich and the successful have to be more honest than anyone else, because that is the very basis of their career. Billionaires have golden hearts.
The following is an eye-opener that shows beyond doubt that the theory of dishonest rich people is a myth. Wipro chairman Azim Premji is one of the billionaires who are doing their utmost to shape the world. He is also described as “the billionaire with a heart”. Premji was just finishing his undergraduate engineering studies at Stanford University in 1966 at the age of 21 when he got word of his father's sudden death and was called upon to handle the family's vegetable oil business. Premji started Wipro with a simple vision - to build an organization on a foundation of values. Under his leadership, the fledgling hydrogenated cooking fat company has grown to a US$ 1.76 billion IT Services organization serving customers across the globe. Wipro is today ranked among the top 100 technology companies globally (by Business Week). Wipro's growth continues to be driven by its core values.

 Premji's net worth is estimated at US$6.7 billion, so some people call him the Indian Bill Gates. But if the anti-offshoring protestors wanted to find a bogeyman in him, they would have to look elsewhere. Premji is modest and reticent, not a belligerent business leader. This down-to-earth billionaire, whose achievement has not changed him as a person, is said to personally know and talk to every employee of Wipro.

 “The comparison to Gates doesn't end at software: Premji's charitable foundation works with that of Gates. Premji's foundation does more work for education in poor rural areas, giving US$5 million a year, while Gates' has made health a priority,” says the Financial Times. Premji firmly believes that ordinary people are capable of extraordinary things. He believes that the key to this is creating highly charged teams. In the year 2001, Premji established theAzim Premji Foundation, a non-profit organization with a vision to contribute significantly to quality universal education in order to build a just, equitable and humane society. This means every child would receive quality education. The financial resources to this foundation have been personally contributed by Premji. The current activities of the Azim Premji Foundation engage 1.8 million children under various programs.
The majority of financially ordinary men envy success in others and react with bitterness, however the people who are rich and financially successful and have a positive attitude do not react with envy to someone else's success. In fact, they appreciate success in others.
The bottom line to remember is that one should appreciate, not envy other successful people. 

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