The Smart Techie was renamed Siliconindia India Edition starting Feb 2012 to continue the nearly two decade track record of excellence of our US edition.

The Man with a Mission for Masses

Jaya Smitha Menon
Thursday, December 9, 2010
Jaya Smitha Menon
He is hailed as the Telecom Czar of India who revolutionized the Industry which is today standing tall as one of the key drivers of Indian economy. He is known as the Game Changer who is believed to possess the ability to transform and redirect the field he steps his foot into. Meet Sam Pitroda, the articulate leader, who conceptualized and triggered the thought of growth at the bottom of the pyramid in India.

An entrepreneur who has over 50 patents to his credits, Pitroda has sketched a unique path of glory and gratification for himself. While the best brains of the world were busy solving problems of the rich, he espoused a mission for the masses of a developing country like India. Today Pitroda is embarking on his next big mission as Prime Minister’s Advisor and Chairman of National Innovation Council.
In an exclusive interview to siliconindia, Pitroda talks about the need for identifying leaders at all levels, India’s growth trajectory and his ideas on innovation.

Defining leadership
To me leadership is about creating a vision, a vision that you want to implement. Leadership is also about articulating these vision into small pieces, communicate it to large number of people and then break it up into pieces of work. At the end you have to excite, encourage, motivate, create a dream and finally make it happen. There are all kinds of leaders; political, social, business and so on. They are all products of their era, their experiences, their own ecosystem, and the challenges they try to solve. Bigger the problem, bigger the opportunity for leaders. More than anything, I believe leadership is about building the self. Leadership in the 21st century is going to be very different from that of the 20th century. Leadership of the 20th century focused on command and control, whereas leadership of the 21st century is all about collaboration, communication, co-operation; mainly because the internet and the accessibility of information and the power of communication has changed the dynamics of social structure, productivity and business model.

A need to re-haul the education system
The power of communication and information accessibility has made it necessary for the educational system to be revamped. When you think about education, what comes to your mind is always a blackboard, chalk, classroom, teacher, textbook, exam and all that. But the times are changing. My 6 year old niece goes to the Google for information. The modus operandi should change. Teachers today spend 90 percent of their time in preparing and delivering content.

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Reader's comments(1)
1:Very very relevant and awesome thoughts. I have never have heard anyone talk with such conviction and precise thoughts on what is need of the hour of India. Rather than innovating another twitter or facebook from India, I completely agree with Sam\'s viewpoints on the need of innovation for the much needed people in India.
Kudos to you and your team.
Posted by: Gopinath Venkat - 19th Dec 2010
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