Imagine you put vegetables, spices, oil, all together in a saucepan with no flame for a few hours and then want to eat it after that. Would it be edible? Of course not. These are just the ingredients; they don’t become an edible dish unless they are cooked on a flame. Just because we get all the ingredients together does not mean it automatically becomes a dish that is edible. It needs a Catalyst, and the flame is the catalyst that brings the ingredients together, making it a successful dish.
I see the same myth prevalent amongst people about careers and life. Most people think, “I have the ingredients for success like Education, a Job, IQ, EQ, hard work, etc. and hence, I will be successful.” No, the ingredients are just that - ingredients - and without bringing in catalysts, these ingredients won't convert into success automatically.
Which then brings us to the million-dollar question: What are the catalysts required to become successful?
That is what I have tried to answer in my book, Catalyst.
There are catalysts required in 3 areas:
1. Conversion of Time to Experience:
It is a myth to assume that if you spend 5 years at work, then you have 5 years of experience. Somebody could derive 3 years’ worth of experience from that, and somebody else could derive 7 years’ worth of experience from that the same time period. In my judgement, one of the greatest differences between successful people and less successful people is their effectiveness of converting time to experience. Successful people convert time to experience more effectively than others. And conversion of time to experience requires a Catalyst.
2. Career management:
Careers are forty years long and have two halves. One of my insights is that most people are successful in the first half of their career, but only a few are successful in the 2nd half of their careers. Hence, to be successful, you have win in the 2nd half, that’s what matters. And success in the 2nd half requires a catalyst, the catalyst of career management based on few important principles, which have to be implemented right from the beginning of the first half, from the first innings itself.
3. Work-life balance:
A lot is spoken and discussed about work-life balance. I like to turn that phrase on its head; I believe that the impact of work on life is much lesser than the impact of life on work. How we live life can actually be a great driver for success at work. How you live your life can be the ultimate catalyst to how successful you can be in your career.
If you are interested in knowing more about these catalysts, if you want to be successful, then please read the book ‘Catalyst’ written by me. My name is Chandramouli Venkatesan and my aspiration is to help you become all that you can be. All the very best.
Physical books in stores from early February.
- ChandraMouli Venkatesan