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Your generation is more global, educated, tolerant, and technology savvy than perhaps any that has come before it. It is because of the kind of minds that exist here at IIM Bangalore that I know that we will surprise the pessimists. This is your generation’s world to shape. I am eager to see the problems you will solve and the solutions you will create,” said Arvind Krishna, chairman and CEO of IBM, during IIM Bangalore’s convocation ceremony. A total of 624 students from various programmes graduated at the ceremony, held recently in the virtual mode.
The IBM chairman advised the graduating students to be curious and persistent. “Curiosity is what will allow you to find problems that are worth solving. It will give you a new sense of what the word ‘discovery’ means, and will lead you down all sorts of interesting paths. Ultimately, it is your propensity to learn throughout your life—not your intellect, not your degree, not even your experience—that will determine your success. Being insatiably curious will give the fuel you need to learn how to learn throughout your life. I can guarantee you that it will not only make you a better person, but also a much better business leader.”
He added that persistence is another key to take best advantage of the opportunities around us. “Be aware, take paths less travelled, and look for the opportunities that are hidden in plain sight. What is certain is – the more curious and persistent you are, and the more you are aware of these opportunities … the more you will give luck a chance.”
Citing examples of the innovations that went behind the invention of the light bulb, penicillin, microwave, radioactivity, X-rays, or even the Covid-19 vaccine, he pointed out that it is often the people with the most grit who end up making a difference. Expressing his optimism about India’s future, he said: “India is expected to remain one of the fastest growing economies in the world. India today is a technology powerhouse with more than half of the world’s largest 1200 multinationals having set up their R&D centres here. I have immense confidence in your generation’s ability to take on the challenges of our day, use this as an opportunity to build a better future and fix some of the fault lines that the crisis has exposed.”
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