“Independence” – Hyped or Worth The Risk?

By Pilli Chaudhuri Freelance Consultant @IndusGuru

Various civilizations of the world have spent the last two centuries fighting for their independence. Does risk come with independence? Definitely, it does! But the real question is: Is this risk worth it? Independence is taking things under one’s own charge and this definitely needs walking through new roads.

Having said this, as a species we are risk-averse as our basic human instincts tell us to run away from fire, dangerous animals etc. This instinct is so instilled in the human psyche that we fail to understand that we have advancement that we can fall back on and we have the luxury of taking such risks.

An easy way to fathom this is to take the example of Indian Independence. The British Crown ruled India for 200 years and in spite of the dreadful downfall of India as a country and as a civilization, Indians got used to the British rule. It was almost as if we got used to the faminies, the poverty, the plunder, the discrimination, the government, their laws etc. If Indians did not take the risk of trying to make it on their own without any formal framework to begin with, we would still be flying the Union Jack and working as clerks in British firms. So, was it a big risk for India to try to start the world’s largest democracy from literally nothing?? (Not to forget the huge international debt of course!) Yes, but we pined and craved for it. And look where we are today! We are competing to be the world’s fastest growing economy from a point where the average income of an Indian was Rs. 20 per year (in current currency value).

A few decades ago, India used to be a very different economy and the needs and wants of people were also very different from what they are now. Back then, all an educated person asked for was a good job with a respectable position and a decent pay, and this was only because there were fewer jobs in the economy. Getting a job which had all the above qualities was difficult and the one who succeeded in clinching one was considered to be respectable in the society. But, gradually the 90s kicked in, India became an open economy and newer avenues opened up, and in another decade’s time, jobs increased so much so that it became inevitable for an educated person to graduate from college and end up in a job. We as an economy now have reached a place where we do not fear a life without a job and financial stability.

The greatest advantage for an individual to be in a job is the financial stability it offers. A job offers a consistent flow of funds which no other kind of work in this world would perhaps be able to provide – the same amount on the same day every month. This very fact makes us comfortable and keeps us in peace, so that we do not have to worry about the luxurious necessities of life. No matter whether we agree with it or not but jobs also give us a higher social respect, a person having a steady job in an MNC in sometimes respected more in our society than somebody who has his own new start-up. In current times that are filled with loans and EMIs, jobs help individuals to plan their assets and investments from a much comfortable financial state. But the most important issue that today’s working individuals are suffering from is job satisfaction. Doing the same work every day and dealing with the same clients and preparing the same reports year after year makes them weary and bored of the job, and hence productivity goes for a toss.

We, the humans of 21st century or ‘Millennials’, as you might call us are very fickle from the dawn of our kind. We do not like to be into anything for a really long time, from television channels to phones, from relationships to jobs, we keep experiencing a compulsive need to change. The sole reason for this is that we want to make our mark in whatever we do. This generation fears less about financial instability and other material inconsistencies, it is more satisfied if it can achieve quality and expertise in whatever it does. This is where Freelancing or Consulting comes into play.

Today’s professionals are continuously training themselves so that they can be among the best in the business and after a certain point when they have dug too deep into a job, they experience a feeling that there is nothing more to learn from that avenue. This is when productivity is compromised. This is the reason why professionals now are moving towards Consulting and are becoming mercenaries for a number of different companies at the same time.

This culture is very new to India and most people are not used to this, but the whole idea of Consulting has a number of advantages both for individuals and for organisations.

  • The constant change in projects, clients and the nature of work keeps the dedication and hunger for excellence in individuals in place. Which is the reason why productivity is at the highest level
  • This way the organisations also gain specialised work force which is very productive and hungry to meet deadlines
  • Consultants generally deal with multiple organisations, so they deliver assignments on time so that they can move on to the next one. We have to remember here that it is not about the salary any more, Consultants have to maintain their own financial stability by completing projects on time and doing multiple projects in close succession
  • The constant shift in the nature of projects always keeps the learning process moving for individuals and they never get bored of what they are doing.

There might be a feeling in many of us that Consulting is a big risk to take, well, yes it is. There will always be risks involved in doing anything different from the system that is established for a long time, but that does not mean that one should not go for it. If one is confident on the skills he/she has acquired in years and believe he/she should be hired by companies for specialised work, then there is no harm in giving it a shot. If it works out it will have its own perks which I do not think I need to explain, and if it doesn’t then there are a number of jobs always there to fall back to.

Warren Buffet says, “People will always try to stop you from doing the right thing if it is unconventional. At the same time he says that “Risk comes from not knowing what you’re doing”. Thus it can safely be said that consultancy is not the future and is already the present. It is a double whammy situation for both firms and the millennial work force.

#Indpendence #Republic #India #BritishRule #BritishIndia #Consulting #EconomicBoom

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this column are that of the writer. The facts and opinions expressed here do not reflect the views of IndusGuru Network Partners.

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