That was a time, a friend of mine & I were deeply engrossed in discussions on what to start. I was running a small Professional IT Services firm & he was employed with an IT major then.
We met during the weekends and spoke about everything under the sun. We kept our eyes and ears open & saw what was happening in the market.
Once, he had just returned back home after a short trip to the US. He asked me if we should develop a taxi hailing app. That was much before “Taxi For Sure” or Ola in India or Uber in the US. I am not sure what happened next and why we didn’t jump into that at that point in time.
I have learnt one thing in life. You have to take risks. There’s no easy route to success. And it’s never late. There’s always an opportunity. Or ways to differentiate what already exists.
If you are chasing a dream of starting up on your own, I advise you to start it as a side gig and work on it passionately outside of your 9-5 job. Rajiv Srivatsa, COO of Urban Ladder, an online furniture retailer said, in Aug 2018: “In the next 20 years, the strongest brands in any category will start purely online, reach out through the power of these marketplaces, and, as they build a sustainable brand, look at other channels to expand to.”
From Wikipedia: “The Walk is a 2015 American 3D biographical drama film directed by Robert Zemeckis and written by Christopher Browne and Zemeckis. It is based on the story of 24-year-old French high-wire artist Philippe Petit’s walk between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center on August 7, 1974.”
What were the steps taken by Philippe Petit to achieve the final outcome of walking between the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York in 1974 ? How did he achieve what he wanted to ? What must have gone through his mind during the event ? How can someone achieve such a rare feat ? And what can we learn from his walk on the high-wire ?
Let us now examine one after the other.
Steps taken by Philippe Petit:
He dreamed at an early age and thought it was possible to walk on the tight rope at such an altitude.
He came to know from a magazine about the construction of World Trade Center while sitting in a dentist’s clinic and found that it will be the tallest building in the world.
He conceived his idea.
Traveled to New York several times.
He and one of his collaborators, a photographer rented a helicopter and photographed the under construction towers.
Had few other collaborators and friends who helped him. One of them provided financial assistance as well.
Entered the building as a Journalist and in the pretext of interviewing the workers observed the towers from close quarters.
Got caught by a Policeman once but that didn’t dampen his dreams.
He and his team settled on the bow and arrow attached to a rope to pass the cable and they perfected this technique by practicing it several times.
He and his crew got an opportunity to travel in the elevator to 104th floor on the day of the event. With their heavy equipment. Call it miracle if you wish.
Finally executed his plans.
How did he achieve what he wanted to ?
The central theme of the whole thing – that is, the events leading to the big event – was a firm belief that he can achieve what he wanted to.
He was committed to it.
He was ready to sacrifice anything and everything to achieve it.
Was there fear in his mind ? Must have had fear but gradually did overcome that fear and succeeded.
He gave everything that he had to achieve it.
He had a good team who also sacrificed, risked and provided solid support to him.
He was focused. He breathed, ate, slept, walked [?] high-wire walk.
He was positive and had overcome all obstacles.
What must have gone through his mind during the event ?
He must have forgotten that the world exists.
He must have forgotten that he is walking at such a high altitude [1350 feet from the ground].
All he saw was the wire.
He focused his mind towards balancing the walk on the high-wire.
He must have walked as if he was performing at a low altitude – like his past performances.
How can someone achieve such a rare feat ?
Single minded focus.
A team that fully supports.
When others think it is death, he thinks it is his life. Coming out of the fear zone.
Skills. Training. Practice.
And what can we learn from his walk on the high-wire ?
If you think you can, you eventually will.
Dreaming is very important. Everything was originally a dream.
Commitment, sacrifice, putting effort, training, practice, single minded focus are important.
Not to get cowed down by obstacles.
Not to get discouraged by friends, family but to continue with your plan against their warnings.
Skill development – is a given.
Positive thinking makes things happen. The whole world conspires with you.
Great team. And Team work.
Identifying what gives you happiness and relentlessly pursuing it, come what may.