A Talk by Narayana Murthy at IIIT, Bangalore on 07.07.2006

I was planning to write about it immediately after the talk but due to some of my pre-occupations and a busy weekend, I was not able to do so. Well, it was a much awaited moment for all the students of our institute, International Institute of Information Technology, Bangalore. Almost every student was very enthusiastic to listen to him. I feel this was the first time that Narayana Murthy was there for a talk while all students were there and the academic session was active with no holidays.

I was told by our Director, Professor Sadagopan, and two days before only about the event and was asked to attend the talk, which I promptly accepted. On the day of the talk, around 300 people professionals from outside, assembled at the main classroom and at the OS lab in the first floor of the main building of the institute. There was online streaming facility from the main classroom hall, with the capacity of 150 odd people, to the OS lab.

As usual, Mr. Murthy arrived and after having snacks and tea came to the classroom for the talk. Almost all the students assembled at the OS lab as the main classroom was occupied completely by the professionals, baring a few like me who were standing near the doors of the main classroom or so.

After the greetings, Mr. Murthy started his talk on “Quality and Success”. He emphasized completely on the Quality of Service and all his points and examples were in and around those things only. At one instant of time I remember him saying that he visits the restrooms of all the entrance gates of the Infosys building himself once in a month. I also remember him saying that he review atleast 10-12 projects every year and reward the people for the quality if the work done.

Very True, Quality and Success are interrelated. Quality depicts what state of mind and the attitude one carry and Success is the goal or aim that one has dreams to achieve with that state of mind and the attitude.

But the thing that I did not liked about his talk was that he emphasized on the “SERVICES” of the IT industry. I feel we need to mature now. The Indian IT industry needs to see much beyond than the SERVICES. We have already established ourselves as a front leader in the IT services which is quite evident from the outsourcing facilities to India and now almost all the IT majors like Infosys, TCS, CTS, Satyam etc. are sitting on huge capitals and is perhaps in a good position to invest in the product developments and research. The Indian IT majors need to now shift their focus and concentrate more on R&D if they have to survive in future. It is the time that we Indians need to prove that we are best brains of the world and can create the FUTURE of our own as we have shown in the Silicon Valley of the US. If we will go by the statistics and surveys, then we are major brains behind all the developments of the IT and NASA in the US. So, why can’t we do the same here in India?

The step in this direction would be the change of the outlook of the people and the companies. Then, we have try to retain our real wealth i.e. the manpower coming out of the premier institutes like IITs, IIMs and IIITs. At the same time the media and the government of India need to work together to provide the facilities and support to such initiations.

If we start following these, I don’t see why we can’t be the superpower of the WORLD by 2020.

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