I was a very good student. But I didn't have the latitude to study more. I was never allowed to do anything cross-disciplinary. Why can't an engineering student learn physics?
Any school which wants to create an impact on the society should work on creating leaders.
I firmly believe that philanthropy is most effective and outcome-oriented when you ensure that your pledge actually gets spent.
One time, the teacher was the storehouse of knowledge. That will no longer be so. So what would a teacher do? A very good teacher will play the role of augmenter. Also, the teacher will be located anywhere and helping students.
The U.S. healthcare industry is undergoing radical transformation with the Affordable Care Act. Evolving thought and business models have little semblance to present mechanisms.
Since Graham Bell came up with telephony, it took 100 years for the way the technology has impacted our lives, the way we perceive the world.
The government of India is consistently very advanced. When the world was hesitant on UNIX, we were the first to move in; the RBI said that all banks will implement on UNIX. It worked!
The 1980s were fantastic. This was a time when we were at the peak of our creative work. The question of whether we would exist or not - something which everybody used to ask, including ourselves - stopped. Profits kept pace with growth requirements. HCL had credibility - that was the biggest barrier we had to break.
You have to be very skilled in this industry. I grew in this industry; we created the very beginnings of this industry. We made the first PCs (personal computers) in the world.
The anti-Hindi agitation changed the entire face of Tamil Nadu with a local party emerging on the top, relegating the Congress.
The younger you are, the more courage and audacity you will have to set long-term goals and be there to personally work towards your vision. You will have the confidence to take risks because you have time by your side. You can bring innovation into everything you do and constantly reinvent yourself.
My student days in PSG saw three Prime Ministers, two wars, taught us courage, resilience, leadership and optimism.
If you look at the leading Indian IT companies, Cognizant is not active in business process outsourcing, and neither is Satyam.
I have talked about the 'fractal organization'. Those smaller pieces should innovate and lead the rest of the organization. There will be parts that will be thinking about technologies of the future, and you need to nourish them.
If you have excellent people, then you have to give them the power.
If you go to Wall Street, there is someone from Harvard, Stanford, etc, who relate to each other by the batch they studied in, the dorm they lived in, and so on.
We didn't create an institution to increase land value or asset value.
Buffett gave significant portions of his wealth to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Buffett made money for 50 years before he donated.
A founder can carry an institution only so far, and then others have to step in, even the alumni. That's how an institution becomes one.
The need is schools dedicated exclusively to the rural segment. If we have a child from a village and a city studying in the same class room, the former is bound to lag behind because children from the urban areas have a better start.
In philanthropy, you have to take the attitude of a mother... You have to be patient, and we have been very patient for a long time.
As a product of education, I have always believed in the power of education as the most powerful, high-impact catalyst for transformation. Look at the impact that the Indian Institutes of Technology have had globally.
Any organisation has to go through at least one depression to see how it survives, and a normal economic cycle takes seven years.
If you get to think of sharing wealth with people who need it and the purposes that need it, it gives a very different sense of satisfaction. I think I can build an institution which is very unlike the Gates' foundation. Gates' foundation is totally project-driven, that will serve a specific purpose and then self-destruct.
My colleagues and I were engineers who worked for DCM's calculator division. These electronic calculators used digital integrated circuits, and then they started using chips. The advanced versions of those chips were used for programmable calculators, which were the forerunners of PCs.
Any institutions' alumni are key to its growth. We are focused on giving a global experience to our students.
The Bharat Ram family was into philanthropy a way earlier. They build institutes such as Shri Ram College of Commerce, Lady Shri Ram College, and Shri Ram Schools. They are very inspiring.
The IP is a completely different side of the IT, and that is what we want Vijayawada for.
HCL is a corporation. It is for profits. A corporation stands for its shareholders, its profits, its employees, its discoveries, and its customers.
On Sundays, we would travel to the town and watch English movies. This way, we must have ended up watching some 1,000 movies during college.
Adaptability and constant innovation is key to the survival of any company operating in a competitive market.
Education is and will be the most powerful tool for individual and social change, and we must do all that it takes to facilitate it.
There is a disconnect in education and work. And corporates don't do a great job of skilling. In future, corporates and educational institutions will work closely.
Union Budget 2012 has supported industry's long time demand to improve the provision and standards of education in the country.
Though easy to define, it is important to understand the significance of philanthropy. I believe it is really a state of mind: where one feels empowered and equipped to fill the huge gaps in the existing system.
Most people make poor partners because their mental script has a defect. They believe focus means looking after their own interests. It's a script error.
Like education, healthcare also needs to be given importance.
When you take the best of universities in the world, all of them have research and education contiguous; the person who teaches you could be a Nobel laureate. Some subjects are at the tri-junction of many subjects put together.
Globally, as work is re-distributed to various countries, infrastructure will have to be managed remotely.
My daughter has no interest in succeeding me in the business. She is going towards social entrepreneurship, an area she is interested in.
I was born in Tamil Nadu. I built HCL in UP. The first computers of the world were built in UP, and the UP government has supported us all through.
Education is a very large area, and we have our hands full. For example, SSN has to become a university; we have to keep adding departments like it is with universities in the U.S.
It's rare to find an Indian who speaks Chinese. It's rare to find a Chinese who can speak any of the Indian languages. Neither of them at the trading level - I want to repeat this, at the trading level - can speak English, either.
Major forces that have contributed to the evolution of philanthropy in India in the pre-modern era have mainly been driven by religion, family, and society. The Hindu teaching of 'daan' or 'giving' is present in different ways in almost every celebration or ritual.
Our belief is that aspirations, meritocracy, and a world class institution are the three ingredients our country needs.
A 5-acre school each in Noida and Gurgaon is what we have; it costs Rs. 50 crore to buy the land and another Rs. 50 crore to build the property. That's the capital cost alone.
The SSN Institute will be expanded in areas such as liberal arts, social sciences, natural sciences, communications.