Sunday, September 11, 2011
"Winning is NOT God's gift. It is not about luck as luck can only happen to you once or twice. In the real world, the journey is a marathon NOT a short sprint”
Updated: Sunday September 11, 2011 MYT 7:19:42 PM
Avoid conformity, Utar graduates told
KUALA LUMPUR: To be successful in this world, break all the rules.
This was the message Star Publications Bhd executive deputy chairman Datuk Vincent Lee had for graduates of Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman at their convocation.
"I am not asking you to break the law, but if you want to stand out, to be noticed, you must avoid 'conformity.'
"You must be brave enough to break the rules of engagement," he said when addressing one of the sessions at the convocation.
Lee also touched on his soon-to-be-released book "Why 'Stupid' People Get Richer."
He said that as the title suggested, “stupid” people get richer because “stupid” people “win” most of the time.
"Winning is NOT God's gift. It is not about luck as luck can only happen to you once or twice.
"In the real world, the journey is a marathon NOT a short sprint.
"It has nothing to do with your degrees. Nobody gives you money just by looking at your degrees. Neither does family fortune come into play," he said
Full text of the speech.
It gives me great pleasure to join all of you at this 13th convocation of Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (Utar).
I thank Utar for inviting me as the guest-of-honour for this session. I would like to congratulate the members of the class of 2011. You are the very reason for our presence here today.
I am honoured that you have chosen me to help celebrate your graduation today.
I would like to assume that I am here today NOT because of the fact that I am the executive deputy chairman of The Star or that I am the executive chairman of Naga DDB.
Rather, I would like to think that the real reason as to why I am here is because of my soon to be published book called "Why Stupid' People Get Richer.”
You may think it's funny.
But in many ways, it's true when you come to think of it.
When I look around me now, I see a lot of successful people that were not perceived to be very clever while in school and yet at present they find themselves very rich. Ever wondered WHY “stupid” people get richer?
Simply put, they try harder! They never give up. They cross rivers when there is no bridge, they climb mountains when there are no ladders and they take flights when there is no wind.
So what do you fine students of 2011 need to hear from me?
As a branding and communications person, it would be fashionable to share a few of the latest methodologies or even marketing terminologies that would impress even the most astute of professors among us today.
In fact, it would be even more topical to share a few quotes from the various “gurus” of our time.
But to be perfectly honest, there really isn't much advice that I have to give you.
You are all smart. All educated. At the press of a button, you can now access information that we at our time took months if not years to learn.
This is the digital age, This is the age of speed and innovation. This is the age of creativity. Anybody with an idea can sell his idea to the world. The world now is borderless. It's a scary world out there, but I am not trying to frighten you.
On the contrary, I am here to inspire you to do the unthinkable. To win, to be the best in class no matter what field you choose to be in.
We live in a globalised age, and you know this world better than my generation ever did.
In many ways, it is I who need to learn from you.
What I can do, however, is to share with you what I have learnt - what I have discovered in this world.
This journey of discovery was not an easy one, especially when you are in the creative industry.
Most of the thoughts I am sharing with you today could be very applicable if you are to join this industry.
In the UK, the creative industry presently makes up more than half of the total economy.
The creative industry is not just about advertising but also consists of design, architecture, TV and radio, movies, product design, journalism, etc, just to name a few.
It is my hope that some of you will join this industry in the near future.
If you are to take away anything from what I said today, remember this: to be successful in this world, we simply need to break all the rules.
I am not asking you to break the law, but if you want to stand out, to be noticed, you must avoid “conformity” in the business world. You must be brave enough to break the rules of engagement.
In my world, so-called “winning formulas” are yesterday's news. As the saying goes, not only is yesterday's news OLD news, it is today's nasi lemak wrapper.
And as the title of my book suggests, “stupid” people get richer because “stupid” people “win” most of the time.
So as not to be too Machiavellian about things, winning is NOT God's gift. It is not about luck. As luck can only happen to you once or twice.
In the real world, the journey is a marathon NOT a short sprint.
It has nothing to do with your degrees. Nobody gives you money just by looking at your degrees. Neither does family fortune come into play.
Winning is a mentality.
“Stupid” people “win” most of the time not only because they try harder but also because they don't see any hurdles or choose to disregard any obstacles.
Have you ever seen an excitable dog jumping for a bone?
Sometimes, it jumps higher than it believes it can. Just like the dog, “stupid” people only see opportunities and pursue them relentlessly without fear or prejudice.
We all grow up with a fear of something or other.
For some, we are afraid of growing old. For many, we are afraid of failure. And the more competitive among us are just afraid that others will be more successful than we are.
I am sure that you would have heard at some point, a family member or a friend of a friend talk about that “stupid boy” at school who is now richer than them, and who is driving a faster car or living in a bigger house.
As we turn the page and embark on a new chapter in our lives, I believe that the answers to your life's concerns are in the following tenets:
#1. “Stupid” people don't follow formulas. Time and time again, we see street fighters defeat karate or kung fu masters in a brawl. Competitive economies require intuitive decisions to be made. “Smart” people think too much. Act too little. They suffer from what golfers call analysis-paralysis.
#2. Case studies are not to be followed. By the time the case studies are written and published, they are already outdated. We all know that success stories are post-analysed and post-rationalised to suit the strategies.
#3. To win, you need to be insightful and be led by blind faith. When successful, write a book (and claim it was foresight!)
#4. Never chase after money. Instead, chase after dreams! “Winners' are men and women who made the leap from facts into the realm of the imagination. Contrary to popular belief, money does not make money. Only having an idea of what to do with the money makes more money, just like how bankers make money from innovators.
#5. Speaking of chasing after money, choose to mix with people with ideas and not people with money. Rich people NEVER part with their money.
#6. When in pole position, act like a challenger. What it means is that when you are leading the pack, think you are number two. Keep running. When you are challenging, act big! Think and act like you are number one in the pack.
#7. The 51-49 rule. If you think the chances of success are no less than 51%, just do it. There are no fail safe ideas. It is better to learn to ride on three wheels than never be able to ride at all. Don't wait until the four wheels arrive and then only start moving. Take your risks now. As you get older, you will tend to be more fearful, and less flexible. The bottom line is you can't be afraid to fail.
This leads me to my final thoughts.
It's what you learn after you know it all that counts.
And ALWAYS, be the dream.
I had always wished that for myself.
And now, as you graduate, and begin anew, I wish that of you.
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Posted by HSBP Class of 72/73 Sixth Formers at 8:03 AM