I write this post with great excitement. In my opinion, we, the citizens of India, are at the helm of a great period of economic growth, crazy experimentation and lots of entrepreneurship. I have been trying to rationalize my decision to become an entrepreneur and I have seen dozens of entrepreneurs doing the same over the last 5 years. I notice something radically different.
I recently saw a video of a graduating batch of a suburban, middle class school kids who went on to narrate where they saw themselves 10 years after graduating. Exactly 13 years ago, I graduated from a similar school in Bangalore. Even though we didn’t have a video of ourselves narrating our career aspirations, I know it was drastically different from the kids now. Everything was different. These kids didn’t see themselves as engineers or doctors. They saw themselves in professions that I wouldn’t dare utter in front of my family. A bunch of them wanted to study music, some of them fine arts, some wanted to be DJs and others wanted to start their own restaurant or fine arts institute. There were also kids who wanted to be wildlife photographers or rally drivers. Most of these occupations were unheard of when I graduated.
Then it dawned on me. These were kids from the post deprivation India. I think the kids of the 90′s broke the stereotype of public sector jobs and our generation is slowly trying to do different things. But these kids were fearless. Their confidence was impressive. Their focus and determination was admirable to say the least. There were also collaborations; a group of kids wanted to start a dance institute together.
Our generation was what I called the first of the privileged generations in India. We were the first ones to get cable television, American media and fast food outlets as kids. We were also the first to reap the fruits of economic liberalization of India. We took that mixture ideals and values and crafted a life around it. Not a single person took up a public sector job in my gradtuating class. But I also remember the days where there was only DoorDarshan(DD). Most, if not all, shows on the national television was around poverty or poor families. Where living in India was not considered a great thing. Most of my relatives would urge me to seek a job abroad. Our generation is what I term the privileged post deprivation era Indians.
The people born in the late 80′s or early 90′s didn’t know the era of DD. These kids are now graduating and are trying to shape their future in meaningful ways. A lot of them are choosing entrepreneurship and that means great things for the country and the economy. I don’t know too much about post depression America but I can only assume it was similar. I forsee (I don’t like the word) great things happening in India in the next two decades. I see steady economic growth and a big indigenous market. There are tons of problems that need solutions and poverty is the big challenge but there are also thousands of Social Entrepenuers mushorooming trying to tackle these challenges. I see a great nation taking shape. And before you comment about it, NO, I am not a patriot.