Three lessons from the historic India vs Australia test match

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The last couple of days have seen cricket fans and followers in a frenzied rapture. The Times of India newspaper ran the headline, “Guts and glory at the Gabba as India pull off ‘Aussome’ victory.” For the uninitiated, here are the two important milestones the Indian cricket team achieved in test cricket. First, they won back-to-back test series on Australian soil, and second, they became the first-ever Asian side to win a Test at the Gabba. This they achieved when the world had written them off. A team of rookie players achieved the impossible and pronounced their abilities on the global cricketing arena.

Here are three lessons that we can learn from this:

Experience, a killer?

We rely very heavily on experience and track record. Experience is the road to perfection. It helps one gain more knowledge and be better in a job, no doubt.  Over time, when people have rich experience and accomplished several successes, they attain stardom status in their organisation. All good as long as the going is good. At times, the pressure of successful track record, living up to the expectation of being a star performer and one’s own inability to accept failure creates a stifling environment.

Experience can also hamper creativity and experimentation. Often one fears taking the untrodden path and tends to stick to the all too familiar road. After all, that was the recipe for success, it has worked all along, why change it? At best experiments remain old wine in a new bottle. Leaders tend to stick to familiar people and familiar formula for success. Jolting them out of this requires a significant shakeup.

Rookies can rock

When we give young blood a chance, we are taking the risk of ruffling the apple cart. It raises several questions and doubts as rookies lack experience. Unless we try, we are not sure of what we have left on the table. Without the pressure of stardom, without any baggage, they may be able to achieve much more. They have nothing to lose and everything to gain.

We have a few examples around us of CEOs taking charge at a young age and tasting extraordinary success. Yet, we hesitate to give youngsters a chance and tend to back those with experience and good track record.

Confidence, Trust and Patience

In the corporate world, often one hears that no one will ask for you if you don’t ask what you want. Similarly, no one will trust our abilities. That task is solely ours. We have to have confidence in what we can do or achieve. What someone else has done before should not be intimidating.

We should also have the right amount of patience and tenacity.  Giving up is easy. Staying in there and waiting for a chance is hard.

Sporting arena is replete with stories of how a team has achieved tremendous success with a bunch of young, inexperienced players. Some football clubs have mastered this art of transforming youth talent into successful performers. The stunning achievement of the Indian cricket team will be talked about for decades to come. Such successes are an excellent reminder for us to learn, think differently, experiment and never stop doing something new.

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Radha Radhakrishnan
Radha Radhakrishnan has over 25 years of experience in corporate communications and marketing across different industries and geographies. She has built a reputation as a storyteller and a creative thinker. She has mentored social entrepreneurial startups and has been a visiting faculty at premier communications institutes in India. She is currently the global head of corporate communications at Wipro Enterprises. She anchors the weekly PR and Communication podcast, Mrigashira.

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