India has moved from being an agricultural economy to a knowledge economy in past decade and a half. The Indian doctors, scientists and engineers have created their mark across the globe and India. This is one of the main reasons why India is at the forefront of IT Outsourcing and off-shoring revolution too. This shows that Indians are not bad when it comes to knowledge, talent and skills. But why is that only very few Indians are looked upon as entrepreneurs ? Why is it that we hear about only selected few people who have made it big ?
I am telling you this because I was looking at huge disparity among the number of Indian Entrepreneurs versus Americans. India has less than 1/10th of them as compared to US Counterparts.
America has approx 12% of population, who have either started their own Business or are self employed. Comparatively, India has less than 1% of population who start their own business.
Why is it so?
At external macro level there are number of reasons, like unfriendly government policies, less stress on entrepreneurship in schooling and colleges, Indian culture, financial security, corruption etc…
However, there is one thing that Indian’s as individuals lack (Now I may put off a lot of readers by making that statement), which I give tremendous importance to –
It is the lack of Killer Instinct!
Indians are generally quite concerned about society and we do give a lot of importance to what people will say about us. That itself gives us an intense fear of failure. Most of us do not even think in that direction for the simple reasons “What will they say if I fail”. Some of them who do take the step, the lack of “killer instinct” does not let them go beyond certain point. Most of them surrender at first glimpse of pressure. They are unable to wade through the stormy waters of entrepreneurship.
A fine example, although not from business perspective is our cricketers. Look at them, they are highly knowledgeable, talented and skilled, but they never stay on top. They do have occasional moments of greatness but they just lack the consistency.
The reason again is lack of Killer Instinct!
I would love to hear what readers have to say…Do Indians lack killer instinct ?
However, the scenario is fast changing in India. A lot of Indians who traveled west in last 3 decades are coming back in big numbers. And these new breed are not only financially strong, but they come back with the killer instinct that is required to succeed.
I am not aware of the current numbers, but from what I see, it is amply clear that entrepreneurship is growing at a fast pace India!
Suggested Reading (pdf file): A Brave New World Beckons Indian Innovators and Entrepreneurs