Hon'ble Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam delivers Talk on Leadership as part of EIL Golden Jubilee Lecture Series
Hon’ble Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, former President of India delivered a Talk on Leadership in Vigyan Bhawan on February 17, 2015 as part of EIL Golden Jubilee Lecture Series. Shri Dhramendra Pradhan, Hon’ble Minister of State (I/C), Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas, Dr. S.C. Khuntia, Special Secretary & FA, MoP&NG, Shri A.K. Purwaha, C&MD, EIL, Functional Directors & CVO of EIL, senior officials from MoP&NG and Oil & Gas PSUs also graced the occasion.
In his welcome address, Sh. Purwaha presented a glimpse of EIL’s contribution to the development of India’s hydrocarbon sector over the past decades. He stated that EIL was set up in 1965 when the country was having a meager refining capacity of 0.5MMTPA. Over the years, the Company has metamorphosed into a Total Solutions engineering consultancy company with footprints in 19 of the 22 operating refineries in the country and 7 of the 8 petrochemical complexes.
Addressing the august gathering, Shri Dharmendra Pradhan said that EIL has played a pivotal role in shaping the contours of the country’s oil & gas sector and all Indians are proud of its achievements. He expressed that it’s a great honour to listen to the inspiring words of a luminary like Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam who has made immense contribution to the nation as scientist, innovator and statesman. “Humility is an integral essence of leadership and Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam is the greatest embodiment of this virtue,” Sh. Pradhan added.
At the outset of his keynote address themed “Dimensions of Creative Leadership”, Dr. Kalam congratulated EIL on its Golden Jubilee celebrations. He expressed that the leaders of 21st century must work with integrity and succeed with integrity. Deliberating on the changing paradigms of leadership, he said that in yesterday, natural resources defined power but in today’s world knowledge is the power. “Leaders of yesterday commanded control, but today’s leaders empower their teams. Yesterday seniority signified status, but today creativity drives the status,” he further added.
Recalling his student days at the Madras Institute of Technology, he shared his experience of learning valuable leadership lessons while leading a project team for developing an aircraft design. “We not only learned the intricacies of system design & system integration during the project but also understood that convergence of technology and people management is very important for successful execution of a project.” He urged the youngsters to acquire knowledge in an integrated way for using multiple disciplines towards product development and management.
Dr. Kalam explained how economic prosperity of a nation is linked to creativity of leadership. He stated that prosperity is empowered by competitiveness which is driven by knowledge. Knowledge is derived from technology innovations which require resource investments. The resource is generated from increasing volumes which is driven by customer loyalty. The loyalty calls for a quality product which is linked to employee productivity. Productivity emanates from employee loyalty and satisfaction which result from a great work environment. A work environment is possible only when there is creativity in the leadership.
Elaborating on the essence of leadership, Dr. Kalam said that great leaders must have passion to realize their missions and be able to travel in the unexplored path. They also must know to manage success and failure and demonstrate the courage to take decisions.
Dr. Kalam shared the humble history of the Thumba Rocket Design Center in Kerala in the early 60s. He said that Vikram Sarabhai, the visionary of space programme in India, was looking for a site to establish space research station in the equatorial region. He was asked to see the Bishop of Trivandrum Rev. Peter Pereira. Dr. Kalam recalled that Rev. Pereira took the decision to dedicate the church for the establishment of the ISRO at Thumba. "It was in that church we had our design centre and started rocket assembly. Later, the Thumba Equatorial Rocket Launching Station (TERLS) led to the establishment of Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) and multiple space centres throughout the country," he said. "When I recall this event, I can see how enlightened spiritual and scientific leaders, all converge towards giving reverence to human life," he added.
For complete text of Dr. Kalam’s speech, please Click here