Know what’s keeping Ratan Tata busy and happy post retirement

Know what’s keeping Ratan Tata busy and happy post retirement “The first few weeks of life after retirement have been wonderfully pleasant...As days go by, I will begin to focus my attention on specific areas where value can be added to enhance the quality of life of the rural citizens. I hope this will be greatly engrossing activity and one which hopefully I would enjoy.” This is an excerpt from the letter (dated January 26, 2013) that Ratan Novel Tata wrote after his retirement from the post of Chairman of Tata Group in 2012.

The quote mentioned above clearly reflects Ratan Tata’s humane side and also depicts how this man simply wants to give it back to the society by devoting his time, and not just money, for the cause. And guess who is on his top priority list? It’s the rural citizens of India.

But are you aware, how he aims to achieve his dreams? By spending quality time in his ‘Happy Space’.

Happy Space: Where talent is nurtured and ideas are born
Rata Tata’s ‘Happy Space’ is nothing but his own zone wherein he spends time with Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) students, meets young entrepreneurs and of course, spends some time taking care of Tata Trust’s initiatives.

After stepping down as chairman of Tata Sons in 2012, Ratan Tata had also expressed his wish to focus on initiatives like rural development, water conservation and child nutrition. “My most visible goal is to do something in nutrition to children in India, and pregnant mothers. Because that would change the mental and physical health of our population in years to come,” he had said.

His other plans include low-cost housing, sustainable energy, waste management and clean water for Indian citizens, and here is what he has done for these causes so far.

· Nutrition: He had demanded full subsidy on food for the under privileged sections of the society. He had also said that the country was going to suffer if children's very existence was condemned because of malnutrition.
· Clean water: Clean drinking water is another essential area which drew Tata’s attention and as part of his social responsibility, a rice husk ash-based water filter was developed at the Pune-based Tata Research Development and Design Centre.
· Waste Management: XPRIZE, the global leader in incentivized prize competition, entered Indian market in collaboration with Ratan Tata and other philanthropists.

Ratan Tata’s formula for success
The personality of Ratan Tata projects a true entrepreneur and also gives us an insight about the person, who is willing to work all his life for the betterment of society. What makes the claim even stronger is the fact that he not just talks about social betterment but actually implements initiatives to make a difference. In addition, those bitten by the entrepreneurial bug can also take lessons from Ratan Tata’s life; provided they pick up the following characteristics of the man:

1. Be a visionary: No one can deny Ratan Tata is a visionary, and that is precisely what one needs to succeed—a vision to lead.
2. Risk-taker: Ratan Tata broke the 144-year-old practice and announced Cyrus Mistry as his successor, someone from outside the immediate Tata family. Who else could have taken such a risk?
3. Authenticity: The secret behind every successful leader’s achievement is his authenticity; the knack to listen to one’s own voice.
4. Be a humble listener: Those who had the opportunity of working with the man always say he is a very good listener and makes everyone comfortable in his presence.
5. Create your own ‘happy space’: Of all the skills you could be bestowed with, one’s own happy space is the most important part. Identify that what makes you feel happy and what drives you to act.

No wonder, Ashok Ganguly, former Hindustan Unilever chairman, describes Ratan Tata as a ‘Karma Yogi’ and feels that he might be growing old in times but has a young heart. And what we think is that he is the man with a golden heart! Wouldn’t you agree?