Friday, April 09, 2010

Simply Fly!

Have you ever wondered how entrepreneurs succeed and make money? Have you wondered how one can start a business from practically nothing? Have you ever wondered how your actions (past or present) will help you someway or the other in the long run? Well, for some of these answers I recommend reading Captain Gopinath’s autobiography “Simply Fly”. Nope, I don’t have the habit of writing book reviews and so will not dwell too much into the details of the book. But believe me when I say it is one truly amazing story.

I am a sucker of good autobiography books but this one takes the cake! It’s not because he is better than most but it’s just that he hails from a very familiar background - with a middle class background from Karnataka he went on to do amazing things. He made such a big impact to the aviation industry that he is considered as the father of the low-cost airline industry in India.

I had always wondered how he made millions from nothing. But I never knew how he got there nor did I know what he had to do to get there. When you read the book you will realize it was never a walk in the park. But his perseverance and his ability to keep trying various things has taken him where he is now. My respect to him has increased manifold after reading his life story.

Hailing from a remote village near Hassan he became an army captain. Fought in the Liberation of Bangadesh war and was later posted on the Sino-India border as a ‘watchman’. After all the spiritual enlightenment he could get there, he took early retirement from Army because he got bored with it! This was not before he extensively traveled across India and also went on a backpacking trip to USA on a meager $500. At the age of 27 he suddenly felt the urge of becoming a farmer and invested heavily on farming. He had to take a huge loan and a much bigger risk to start this venture. The breadth of his experience in these activities, his learning and his achievements is simply astounding.

If one has the notion that one has crossed the age of taking risks or one is too old to try new things, then just throw that notion away. He demonstrates how foolhardy it will be to think like that. All one needs is to have the will and desire to achieve success and wok hard towards it! From farming he goes on and tries his hand at garage/motor workshop business, dealerships, hotel business, agriculture consultancy and even politics before plunging into the aviation industry. One must hear from the horses’ mouth to get an idea of what he learnt, the risks he took and the success and failures that followed. Half the book tells you the story of how Deccan Aviation (the charter company) was born and how it gave rise to the more famous/publicized Air Deccan (LCC – Low Cost Carrier).

The book gives a very deep insight to the life of a first generation entrepreneur and it is Simply Amazing! A must read for anyone and everyone who can appreciate grit and valor, risk, disappointments and rewards - especially for all the future entrepreneurs out there!


Divya A L said...

I usually refrain from autobiographies, but after reading this, I think I must try reading atleast first few pages :)

dilip said...

Most times the first few pages of a book are the most boring..;)

Garf said...

U actually ended up with a book review. :D i guess..u r too inspired and liked the book very much. Good of u 2 hav written about it. I am thanfull. Entrepreneurship always excites me.....good times ahead with a good book.

dilip said...

hehe..:D yaa..i know..:)
But i guess, like you said i couldn't stop and the book deserved it..:)