Keep Learning

I have made plenty of career transitions and here is my biggest learning – if you are fearless and keep learning, you can catch up with anyone, even in a new field.

When I went from studying engineering to becoming a police officer it felt like a big leap. But then going from being a cop to being a consultant at McKinsey was even crazier.

But was it hard? The answer is – it is all in your mind. Nothing is hard unless you think it is hard.

On joining the police, when I first faced a crowd of 20 odd protestors, I thought, “Oh my God! How does one handle this? They are so angry!” But within a year or two, even handling a crowd of 5,000 felt routine.

When I became a consultant at McKinsey, my slides and spreadsheets would have been awful on my first day on the job. But you quickly learn and get better.

When I became the police commissioner in Trivandrum, my Assistant Commissioners of Police (ACPs) had handled law and order for 20 plus years – I had done it only for 7 months. And yet, very soon, I had figured out the tricks and was leading the team comfortably.

Everybody starts from zero – it is not a big deal. If you keep learning, no matter how unfamiliar your field is – soon you will be a pro.

Nothing takes as long as you think – just keep learning and don’t get scared.

– Rajan

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