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Shahrukh Khan's speech at AIMA NMC

AIMA speech

Good evening everyone. Let me say it at the outset….ITS REALLY SCARY HERE!. The biggest managers of the biggest corporations in the biggest convention for management...AIMA. Really it’s a sadreflection that in such an august company of

people and such a collection of skill set...and big business houses and managers.. . all you could manage was to get a speaker from Bollywood to speak at the convention. Economy must really be bad.

But who am I to speak about the economical downtrend across the globe etc, or anything else for that matter..... just reading the topics being discussed before I came on stage.. .1 was frightened. Shit scared. Couldn’t understand a word.


Yeah if u say so.. . or no if you are in a bad mood sir.

Managing crunch...risk of npa...csr mandate...ceos...coos...cfos...ufos...mind boggling and numbing for a person like me...who can just about say kkkkcorporate management without falling over his own shoelaces. And I have to speak about Courage in this scared and ill informed mindset of mine.

But here I am and so are all of you wonderful people. I wish you a great convention and a happy economy.. .and I want to thank my friend Shiv for giving me this opportunity to speak in front of such an extraordinary amazement of grey matter....all you highly successful...perhaps the most successful people in the world and give a speech on success...!!

Am I the only one who is seeing this irony or are you all too busy holding back your laughter as to what I will say here.

Apart from my lack of knowledge and fear the only other problem is that I am really not good at giving discourses on how to be successful. I am not good at this because I don’t really know what can I say to you highly motivated people that you don’t already know...about life and success.

So I will bore you with a few details of my life and how I got to be a movie star...and mainly talk about success and how it came to be. Let me forewarn you, this is a recycled speech. Whenever I am called to give speeches at ypo or some such big organisation...I use this speech. Its generic... simple... and makes me give no

commitment in our first meeting. Somewhat like

the corporate world itself.

The biggest problem with success is that any narrative of success is bound to be at least a little bit dull...because its not your story. I have sat down with people who tell me their stories of success...and I am the hell out of my sight...if I want to feel jealous...I will see

some other actors successful film...I don’t need

the story of your life. Second..and more importantly so...successful people are almost never able to pinpoint what it was that made them so.

Take Warren Buffet. Here’s a guy who must get

asked five times a day how he became the most

successful investor of his era. His answers —

“Reinvest your profits,” “Limit what you borrow,” etc.—are no different from what any

fool could tell you. Buffet isn’t being cagey. He simply doesn’t know. Success is a wonderful thing, but it tends not to be the sort of experience that we learn from. We enjoy it; perhaps we even deserve it. But we don’t acquire wisdom from it. And maybe that’s why it cannot be passed on being successful does not mean my children will also be much ever I teach them what all I did in my life and even if they follow it to the letter. Success just happens. Really.

So talking about how to become successful is a waste of time... instead let me tell you very honestly...whatever happened to me happened because I am really scared of failure. I don’t want as much to succeed as much as I don’t want to fail. I come from a very normal lower middle class family...and I saw a lot of failure. My father was a beautiful man...and the most successful failure in the mom also failed to stay with me long enough for her to see me become a movie star. We were quite poor actually at certain junctures of our lives...and I have even experienced a kurkee...where they throw you and your house stuff on the roads. Let me tell you...poverty is not an ennobling experience at all. Poverty entails fear and stress and sometimes depression...1 had seen my parents go through it many times. It means a thousand petty humiliations and hardships. At an early age after my parents died...I equated poverty with failure. I just didn’t want to be

poor. . . .so when I got a chance to act in films it

wasn’t out of any creative desire that I signed

my was just purely out of the fear of

failure and poverty that I signed most of my

initial films. Most of them were discards of actors and the producers could not find anyone

else to do them. Deewana was discarded by Armaan Kohli...Baazigar was rejected by Salman Khan and Darr was negated by Aamir Khan. I did them all for just making sure that I was working to avoid unemployment. The timing..or something was right, and that made them happen and I became a big star. I asked Dilip Kumar sahib once...that why he did Devdas...and he looked at me and said...for the money yaar. Bimalda paid me one lac of rupees....I didnt know it would be such a great

film and make me such a huge actor....that’s

the only reason I did Devdas. Which means sometimes our success is not the direct result of our just happens on it’s own and we take credit for it...out of embarrassment sometimes.

So I believe the true road to success is not just the desire for success but a fear of failure. I tell everyone if you don’t enjoy and be scared of you failure hard enough.. .you will never succeed. I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun. . .but I will insist and hope that all of us...should experience failure in some measure. The extent of what each one of us perceives as failure may it should. . .but I believe one needs to pass through some stages of failure if they really want to succeed.

So how does failure help us.

1. First and foremost..its not the absence of failure that makes you a is your response to failure that actually helps to buffer the reverses that you experience. I for

one have two responses to failure...first is

pragmatism.. .a recognition and belief that if one approach does not work...then the other will or might. The second response is fatalism. I fool myself that it was bound to happen and I need to move on..not get caught up in the oft repeated question...God why does it happen to me ???

2. Failure also gives me an incentive to greater

exertion...harder work...which invariably leads to later success in most cases.

3. Failure is an amazing teacher...if you don’t will never learn...and if you don’t will never grow. There is a well- known story of a bank president who was asked the secret of his success. “Right decisions,” he replied. “How do you get to know how to make right decisions?” came the follow-up question. “Experience,” was the answer. “Well, how do you get experience?” asked his interrogator. “Wrong decisions,” he replied.

4. Sometimes it has taught me stop pretending that I am someone else than what I am supposed to be. It gives me a clear cut direction that hey...maybe I am not supposed to be doing this... let me just concentrate on finishing and doing things that really matter to me..that define me...instead of following a particular course that actually is taking me away from what really my core liking is. KKR my cricket team is one such example, till through the advice of my friends like Shiv I took on a ceo and whole new department that would

handle the job better.

5. Failure also gets you to find...who your real friends are. The true strength of your relationships only get tested in the face of strong adversity. I lost lots of friends post Ra.One apart from losing a lots of audience too and post Chennai Express, I am happy to tell you though I haven’t made any new friends...1 have a whole new set of enemies.

6. Regular failures...also have taught me empathy towards others. Being a is easy to be prone to the notion that I am superior...self sufficient...and fantastic..instead of realizing that I was just plain lucky or got some lucky breaks.

7. Overcoming some of my failure has made me discover that I have a strong will...and more discipline than I suspected. It has helped me have confidence in my abilty to survive.

So all in all I think failure is a good thing. Won’t

bore you with more details of how failure is a

good thing...cos you wont call me back again for a talk on success etc next time...but would like to tell you all...that life is a not just a check

list of acquisitions, attainments and fulfillments. Your qualifications and c.v. don’t really matter. Jobs don’t matter. Instead life is difficult and

complicated...and beyond anyone’s control and the humility to know that by respecting your failures will help you survive it’s vicissitudes.

There is the greatest practical benefit in making

a few failures in life. I say making because failure is not an exterior force, I believe it happens due to our own actions and reactions, in such convoluted ways that we may not understand, but we are the reason for it. So don’t be weighed down by it, cherish the experience and learn from it. By experiencing all and accepting it, will you experience success, not in isolation of life’s full offerings.

Let me conclude by saying that my hope for you is a lifelong love of learning, exciting and

inspiring dreams, businesses, profits, deals,

power lunches or whatever turns you guys and girls on but alongside I wish you a fair number of moderate failures too. By experiencing all, I hope that you will experience success.

Success is never final....just like failure is never


Courage is ill defined if we think it is doing

something macho...risky or chancy. If that happens at somebody else’s others cost, its even less courageous. Courage is doing what YOU are afraid to do. Personally scared to do in whichever capacity you work. There can be no courage unless you are scared. So be feel the courage. Be fearful. I believe one has to have the fear of failure so much...that you get the courage to succeed.

So that’s my learned piece on courage in success. Or what I call THE SUCCESS OF FAILURE....AND BEING SCARED ENOUGH TO BE COURAGEOUS, TO MAKE IT SO.



In simple terms or film language it means....If at first you don’t succeed...reload and try again.

SHOOT FAST... SHOOT FIRST and be ready to take a bullet too....and remember what Don said..... iss company ki management ke dushman ki sabse badi galati yeh woh isS company ka dushman hai...kyunki jab tak dushman apni pehli chaal chalta hai....yeh company apni agli chaal chal chuki hoti hai.....

Thank you very much all. I am open to all kinds of questions and answers now.. . SPECIFIC AREAS OF INTEREST TO YOU ALL OR GENERAL CHITTER