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Find Inspiration And Create Aspiration

Most successful people are somehow inspired to do things differently. For some it is an innovative idea, and for others it is identifying a need and filling it. For Ajit Prabhu, the co-founder and chief executive officer of QuEST Global, it was a car.

Most successful
people are somehow inspired to do things differently. For some it is an
innovative idea, and for others it is identifying a need and filling it. For
Ajit Prabhu, the co-founder and chief executive officer of QuEST Global, it was
a car.

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At a time
when few in Ajit’s home town in India could afford an automobile, Ajit’s uncle
drove one to and from his incense shop. Ajit wanted a car too. So
in eighth grade, when his friends invited him to play, Ajit said no. He
decided instead to work on his new business selling incense sticks, just like
his uncle.

This was one
of the first unconventional choices that Ajit made in his life. His
entrepreneur spirit was strong and so was his desire to make a living. The
value of aspirations cannot be ignored, and Ajit says that it is one of the
three fundamental requirements for building a successful business.

“To build
something and create some value, you have to have aspirations – that’s
absolutely important,” says Ajit.

It was
Ajit’s early aspirations that led him to reject the traditional path
repeatedly, choosing incense over play, opportunity over predictability,
throughout his entire life.

Ajit’s
willingness to pursue uncommon options led him to co-found QuEST Global, an
engineering consultancy

 and outsourcing firm, in 1997 with one partner and one client. As
of 2009, his company is approaching $100 million in revenue, employs 1,600
people across 17 countries, and services many of the world’s largest firms.

QuEST Global
is a leading provider of diversified engineering services and manufacturing.
The company helps customers in the aerospace, consumer electronics, healthcare,
industrial products, marine, nuclear engineering, oil & gas, power
generation, and transportation industries. QuEST helps cut product development
costs, shorten lead times, extend capacity and maximize engineering resources
availability by providing support across the complete product life cycle.

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By
dissecting Ajit’s uncommon ability to open up new market space, we see a clear
and consistent playbook of proven strategic moves. These are options that his
competitors did not see, and by employing these approaches, QuEST Global is
leading its industry.

Over the
next few days, I will share just a couple of the strategies that the company
used to outthink its competition. QuEST Global’s dominance might come from a
mere aspiration, but it was the planning and forethought of its management that
has made it so strong.

Ask yourself the questions below to see how you can find
renewed inspiration to fuel your business’ next aspiration.

  1. What do
    I want?
  2. What do
    my customers want?
  3. Is
    there a need in my business or industry that needs to be filled?
  4. How can
    filling a new sector open up new market space for my company?
  5. What
    can I prepare now for future projects?

 

About the author

Author of Outthink the Competition business strategy keynote speaker and CEO of Outthinker, a strategic innovation firm, Kaihan Krippendorff teaches executives, managers and business owners how to seize opportunities others ignore, unlock innovation, and build strategic thinking skills. Companies such as Microsoft, Citigroup, and Johnson & Johnson have successfully implemented Kaihan’s approach because their executive leadership sees the value of his innovative technique.

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