Staff Reporter

Take up the challenge, become entrepreneurs: Minister "I did not shy away from responsibility. I did what management schools taught me."

CHENNAI: Challenge yourselves and consider becoming entrepreneurs, for Indians are born entrepreneurs, Union Minister for Communications and Information Technology, Dayanidhi Maran told students on Sunday.

Speaking at `Crescita 2006,' a conference on managing corporate growth, organised by Bharathidasan Institute of Management (BIM), Tiruchi, he said many students avoided taking risks.

The Indian BPO industry provided jobs to several Americans here due to their superior managerial skills, he said.

With English being made compulsory in several schools across China, the nation was bound to emerge a very strong competitor, he added.

"India is lagging behind in managerial skills. You are going to have a tough time competing with experts from other countries."

Recalling his student days, Mr. Maran said he never dreamt of becoming a minister. "However, I did not shy away from responsibility. I did what management schools taught me. I listed out my priorities and later, proved my point."

The minister said he always believed in teamwork. "There have been times when members of my team thought my targets were impossible to achieve. Sometimes, you can use the muscle of a minister," he said, as students roared in laughter.

Speaking on the importance of capitalising on one's growth, he said getting Nokia to invest in Chennai was one such move. He said he aimed to achieve the target of having 500 million phone users by 2010.

Director general of BIM N. Jayasankaran and director M. Sankaran were also present. The two-day conference, sponsored by Tata Consultancy Services, featured several presentations by industry leaders and a business quiz for corporates.

A corporate quiz was held on Saturday as part of BIM Quest. The winner of the event was the team from the Sanmar group. Actor Prasanth presented the winners a prize of Rs. 25,000.