Corporate world will wait for Dravid to transform into a motivational speaker

Like any business summit, Rahul Dravid stressed upon the â art of giving backâ and â customer is the kingâ theories during his speech © Getty Images

By Sidhanta Patnaik


Quite on the expected lines, Rahul Dravid’s speech at the Bradman Oration which he delivered on Thursday night at the Australian War Memorial in Canberra has attracted rave reviews. Knowing Dravid’s overall personality in the public domain the well-scripted speech was not surprising. He is a rare, well-read Asian cricketer who has a flair for the outside world. So it would have been a sloppy performance had he failed to seamlessly integrate history, culture, tradition, humour, commercial significance, foresight and literary derivation with cricket. His body language could have been a bit more animated, voice modulation slightly better and eye contact with the audience more convincing, but when have secondary elements been his forte when all his life he has earned our appreciation for the quality of his content and not the price tag on it.


One assumes that the writing was drafted by him, but considering his watertight schedule even if it was not, that does not earn him any discredit because one needs the analogy of a professor to be conveying a point or two to an audience. The speech has done enough to commonly influence us at a rational level. By it I mean not on the way we consume or perceive cricket but in the way we conduct our lives. Once the triumphant mood of the occasion’s magnitude settles down and we replay the speech in a much clearer mind space, the light of it will prominently fall on our daily lives’ utility value.


Beyond what was communicated about cricket’s worries and the game’s significance in India’s landscape, what stood out were the lessons that qualify to be priceless possessions of any business entity. For an individual, the biggest take away from this speech should be to admit that in a world that is swearing by the tag of narrowcasting and core domain specialisation, it is important to have a broader spectrum to have the approval of the global community with varying interest.


Like any business summit, he stressed upon the ‘art of giving back’ and ‘customer is the king’ theories. Not only it creates enormous leveraging opportunities but also defines the path to success. Today’s youngster, whose empathy levels are at an all time low and are canvassed by the ‘I-Me-Myself’ world, it is a must pick-up point. At a time when anti-workplace Facebook status messages are leading to complicated relationships between employer and employees, it is important to note that when he said that a cricket match is not a war and shared Sir Don Bradman’s secret of remaining occupied. It was an acknowledgment of the fact that like any other job holder, cricketers too have an attendance register to tick. They do that with pride and carry themselves with dignity and integrity.


Being in the zone and rekindling the original love for your profession is a bliss that propels a performer to new heights. When he spoke about it, he represented the entire creative fraternity. It is an encouragement for others to try and find their zones and ride on its euphoria for a bright and contended career. When he reflected on his generation of cricketers’ impact in the way the game is played in 2027 he yet again made the vision document of any organisation look like its most prized possession.


Cricket and life have been synonyms for as long as one can remember and appropriately a meticulous student of both who carries himself with consummate ease in every platform, eloquently passed on a few handful tips. There is no end to how much one can derive out of the peerless Rahul Dravid. With more runs to come and more hair to go grey, corporate entities will eagerly wait for a day when he transforms himself into a motivational speaker. It is perfectly understandable if fans have concluded that what they soaked on Thursday night is just a tip of the iceberg.



(Sidhanta Patnaik is a sports marketing professional, public speaker and part time writer. His twitter id is @sidhpat)


Click here to read full transcript of Rahul Dravid’s Sir Don Bradman Oration