26th Indian to join LinkedIn’s influencer initiative                    

Former Indian cricketer and captain Sourav Ganguly joined LinkedIn today as a LinkedIn Influencer, a program that includes 500+ global leaders, thinkers, and pioneers of various industries. Ganguly will be the second Indian cricketer to join the platform.

Ganguly will now be part of the LinkedIn Influencer Program that includes an illustrious list of names such as Narendra Modi, Bill Gates, Richard Branson, Priyanka Chopra, Oprah Winfrey, Justin Trudeau, Sachin Tendulkar, among other eminent personalities across geographies and fields. In India specifically, some of the other LinkedIn Influencers such as Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Kailash Satyarthi, Vani Kola, and Devdutt Pattanaik, spark some of the most valuable thought leadership conversations on the platform that help members stay one step ahead.

Ten years after retiring from international cricket, Ganguly, the ‘Bengal Tiger of the Indian Cricket team’, will spend his next innings promoting and inspiring fresh talent in the sports industry. His debut post on LinkedIn, as the former captain of the Indian cricket team, draws parallels between athletes and professionals and talks about lessons learned in leadership, team building, challenges, and visualising instinct-backed success.

In addition to working within the sports industry, Ganguly has also written his first book, A Century is Not Enough, which epitomises his never-say-die spirit. The book is much more than just a cricket book; Ganguly talks about leadership, failure, how to recognize and grow talent, and how to emerge victorious from any situation.

Sourav Ganguly shared,As an international sportsperson, I have had the opportunity to play with some of the best sportsmen and take on the mantle of being the Indian captain. The journey has taught me a lot about leadership, understanding your team, how to handle high pressure, and most importantly how to succeed by always following your instincts. I am excited to share these learnings with professionals and entrepreneurs on LinkedIn and engage in meaningful conversations.”

“We are delighted that Sourav Ganguly is now an influencer on LinkedIn. Having grown up watching his career and captaincy closely, it has been inspirational to see Sourav play a critical role grooming the next generation of leaders, who have now become leaders in their own right. He is responsible for changing the face of Indian cricket, and that leadership is useful to understand for any business you’re in,” said Akshay Kothari, Country Manager, LinkedIn India.

In an exclusive interview with LinkedIn, Sourav Ganguly shared some inspirational anecdotes on good leadership and achieving success:

…on visualizing success: Life is led by what goes on in between your two ears. That is everything. Your success, failure, how you approach situations, how you recover; its the way you think. It’s your mind which actually rules your body and never the other way around.

…on making a difference:
Captaincy is a huge moment in everybody’s career. But just being captain is not a huge moment. It’s about how you make a difference – so how you handle pressure as a captain, how you build a team, how you deal with youngsters, how you make the youngsters perform, how you deal with youngsters who don’t perform… These are all cycles, and these are emotional cycles.

…on attracting the right talent: “… Be very careful about who you pick and take your time before you are sure of the person you are going to work with. At some stage in life you have to be judgmental. I was judgmental about picking players for my team and most of them have worked. That might not be the case always but the only way to get it right is by backing your instincts and not having afterthoughts.”

…on his leadership style: Because I was strong on the field, many people thought I was strong off it, but I was a completely docile person off the field, very very laid back. That’s the actual Ganguly! The best thing you can do as a leader is to reflect at the end of the day and be absolutely sure that you did what you thought was the best for the country and for the team.

…on high pressure jobs: “Every high-pressure job comes with an expiry date. We are humans and we all need to deliver, and if the delivery is clubbed with a lot of high pressure it has to come with an expiry date… Every time there’s a little bit of dip in your performance and there will always be dips as we are all human, judgements will happen, and you have to find a way to come back out of it; create your own zone of performance and be successful…”

…on work-life balance: “If you do a job which has no challenges it’s no fun and that’s how I saw life. If there’s a challenge and you overcome it, you will enjoy your holiday better. You only enjoy breaks if you work, otherwise breaks are not fun.”

…on striving for excellence: “Getting a chance in life should be seen as an opportunity and not as pressure. When you get on the field for your job, perceive it as an opportunity to excel at it and emerge as a hero out of it, instead of focusing on the pressure that comes with it. Every chance, every job and every situation must be looked at as an opportunity to succeed.”

…on bouncing back: “Everyone has bad days. Even we have had bad days on field, where the heat was too much and we were too tired but we found a way to push ourselves and get back on the field. We are humans and we will have bad days but it’s all about getting back and delivering, because that’s what we are in it for.”

Follow Sourav Ganguly on LinkedIn, and check out his debut post here. To watch his interview please click here.


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