Today was a real great day. I got to meet the great man himself, Jen-Hsun Huang, CEO of NVIDIA, in flesh and blood. This is the man who revolutionized the Graphics industry with his company NVIDIA for which I work proudly. My association with Nvidia products goes back to 2000 when I had persuaded my parents to buy a Rs 4000/- NVIDIA Riva Tnt 128 Mb card. I still remember what all I had to listen.
It was kind of completing the circle when I met Jen-Hsun Huang today.
To begin with he has a lot of energy and infectious enthusiasm. He single handedly gave his presentation and answered lot many questions. I found him very approachable and enthusiastically mixing around with the people. I had a fun chat with him while we were having a round of drinks.
Front to Back, Left to Right :- Rajib, Jaya, Parag, Jen-Hsun, me. Shazia, Surath, Bibhuti, Kali, Karthik, Sachin. (Missing - Bhaskar and Meduri)
Here are some of the points that I noted while I was attending his presentation.
- Be in a "sustainable" industry some place where there is potential for growth.
- The field should have very few competitors.
- The solution provided by you should help a lot of people.
- Always do something that is worthy to do.
- Create a brand name minus the hoopla of advertisement. Nvidia hasn't spent a lot on money on advertising. It is only by word of mouth that the brand has been built.
- Create an ecosystem around the product to advance in the future. Create something that initiates something more. In Nvidia's case it is the CUDA technology that is doing that.
- Create demos to shock /awe / inspire people.
- Focus on the needs of the next generation.No one in the 90's ever thought that their cell phones would have music on them, could capture videos,etc.The next generation can't live without these on their cell phones.
- The leader has a self deprecating sense of humor. Jen Hsun has a great sense of humor. He laughs at himself and makes us laugh too. There was this instance where he answered a question with something that was totally not what was asked. Dwight had to correct him. So Jen Hsun said that he was afraid he was turning into an old senile man. :D
- Focusing on your competitor is not a good strategy. People always kept on asking him " Why don't you compete with Intel / ATI ? ". He says that you need to focus on your strengths and keep creating innovative stuff so that your competition has to catch up with you all the time. Don't spend time in thinking how can I dodge / attack my competitor.
- Put in funny incidents in your speech. While speaking to us, I observed that he used to put in stories and make them interesting. This story telling ability with a sense of humor is a potent combination.
- Build on your competencies by age 30. This is something that I concluded from the talks that I had with him. Develop your armoury, your skills by the age of 30 to see that you can develop something really fruitful in your life.