“On résiste à l’invasion des armées; on ne résiste pas à l’invasion des idées,” so said Victor Hugo, the greatest French poet of the 19th century and author of famous books, ‘Les Misérables’ and ‘The Hunchback of Notre Dame’. When translated into English, it means that even armies can not stop an idea whose time has come. This came true in case of Jan Koum and Brian Acton, the co-founders of WhatsApp, a mobile messaging application company they founded barely five years ago.
“WhatsApp gets a $ 19bn ‘like’ from Facebook,” so read the headline of a news item on the front page of ‘The Times of India’, New Delhi edition of Friday, February 21, 2014. Else where in the same news paper, another headline, “55 staff + 450m users = $ 19bn” reported the news of acquisition of WhatsApp by Facebook at a breathtaking $ 344 million per employee. The deal worth Rs 120,000 crore is considered to be one of the biggest deal in the technology world. The amount involved in the deal is reportedly equal to a country like Bangladesh’s foreign exchange reserves and even bigger than the NASA’s budget. It is really mind-blowing…an idea when implemented and converted into an application or product could result into such a windfall of this proportion…just out of this world…totally unimaginable.
An idea can change your life as it did in the case of the Ukrainian duo, Koum and Acton. So, what’s yours? Dream big, Develop your competencies by continually updating knowledge, skills, and attitudes, Think creatively big ideas that have the power to change this world, Innovate to do things differently, and Create applications or products that can impact the lives of the people, à la WhatsApp…Who knows, you may hit a bigger jackpot tomorrow!