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What Entrepreneurs Can Learn From An Astronaut Launching your business is almost like launching a space mission; sitting at the helm is the founder and the astronaut in the latter.

By Punita Sabharwal

You're reading Entrepreneur India, an international franchise of Entrepreneur Media.


Flying an airplane was not something Capt. Sunita Williams had done earlier. In her words, "Never be afraid of trying something new. It was something that I had never ever done but I said, "Let's try.'" It is possible to achieve anything if a person is qualified and determined with the will to make the right decisions. A person should aspire to try out new things and explore new opportunities. Confidence, perseverance, persistence and knowledge play a key role in achieving the most challenging feats, said Capt. Sunita Williams, NASA Astronaut at an interactive session on women empowerment organized by FICCI Ladies Organization.

Capt. Sunita Williams is an American astronaut of Indian origin. She is the second woman of Indian heritage to have been selected by NASA for a space mission after Kalpna Chawla. She holds three records for female space travelers – longest space flight, number of space walks and total time spent on space walks. Here's how she's creating entrepreneurial motivation. Having witnessed the spectacular view of 16 sunrises and 16 sunsets in a day while on her mission to space, Capt. Williams was of the view that nothing was impossible. Considering herself as a girl next door, she said that opportunities were aplenty and the need was to grab and explore them. She added that it was important to be a good student as it opens doors of opportunities. Speaking about her experiences in a male dominated field, she said that she often found herself in a minority but it never deterred her or interfered with her goals. She knew her tasks well and was competent to take on any challenges. Capt. Williams added that every woman brings to the table team work and willingly takes care of the team as it's her innate nature.

While narrating learning from her numerous space explorations, Capt. Williams said that these experiences had taught her to be spiritual and realize that it would be in the interest of the humanity to preserve earth. She added that there was a need for all to be a little more friendly and understanding towards others.

After all success stories, Capt. Williams has not changed as a person. As per her, "When you are up there for a long time, when space becomes your home, you realize how trivial everything is. It doesn't matter if you are from country A or B, what matters is that you are from planet Earth." She still carries Bhagvad Gita and samosas to the space.

This article first appeared in the Indian edition of Entrepreneur magazine (April 2016 Issue).

Punita Sabharwal

Entrepreneur Staff

Managing Editor, Entrepreneur India

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