Zain Al Hussain Naqvi’s 5 answers to success

  1. What’s the most important thing you’ve learned throughout your career?

I can’t emphasize enough on networking & talking to people. One of the most important aspects of progressing in my career has been networking – talking to people, building meaningful conversations, and maintaining a relationship that has resulted in win-wins. To network with people, you must present yourself in a certain manner, make yourself approachable and hold the ability to small-talk in situations. When I was 15-16, I wasn’t too keen on public speaking or speaking out as a whole, as I worked across multinationals, I realised how much speaking up helps. I was awarded better responsibilities – speaking to clients as a trainee (not too common in corporates), better work responsibility, and standing up for what’s right – if there’s something I feel was wrong, I would approach my senior. 

Hence, I believe as a student, develop your ability to speak – participate in-class debates, ask questions, be involved with activities that require you to communicate, speak up & interact. This will eventually give you the confidence to step up in the corporate world. 

2. What contribution does Jai Hind have to your personality, your success? 

Jai Hind played a huge role in contributing to where I am today. The department that kept giving me opportunities to shine and showcase my talent also supported me thoroughly when I studied for ACCA. With a variety of subjects and different models of testing, I was required to write reports, be thorough with research, and speak to peers, seniors, and industry experts which contributed to my personality and eventually built my confidence. 

Faculties such as Milind Sir, Armin Ma’am, and Hitesh Sir challenged my ability to think critically, and apply concepts rather than rote-learn and gave me an experience of experiential learning. Jai Hind also gave me a platform to lead fests, participate in other college events and develop my leadership. Today, at a professional level – I yet have takeaways from my college days to apply professionally and I’m eternally grateful to the department and college for this.

3. Was it easy for you to manage ACCA studies along with your college studies? What tips would you like to give to students- who are aspiring to such professional courses?

Pursuing ACCA during college was one of the hardest challenges of my life. Topping college exams as well as clearing ACCA in my first attempt goes down as one of my best personal and professional achievements. The balance between college, ACCA & work to a point instilled peculiar discipline, and a very stringent work/studying ethic. This discipline carries down to today and hope for the rest of my life. There were instances wherein I would skip social obligations to probably put in an extra revision session for an ACCA exam – what kept me going was the success that I’d taste in a few years once ACCA was done. The urge to skip studying for a social alternative did overpower me sometimes but the guilt was extremely burdening too. 

However, when I received my results, the joy of being an ACCA at 21 was unparalleled. This journey has taught me so many life lessons, has allowed me to help others in their journey and today contributes SO much to my professional journey. 

4. What advice would you have for students who struggle to reach out to seniors/teachers for mentorship? 

There’s only one solution in my opinion – Networking. You must build your profile and present yourself in a particular way. You need to have a vision, and purpose of what you want to do in life & you must be god-damn serious about it. The last thing a faculty/mentor wants is spending time with you and realizing you’re not even interested. Identify areas of expertise, talk to people who you think can help you out, and learn the right way to approach them. For example – Approach a faculty on a topic that was discussed and build your conversation around it, talk about it, show your willingness to learn and the rest will come along. 

Seniors/Mentors/Faculties are here to help. During my journey, I gained the satisfaction of helping out colleagues, fellow juniors, and students with small bits – this helped me develop a passion for teaching which today I can fulfill at a larger scale. As a student, if you ever need help/advice, PLEASE don’t hesitate to approach any senior or faculty – you can reach out to me as well & I’ll be more than happy to help! 

5. What do you wish someone would have told you when you were in college,?

I wish someone had asked me to start reading a little earlier in college. When I speak about reading – I don’t only refer to non-fiction finance books but also fiction, newspaper articles, research papers & podcasts. Even in my lectures today – the emphasis is on reading and being up-to-date with all the current affairs. This eventually will help you determine your area of interest; whether is it markets, politics, sports, or finance. This eventually will help you shape your career and pave a path for further education too. 

Additionally, when you study, relating a real-life example to a concept is the best way to remember a concept or understand better how it works – this can be derived through pure reading and being up-to-date with current affairs. Reading also naturally improves your vocabulary, improves your soft skills, and ensues as a good conversation topic while networking – I can vouch for that personally! 🙂

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