Entrepreneurs have saved entire nations from collapsing, and it is the entrepreneurs that will save our country’s future. Having spent a life working with founders and dreamers, there’s a chapter in my journey that came to pass with Prof. Dr. Chaudhry Abdul Rehman, Chairman The Superior Group.
At a time when we met, I was in the pursuit of a channel that will allow me to redefine heroes on national television. The show ‘Idea Croron Ka’ was merely an idea back then, and an idea that no media house saw promise in. Quite similar to what the initial reaction to incubators was in the country and look where we are now. One such man whose eyes lit up on hearing what I wanted to do was him. He offered me the prime spot on his channel NEO News and thus began our journey.
Prof. Dr. Chaudhry Abdul Rehman, is a mentor to many whose entrepreneurial journey is to be learnt from. Success doesn’t come easy – this is what entrepreneurs are told. Sure – His journey has been long; a journey of disrupting the status quo in education, media, entrepreneurship and technology in Pakistan.
When asked about the one thing he could do all his life, he says ‘teaching’. Prof. Dr. Rehman is a teacher by heart and soul, and his lessons revolve around passion, persistence and risk-taking. Given the state of education in the country and the number of children that is out of school and colleges, he has focused his efforts towards the youth. ‘We want to make job creators and not job seekers through our institutions’, says Prof. Dr. Rehman.
The present state of the education sector is discouraging. The quality of education provided is largely questionable. Are students then equipped to take on those from developed systems? Do the students have knowledge beyond what is rote-learned in classrooms? Are their critical and analytical skills developed enough to participate in international challenges? The system is, sadly, neither producing nor nurturing heroes.
A common factor that weighs entrepreneurs down is their impatience. Success requires patience and persistence. It requires perseverance. Success that comes easy is rather short-lived and a ‘fad’. Prof. Dr. Rehman started his mission with establishing one educational academy in Lahore. Today, after two decades, the Superior Group has more than 100 schools, 250+ colleges and 2 state of the art university campuses. Being a risk-taker, he has ventured into other spaces and the Group comprises of 15 companies including 2 TV channels (national and regional), national newspaper and a radio channel. Without deep-rooted perseverance, he may have either closed down the academy or even accepted partnership offers, or taken a decision that would have implied a compromise on the values he had set for his organization. That’s what sets an entrepreneur apart from the crowd – he does not compromise on the journey he sets on.
An element which makes cofounders special among the league of successful entrepreneurs is the investment they make in their teams, the people around them. These cofounders put in all resources necessary to kick start the learning and growth of their team members. That is precisely how Prof. Dr. Rehman has been building people – students and his teams – at Superior Group for two decades now.
Successful entrepreneurs like Prof. Dr. Rehman are proponents of innovative ideas. Talking of the show, there have been four successful seasons with the fifth one on the way, where 100+ startups pitched their ideas, PKR 510 Million was raised in investment commitments, 43 individuals were featured as inspirations and featured 25 local and international investors. That is the success of an entrepreneur, the power of believing in innovation.
Prof. Dr. Chaudhry Abdul Rehman’s motivating journey is marked with passion, hard work and self-belief. It illustrates perseverance of a determined individual who continues to strive, strive to make Pakistan economically superior.